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From: Al Steiner <steiner_al@hotmail.com>
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Subject: {ASSM} NEW: I Remember Pearl Harbor by Al Steiner (FM,cheat)1/2
Date: Wed, 21 Jun 2000 04:10:02 -0400
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Greetings to all.  It's been a while since I've written an erotic
fiction story and it is an experience that I have missed greatly.  Many
other things have been going on, both in my literary life and in my
actual life, so I have not had as much time to spend on such a thing as
I used to.  But finally I gave into the compulsion to delve back into
the no-holds-barred world of ASSM and produced the following tale.  I
hope everybody likes it.  Please send me comments one way or the other.

I have changed my email address because my original one has now been
placed on so many bizarre mailing lists that I can no longer even check
it for legitimate mail.  Though this first address has served me well
for several years and for more than thirty stories, it currently
receives (no exaggeration) approximately 300 spam messages each and
every day, including Sunday (the Lord's Day goddammit!).  My sincerest
apologies to anyone who has sent me mail at the old address over the
past few months.  Though I've always tried to answer all email that is
sent my way, I have been simply unable to wade through all the crap in
order to pick out the gems.  The new address is steiner_al@hotmail.com
Please direct all future mailings there and I will answer all
legitimate mail as I once did.  In the meantime, enjoy the story.  It
is my usual formula of extensive character and scene development prior
to any sexual activity.  So if you're a first time Al Steiner reader
and looking for a quick stroke story, you might want to move on to the
next thread.




I REMEMBER PEARL HARBOR
By Al Steiner
Send all comments to steiner_al@hotmail.com





Emily and I had been friends for about three years before the trip to
Hawaii last Christmas.  We were friends, but only at work did we see
each other.  We never socialized together after hours, we never talked
on the phone outside of the workplace unless it was one of us asking
the other for lecture notes or something like that.  We were friends in
the way that married people of the opposite sex have to be friends in
our society: at a distance.  If we had both been single when she joined
the ranks of teachers at John F. Kennedy High School, I imagine that
something might have developed in the romance department between us.
After all, we were very compatible.  Both of us had Master's degrees in
World History and both of us were in the history department.  We both
shared a fascination with the World War II era and our discussions in
the lunchroom were always animated and fun.  I suppose that the rumor
mill, which is no different among a high school faculty than it is any
other place, had us sleeping together.  Anytime that any two people
were seen having lunch together more than once it was automatically
assumed that they were lovers.  But we were not; we were just
professional friends.  I was married to a corporate auditor that I had
met in college and she was married to a one time minor league baseball
player who was now a computer programmer.  Both of us took our marriage
vows seriously.  Romance between us was not an option and, at least on
my part, had never even been considered.

That is not to say that I was not attracted to her.  I am a male after
all and I like the sight of a pretty woman as much as any man.  Emily
wasn't stunningly beautiful.  She wasn't ever going to be asked to
model lingerie in a department store catalogue or anything like that.
But she was attractive in a girl next door kind of way.  She had
reddish blonde hair and green eyes, the genetic mark of Irish
ancestors.  Her face was very innocent looking, making her appear to be
somewhat younger than the twenty-eight years old she was the year of
the trip.  Though her body was usually well hidden by the collection of
ankle length dresses she wore to school, you could still tell that it
was shapely and that her legs, which were usually covered in dark
nylons, were the kind of legs a man liked to run his hands over or feel
wrapped around his back.  It was not until Hawaii however that my
suspicions about the allure of her attributes were confirmed.  Until
Hawaii I had never seen Emily dressed in anything but school marm
clothing.  The first time I saw her in shorts and a half-top, shortly
after we checked into our Waikiki hotel on December 19, I found that my
imaginings of what she looked like in such attire had been entirely
correct.

The annual Christmas break trip to Hawaii was a tradition at JFK High
that stretched far beyond my tenure there.  Each year a group of eight
to ten faculty members and their spouses would book with a travel agent
and take the ten-day trip together.  This entitled us to a reasonable
group rate at one of the nicer Waikiki hotels during what is the
busiest season for Hawaiian tourism.  The couples would each have their
own hotel rooms on the same floor of the building.  The time would be
spent taking in the sights and generally just enjoying the tropical
weather during what is always a miserable time of the year in Seattle.
The experience of being in such a place with friends made the trip
something that was looked forward to each year and that kept the annual
tradition alive.

