My Ex Wife’s Sister

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This is my first story. Thanks for reading!

It has been a long 8 months. The divorce had started a snowball effect in my life. I had moved out of my house, changed jobs, and every routine that I once had that made me feel comfortable was now gone or different. Everything felt out of control; I felt out of control.

The only good thing that I can say about my divorce was that there were no kids involved. My name got drug through the mud in every way possible. I caught her in bed with another man and I am made out to be the bad guy because I didn’t want to pay alimony. She ended up with the house which was fine with me. I didn’t want to see that place and the memories it held ever again.

I found a new job about an hour away and got a small house with a short commute. It wasn’t the most lavish place in the world but it did it’s job. The job was a big change for me. I have always been terrified of change when it comes to jobs. When I get comfortable at a job and an income it is almost like a security blanket. I had been at my old job for 5 years so I had some seniority. Leaving that would make me low man on the totem pole and the first one gone if anything was to happen. But to my shock I wasn’t hired as a regular employee like I had applied for, I was promoted to a supervisor position with a hefty pay raise. My new boss, Jim, said he saw potential in me and a eagerness to succeed but a lack of self esteem; which he said he was willing to raise in order to accomplish his goals.

For 8 months my life has been work and court dates, but I am finally free. The papers are signed now and I am done. Being divorced leaves a lot of free time on your hands though. I had to find a new hobby and fast before I lost my mind. Late one night I found some videos that interested me greatly, off the grid camping. I fell in love with the idea of being in the middle of nowhere with nobody around for miles. With my new pay raise I had kept living off my old salary and started putting the rest in my savings. I began my research, traded in my old truck for a newer 4 wheel drive, and bought an old camper that I could fix up. For the next year I spent my nights and weekends testing the camper or working on it.

It was right at 2 years since my divorce when things got a little weird. And by a little I mean my world was about to be flipped upside down again.

It was late one Friday night and I was finishing up building a new water tank system in the camper and working on my 2nd Hurricane when I heard a knock on the door. I looked at my watch, it was 11:20 PM. “Who in the world would be here this late?” I whispered to myself as I walked to the camper door. I swung the door open to see a familiar face. Standing at the door way was my ex wife’s sister. Something was wrong, she was crying.

“Ree what are you doing here?! How did you find me?! What’s wrong?!” I exclaimed as a million questions came rushing through my head.

“I don’t know honestly. I needed somebody to talk to that knows the family but is no longer involved anymore. Someone that would understand but be unbiased. You were the only person I could think of.” She sobbed out between the tears.

“Come on. Let’s sit down.” I said as I ushered her to the chairs I had on the front porch. “Can I get you something to drink?” as I motioned at my Hurricane.

“Water please. I have to drive home.”

“Not like that you’re not. Your eyes are so swollen that I can barely see your pupils. What’s wrong?!” I said in a voice she recognized. We were always close all the way up until the divorce. But I haven’t heard from her since the papers were signed.

I went in the house and returned with a cold bottle of water and a wet rag for her to wipe her face.

“Neil left me. We have been arguing a lot. Tina and Megan are taking his side blaming me for it, saying that I didn’t show him enough attention and am too harsh on him.”

I winced at the mention of Tina. I instantly pulled out my pack of smokes and lighter.

“Sorry. I didn’t think about it. But they are blaming me! He is the one that stays gone all the time. Between him working 3rd shift and me working 1st, and all his band practices and bar room gigs there is no time for us. He expects me to just tag along all the time. But I get tired of being hit on all night by a bunch of men with brewery breathe in a shit hole that smells like piss.”

“Sounds like they are confused as to which one of you is their sibling. And how can they blame you? He could easily make the decision to play less gigs and spend more time with you.”

“Exactly! But to them I should put his aspiring music career in front of anything else and be supportive.”

“There is a difference in being supportive and giving up your life to follow him around.” I said while putting out my cigarette and finishing off my drink. “How did you find me?”

“A few months ago you wrote that letter to Mom. I took a picture of the return address as a just in case of an emergency.” Her eyes dropped to the ground shyly in maltepe escort an almost ashamed face.

I chuckled, “Well you’re here, so what’s the emergency?”

