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The Story Teller (New) Pls read intro.
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Getting out of Isolation and connecting with others is an important part of recovery. This board is for non-addiction related threads, where members exchange jokes, have fun - and drink Lechayim Together!
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TOPIC: The Story Teller (New) Pls read intro. 1768 Views

The Story Teller (New) Pls read intro. 02 Mar 2021 17:15 #364540

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TRIGGER WARNING! 

Viewer discretion is advised.

PLEASE READ INTRODUCTION: 

Disclaimer: There was a tremendous discussion here regarding allowing this story. On the one hand, at times it can be quite triggering. Yet many people have found it helpful. The verdict by the moderators was to continue. Please use your own discretion and do not read - if you feel it to have a detrimental impact upon your journey against lust.

Important to note:

The purpose of this piece of fiction, is to entertain and tangentially to educate and inspire too.

All views expressed are for entertainment and illustrative purposes only, and in no way should be viewed as a rabbinic or professional opinion. No research was done to validate any of said aspects. Nor does it mean the author agrees with any of the positions taken by any of the characters.

Additionally, due to the sensitive nature of some of the topics addressed, and in the interest of being tznius and minimizing triggering content, as well as taking into account that this story isn't exclusively for married individuals, intimation and hinting were and will be used throughout this story. Please use your imagination (but not too vividly) as to what the intent really is, and to understand the underlying narrative.

If anyone feels that those boundaries were mistakenly crossed in an unnecessary way, please private message. Editing and corrections will be done immediately. There is no interest for this to serve as an impediment, or a hindrance to the path of recovery.

Additionally, readers are requested not to post on this thread. There will be a link posted to a separate thread created exclusively for that purpose. All comments and questions are welcome there.

Original Thread With comments. 
Original comment thread.
New comment thread. 

Thank you.

                                    Grant
Last Edit: 02 Mar 2021 23:55 by Grant400.

Re: The Story Teller (New) 02 Mar 2021 17:23 #364541

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Please make sure that all characters are gender neutral as well, and be considerate as to what pronouns are bein' used, we don't want anyone offended.
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Re: The Story Teller (New) 02 Mar 2021 17:40 #364542

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Righteous Indignation 

Prologue:


April 17, 2012; Undisclosed Location.

The man sat on the concrete floor, icy coldness seeping into his bones, the realization hitting him like a ton of bricks. He finally saw reality for what it was. The clarity was blinding. He tried to adjust his hands to a more comfortable position, but it only caused him to wince in pain.

He was running, running his whole life. From where? To what? It was all an illusion, he can see that now so clearly. It was a futile chase after a fantasy now exposed in it's ugliest reality. It was a pathetic journey towards something he felt worthy of respect, when in reality it was all a puff of worthless smoke. A foolish facade for what he was searching for all along. It was always sitting right in front of him.

The man grunted in pain, not just in physical pain. His insides felt like they were being torn up. He felt like a wrecking ball just swung into his chest, knocking all the air and nonsense right out of him. How many people has he hurt, how many wrongs has he considered right, all in the name of his burning self righteous indignation? Oh, how wrong, so terribly wrong he was.

He knew what needed to happen. He knew what he must make happen. It was now. He was never going to look back. He knew that now. He just hoped it wasn't too late.

To be continued...
Last Edit: 02 Mar 2021 20:28 by Grant400.

Re: The Story Teller (New) 02 Mar 2021 17:43 #364543

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Righteous Indignation

Chapter One:


January 13 2010 2:50 am; Brooklyn N.Y.

Moe Steiner was laying in his bed wide awake. His family were already sound asleep. But not him, he already gave up trying to sleep, after twisting and turning fitfully for 3 hours. Tomorrow was the big day. His heart started pounding with nervous anticipation, yet again. It finally arrived, after weeks of incredible highs and terrible lows, the speculation and wondering were almost over, tomorrow he was finally going to propose. Oh! How his heart was singing, this girl was the one, of that he was always certain, now that they were on the same page they were done with the feet dragging. He was more than ready to get the show on the road.

He planned the perfect proposal. Never one to spare an expense, he excitedly rented a full size luxury car, a Cadillac - his favorite - to pick up his wonderful Esther Berg, soon to be his very own Esther Steiner! He spread the back seat with an assortment of her favorite chocolates and candy for a mini lichaim together after he said the words. Of course the jumbo bouquet of red roses were going to be waiting in the trunk for right after. Oh, he couldn't wait. Those beautiful four words; Will you marry me? He'd been practicing in the mirror the whole night.

He decided to drive down to N.J. tomorrow and take a nice walk with her on the Point Pleasant boardwalk, ending at a small dock were his good friends set up a small table with a bottle of champagne resting on a bed of ice, flanked by two thin stemmed champagne flutes and sprinkled with red rose petals. He wanted it to be perfect, just like the life ahead of him. Perfect of course.

                         *             *             *

Moe lay with his hands tucked comfortably behind his head, imagining the future. How beautiful it will be. To finally have someone with whom he can have a real honest and deep relationship. Someone to laugh with and someone to cry with. He knew he was going to be the best husband ever. He just knew he will always be there for Esther, and she will always be there for him. Their relationship was going to be legendary. To be able to open up and share the most raw emotions, to be vulnerable and honest...Honest! Moe abruptly sat up and kicked off the covers. He suddenly felt stifled and short of breath. Honesty. Is he being completely honest?

He swung his bare feet onto the cold wood floor and started pacing back and forth. A weird feeling bubbling up in his chest. What was it he wondered? Fear? Guilt? Confusion?

All these years he knew the time would come, the time he will have to let go and never turn back. When he would finally have to face reality and admit the painful truth to himself. The truth about his secret. Until now he always  excused himself, boys will be boys - of course I wouldn't do it forever, that's disgusting. But that was always deep in the unforeseeable future, but that future had just arrived. To have an honest and healthy marriage, to be the husband and father he wanted to be, meant finally facing reality.

His hands shaking, he headed towards his desk where his pants were neatly folded and draped over the chair. He picked them up with purposeful intent, then he stopped in place. Was he ready? Can he give up all those years of pleasure and bliss? All the hours and history together? He sighed, his heart heavy. But he knew what he must do, no, what he wanted to do. He  set his jaw determinedly, stuck his now steady hand into his pocket and pulled out his treasured and secret device. He tiptoed toward his bedroom door and ever so softly padded his way into the hallway bathroom. He turned around and closed the door gently clicking the lock into place. He stood in front of the toilet, memories flooded his senses. That was then, he chided himself. It's over I'm not that person anymore. He picked up the cover of the toilet tank and without hesitation dropped his phone into the water, holding his breath without realizing until he heard the telltale thud of the now despised device hitting the bottom. He exhaled, expelling his mixed feelings along with his pent up breath.


He instantly felt better, he knew he did the right thing. No regrets. Now he can face tomorrow with a clean conscience and build an honest and open relationship together. All those years and all those times were over, from now one it wasn't just  Moe for himself. Now it is Moe and Esther, an entirely new entity, an entirely new beginning.

He couldn't wait for tomorrow. He headed to bed and snuggled into his quilt. Feeling the soft mattress envelope him in a hug, he sighed in satisfaction and immediately drifted to sleep with a smile on the corner of his lips. Pleasant dreams of the future accompanied his contented snoring. He knew everything will work out.