My wife Sharon and I had included ourselves in the group every year
since my employment.  Sharon, as I've mentioned, is a corporate auditor
and she is very career oriented.  The rest of the year she is a driven
woman, working eighty and ninety hour weeks trying to propel herself up
the proverbial ladder.  Naturally this puts somewhat of a strain on our
relationship.  She misses meals, she breaks plans, and she puts nearly
everything else aside for her sacred job.  I can sympathize with
generations of corporate wives very well since I've been on the
receiving end of the same process.  The trip to Hawaii, in the past,
has always been an opportunity for us to rekindle a little of the
romance that had once possessed us and had driven us to marry in the
first place.  We could put all of our problems aside and spend long
hours walking on the beach or going to shows or doing all of the
tourist things or just making love in our room.

But in the last two years, as Sharon's career goals became closer and
more distinct, some of the romance leaked out of the trip.  Her drive
to succeed at all costs became even more of an obsession during the
rest of the year and during the trip itself she was always distracted
as she worried about whether or not taking ten days off would exclude
her from some crucial bit of favor with her bosses.  She would spend a
lot of time on the hotel room phone, checking in with the office just
to see how things were going, trying to keep her name at the front of
the right people's minds.  Though we rarely fought at home since we
rarely saw each other, the last two trips we took together were hotbeds
of marital squabbling as I begged her to try and relax and she spent
the entire time wishing she was not there.

This last year our home relationship had been particularly bad.  Sharon
had received a much wanted promotion in February, just a few weeks
after we had booked with the travel agent, and her eighty hour weeks
became one hundred hour weeks.  She had to travel a lot, sometimes for
four and five days at a time and, when I was graced with her presence
at home, she was haggard looking and tired.  As the time for the trip
grew closer I wondered if the soothing beat of the tropical paradise
was going to be able to work its magic on her at all this time.  Was
there anything left to rekindle?  This was definitely not the woman
that I had married.

I never had a chance to find out if the rekindle was going to work or
not.  In early December, when it was far too late to back out of the
arrangements without losing our money, Sharon's team of auditors was
given an urgent project that needed to be completed by the end of the
year.  Of course Sharon's boss, knowing that her vacation had been
scheduled since February, said that she should go and that the team
could carry on without her.  I'm sure he used his best martyr voice
when he said this and of course Sharon told him not to be ridiculous,
that she could go to Hawaii any old time.  This project was IMPORTANT
for the company, for the firm, and for the continued prosperity of
western civilization itself.  She told me that night that she had to
stay home.

This of course prompted a long and bitter fight between us, easily the
worst of our marriage.  From the time that she gave me the news until
the night before the scheduled departure, we slept apart and when we
weren't giving each other the silent treatment, we were arguing.  In
the end I put my foot stubbornly down.  I told her that since the trip
was paid for and since I wouldn't be seeing her over the holiday
anyway, I would be going without her.  I told her that I would send her
a postcard from Hawaii.  She protested my decision but it was to no
avail.  When the DC-10 left the runway at Sea-Tac, headed for Honolulu,
I was on it and my wife was not.

+++++


I met Emily's husband, Frank, for the first time on that seven hour
flight.  I took the window seat on the left side of the plane and they
sat next to me, Emily in the middle seat and Frank on the aisle.  Emily
had never talked much about her spouse during our discussions at
school.  Now, meeting him (this was their first time going along on the
annual vacation) and talking to him as we flew six miles above the
Pacific Ocean, I discovered something fundamental about him.  He was a
very annoying and unlikeable person.  A short man, measuring up at
about five-eight or so, Frank was afflicted with a nasty case of Short
Man's Syndrome.  He ran his mouth almost constantly and all he talked
about was how much better he was at everything than anybody else was.
He had endured greater hardships in his life than Ghandi or Jesus
Christ.  He had made greater achievements than they as well.  He was
smarter, stronger, faster, more agile, and generally just superior to
everyone and everything.  The bulk of his discussions revolved around
sports and sport-related subjects. He enlightened me on how good he was
at basketball, at golf, at football, and particularly at baseball.