“Asshole! Did you not listen to anything I said?!” She cut at me with a snide smile.

“Yea I heard that your fiance is a self centered asshole and your sisters are taking his side. But I also got a smile out of you.” I said grinning.

“You were always pretty good at making me smile. That’s another reason why I came here. Well I guess I got what I wanted so I should be leaving now.” She said as she stood up and started walking down the steps.

“Did you not hear me? I said you aren’t driving like that. You can take my bed in the house. I will stay in the camper. You need some time away and to think. Go inside, help yourself to the pantry. Then get some rest.”

She thought about it for a second and came back on the porch. “I guess you’re right. Thanks Will.”

The next morning I woke up early with a slight hangover headache. I went outside on the porch and lit up my morning smoke. I was jonesing for my morning coffee but I didn’t want to wake Ree up after the night she had. Then a thought crossed my mind, “Why did she come to me?!” I sat there thinking for a few minutes, shook it off, and went to work on the camper. I had a lot to do before next weekend.

About an hour later Ree came stumbling out the front door, face still red but the swelling had subsided.

“Good morning sunshine! Want some coffee?”

“Yes please. And a smoke if you got an extra.” She mumbled with her eyes still half shut.

I pointed at my pack and lighter on the table and headed inside. A few minutes later I returned with 2 mugs of coffee still steaming.

“Careful that’s hot.” I said as I handed her’s over and then sat down in my chair. “Sleep well?”

“Not really. I cried a lot. Then Megan started calling so I turned my phone off and just laid there for a while thinking. I don’t know when I finally dozed off.” Ree said with a slightly raspy voice that I couldn’t tell if it was from the morning time or crying all night.

“So why me?” I said after a few minutes. I instantly regretted my decision of words. Not that they were wrong, I just get nervous and over analyze intense situations in my head. So I changed my statement to “I meant why did you come see me? You have tons of friends. And you haven’t spoken to me since the divorce.”

“I haven’t spoken to you because I thought you would be mad at me.”

“Mad at you? For what?!” I said so quickly that it surprised myself.

“You got a divorce from my sister. I don’t know. It’s complicated.”

“Ok. I will accept that answer for now. But why choose to come see me?”

“I really don’t know. I mean you used to give me the best advice and talk to me like no body else would. You were brutally honest with me no matter how much it hurt. But every single time, I needed to hear what you had to say. When shit hit the fan, you were the first person that I thought of.” She had started to tear up again.

“Hey. Enough of that shit. I am in no way mad or upset at you. A little confused maybe, but not mad. And he is not worth crying over. You may have loved him but he didn’t love you. If he did then he wouldn’t have drug you all over creation every weekend to those shit hole bars. He would’ve made time for you and put you first.”

The look of shock in her face told me that either I had said something she had never been told or never seen from that perspective. “How did you move on? How did you forget about her?”

“I didn’t. I just found something to take up most of my time and get as far away as possible.” I said as I gestured towards the camper.

“I meant to ask you about that. What is that thing? I have never seen a camper like that before.”

I stood up and motioned her over. “This is my off the grid camper. I renovated an old camper to do what I want. It can go anywhere and has enough water and food in it to last me 14 days.”

“I love camping! It looks like you are packing up. Which campgrounds do you go to?”

“I am getting ready for my big trip next week. I am leaving next Saturday morning. The plant is shutting down for the 4th of July and major maintenance repairs. And I don’t use campgrounds.”

Looking rather confused she asked, “Then where do you camp?”

I chuckled. “Off the grid means I can go anywhere. I have an old friend from college that has 200 acres up in the mountains about 4 hours away. He hunts up there in the winter but in the summer it is unused. He gave me permission to stay up there for the week as long as I clean up after myself. He even sent me a map of the place and pointed out a spot he thinks I will love!” I said excitedly and pulled out the map off the counter top from just inside the camper doorway.

“That sounds like fun! Gosh I would give anything for a getaway like that! Well I better get going. Thanks for the place to stay and the advice.” She said as she mecidiyeköy escort hugged me and headed towards her car.

We said our goodbyes and I watched her drive away. I went back to work checking and double checking everything and packing it away for my trip. But I couldn’t stop trying to figure out what the hell had just happened.