To be continued...

Re: The Story Teller (New) 02 Mar 2021 17:44 #364544

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Righteous Indignation 

Chapter Two:


January 13 2010; 7:30 AM Brooklyn N.Y.

The alarm clock let off a blare, jolting Esther Berg from her dream filled sleep. She groggily cracked open one lid, her eye adjusting to the sun streaks peeking through the beige blinds. Her sleep deprived brain trying to decipher the words of Modeh Ani. Suddenly it clicked! She remembered what day it was, today was her planned engagement! Her soon to be chosson is slated to pick her up in two hours! "Two hours? What was I thinking?" she exclaimed out loud finally fully awake. " I need to daven, eat, do my hair and makeup - I'll never make it!"  she whined.

She jumped out of bed and started her preparations. Anticipation sending tiny electrical volts coursing through her body. She must look perfect today. Be her best to look like a radiant kallah. Today is the day she dreamed of her entire life.

                           *              *             *

Two hours later all ready, she stood in front of the mirror obsessively adjusting her perfectly brown coiffed hair.  Maybe I should change my clip to the felt one? The black beaded one doesn't do justice to my eyes. Nah, it's fine she decided, and sat down to wait nervously tapping her right foot.

Her mind drifted to the days in high school of when she dreamed of the man she will eventually marry. How she imagined him being a true ben torah and yirei shamayim. Someone whose whole day was devoted to learning and working in his avodas hashem. She always pictured herself the perfect wife, always there to help her husband in his quest for being n'hene m'ziv hash'china.

In seminary that dream only solidified and grew in intensity. Now she understood that the only purpose of life was to raise a toradi'ke family, and create a home where yiddishkeit was cherished and the sole focus. She was ready to sacrifice for hashem and his holy torah and now that dream was going to come true.

When she entered shidduchim she made it clear to her parents just what kind of boy she was looking for, and they wasted no time getting to work. They searched high and low, digging through a stack of resumes tirelessly, until they found just the right boy, Moe Steiner. He had a stellar reputation as a bochur who took his learning extremely serious. His davening was a true avodah. He was someone who lived for his yiddishkeit, and he was the one she wanted to build a beautiful relationship and family with.

During the dating process she made sure to make her convictions clear. To relate the passion she has for hashem and the way she wants to live her life. Moe was completely on the same page. The future looked bright.

"Knock, knock" she was shaken out of her reverie, Moe was here! She excitedly walked towards the door, her heels satisfyingly clicking on the ceramic tiles. She swung open the door and flashed him a million watt smile, "Hi" she giggled shyly, blushing just a bit. "Hey there"! He returned the grin with a luminescent one of his own. "Ready"? He asked, "You bet!" she exclaimed, and she locked the door behind her and they strode toward the car.

How handsome he looks, she thought walking alongside him. In his black suit, dark green tie with small red circles and shabbos shoes buffed to a sheen, he did look quite dashing. My chosson, she practiced the word in her head with satisfaction. She liked the special ring it had to it.

Nearing the car Moe, being a gentleman opened up the passenger side door of his luxury rental, and made a show of bowing. "Nice car Moe" said Esther. "You like it"? He asked excitedly, she found his boyish exuberance endearing. "You bet"! she laughed. "Are those your favorite words"? He teased. Esther smiled and slid gracefully into the seat. Moe looked on with pride. This was the girl he wanted to marry. So cute and elegant. How pretty she looked in her straight grey skirt with all those gold buttons running down the side, and that white top really made her face look so pretty and glowing. She was perfect, he knew it and he was looking forward to the rest of their lives together.

                  *              *             *

After arriving, they took their time leisurely strolling across the boardwalk. Moe appreciated the looks he was getting, thinking to himself, yup she's mine. Esther was excitedly babbling on about how excited she was, and how she called all her friends to share the news.

Eventually they slowly walked up to the dock where the table was set up. Esther, laying eyes on it exclaimed "Oh. My. Gosh! That's sooooo cute! You are amazing!" Moe turned to her a serious look on his face. "My dear Esther, I've only known you for a few weeks, but I feel like I've known you for much longer. I've come to appreciate what an amazingly spiritual person you are. What a kindhearted, giving and smart and extremely pretty girl you are. There is no one I'd want more to be my wife, my friend for life and the mother of my children. So, will you make me the luckiest man in the world? Esther, will you marry me?"

"Yes! Of course! Yes! A million times yes!" Esther was glowing. "Mazal tov!" they said to one another. "We must call our parents" Moe exclaimed "but first a toast to the most special kallah in the world"! He popped open the ice cold champagne and delicately poured it in to two glasses. He handed one to Esther and raised his own. "To the most amazing girl and the luckiest man alive" Esther said "Amen!" exuberantly, and laughing they sipped their celebratory champagne. They looked into each other's eyes and wondered, can they be any happier?

To be continued...

Re: The Story Teller (New) 02 Mar 2021 17:45 #364545

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Righteous Indignation

Chapter Three:


January 25, 2010

After all of the excitement of the past few weeks, with the L'chaim and vort already over life started settling back into regular routine.

Moe returned to yeshiva, with a renewed vigor and continued his shteiging. With his vibrant kallah on his mind he felt energized, wanting to be the man she wanted to marry. He strived to be a husband she will be proud of, a true talmid chacham.

After a week or two of uninterrupted learning, Moe started looking for the perfect chosson rebbi. He started to ask around, inquiring of his married friends who they went too and what their experiences were. He didn't want someone too yeshivish, because hey, he's not planning on being a "porush" the rest of his life, he heard enough horror stories about that, but he definitely wanted someone who can give him a true torah perspective and teach him to live in a successful yiddeshe marriage, because that was very important to him too.

After a few days of searching he finally decided upon Rabbi Rosenberg, who had a stellar reputation of being open minded, yet having true yiddishe hashkafos. They set up an appointment to start learning the following week.

                         *             *             *

Esther knew right away which kallah teacher she was using. Her twelfth grade teacher Mrs. Riesman was the best! They had an amazing kesher, and she always knew she was going to go to her. She was truly the woman Esther wanted to be. She had stellar middos and lived for hashem's torah. Her davening was real and she was the epitome of a tznua. She was beautiful, always dressed modestly, yet with an understated elegance. She was an embodiment of what a true bas yisrael should look like and act. All the girls adored her.

Her husband was a big rav, and she lived for torah. Her shalom bayis was legendary. The respect she had for her husband and her husband had for her, was whispered about admiringly by all the girls that were zocheh to spend a shabbos by her. Throughout the year she invited 3 girls at a time to her house where she showed them what a true home filled with respect and holiness looked like.

Esther's face glowed every time she recalled that shabbos. She went with her two best friends Shaindy Baum and Chani Goldstein. They had the time of their life! Watching the rav and her teacher interact with their angelic little children, asking them the parsha questions and discussing their week, was a true lesson. When the rav sang the holy shabbos zemiros in his melodious voice, she felt the shabbos queen singing along. The way the rav after tasting every dish complimented her teacher over how delicious and well spiced  it was, made her picture herself in the same situation being acknowledged by her husband for her efforts, caused her to shiver in delight and hope for that day to come quickly.