"I had an upper three hundreds average for three straight years with
the Philly's farm team," he said nostalgically.  "Damn near broke the
minor league home run record the last year."

"Is that right?" I asked, being polite but completely uninterested.
Between us, Emily was giving off wifely vibes of annoyance towards him
demanding he talk about something else.  They were so strong that even
I, who was not married to her, was able to clearly pick them up.  But
not Frank.  He either had his receiver turned off or he was ignoring
the signals.

"Damn right," he assured me.  "I woulda gone pro too if it wasn't for
hurtin' my damn knee near the end of the season."  He shook his head
regretfully.  "That ended my baseball career before it could even get
really started.  Disabled me enough that the pros could never pick me
up."

"That's too bad," I told him with feigned sympathy.

On and on his competitive, sports oriented conversation went.  He
explained his theories on the up and coming NFL playoffs.  He explained
his theories on the up and coming basketball season.  While eating our
in-flight meal he expanded greatly upon his failed baseball career,
taking a moment to blame those "damn niggers and South American spics"
for keeping him in the minors those first two seasons after being
drafted.  As I listened to his endless drivel and was bombarded with
intercepted cease and desist vibes from Emily, I found myself wondering
what had possessed Emily to date such a person, let alone marry him.  I
mean, she was so sweet and this guy was an asshole.  What had happened?

It was as we banked over the island of Oahu and the pilot pointed out
Pearl Harbor and the tiny Arizona Memorial far below that Emily asked
me about the national monument.  "You've been there a couple of times,
haven't you?"

"Just once," I said.  "On the first trip."

"Just once?" she said, raising the eyebrows on those pretty green
eyes.  "A World War II buff like you?"

"Well," I said with a shrug, "my wife isn't too keen on historical
things.  She went the one time with me and she never wanted to go
again."

Before Emily could answer, Frank put in his two cents.  "I'm with your
wife," he said.  "Who the hell wants to go see where a bunch of Japs
ambushed us."  He shook his head a little.  "It's morbid you ask me.
Fuckin' Japs.  We should've nuked them a long time ago."

Neither Emily nor I pointed out that we HAD nuked them a long time
ago.  "It's not just the memorial," I said.  "They have a museum there
with a lot of artifacts from that era.  It's actually quite
interesting."

"I want to go spend at least a day there," Emily told him.  "Let's
pencil that in, can we?"

At that point a minor argument developed between them.  Frank
maintained that he had much better things to do on his vacation than
wasting one of his days at a goddamn naval base.  Emily pointed out
that she was not asking anything else of him on the trip but that she
wanted this one thing.  Frank refused to commit.  I listened to their
squabble uncomfortably, the way people get when they are trapped with
two people doing such a thing.

"Well what about when you go out with the rest of them on the golf
trip?" she asked him finally.  She was referring to the tradition that
the golfers among us had of spending a day on the links at the
exclusive and very expensive Turtle Bay Country Club on the other side
of the island.  Frank was of course a golfer and he had already been
invited by the others to partake in the tradition.  In one of his
earlier discussions he had maintained that he was going to beat
everyone there with his five handicap.

"Well what about it?" he asked defiantly.

"I'll just take the day that you're golfing and go there on my own.
That way, everyone's happy."

Frank didn't seem very happy about this at all.  I understood.  To the
Frank's of the world, someone is always trying to steal their woman out
from under them and they do not like them to go out to such places as
historic naval bases alone.  I wanted to offer to accompany Emily there
- I was not a golfer and, since my wife was not with me, I had nothing
better to do anyway - but I held my tongue figuring that Frank wouldn't
want me accompanying his wife either.  But in this, I was wrong.

"What if John comes with me?" Emily asked.  "He's been there before so
he knows how to get there."

Frank thought this over for a second and then gave his approval of the
plan.  Apparently he didn't see me as a threat of any kind.  I wasn't
sure whether to take this as an insult or not.  But in any case the
plans were made.  On the following Monday morning, while Frank was at
Turtle Bay, Emily and I would catch a shuttle bus and go visit the
scene of one of the greatest sneak attacks in history.

