Remember Love

Expected release – 2019

Chapter 1
You’re Not Lexi


They say a man’s sex drive decreases after he reaches age forty. Apparently my libido didn’t get the memo. Almost half a century on this earth and I could still rock a headboard like a horny teenager. And if the sexy obscenities Petty Officer Torres cried were any indication, I was still quite capable of providing a hell of a good ride.
Isabel Torres was extremely vocal, to say the least. Her profanity laced moans were loud enough to wake the dead, or at least draw attention from anyone passing by the door. I wasn’t particularly fond of her noise level, so I focused on the song coming from her blue tooth speaker – Closer by Nine Inch Nails. Izzy’s choice in music was deliberate and appropriate as we currently were going at it like animals. When she squeezed her eyes shut and dug her fingernails into my back, the slapping of flesh against flesh grew louder as I pumped with the urgency of anticipated release. Ripples of pleasure radiated through my body as her rhythmic contractions stroked me into a blissful state of oblivion. A moment later, I eased out of my coworker, flushed my condom and quickly pulled on the clothes I’d tossed onto her roommate’s bed.
As far as no-strings sex buddies went, Izzy Torres was ideal. She was hot, gave great head, contorted herself into whatever position I wanted her and didn’t take too damn long to come. But for the past few months, my body had been pretty much just going through the motions as I satisfied a physical need with an activity which left me emotionally empty.
On any other day, I would have remained in Izzy’s bed a moment longer, while she basked in afterglow and I caught my breath – not because we shared an emotional bond – there was nothing romantic about our time together. We enjoyed each other’s company and each other’s bodies. End of story.
Our pillow talk included highlights of the day’s work and the people we worked with. Izzy was a shit-hot mechanic and her heavy Latina accent made her description of engine repair techniques sound like an exotic tale.
We’d developed sort of a routine – a couple of days per week, we’d casually meet up – usually in her room since her roommate worked the night shift. We had sex, a quick bite to eat, a few drinks and possibly more sex. Today was different however. I’d reached a dreadful turning point. No. “Reached” implies moving toward something. I hadn’t been moving toward anything. If I had, no one told me about it. No, this shit came from nowhere – without warning – and slapped me in the face. Hard. Blindsided me. So rather than hang out with the coolest mechanic I knew, I was heading to my own room to sulk, drink and contemplate my next steps.
“You’re leaving?” Tousled, jet-black hair hung around Izzy’s pretty, olive-toned face as she balanced her perfect figure on one elbow.
“Yeah. I’m going to my room to study a bit.” I grabbed my jacket from the back of a chair and headed for the door. The beautifully decorated room was noticeably cleaner than usual. In fact, every room in the barracks was spotless on Fridays because of weekly room inspections.
“You’ve taken that test so many times you’d pass even if you didn’t study round the clock.”
“Maybe. But I don’t want to just pass. I need to ace this exam and advance to Chief, already. “And by the way,” I turned to face her. “Why aren’t you studying? “Aren’t you taking the exam for E-6?”
“Advancement freeze. The Navy currently has no need for new first class mechs, yadda yadda, so I’ll be E-5 a while longer.”
“Well I’d like to retire at least as an E-7.”
“Whoa! Are you retiring already?”
I didn’t know the answer to that question. Until yesterday, I’d been considering getting out of the Navy at the end of my 20 years. I’d retire, go back to New York and settle down with the woman I love. But today I had no clue anymore. Everything would be different in just a matter of months – or weeks, even. I had no idea how long these things took.
“I’ve served seventeen years already so I’m thinking about it.”
“Cool.” She got out of bed and pulled on a pair of black, lacy panties. She was comfortable being naked. And she had every right to be. Izzy had to be in her thirties – late thirties, maybe, and had a perfect body. “Well anyway, I’m starving. Are we getting something to eat?”
“Maybe some other time.” I doubled back and kissed her cheek, hoping to lessen the callousness of my tone.
“Is something wrong?”
Yeah. You’re not Lexi.
After months of fucking blondes, brunettes, civilians, Navy, those two college students and that crazy woman from Jersey, I still couldn’t get over the love of my life. Alexis. The only woman I would do anything for. Well, almost anything. But other women didn’t help me get over her. Eventually I gave up trying to get over her and I was fucking just to get my rocks off… and because I was pissed off.
The meaningless unions with these women were adequate for satisfying my physical needs, but nothing else. No intimacy. No emotional connection. And I always felt empty afterward. There was no mistaking the difference between hooking up with someone simply because I wanted to get laid and connecting with someone I truly cared about. No other woman and no amount of sex could fill the void Alexis left when she gave up on us,
“Nothing’s wrong. I just need to get ready for this exam.” That was partly true. I’d been eligible for advancement to Chief Petty Officer for a few years now. I’d taken the exam a number of times after a two-year advancement freeze for Aviation Structural Mechanics, but for whatever reason – politics, an evaluation score that wasn’t four-point-oh, or whatever, I hadn’t been one of the few first class AMS’s selected for Chief. So I planned to ace the exam next month and hopefully meet the numerous requirements for being selected as a higher ranking Non-Commissioned Officer.
I did plan to study tonight. However, the main reason I was anxious to get out of Izzy’s room, came in today’s mail and lay on the desk down the hall in my own room.

Eight doors away and 20 seconds later, I entered the room I shared with Bobby Joe Johnson, one of the coolest roommates I’ve had to live with. He wasn’t the neatest person in the world, but every Thursday during field day he’d clean our room so thoroughly, we could eat off the floor. All I had to do was shove my crap into my closet and he took care of the rest. Friday morning room inspections always resulted in our room being marked “outstanding”. It didn’t matter that the room was a mess again by the end of the weekend, because Bobby Joe seemed to derive some sort of weird therapeutic pleasure from cleaning every Thursday night. Whenever I’d offer to lend a hand, he refused, so I’d just get my gear out of his way and let him do his thing. My roommate was also a great conversationalist particularly regarding women and work, but I wasn’t in the mood for conversation today, which is why I was glad our room was empty.
The barracks was almost always filled with noise and activity. Loud music. Doors slamming. It didn’t usually bother me, but sometimes I longed for quiet. And privacy.
I picked up the papers on my desk which – in my anger – I’d crumpled into a ball. I opened the document. Two stapled pages with one of those bumpy circles at the bottom which meant it was an official document. I studied it, probably for the tenth time since I’d received it this afternoon. Nothing had changed since the last time I looked at it. Big words. Legal jargon. My name. My wife’s name. And some bullshit about a divorce.