Of course she was going to Mrs. Reisman for classes! She was her role model, and the only person she wanted to emulate in her marriage. All her friends went to her. She couldn't wait to hear all the secrets of how to build such a relationship, based on mutual respect with her husband. How exciting! She must call Shaindy and Chani. She smiled to herself.

To be continued...

Re: The Story Teller (New) 02 Mar 2021 17:49 #364546

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Righteous Indignation

Chapter Four:


January 25, 2010

Esther picked up her worn out flip phone and pressed speed dial number two. Chani Goldstein, now Chani Baum after marrying Yeshuah Baum six months ago, used to be speed dial one. Of course after getting engaged to Moe she was bumped to number two. Not number two friend, she's always going to remain best friends with her, she was always going to be friend number one.

They were friends since toddling around in diapers. Her second word after "Mama" was "Ani", the way she used to pronounce her friends name as a baby. Even after growing up and having very different personalities, they remained close.

Esther was more settled, always knowing what she wanted out of life and always wanting to do what was considered the "norm". Chani was exuberant and outgoing and had more of a wild streak in her. She was always down for an adventure and living impulsively. She was brimming with self confidence, unencumbered, her blue eyes sparkling, her long blonde hair flowing in the wind. It helped that she was the most gorgeous girl in the school.

She married Yehoshua Baum, a good solid boy who was her polar opposite. He was a quieter boy, with more of a serious streak to himself. She always wondered about that shidduch, but she chalked it up to the known adage of "opposites attract". They did seem rather happy.

Sitting on her bed with the phone pressed to her ear, she twirled a strand of her brown hair around her right index finger. The phone rang for the sixth time, finally chani answered. "Hey Est"? She said sounding breathless, the sound of her washing machine humming in the background. "How's the blushing kallah?" Esther loved the sound of that word. Finally, she was a kallah! "Now she's blushing!" She laughingly responded. "Chan, I just wanted to schmooze about Mrs. Reisman's kallah classes. I'm so excited and I wanted to talk about it. It's amazing right? I mean after going to her marriage really is bliss right?" "Uh huh", Chani replied distractedly, "OMG I gotta run, my mother is clicking in, she wanted my heaven roasted sweet potato and chestnut recipe I made this shabbos, I'll call you back, bye Est!"

Chani hung up the phone, deep in thought. Her mother wasn't clicking in. It was just an excuse to get off the phone. Talking about kallah classes made her chest feel tight. She began to feel all those feelings of unhappiness and discontent surface again.

Her marriage didn't start off on the right foot. She married a great boy, of that she was certain, but ever since her wedding, life had been rather dull. She was used to excitement and energy, adventure and fun. Her new husband although they had a great time together when engaged, it sort of stayed the same way.

She was expecting marriage to bring it to the next level. Yes they were closer and their appreciation for one another grew too,  but she wanted and expected romance and fireworks. She didn't expect him to develop a new wild personality, she enjoyed the fact that he was less gregarious than her, and listened to what she had to say. But he was definitely capable of more. She thought she made sure of that. She was always a big fan of soap operas and romance novels. She waited her whole life to feel that kind of magic with an intensity and passion borne of true love and excitement for one another. She waited for that hungry look in his eyes when he saw her after a full day of being away from her in yeshiva. But all she saw was a quiet appreciation and respect.

She yearned for him to do something impulsively. To come home one day and tell her he made reservations in an upscale restaurant and a luxury hotel. They would hop into the car heading into a night of romance and fun. Or anything like that. Something extra, something fun. But her husband didn't need "fun". He was happy as  can be sitting next to her looking into his sefer, occasionally glancing at her and giving her a sweet smile.

Her husband definitely loved her, there was no question of that. He took care of her with his signature gentleness. He was available and happy to take care of all her needs, always with a smile and a kind word. He left her cute notes around the house, and always came home with her favorite chocolate bar. She knew she should be happy and satisfied. How many girls would give their right hand for such a loving husband? She think she loved him too, but yet, she felt a gigantic crater inside her heart that begged to be filled. She sighed, life was supposed to be simpler, wasn't it? She hoped things would slowly fall into place.

She wished she could confide in someone, but she knew her friend Esther wasn't the one. She would never understand.

She actually did summon up enough courage to call Mrs. Reisman, and she said exactly what she knew she was going to say. Marriage is about love and respect, about a true appreciation for one another. Fireworks and passion are very nice, but that's not a real relationship. That's a modern day fictitious interpretation of love. That's not love, it's infatuation. It doesn't last, nor can it weather the storminess of lifes trials and tribulations. In the face of any unfortunate circumstance it would bust at the seams like an old pair of pants.

Real love is a cement that gives a relationship a solid foundation that never wavers nor sways. It's an unconditional appreciation and respect for the other.

She knew that was true, but yet she still felt a hunger for something more.

For now she put on a good show. No one would ever have any suspicions of her discontent. She acted the part of a happy newlywed settling into her knew life.

Chani headed to the kitchen.To ease her mind she drowned herself in her favorite hobby, cooking. There was nothing as calming and soothing as hearing the chop, chop of her knife hitting the cutting board and a hot pot of something simmering in the stove. She got to work preparing supper. Aromas of delicious food wafting throughout her kitchen, she already felt better.

To be continued...​

Re: The Story Teller (New) 02 Mar 2021 18:54 #364557

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Righteous Indignation

Chapter five:


September 2, 1945. Berlin, Germany.

The five men huddled around the table in the darkened cellar. It was a haphazardly constructed meeting room, with a table assembled from an old brown wooden nightstand with a large piece of wood placed upon it. It was warm and humid, the lone lantern casting dancing shadows across the cement walls.

All the men leaned attentively toward the man at the head of the table. Respect and anticipation gleaming in their eyes. They waited with bated breath for the Dr. to start talking.

The Dr. Placed his palms flat on the table, and gazed meaningfully at each member of the group. He was already advanced in years, but he aged gracefully. His full head of blonde hair, graying at the temples, was slicked back and perfectly combed. His chiseled jaw, prominent nose and cold blue eyes still as determined as ever. Not so much as one hair out of place. His perfectly pressed uniform was spotless, looking like it just came back from the laundry. His countless medals pinned proudly on his chest, gleamed in the light of the lantern. He was a shining symbol of the Nazi party.

The Dr. leaned forward and took a deep breath. Exhaling through his nostrils, he opened his mouth to speak.

"Men. We can no longer deceive ourselves. The end is near. Our glorious Third Reich is being dismantled at a rapid clip. Our beautiful goal of ridding this world of those that aren't of the Aryan race, has ground to a halt. We must acknowledge that. To deny that, is foolish and destructive."

His gaze travelled to each man, to gauge their reaction to his blasphemous words. Satisfied, with their unruffled faces, he continued. "Our path to the reign of the supreme race has indeed been cast off course,  but our eyes must not waver from the prize."

The men all looked solemn, awaiting his next words. "Right now we must retreat and lick our wounds. For if not, we will be totally demolished and destroyed, with no chance of revisiting the glory one day. But today we must plan for the future. A time will come when we will slowly regain our strength, and once again attain the ability to reign supreme. We must be patient and wait for that moment. Try and seize it too rapidly and our plans will bite the dust once again. It may be years, decades, or generations even, yet we will wait with the patience of a lynx, and the cunning of a fox."