++++++


Dress in Hawaii is very casual, no matter what the occasion.  It is one
of the few places on Earth where it is possible to go into a four star
restaurant wearing shorts, sandals, and a T-shirt without violating a
dress code.  As such we were dressed for comfort when we met in front
of our hotel on Monday morning.  I was wearing a pair of khaki shorts
and a tank top.  Emily was adorned in a pair of white shorts and a
sleeveless pullover with a picture of a sailboat on the front.  Her
long legs were every bit as nice as I'd imagined they would be and it
was difficult not to openly admire them.  They were smooth and clean-
shaven, the calves well muscled from her regular workouts.  I could not
help but compare them to my wife's legs, which had grown thin and bony
since our marriage from stress induced weight loss.

We exchanged a few pleasantries while we waited for the shuttle to
arrive and then compared notes on how our trip was going so far.  I of
course was not having the most pleasant vacation of my life.  I was
here alone and my wife was in a Seattle high rise pouring through the
financial records of some huge corporation.  Though I was in a tropical
paradise full of innumerable things to do, the other members of my
group were all couples and they did couple oriented things.  Though
they tried to include me in their activities I generally declined their
invitations not wanting to be a third wheel or a fifth wheel or a
seventh wheel.  I had spent the majority of my time near the pool or on
the beach, drinking tropical drink after tropical drink until I was
drunk enough to go pass out in my room.

Emily professed to me that she was having the time of her life but I
could tell that she was exaggerating her enjoyment.  She and Frank had
been doing what Frank wanted to do and never what Emily wanted to do.
They had been to Aloha Stadium, where the Pro Bowl was played every
year.  They had been to the University of Hawaii, which touted a pretty
good sports program for its students.  They had gone para sailing
because Frank had heard that it was a manly thing to do.  They had gone
deep-sea fishing for marlin.  They had not gone to the Punchbowl or to
Diamondhead or to the International Market Place. They had not gone on
any romantic dinner cruises on the ocean.

"Your husband is really into his sports, isn't he?" I asked carefully
as the bus pulled up before us and the throngs of tourists began to
move towards the door.

She gave me a crooked smile.  "Yes he is," she said lightly.  "Sports
are his life."

We arrived at the huge naval base thirty minutes later and began our
tour.  Pearl Harbor is still an active base of the Pacific Fleet and
two aircraft carriers as well as numerous destroyers, oilers, and other
vessels were at anchor.  We started our day by taking the small ferry
that shuttled people from the dock out to the Arizona memorial, a
white, archlike structure that stood out in the harbor directly over
the top of the sunken battleship for which it is named.  We ogled over
the rusted hulk just below the surface of the water, a hulk in which
American sailors are still entombed and from which oil still bubbles up
from the boilers.  Emily was amazed by the number of Japanese that took
the tour.  They easily outnumbered the Americans by more than two to
one.

"Why do you think they're coming here?" she whispered to me as we
stared down at the protruding smokestacks of the ship.  "Isn't that a
little... weird."

I took a moment to answer her.  As she leaned in to keep her words from
being overheard her breast pushed against my arm sending a chill
through my body.  I could feel the softness of her and a wave of lust
went coursing through me.  I mumbled something back about them being
justifiably proud about the attack; something that probably would have
been much funnier had I not been so distracted.

That was the first contact on our trip.  There were others.  As we
stepped off of the memorial and back onto the boat for the trip back to
shore, Emily stumbled a bit on the uneven surface.  Instinctively I
grabbed her around the waist to keep her from falling into the
handrail.  This brought my forearm around her midsection, allowing me
to feel the firmness of her stomach and the underswell of her breasts
against my wrist.  She blushed a little at the contact but made no move
to break it at first.

"Thank you," she said, smiling up at me gratefully.  "That might've
hurt."

"Anytime," I told her in a voice that was not quite normal.

