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Better Late – 28

The surrounding forest was dripping wet, drenched by the fierce storm. Now the sun had broken through and the drying process had begun. David Goodman led Shaynah Levy out of the small cabin and up a path toward the main house.

From the outside, it appeared to be a very friendly house. It had a storybook look to it because of the very high, steep, pointed roof (so snow can slide off easily, David had told her). The raw, weathered wood blended well with the natural surroundings of trees and underbrush.

Inside was a warm environment with gentle, buttery-looking pine everywhere. From most every room, large windows looked out on beautiful scenery. The large central living room looked out at the bay they had crossed to get to the island and the mouth of the channel beyond it. The large, stone kitchen had the same view on one wall, and a view into some forest on the other side. A third window looked out at the cabin and the cove beyond it.

“I have to remind you, Mrs. Levy… “

“Shaynah, please, David,” she interrupted. “Call me Shaynah.”

“I must remind you… uh … Shaynah, that it really is not an appropriate, year-round home for a mature woman alone.”

“Have you lived here alone, year round, David?” Shaynah asked.

“Yes, I have,” David said, “but I was writing a book, and wanted solitude. What would you do with twenty-four hours a day, alone on an island?”

“I guess you’re right, David,” she said sadly. “It’s a foolish fantasy. Where are you going to live if you sell this place?”

“I don’t know. I just need a change. The book is finished and I’m looking for a publisher. I’ve been alone here for two years and it’s a long time to be alone, even though I love this place and don’t want to leave it, I don’t have an appealing alternative at the moment.

“Maybe you do, David,” said Shaynah. “Maybe you do. Let’s talk, but first I need the bathroom.”

“To the right of that alcove,” David pointed and Shaynah went.

“Inside the bathroom took Shaynah’s breath away. Mirrored walls tinted with gold rivulets, polished brass fittings everywhere, and of course, a large Jacuzzi tub beside an open alcove where a shower in white tile, big enough for two people, had five shower heads to reach every part of a lucky couple’s body.

Shaynah shocked herself when the image of herself and David Goodman seeped into her mind’s eye. The two of them, naked together in the shower, streams of warm water washing over them amid a cloud of swirling steam. Shaynah reminded herself that such a situation was extremely unlikely. Still, it was a deliciously exciting thought for a recently released Hasidic woman.

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