"We must pass on this message to our firstborn sons, teaching and training them with our ideaology. Instructing them how to await the right time and start the plan over."

"These past few years, with the generous funding from the Furher, I have succeeded in developing a rapidly spreading virus which can cause a decimation of complete populations. The time will come when the opportunity to use it will present itself. We will be there."

"Over the next few years, we will continue to secretly develop the product, advancing it's potency, and designing means to spread the virus, and to create an antidote for use by those we want alive. We will be the only one of the powerful nations left alive, at last, our world dominion assured."

"We must continue to meet, secretly of course, and further solidify our plans. I took the liberty to draw up a code, strengthening our bond in this secret society. This society will be referred to as the "Eisenkralle" (The Iron Claw). I will pass the document around. Please affix your signature. By doing so your promise will be etched in stone and your pledge cast in iron. A betrayal of this sacred code will result in an immediate death. There is to much at stake to treat this lightly."

The Dr. passed around the paper. Each member dutifully signed their name, brows furrowed with the seriousness and gravity of the moment. They knew they were rewriting the history of Germany.

To be continued...

Re: The Story Teller (New) 02 Mar 2021 18:54 #364558

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Righteous Indignation

Chapter six:


April 20 2010;

Moe and Esther were happily married at Ateres Chaya Hall, in Boro Park. What a wedding it was! Starting from the chuppah to the final dance and dessert, it was truly spectacular.

Moe was the perfect chosson He looked super sharp in his brand new black suit and the requisite white tie. His hat had just the perfect brim size, not too wide, but not narrow. A great yeshivish/but open minded style hat. When he smiled everyone smiled with him, his happiness contagious.

Esther was a positively glowing kallah. Flowing white gown, with white beads around the shoulders. Perfect makeup and a nice updo. She just got gloss on her nails, she felt a colored manicure wasn't so tznius. She wanted to be a beautiful kallah inside and out, and didn't want to cut corners when it came to halacha. This was the start of her torah home!

At the end of the night they exited the hall, and waiting for them was a beautiful black stretched Lincoln Towncar. They settled in for the ride to the hotel.

What a perfect night.

                      *                   *                   *

August 2010; Brooklyn N.Y.

Dear Diary,

I haven't kept a diary in quite a number of years. But I think I'm going to start up again. I have so many emotions whirling around my brain, my heart is in turmoil, I must vent somewhere. I've been married for four months two weeks and three days. I wasn't supposed to be feeling like this now. But I'm getting ahead of myself. Let me start at the beginning.

During the first month or so after my wedding, life was blissful. Moe and I spent time getting to know each other.  We had long stimulating conversations, sometimes deep into the wee hours of the morning. It was  delightful. We became closer and closer, and I felt like I was on top of the world.

Moe returned to Yeshiva and started learning with a fire and a zest. I rolled up my sleeves and got to work doing the job I always yearned for. To be the wife of someone who sits and learns the whole day. I tended to his needs and assured him that nothing will stand in the way of his learning.

All would've been great, had life continued in this way. The truth is, life did continue like this, yet something started to chip away at the foundation of our relationship. Initially I couldn't put my finger in it, then it clicked.

Every night, when Moe would return from night seder, I was conked out on the couch, tired from my full day of cooking three meals a day, cleaning, doing laundry, in addition to doing my nine to five job as a secretary at Lumber Supplies Ltd. Moe would walk in all full of energy, and flip down on the couch next to me. He looked at me with those puppy eyes full of question marks.

I'd laugh, and give him an answer depending on how low my energy levels were. Sometimes yes, and sometimes no. When I was bone tired and had the beginnings of a headache, I was just ready to cuddle up in bed and drift off. I thought we were in agreement.

When it was enjoyable for both of us, we would be on. I mean, obviously I don't wait until its beckoning, because it usually doesn't when I'm so tired at the end of the day. I try to be there for him when possible. At least the minimum that my kallah teacher said. But when I'm just too exhausted, I mean it's simple mathematics no?

As the weeks progressed, Moe started to act short tempered with me sometimes. He just wasn't his old cheerful self. I wasn't sure why, but I chalked it up to a hard day in yeshiva. The turning point was last night. After slaving away the whole day, I cleaned up our supper dishes. I was about to retire to my beloved couch and indulge in another chapter of the new book I bought.

I decided instead to surprise Moe with a surprise he'll love. I know at night he enjoys a little snack after learning. I decided to make him his favorite, peanut butter chocolate chip cookies.

I quickly took out all the ingredients and the mixing bowl and got to work. I worked as fast as I can since I wanted it to be all ready for when he comes home. The baking went a little faster than I expected and I was all finished twenty minutes before Moe usually arrived home. I wrote a little note. Dear Moe, Thank you for being the very best husband ever. I hope you enjoy this little surprise! Esther.

I sank into the couch My weary body sighing in relief. I sat there excitedly awaiting his arrival. I must have drifted off to sleep because I awakened when Moe walked into the room. I opened one eye and said to him, did you see my surprise?

He totally ignored me and said, your sleeping again? Every night you gonna be tired? You bet! I said, I'm zonked from today. I've been working nonstop. I'm heading to bed now. But Moe, I made you surprise cookies, your favorite! I excitedly waited for his reaction. I was so proud of myself. He looked at me kind of funny, and rolled his eyes. I'm not hungry, he replied, and turned and stormed away.

I was shocked. I was deeply insulted. Moe! I said. At least eat one cookie! They are as fresh as possible! Are you so stuffed from the supper I slaved away making especially for you, that you can't even make believe you appreciate what I did? At least make believe! 

He stopped walking and turned around. You don't get it do you? Cookies? Seriously!! It's been 5 days already! He stormed away and slammed the bathroom door behind him.

I was terribly hurt. What was his deal? It finally clicked. I understood why he was acting aloof recently. My eyes welled up. I tried to swallow them down. You're a big girl I told my eyes, but they paid no heed to my pep talk. The tears spilled over and streamed down my face. I felt the worst I ever felt in my life. Why? Oh, why? All I did was try to please him, but all he can think about is one thing, and one thing only?!? I started sobbing quietly into my sleeve. I was so hurt. I felt crushed. 

Enough, I decided, he can get what he wants tonight. If that's why he was moping for days then I'm done with all this. I walked over to the kitchen table, picked up my plate of still warm cookies, opened the garbage lid and threw them in. I wiped my tears with my sleeve and headed to the bedroom. I'll give him his stlye cookies, the way he wants. I resigned myself. Maybe I'll hang a bell around my neck and he can ring it whenever he likes. I get it. He speaks one language, and one thing it's not. It's not the language of love. It's the language of lust. I'll serve him a heaping portion tonight.

So diary, it may have been the biggest mistake of my life. I felt so violated, and humiliated after he gleefully took me up on my angry offer. I took a shower, but the feeling stayed.

Moe left to yeshivah whistling today. Oh well, at least he still feels human.

I'm just so confused and hurt. Is this normal? Maybe I'm wrong. I guess I'll call Mrs. Reisman.

                                  Love,
                                
                                     Esther

To be continued...

