In Plain Sight


Exposed to the elements and out in the open, it wasn’t the ideal location for a rendezvous. Yet under the cover of darkness, it could nearly pass for a place that held a dark secret. Perhaps they had- but no, they wouldn’t. Not when someone simply driving by could see them. She was married after all and he was far too old to be pursuing women of her age. Then again, her husband was abusive and almost always drunk. And him! His wife died years ago under tragic circumstances. Considered an eligible bachelor despite his age, it was a disappointment to the women whose attentions he had rejected time and again. Clearly, he wasn’t in any hurry to remarry- but if the rumors were true, maybe they’d been mistaken. Maybe he simply hadn’t been in a hurry to marry someone available.

It wasn’t like anyone could blame such a torrid affair fueled by something stronger than love- loneliness. It was just that the small town wished it were more discreet. The neighboring communities were beginning to talk. Still, the two had never been caught, never seen under the shadows of lamplight as they tore in desperation at buckles and tights, skirts and suit jackets, hoping to feel whatever it was that seemed to be missing no matter how closely they brought their bodies together.

The rumors had started when old Ms. McClung claimed she’d seen shadows ravaging each other against a brick wall across from the post office. She’d been drunk, of course, as she always was when exiting the bar. Her husband had died years ago, but she had no problem frittering away his savings (which had been intended as an inheritance to their only son) on whiskey and gambling. It was no wonder the townsfolk didn’t believe her when she told them what she’d seen.

Yet rumors had grown and the accused found that a lingering glance in the cafe or a happenstance appearance at the same venue led to a flurry of questioning behind their backs. Still, they kept their secret, if it was even true. Hiding in plain sight and counting down days until they would be reunited under the dancing shadows of the streetlamp.


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