We continued in that stance for a few moments until we sensed the
impatience of those behind us, those we were holding up.  I released
her and we stepped aboard the boat.  As we motored our way back we were
forced to sit very close together on the small bench.  This allowed my
right leg to rest snugly against her left leg.  I could feel the silky
smoothness of her outer thigh pressing against mine and I had to resist
the urge to rest my hand upon her leg.  Neither one of us commented on
the closeness.  We simply discussed the Arizona and its status as a
piece of preserved history, all the while pretending we were not
noticing the contact.

Once back on shore we went to the museum, where we spent the next two
hours wandering from exhibit to exhibit.  We saw preserved radio
message sheets, artifacts from the ships and from shot down Japanese
planes.  As we moved from place to place we talked easily, both of us
sharing our fascination with this troubled era as we never had before.
Our discussions were the comfortable talk of old friends discussing a
common interest.  It was the sort of conversation that I had never
shared with Sharon and that I was sure she had never shared with Frank.

And as the day went on I found myself looking at Emily much more than
was probably healthy.  When she turned to examine a display behind a
glass sheet I would let my eyes travel over the backs of her legs,
which were tight and newly tanned from the Hawaiian sun.  Or I would
take in the sight of her midriff, which would occasionally peek out
when the hem of her shirt rode up, allowing me to see her belly
button.  She had a fine fuzz of red hair trailing downward into her
shorts and a smattering of small freckles around it.  I wondered what
it would be like to kiss those freckles.  I could also not help but
admire those wonderful breasts of hers, which bounced in her summer
shirt in a way they never had in her school clothes.  Though they were
firmly strapped into a bra their very shape and size was pleasing to
the male sense of aesthetics, making it quite easy to imagine what they
would look like unadorned.

We headed back to Honolulu just after 12:00, wearily slumping in our
seats on the bus, our legs once again in pleasant contact with each
other.  After being dropped at our hotel we stood on the sidewalk for a
moment, looking at each other.

"I'm kinda hungry," I said, not really hinting anything, just making an
observation.

Emily smiled, showing her sparkling white teeth.  "Me too," she said.
"Frank won't be back for another three or four hours.  Why don't we go
have lunch by the pool?"

I certainly wasn't going to turn that down.  We walked together through
the lobby and to the spacious though crowded swimming pool area.  The
pool was enormous and was complete with numerous waterfalls,
waterslides, and other attractions.  It was filled with splashing and
shouting tourists, both children and adults, enjoying its coolness and
the novelty of swimming outside in December.  The dominating odor was
of coconut scented suntan oil and chlorine.  The pool area had a full
service bar complete with circulating cocktail waitresses and a small
caf  type eatery.  We walked over and grabbed a table, ordering
hamburgers and mai tais from a Filipino waitress who was dressed to
look like a Hawaiian.

As we ate and drank we continued our discussion, moving from our
interest in history to what our lives were like in high school and
college.

"Sometimes," Emily told me with a giggle after her second drink, "I
marvel that I even managed to get through high school."

"Oh yeah?" I asked.  "Why is that?"

"Well," she said, "I used to hang out with the wrong crowd you know.
During my senior year I got into the stoner lifestyle.  I would cut
class and go smoke dope with some pretty shady friends."

"You smoked dope?" I asked in disbelief, wondering if she was serious.
Emily looked about as straightlaced as a person could be.

"Pounds of it," she assured me. "It was only when the cops busted me
and my boyfriend smoking out behind a park that I stopped.  They
dragged me home and told my mother what I had done and she..." she
giggled a little, shaking her head.  "Well, let's just say she
convinced me that I wouldn't be doing that anymore."

"I can't picture that," I told her.  "You look so innocent."

"That was my advantage," she said slyly.  "I got away with coming home
stoned so many times because my parents just couldn't believe that I
was capable of doing such a thing."

We had a laugh together and ordered another drink.  As we sipped it I
told her of my own marijuana experiences, which were considerable in my
high school and early college days.  I had quit not because I was
caught at it - to this day my parents do not know I ever smoked any -
but because I had nearly flunked out my first year because of the
lethargic effects of too much pot.  I was one of the smart ones who was
able to leave that childhood indulgence behind.