Re: The Story Teller (New) 02 Mar 2021 18:55 #364559

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Righteous Indignation 

Chapter seven: 


December 2010, Brooklyn N.Y.

Moe sat behind the wheel of his silver Toyota Corolla, deep in thought. He was on his way back from Lakewood, where a friend had made a bris for his son. As he neared the end of the Verrazano Bridge, he veered left towards the Belt Parkway. He always felt calmer around water. It had somewhat of an hypnotic effect on him, helping him gather his thoughts. 

On a whim, he exited to the right, and pulled into a parking spot alongside the water. He shifted the car into park, and stretched his stiff muscles. He let out a sigh. He wasn't happy. At all.

He opened his glove compartment and took out his shiny new iphone. He looked at it. 

He vividly recalled the night he discarded his secret phone. It was the night prior to his engagement. He intended that to be the last chapter of his ugly secret. He really did. He was getting married, he didn't need it anymore. He will have the real thing. Finally. 

The real thing. Nope. He struck out. Just thinking about it made his blood start to boil again. What was Esther's problem? He thought she loved him, and he deeply loved her, but she was so selfish. Seriously, she lived for herself.

Why did it have to be a big deal? What did she think was was wrong with him? Was she not attracted to him? I mean, the way his chosson rebbi taught, it was supposed to be such an exciting experience. A fun bonding experience between a husband and wife. Why did she always make it feel like a chore? Didn't she love him? What did she want from him? To be a monk?

He always imagined him and his wife, with passion, excitement and fun. He was looking forward to this all his teenage years. 

Why was she always saying she was tired? Just because yesterday worked out meant not today? It's something enjoyable! She should be excited about it. He knew from all his years, that women love it! She should be begging for it. Not the other way around. 

His thoughts were whirling around in his mind, like a cyclone. He was so angry. The water wasn't calming him down today. What was the point of a marriage like this? They were glorified roommates for all practical purposes, once or twice a week, they were husband and wife, but please! There was no excitement on her part. Why was she so boring? 

Where was the passion? The adoring eyes? The fire? The...satisfaction? 

He never felt satisfied after, he actually felt disgusted most times. Over the months it got worse and worse. 

Initially, in the beginning of their marriage, it was nice, but as time passed and life started to get more hectic things changed. Esther was tired, alot. He came home from night seder, all geared up, and his dreams were dashed time and time again. When he broached the subject with his wife, she tried to explain that she really does enjoy it. But when she's tired it wasn't something she enjoyed. She just wanted to relax together. But he didn't believe her. No matter how tired he was he wanted it. If you enjoy it, theres always time. He remembered his years as a bochur. He knew what she should act like if she enjoyed it, where was the fireworks? The surprises when he came home?

Eventually she stopped responding when he complained. When he requested either she feigned exhaustion, or grudgingly shrugged and did her chore. Just like she cleaned the dishes. Emotionless.

He wondered why she got married at all. What was the point? If she just wanted a friend she could've just visited her best friend Chani every day.

Chani. Now that was a girl who probably had passion. She was so vibrant and lively, he always pictured her having excitement and energy. Her husband was a lucky man. 

He sighed. Chani....

Moe powered on his new phone. He felt a twinge of guilt, but quickly disregarded it. It's not his fault. It's Esther's. He tried. He really sacrificed for her. But he got nothing back in return. He was so good to her. A man has needs. What else can he do? It's completely her fault! 

When she decides to change, I'll get rid of it, he told himself. 

His flip phone pinged. He clicked on the new message. It was from Esther. Hi there, I made one of your favorite snacks, peanut chews. I know you'll probably be hungry after your drive. It's on the counter. I hope you enjoy it! Shteig away! -Esther.

He really did love his peanut chews. He felt a rush of appreciation for her. She really was a good woman and a loving wife in every other area...but...he just didn't understand it.

He shrugged. He picked up his other phone and got busy.

To be continued...

Re: The Story Teller (New) 02 Mar 2021 18:56 #364560

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Righteous Indignation 

Chapter Eight


March 2011; In the mountains of Afganistan 

The dusty Land Rover wove its way through the rocky mountains. It's destination getting closer. The German man sitting in the back seat, sandwiched between two AK-47 toting bodyguards, fidgeted nervously. Sweat trickling down from his blindfold, to the nape of his neck.

He wasn't sure if this was a good idea, but his feelings and thoughts didn't matter. When the boss gives a command you follow.

This was supposed to be the beginning of a successful partnership between the organization he represented, and the Shakar clan. 

The Shakar clan was ruled by the infamous Abu Batar Ibn Samara. A man whose path you didn't want to cross. Just a mere mention of his very name planted fear in the hearts of all who heard of him. No man dared to oppose him. Those who did, didn't live to share the story. He was a brutal and bloodthirsty man, who tortured his enemies gleefully.  Allowing them to fall gratefully into the hands of death, only after milking them for every cry of pain and tortured scream. 

The German quaked in fear as the vehicle slowed to a halt and the driver cut the engine.

The door was shoved open, and he was roughly pulled out of car. He landed on his feet, his heart pounding. One of his escorts yanked of his blindfold, he squinted in the light, his eyes fighting to adjust. 

He was led into a small white stone structure, in the middle of nowhere, armed masked men roving the property.

He entered the building,  eyes curiously gazing around. "Eyes straight ahead!" He felt the but of a rifle wack him in the small of his back. He quickly looked at his feet, fearing another injury. He was led into a small well lit room, and seated around a small wooden table, and was gruffly instructed to wait.

The door swung open, and in walked the man he came to meet. A tall strong man, with an angry chin and black eyes strode over to the table and seated himself. The guards snapped to attention respectfully. This must be Abu Batar, thought the German.

"You are probably tired after your arduous journey, would you like some freshly brewed coffee?" asked Abu Batar, in flawless yet accented English. He had a surprisingly sweet voice. "Yes, please" responded the German. 

The middle eastern man flicked his wrist imperceptibly, immediately a man came over with a tray of coffee paraphernalia. Abu Batar picked up a steaming decanter of coffee and poured them both a mugful. 

"Sugar?" He inquired. "No, thank you". The Clan leader smiled, "A man after my own heart" he said pleasantly. "Just the way I like it, strong and bitter".

They each took a sip of the hot brew. "Now, to business, what is the proposal? How will this proposed partnership work?" Abu Batar gazed at him intently. He returned the look unflinching. Inside he was deathly scared, but he knew better than to show it. 

The German was ready, he took a deep breath and started to explain in great detail. As he went on, he could tell the terrorist was getting excited. 

Maybe this wasn't such a bad idea after all. This alliance will lend a new thrust and urgency to their aging organization.

"Eisenkralle" is still alive. 

                      *             *             *


April 2011; Brooklyn N.Y.

Dear Diary,

I'm back. I know it's been a while but life's been so confusing, I wasn't even sure how to put pen to paper to describe it. 

My husband is a great guy. He takes his learning and davening seriously, he's always ready to lend a helping hand to someone in need, and is quite a helpful husband too. He's an all-around great guy. I really like him. I actually love him too, but there's a part of him I'm terrified by.

Let me explain. 