Two days later I was back at work and counting down the days until the plant shut down. I got my 1st break at 9 and went out for a smoke and to check my phone. I had a message from a number I didn’t recognize.

“God I envy you. Just getting to run away for a week with nobody around for miles. No problems and no worries for a whole week!”

I tried to figure out the number but couldn’t recognize it. “Yea I guess I am. Who is this?”

“Oh… This is Ree. I guess you deleted me from your phone after the divorce…”

“No. Last year my phone decided to become a fish and went for a swim in the river on a kayak trip. I lost everything. You kept my number?!”

“Yea… Like I said before, I like to keep things for emergencies.”

“Oh ok. Well I hope your day is going better than the last time I saw you. Did your time away do you any good?”

“Will that’s why I am texting you. I want to talk to you about something.”

“Ok? Not to be rude but make it quick my break is almost over.”

“Not like this. In person. I have some errands to run close to your place tonight. Could I stop by for 5-10 minutes around 6?”

“I will have the coffee ready and waiting.”

A million things went through my mind throughout the rest of the shift. “What did she want to talk about?” “Why talk about it to me? I’m not special.” “Oh God. What if she told her sisters and they blew up about it and made things ten times worse?!” I barely paid any attention to anything that was going on around me and the day drug by slower than it already was.

At 6:00 PM I was on the front porch, still in my work uniform, with 2 hot cups of coffee waiting when she pulled up. She was smiling, that had to be a good sign.

“Hey Will!” She called as she walked up the driveway past the camper.

“Hey Ree!” I said as I motioned to the empty chair and cup of coffee.

“Thanks for letting me stop by.” She said while sitting down.

“No problem. Now what’s wrong? I have been trying to figure it out all day. It is driving me crazy.”

“Will you worry wart! Nothing is wrong! What are you worried about?!”

“I was worried that your sisters found out that you came here and were starting even more drama.”

“Oh no! They don’t have a clue! I just wanted to talk to you about something that you said to me the other night.”

“Ok then. I am listening.”

“The other night you said I needed some time away from everything and everyone and to relax and think. Well I was thinking…well you and Tina promised me a trip for my graduation 5 years ago but money was tight so it didn’t happen. So I was thinking maybe you would hold your end of the promise now and let me join you next week…”

I choked on my coffee as I heard the words. “You what?! You want to go camping with ME?!”

She hung her head. “This was a stupid idea. I am sorry that I asked.” She stood up and began to walk away.

I stood up and said “Wait. You aren’t stupid. Come back here.”

She turned around with tears in her eyes. “Why should I? So you can call me crazy or ask me what the hell am I thinking?”

“No. Because I want to make a deal.”

She perked up. “What kind of deal?”

“I will keep my end of the promise as long as you cook 1 meal a day. I haven’t had a good home cooked meal since before the separation…”

“Oh my God! Are you serious?! Deal!” She was bouncing with excitement at this point.

“We are leaving at 6 AM Saturday morning. Pack clothes for 7 days. It can get pretty cool at night so be prepared for that.”

What was I thinking? This could turn out so badly. But I remember how it was when Tina and I broke it off. I know how nice it would have been to have somebody there for you. I couldn’t let her go through this alone. Plus I made a promise that I planned to keep.

The rest of the week drug by. I don’t know if it was from the excitement of the trip or the nervousness that Ree was going with me.

I packed extra food and spices just in case, my tent, an air mattress, extra bedding, and double checked all the suspension and important things on the camper and truck that Friday night.

That next morning I got up around 5, got dressed and ready, packed my clothes and bathroom essentials. I had just finished packing around 5:30 when I heard a knock at the front door. I opened it to see a bright eyed and smiling Ree.

“I brought coffee and doughnuts!”

“Oh Lord. I forgot that you’re a morning person…” I chuckled while taking the coffee. “But thank you. You may prove useful after all.”

“Thanks asshole!” She said grinning and slapping me on the arm.

“If merter escort I was anything else you would think something was wrong with me.”

“There has never been a more true statement ever made!”

We both laughed as we started packing up. “Let’s get everything loaded and we will eat on the road.”