"I still miss it sometimes," Emily said nostalgically.  She hefted her
drink up.  "This stuff is all right when you want to get rid of reality
a little but it makes you soooo sick if you have too much.  Being high
was nicer.  I haven't done it in ten years, but I still remember how it
felt."

"Yeah," I said, nodding.  "Me too.  It's a pity that you can't relive
some of your..." I trailed off, a crazy thought striking me.

"What?" she asked, raising her eyebrows again.

"You know," I said thoughtfully.  "There's a lot of marijuana for sale
here in Hawaii."

"What?" she said, wrinkling her brow now.

"Every time you walk down on the boardwalk or on the beach, someone
tries to sell you some."

"They do?" she said.

"Well," I amended.  "They do to me.  Maybe they don't hit you up
because you're a woman.  But they do me."

"So what are you saying?" she asked, though she knew exactly what I was
saying and was obviously interested.

"Let's get some and smoke it," I whispered.  "For old times sake."

She giggled a little again.  "Do you think we should?" she asked.

"Why not?  We're not in school anymore.  Our parents don't have any say
in what we do.  The school district doesn't drug test us.  And most
important, we're on vacation.  Why shouldn't we have a good time?"

She thought it over for a few seconds and then smiled in a naughty
little girl way.  "I find you make a good point," she said.  "Do you
really think you can get some?"

"You go get some rolling papers," I told her, "and I'll get us some
pot."

"Deal," she said.  "Come up to my room when you get it and we'll go
over to yours to smoke it."

Ten minutes later I was walking up and down the boardwalk, trying my
best to look like a harmless tourist that was looking for a little
fun.  I was a little nervous.  After all, when one buys marijuana one
is necessarily dealing with a criminal element.  But the nervousness
was kept at bay by anticipation.  I really had enjoyed smoking grass
way back when and the thought of getting high again was exciting.
Coupled with this was the thrill of doing such a thing with Emily who,
aside from looking so innocent, was also tripping the lust meters in my
mind.

Finally, after fifteen minutes of walking up and down along the sandy
cement path that ran the length of Waikiki Beach, I hit paydirt.  They
have a distinctive way of offering you their wares in the islands and
the gentleman I made contact with kept to that tradition.  He was a
white man in his early twenties or so, dressed in the inevitable baggy
shorts and absent of a shirt.  He had a Jamaican hat upon his head and
a wary, watchful expression upon his face.  He was walking towards me
along the path and his eyes took a moment to examine me as we closed
with each other.  As we passed he whispered, barely audibly: "buds?"

That was the signal.  Had I been an undercover cop he could have denied
ever saying such a thing.  It had been spoken too softly to have been
picked up on any recording device.  Had I been uninterested in his
product, I could have just kept walking and he would have done the
same.  That was what I usually did in such circumstances.  But this
time I gave him the clear signal that I was interested.  I stopped and
turned around to look at him.  Seeing this he stopped and walked back
over to me.

"How you doing today sir?" he asked me, holding out his hand for a
shake, his eyes continuing to take me in.  "Are you interested in a
little Maui agricultural sample today?"

"Why yes I am," I told him.

"Then I'm your man," he said, jerking his head towards the shade of a
beach shithouse.  "Step into my office for a moment."

The deal was done very quickly since it was out in public.  We
established that we were talking about the same thing and then he named
his price.  It was a number that was a little steeper than I had
figured.

"Fifty bucks for a sixteenth?" I asked dubiously, trying to play the
smart businessman and probably failing miserably.  I did have a little
knowledge about what I was talking about however.  I was a public
school teacher and I heard the kids talk (as much as they thought we
were clueless about their activities).  I knew that in Seattle the
going rate for an eighth of an ounce of good greenbud from northern
California was about seventy bucks, or thirty-five for a sixteenth.  I
mentioned this to my Jamaican hatted friend.

"Dude," he assured me, seemingly insulted.  "Have you ever smoked Maui-
Wowie before?"

"No," I said, putting on my wise-to-the-ways-of-the-world expression.
"But how much better could it be than California green?"

He assured me that Maui bud made California's finest seem like Arizona
homegrown in comparison.  "This stuff is the bomb dude," he told me.
"One hit and you're in fuckin' oblivion."