Our bedroom life is in shambles. Whatever I tried to do to salvage it wasn't  helpful. In the beginning of our marriage, when I learned how important it was to Moe, I spoke to Mrs. Reisman for guidance. She explained to me the way a man's mind is, and the physical necessity of being together. 

She described it beautifully. She explained that for a woman, it's like a delicious dessert, enjoyable but not vital. Something that can be savored, but not every moment is deemed an occasion to indulge. On he other hand, to a man, it's akin to requiring the bathroom. It's a need. It can consume them.

I listened to her, and started making myself more available. A few times a week. I would prepare for him. It was actually quite nice, seeing him enjoy being with me so much. Things really started looking up for us. I breathed a sigh of relief. My loving husband was back.

Yet, as soon as we started to drift into tranquil and serene waters, dark ominous clouds began to show on the horizon, heralding the next storm starting to brewing. Once Moe became used to our new schedule, he started to need something more. He always showed up with some new idea or problem, or a new reason to be unhappy. 

First, he wanted to know why I don't "enjoy" it the way "every other woman does". I tried to explain to him, that I do indeed enjoy it. I enjoy being with him. I truthfully look forward to it. But he didn't believe me, because it didn't "sound" like I do. I'm not sure what I'm supposed to do to make him believe me. I wasn't given acting lessons in preparation for marriage. Although, now I wish I was.

He started to constantly come up with new ideas, always asking if now "it's geshmak", of if finally "it's working". He was relentless. All under the guise of wanting "me" to be happy.

Oh! He completely ruined everything! I used to look forward to relaxing together and giving him a nice time. Now, three times a week, I had a torture session, with a man possessed with "giving me a good time".

Then, he graduated to wanting new ideas. He was always bored with the "old". What did he want? Diary, tears are falling from my eyes, I'm I'm pain. I don't know where to turn.

I learned to dread the night time. When I heard the front door being unlocked on those nights, my heart dropped. I knew that now starts Moe's painful rituals.

I begged, and I pleaded with him to stop this madness, but to no avail. He needed to feel "satisfied " he claimed. It was an obligation for her to go along with it.

I told him time and time again, all I wanted was to have an enjoyable time together with my husband, but he was possessed like a maniac with reaching certain goals and needed me to meet all the specifications. He needed me to dress a certain way, start wearing perfumes, and many more things too painful to recount. 

One thing led to the next and every week or so he'd come up with a new idea and a new way to try unsuccessfuly, to satisfy his unquenchable thirst. I couldn't handle it anymore, I'm not sure what he wanted from me. It was like I was an actor on a set, and he was a stern script writer who needed all his I's dotted and T's crossed.

I gave up attempting to please him, and started to shut down. I started pleading exhaustion, doing all I can to prevent this new unpleasant experience. He was like a ravenous monster, with an insatiable appetite. 

It reached the point where we are now, when faced with no more excuses, I grit my teeth, close my eyes and let him do his thing. I'm just an object. With a diamond ring on my finger, proving that I belong to him.

I do try my best during the day to be a loving wife, I try do shove all the night activities to the recesses of my mind. I try to hold up my chin and smile at him, but inside I'm crushed. 

I cry bitter tears to Hashem every day. I beseech him with all my strength, to turn my husband back into the person I married. So far my prayers weren't answered. 

I hear the front door, that's Moe coming in. Gotta run, I think I'm on the menu tonight. I already held him off for too long. Oh well.

                           Love,
                                
                                  Esther 

                       *            *             *

Moe stared at the screen. His heart was pounding. He had never taken such a step. But he couldn't anymore. It wasn't his fault. What else was he supposed to do?

He pressed send with a shaky finger. He waited with bated breath. She's typing. His message was returned. He read the response and smiled. This could be dangerous, but he felt like he was at the end of his rope. All day every day, all he felt was frustration. He was with a woman who didn't even attempt to satisfy him. Now was a chance to change that. He gleefully started typing again. 

To be continued...

Re: The Story Teller (New) 02 Mar 2021 18:57 #364561

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Righteous Indignation 

Chapter Nine


June 7, 2011; Undisclosed location 

The scientist pored over his computer screen. He was crunching his data and reviewing his logs for the fifth time. He just couldn't understand how this was possible. 

All the other rats were behaving according to plan. They were all injected and placed in a new cage with uninfected rats. Within a few seconds, all the other rats were heavily infected, and died a few days later.

It worked like clockwork. His superiors were extremely satisfied with his success. They were nearing the finish line now, all his years of hard work were worth it for this very moment. 

But what was wrong with the white one? Why did it remain healthy and strong and not contagious in the face of numerous injections and exposures? He was baffled. 

Oh well, he didn't have time for blood tests. He already sent a message that he was successful. They were putting the rest of the plan into motion. He didn't want to disappoint his boss. No one did. Things never ended well when the boss wasn't happy with you. He hoped it was just a weird occurrence. 

                        *             *             *

June 12, 2011; Brooklyn N.Y. 

Moe got into his car, his coffee in hand and pulled out his phone. He clicked on his emails, hoping to find new unread messages. 

His relationship with this young woman he met online, was really progressing. There were moments he felt terrible guilt about it, but as soon as he went home to his wife, and experienced her nonchalant attitude towards his male needs, he felt better. 

Over the past few weeks they've been getting to know each other. She shared with him that she was also an orthodox Jew and married to a man she wasn't happy to be with. They shared their frustrations with each other on an almost daily basis, and the two were growing quite close. They still were wary about sharing their real names, photos or meeting, but they both knew that was going to happen, and it was only a matter of time. 

He really started to love this woman. She seemed charismatic and witty, and had a positive energy about her that he felt immediately attracted and connected to. 

He didn't know how he got sucked into this so deep. Just a short while ago he was a loyal husband and a serious Ben Torah, but slowly things started to unravel. It started with small nips on the internet once again, over time needing more and more, and before he knew it this is where he was holding. He almost felt numb sometimes. Sometimes he felt guilty, and sometimes just plain confused. 

He tried to get himself to break it off and stop all this nonsense. But he couldn't. It was just too hard and too tempting. It wasn't just about desire, this was a real relationship he had with this woman. He felt he really cared about her and she really cared about him. He just couldn't let go. All he felt was missing in his marriage, was found with his new friend. He felt fulfilled and happy when he conversed with her.

He looked at his phone. Yes! He noted excitedly. A new message. He opened it up. "Hey Love! Feeling super edgy today. Husband went to sleep early. I needed some serious action! I wish we would finally meet! I could use a real man in my life. Wadaya think?"

His palms felt sweaty. His heart pounded in excitement. She was ready! After a moment's hesitation, he decided he was ready too. He clicked the reply button, and started to type.

                       *             *            *

June 13, 2011; Undisclosed location

Skippy walked through the hallways, mop in hand with a spring in his step. He was able to feel the excitement permeating the laboratory all day. He knew that after these long weeks, what ever project was going on here was coming to a successful culmination.

He didn't know anything about it, nor what their objective was. All he knew was that he was given a room and food, And was hired as a janitor. Whatever was going on was top secret. He wasn't all6 to leave the building all these months. But he didn't care at all, he was the happiest he's ever been since being a child.

He swished the mop back and forth in a graceful motion, cleaning and polishing the hallway floor. It was a job he took most seriously, he loved working here, and wanted to do the best job possible. Here, he wasn't taunted about his looks, or made fun of the way he spoke. Here he was able to live in peace, assured of food and board.  

