To go, or not to go? The next Gathering was on in days and Julia had still not made a decision. At Carly’s insistence, she went, but when faced with the foreboding castle where the Gathering was to be held, she had second thoughts. Though not a seasoned player, she felt she had handled herself well at the first Gathering, but this, this was completely different—like a trip into fantasyland, where dreams can turn into nightmares at the touch of a whip or manacle.
Old friends, new friends, and some she might never have met, make her stay as enjoyable as the first, but a trip to the punishment room, brings a change in appearance in a frenzied attempt to escape. A proposition, not only from Carly, but others, gives Julia food for thought about her future, though she finds that in Carly she has a friend she can trust.
Her second Gathering brings Julia closer to the depravity she seeks to avoid, though the fruits of evil can be hard to resist.
Friday: 2:30 PM. – 4:30 PM.
The Qantas jet taxied to a stop on the runway as the passengers started to unbuckle their belts and talk freely amongst themselves while they waited for the door to open. Julia was no exception. This was her first flight out of her native Queensland and actually only the second flight she’d had on a commercial plane. The woman who sat beside her during the flight was a seasoned traveller and had been a comfort and support during the flight, not that there had been any problems with the plane, at least.
It had come to a head on the Wednesday night, a week and a half after that party, shaking off the shackles of married life, telling Mike to go, and facing a lonely cold road ahead. Jane had continued the party for another two days, but after she had departed, the feelings of loneliness and depression had returned, and Julia felt she faced an uncertain future without a partner. She cursed Mike and the party for ruining her life, but upon reflection, thanked him for making the break so enjoyable at the time. She had made numerous friends, and had some of the best sex she could ever recall, but that was one weekend and she had her whole life ahead of her yet. She thought about the party in Sydney a number of times, but each time dismissed it as too far and too extravagant.
She was out of her depth with these people, although they had befriended her and seemed genuine in what they told her, but many were society people and she was a plain working girl and didn’t really fit the scene. Those few days of wearing designer clothes, and eating gourmet foods, and living the high life had been an experience, but when she returned to her humble house where she had to cook and clean for herself, the reality of those few days hit home, hard. It was not only all of the above, but the sex had been more than she’d expected. Much more.
The mundane sex she had with Mike had been ruined after that first night, and continually after that. In fact, her body had never experienced such a barrage of digit, tongue and cock in its life, and although she had never seen herself as a nymphomaniac, or whatever, by the following weekend, after a few days of abstinence, Julia was hungering for some type of physical contact, with either man or woman.
She had spent time at work hoping to distract herself from the thoughts of that party, and the upcoming one in Sydney, but it had been of little comfort, and after a few hours, had returned to her empty house to mope and wallow in glasses of gin and tonic, hoping to find some solution to her problem. She had started to pull herself out of the mire by Wednesday, having decided not to go to Sydney and forget that that weekend had ever happened, though her body repeatedly told her, it had. She was a working girl and would never be anything but, so she would concentrate on her business, the hair and beauty salon, and forget the extravagances she had experienced, and concentrate solely on living her life as she thought it should be.
There! It’s settled, she told herself, and pleased she had made such an executive decision. Even if there were still doubts, by 7:30 PM. on the Wednesday night after a couple of glasses of gin and tonic, she had convinced herself, it was. At 8:00 PM., the phone rang just as she was about to get into the shower and retire for the day. She rushed out to the lounge, naked, and grabbed at the phone, taking it back through to the bedroom. She sat down on the bed, thinking it was Beryl about to tell her how the salon went for the day. “Hello,” Julia said.
There was a short pause. “Julia?”
For a moment, she was quiet, wondering who it was. She knew Beryl’s voice, and it wasn’t her.
“Hello, Julia?” the voice repeated itself. “It’s Carly.”
“Carly!” she said, thinking how different her voice sounded over the phone. “How are you?”
“I’m good. How are you? And more importantly, are you coming down this weekend?”
Julia hesitated, unsure what to say, knowing a refusal would be disappointment for her. “I’m sorry, Carly,” she said apologetically. “I don’t think I can make it.”
“Don’t say that, girl!” Carly said anxiously. “There are a number of people who want to meet you. I’ve spoken so highly of you. You can’t disappoint them.”
“Is there something more important you’re doing?” Carly asked.
“You just hop on that plane and get down here,” she ordered in her bossy tone that brought a smile to Julia’s face.
“Is it the money, girl?”
“No! I just don’t know what to—”
“I’ll tell you what to do. Pack your bag, Julia. You won’t need much since I’ve got clothes here that will fit you. I’ll have a taxi pick you up at your house on Friday after lunch and they’ll take you to the airport. There’ll be a ticket waiting for you at the flight office, and I’ll have my driver waiting for you when you get down here. He’ll bring you straight out here to me, and you’ll have nothing to worry about. Did you get all that?”
“Carly. I appreciate what you’re doing, but, I’m not sure—”
“Girl! I won’t take no for an answer. I want you here even if I have to come up there and bring you back myself. Now, tell me I won’t have to do that?”
There was a pause as Julia pondered over what she should do. I don’t know. I’d all but decided not to. She hesitated longer.