"Really?" I asked, not believing him for a moment.

"Fuckin' really."

Though I didn't believe him and though I thought I was probably getting
ripped, I nevertheless handed over two twenties and a ten and he handed
me a rolled up baggie of brownish looking buds.  A moment later he went
his way and I went mine.

In the elevator on the way up to the eighteenth floor of the hotel, my
suspicion of being ripped increased when, finding myself alone, I
unrolled the bag to examine my purchase.  The buds were brown and
sticky and very moist.  They were so moist that they adhered to my
finger when I touched them.  And the smell.  It was an almost sickly
sweet odor that was nothing like what I associated with marijuana.
What was this crap?  Had I just paid fifty bucks for dried out lawn
clippings stuck together with corn syrup?

I collected Emily and we walked down the hall to my hotel room.  Once
inside I showed her the bag and expressed my doubt about the
intoxicating quality of the contents.  She agreed that it smelled
nothing like pot and that I might have been taken unlawful advantage of.

"But maybe not," she said with a doubtful shrug.  "Let's at least roll
a joint and check it out."

I volunteered for the job, cutting the sticky buds up with the scissors
attachment on my Swiss army knife.  Though it had been more than ten
years since I had last attempted such a feat, I did a fairly
respectable job if I do say so myself.  The end result was only a
little twisted and only a little pregnant.

"Here goes," I said.  We were sitting at the table next to the sliding
door that led to the balcony.  I reached over and opened the door,
allowing the breeze in so that the odor would ventilate.  I then picked
up a pack of hotel matches and struck a light.  It took a few moments
of huffing and puffing and more than five matches before I finally got
my doobie to light up.  When it did a stream of acrid, sweet tasting
smoke entered my lungs.  It tasted vaguely like marijuana, but just
vaguely.  My lungs were not used to having anything but air sucked into
them and they protested this abuse greatly.   I suppressed my cough as
long as I could but finally my gag reflex won the battle.  I expelled a
plume into the room.

"Well?" Emily said.  "What do you think?  Is it pot?"

"I don't know," I said dubiously, handing the joint over to her.  "You
try it and tell me what you think."

As she put the smoldering concoction between her pretty lips I suddenly
felt warmth creeping through my body.  My limbs began to feel heavier,
more relaxed and my eyelids started to droop.  I was actually able to
feel my thoughts changing as the drug went to work on my brain.  The
sensation filled me steadily, like when a dry sponge is dropped into a
bucket of water.  This was incredible!  Never had I ever smoked
marijuana before where just one hit, and one that had been coughed out
prematurely at that, had affected me like this.

Across from me Emily was having a little better luck holding her hit
in.  When she blew it out I watched the smoke drift across the room,
expanding as it went, tearing apart in the air currents.  It was a
fascinating sight.

"Oh wow," Emily said slowly, a smile blooming on her face.  Obviously
she was experiencing the same sensations as I.  "I don't think you got
ripped off at all John."

"No," I agreed, feeling a giggle burst from my mouth without warning.
It was a giggle that was apparently infectious.  Emily returned it
right back at me.

We were only able to get one more hit apiece out of the joint before it
clogged completely up with resin and refused to burn anymore.  But that
was okay.  We didn't really need any more than that.  By the time I set
it down in the ashtray I was what my students would call
"obliterated".  My eyeballs were half-lidded, my mouth was dry as the
Sahara, and my thoughts were slow and bizarre.  I didn't have the
munchies but that was probably because we had just eaten.

"This is some good shit," Emily told me, her speech slow and carefully
enunciated, as if she was having trouble forming words.  "I don't think
they had shit like this when I was in school."

"Nope," I agreed.  "The dude who sold it to me said it would only take
one hit.  He was right."

"Yeah," Emily said and then started giggling again.  I did the same and
within a few seconds we were both engaged in a bout of hysterical
laughter.  It would start to die down and then we would look at each
other and renew the hysteria.  I could feel the muscles in my stomach
straining a little and I realized how little I actually laughed these
days.  And God did it feel good to do it now.

-- 
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reserved by its author unless explicitly indicated.
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