His favorite part, was that they supplied him with the best toy in the world, silly putty. He had a whole cabinet full of it in his room. And the thing that put the biggest smile on his face was the fact that he had an unlimited supply of his favorite food, peanut butter. They really wanted him to be happy here. 

Peanut butter, he was able to eat it breakfast, lunch, and supper - and in between as a snack. That's why his name was Skippy. His real name was Danny but in school he was taunted over his obsession with peanut butter amongst everything else they used to make fun of him about, so they called him skippy.  He actually enjoyed peanut butter so much, he took a liking to the name Skippy. He took so much pride in it, he started to use that name all the time. 

He finished cleaning the hallway, and surveyed his handy work. He smiled with satisfaction, proud of his superb cleaning skills. He plunged the mop back into his pail, and headed upstairs to don his special protective suit, before cleaning the laboratory.

He loved cleaning that specific room. This was the room  he had friends in. This was the only room where he was able to talk, and feel connection. He opened the door and sang out "Hey buddies, Skippy is here!" He dropped his mop and pail and put down his spray bottles and rags. He headed over to the little cages that housed his little friends. "Hello Snowflake! Hey there Spot, Ron and Brian. He named each one of them. They were his only companions in his lonely existence. 

Next, he exuberantly walked over to his favorite one. This one was special to him. It reminded him of his little pet he had when he was a young child. It was only true friend, the only one he felt comfortable around, the only one who didn't make fun of his looks, or call him mentally retarded.  

He looked down with fondness in his eyes, reminded of all the happy moments. "Hey there, Peanut" He said, "Daddy's here." He knew he shouldn't and he wasn't allowed to, if caught he would definitely lose this precious job. He couldn't resist. He reached down and unlatched the air tight case. He stuck his hand in, and picked up his little furry friend. 

"Hello there", he cooed, stroking it's soft back. "Are you hungry?" he asked. He reached into his pocket and pulled out some leftover lunch. He always saved some for  Peanut. He dropped some crumbs of bread generously slathered with Skippy peanut butter, on to his palm. "Here, eat, eat up, precious". 

The white rat hungrily devoured the little gift, and licked his paws in satisfaction. Skippy knew they were friends. Really close friends. He gingerly lifted him up, and reluctany placed him gently back in the cage. "Good bye Peanut. Daddy has to go now I'll see you again tomorrow."

                         *             *             *

June 14, 2011; Brooklyn N.Y.

"Esther!" Moe screamed. "Why is there four settings by the table?" "Don't you remember?" Esther replied. "I invited the Baums for the Friday night meal." He really doesn't listen to anything I say anymore, Esther mused to herself. 

Things between her and Moe, were gradually getting worse. She didn't want to share a whole meal with just Moe and herself all the time, so she invited her friend for the Friday night meal. She'll have Chani to talk to, and they'll have a fun time talking about their week like they always do. Moe will have to talk to Yehoshua. She knew he didn't love hanging out with him because he found him a little boring, but too bad, this was her decision.

Oh, the Baums thought Moe. He smiled to himself. He didn't really like having to sit and talk to Yehoshua for so long, but he sure did enjoy having Chani sit at his table.

He enjoyed just having her around. He was able to feast his eyes on her, and hear her voice. He knew it was wrong to view his wife's friend like that, but she awakened something inside him, and he always felt some deep stirrings. 

He sometimes wished he were married to her. He knew they would have fun together. He didn't understand why she was with Yehoshua. They didn't seem to have any chemistry. When he mentioned it to Esther, she brushed him off, and told him he's imagining things. He knew it was true.

He was looking forward to the meal. 

To be continued...

Re: The Story Teller (New) 02 Mar 2021 18:58 #364562

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Righteous Indignation 

Chapter Ten


June 14, 2011; Brooklyn N.Y.

The Baums were at the Steiner's for the Friday night seudah. Moe couldn't take his eyes off of Chani. She was beautiful. He tried not to be obvious, and continued schmoozing with Yehoshua, while casting surreptitious glances at Chani.

After the soup, Yehoshua excused himself, and headed to the bathroom. At the same time, Esther got up to clear the empty soup bowls.

It was just Moe and Chani left at the table. Moe shyly glanced at chani, she met his eyes with a glance of her own. They looked at each other. Moe felt frozen. 

Chani looked at him and winked, a flush slowly creeping up her pretty face. "What's up?" She asked. 

Moe was taken aback, he wasn't expecting that. He smiled, his face red. She likes me back! He thought excitedly.

Esther suddenly walked back into the dining room, carrying a dish piled high with steaming BBQ chicken.

He guiltily turned away from Chani, and started to sing "ka ribon alam..." A weird feeling in his chest.

                        *             *             *

June 16, 2011; Langley, Virginia.

The phone rang in Langley, Virginia. The man in the dark designer suit, picked it up on the first ring. He didn't say anything. He listened for a moment, then hung up.

He immediately punched in a few numbers, waited a moment and said "We are closing in, the location is set. Brief the team, it shouldn't be more than a few weeks." Without waiting for a response, he abruptly hung up. Confident his directive will be adhered to.

He leaned back and breathed a sigh of relief. They were finally getting somewhere. After years of confusion whether this organization existed, the fears were confirmed. 

The C.I.A. was ready. The C.I.A. was always ready. 

                        *             *             *

June 18, 2011; Brooklyn N.Y.

It was dark and eerily quiet. She was all alone. A sharp, cold, howling wind blew roughly against her cheeks. An ominous sense of impending doom started to envelop her. Panic started rising. She shivered. Someone started chasing her. Must get away, she thought. She tried to run. Her legs wouldn't move. Her fearful eyes darted all over looking for someone to save her. Raw fear paralyzed her. No one was there. 

She was all alone. All alone. All alone. 

She started to scream...

Esther abruptly opened her eyes. She woke up in a cold sweat. The fear was so real. She futilely tried to shake off the cobwebs of sleep. She was confused.  The house was dark and quiet. Glancing at her wristwatch, she saw it was 3:20 am. Why was she sleeping on the couch?

As her foggy sleep deprived brain started to clear, the dark dreaded feeling started to set back into her stomach. Water. She needed water. She felt parched. She stumbled off the couch, groggily making her way to the refrigerator. She grabbed a cold bottle of Poland Spring water, and sat down at the kitchen table. 

She aggressively twisted off the cap, mumbled a bracha, and thirstily gulped down a few mouthfulls. Satisfied, she set the half empty bottle down. She felt drained. Entirely and utterly devoid of energy. 

Her mind started to wander back to the days horrifying events...

                       *             *             *

"Moe, I need the car today. My ride to work cancelled on me."

"Your sure there's no other option?" He responded. "You know I hate not having the car."

"I know, but you're just going to have to manage for one day. I'll drop you off at yeshiva and I'll pick you up after second seder. I can prepare you lunch to take along, if you don't want to eat the yeshiva lunch." Esther offered.

"Ok." Said Moe resigned to losing his car. "We need to leave in ten minutes, you'll be ready?" "Sure", replied Esther, "I just need to put on my sheitel and throw on some lipstick. I'll be right there".