“Sounds good to me!”

We loaded the camper with my things and her bag, which was a lot smaller than I had expected. I assumed that she would have tried to pack up her whole house. We pulled out of the driveway at 6:05 AM and headed out.

It was a pleasant ride. Ree did a lot of the talking. Telling me what all had been going on in her life the past 2 years, all about the Neil situation, and singing along with the radio. I just sat there and listened. I had plenty to say sometimes. But she needed a listening ear right now. There would be plenty of time for advice.

We made a few pit stops for bathroom breaks, fuel, and for me to check the camper out and finally made it to the property around 11. Using my map we found the spot that John had told me about. It was better than I could have dreamed. It was a big opening in a cluster of huge evergreen trees with a large creek that ran down one side of the hill with huge boulders and what appeared to be trout swimming.

At the top of the hill it planed off pretty flat before going up the actual mountain, so I parked the truck and camper there and got to work setting up. Ree was actually a lot of help. She listened to everything I told her and responded with her best effort. By 1:30 PM almost everything was ready.

“Hey Ree, we are pretty much done with set up. Would you mind making us a couple sandwiches while I hook up and aim the solar panels?”

“You read my mind! I am starving! But you have to tell me about those solar panels when I get done!” She said as she headed towards the camper.

As we ate I explained how the panels work and the inverter in the camper that stores that energy for us to use. Then I explained that if it was cloudy or stormy and we really needed power that I had a gas powered generator that we could use.

“So I could charge my tablet that I read my books on?!” She said very excitedly.

“Well, yea. We run our lights in the camper, any chargers, and even our small countertop oven on that power. It is for anything that you want.”

After lunch we took the afternoon to ourselves. I was busy just doing little things here and there around the campsite and enjoying a couple drinks while Ree found a nice quiet spot next to the creek to read a book on her tablet.

Around 5 she came walking back, “I am about to start dinner. Would you show me where everything is?”

“Sure! Follow me.”

I already had the kitchen equipment set up under the awning beside the door of the camper and showed her inside the camper where the counter top oven was and all the food and spices were.

“Alright I think I got it. Go outside and actually sit down for a while. Dinner will be ready shortly.” She said smiling.

It wasn’t long until she brought me a plate with a big tin foil ball on it. Inside was a huge hamburger steak, potatoes, carrots, and onions that all had been slow roasted together inside the foil. Everything was so juicy and tender. I ate until I was almost nauseous.

“Well you have earned your keep already! That was delicious!” I said as I scooted away from the table and began to help her clean up.

“Well thank you! Honestly I love to cook. This is the 1st time that I have been able to in quite some time.”

“That’s crazy! If you can cook like that then why don’t you cook like that every night?!”

“Neil doesn’t enjoy food like that. He would rather a burger or chicken nuggets from a fast food restaurant on his way to work. And there’s no sense in cooking like that for just myself.” She hung her head slightly when she started talking about Neil.

“Well he is crazy! But enough about him. We came out here to relax and get away from everything, including him. Let’s make a deal that neither of us will mention him or any other relationship of the past for the rest of the trip.”

She giggled. “Okay. Deal.”

“Hey I am getting another drink. Want something?” I asked while getting up.

“Sure! Why not? Just not too strong. I am a light weight.”

I mixed myself a Hurricane and her a fruity margarita with some mix I had found at WalMart.

“Here you go. Careful I filled it up a little too much.”

She giggled. “Hey Will. I have a question.”

“Ask away.” I mumbled in between a couple sips of my drink.

“I probably should have clarified this earlier. But when I went into the camper I only saw one bed. Where am I supposed to sleep?”

“Oh! I forgot to tell you!” I pointed towards the tent that i had set up for her while she was reading. “I brought that for you. It is insulated so the wind won’t bother you. It isn’t supposed to rain this week so it should be fine. There is a queen sized air mattress inside with fresh bedding already on it and extra blankets.”

“Thank you!” She said with a relieved sigh.

“What? Did you think I had something planned?” I said half laughing.

“Oh no! I just wasn’t sure. Plus I don’t know what you wear to comfortably sleep in. And you don’t want to know what I sleep in.”

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