True to her word, Esther was ready on time, and she dropped Moe off, with a few minutes still to go before seder. She pulled out of the parking lot, and headed towards work.

Esther hummed to herself as she drove. She was in a pretty good mood this morning. She wasn't sure why. Maybe it was because she expected Moe to put up a bigger fight for the car. She was prepared for him huffing and puffing, but he seemed ok. 

Esther pulled onto Avenue L, just as she felt her phone vibrate. Picking up her phone, she flipped it open to read the text message. Suddenly, she saw flashing lights in her rearview mirror, and horrified, she realized she was being pulled over. She fearfully turned on her right blinker, and slowing down, pulled over to the side of the road.

When the officer appeared at the window, Esther obligingly rolled it down. "License and registration, Ma'am", said the stern faced cop in a no nonsense tone.

She dutifully reached into her purse and removed her license. She leaned over and clicked open the glove compartment, looking for the registration card. As she ruffled through the contents with shaking fingers, she felt something hard among the documents. Interesting, she thought to herself, I wonder what that is. 

Oh, "here it is" she said, victoriously holding the registration aloft. She handed it to the officer. She nervously tapped her fingers against the steering wheel, as she waited for the police officer to return. She never got pulled over before. She was terrified. 

The cop returned, and said "Ma'am, you were driving while on your phone, but I'm going to let you off the hook, because you got a clean driving record. Consider this a warning. G'day". He handed her the papers and returned to his vehicle. 

Esther exhaled in relief, "Thank you Hashem" she said. She placed her license back in her pocketbook, and returned the registration to the glove compartment. Before she shut it, she remembered that there was something she wanted to check. She groped around, seeking the curiously hard object. Her hand closed around it, and she pulled it out. 

A cell phone. Actually a smartphone. Interesting, I wonder who's this is and what it's doing here, she innocently mused to herself. She decided to turn it on. As it was powering on, she resumed her drive to work.

She pulled into a parking spot, and picked up the phone. She was real curious. She clicked on the contacts, it was empty. Suddenly, Esther started to get suspicious. She started browsing through it, and realized it had service. She clicked on the browser, and selected the browsing history. She gasped. 

Esther felt her throat constrict, icy tentacles squeezing her airways. Her heart started pounding. Curiosity got the better of her, she scrolled down. Then she clicked on one of the searches. The results appeared on the screen. She pressed play. 

She couldn't believe her eyes. She was utterly appalled. She felt the bile rise in her throat, and felt like she was going to puke. She quickly rolled down the window for some fresh air. It didn't help.

How, how, how...she couldn't formulate a coherent thought. Her mind was racing. She felt her ears getting hot, a migraine headache starting to set in.

The tears started to flow. Big, hot, salty tears started to course down her cheeks. She started to sob uncontrollably, her shoulders heaving against her will. She felt such a deep sense of betrayal and despair. She never felt so hurt in her life. She felt like somebody stuck a sharp dagger into her chest, and ripped out of her heart. Her life was over. Completely over.

Esther sat behind the wheel of her car, for the next three hours, in a daze. Incoherent thoughts streaming through her painfilled brain. She didn't know what to do, where to go, or who to turn to. She was drowning, every breath a torturous struggle. 

She was all alone. All alone. All alone.

To be continued...

Re: The Story Teller (New) 02 Mar 2021 18:59 #364563

  • Grant400
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Righteous Indignation 

Chapter Eleven


June 17, 2011 Undisclosed Location 

The man spoke into the phone intently, arranging all of the final details. If everything were to go as planned, it would be underway in a few days time.

He called the last number on his list. "Mike? I need someone from you, make sure he won't take the consequences, we can't afford to lose at this point. Make sure there's no question at all. Good. Bye."

The man hung up. He leaned back in his chair and waited for the show to begin.

                        *             *             *

June 17, 2011; Brooklyn N.Y.

Esther sat in her car at a loss. She watched her life burn and crumble around her. She felt a searing pain deep in her heart. She wracked her muddled brain to think of the best person to reach out to. She didn't think there was any way to fix this terrible situation, but she desperately needed a loving hug and a reassuring pat on the back.

She was embarrassed to call Mrs. Reisman, she felt her face burning in shame just thinking about it, but she knew that was her best and only bet.

She picked up her phone, found her kallah teacher's number and hesitated, then with her jaw clenched, pressed call. She waited as it rang, her heart in her throat, with no idea what she was going to say.

"Hello?" Mrs. Reisman's clear voice rang over the line. "Hello, it's Esther, Esther Steiner." " Oh, Hello my dear Esther, what a pleasant surprise! How are you? I missed you!" Replied her Morah. The sound of  love and warmth in her teacher's voice was just too much for Esther, she melted and broke down in tears, crying uncontrollably. She tried unsuccessfully to enunciate a few clear syllables in response, but she just couldn't do it. It was like all of the pain of the past many months suddenly broke loose, the dam inside her decimated by the gushing tears. She waited a moment. 

"Oh, Morah, Morah, it hurts so much! The pain is too much. Morah, I can't, my heart is exploding." The words tumbled out of her uncontrollably. She started to hiccup. 

"Esther, my sweetheart, take a deep breath. Talk to me sheifela. Morah is always here for you, no matter what", said Mrs. Reisman, love and deep concern permeating her voice. Esther felt  a profound sense of relief wash over her. She felt deep feelings of love for her beloved Morah. She had someone to talk to, someone who loved her, someone who was loyal to her. She had her Morah.

"Morah, I don't know how to say this, it's mortifying. Um, I um, found a phone that my husband had, and um, it had not nice things on it. Like um, not tznius videos, of um, other woman undressed and..." she couldn't finish the sentence. 

"Oh, Morah!" Cried Esther, the raw pain evident in her voice, her thoughts pouring out of her in a jumble. "Why doesn't he like me? Why am I not enough? Am I so ugly, Morah?" The tears started to flow with more intensity. "I always tried to be a good wife, what did I do? What am I doing wrong? Morah, I promise I was good to him, just like you taught me! Am I really not a good person? Tell me Morah, tell me!" Esther's eyes started to sting, and the back of her throat started to ache from her crying so much. 

Morah Reisman wisely allowed Esther to express herself. She waited until she was sure her beloved student was finished before starting to talk.

"Esther" she began, "I can't imagine the pain you feel right now. It must be so painful, your entire marriage seems to be a lie to you. You feel like your husband hates you. I understand Esther. I truly do. But I promise you, you are a special person. A truly amazing young woman, who is beautiful inside and out." 

Morah took a deep breath and continued. "You are a lovely wife, I can assure you, and you are a beautiful bas yisroel. Moe is a very luck man."

"But Morah" exclaimed Esther, "Why does he need all the other girls then? Why isn't he satisfied with me? Now I understand why he always needed more and more. Now it's clear why he always had these new ideas, he was always busy with this. Morah I can't stay married to this monster! I can't! I never want to see him again! What should I do?"

"Esther-" Mrs. Reisman started to say, Esther cut her off. "I'm never letting him see me! I'm so embarrassed! How can I compete with all those pretty girls?" Esther was bawling now, her voice high and shrill. "He probably wishes he wouldn't have married me. He thinks I'm ugly, I know he does! Morah, tell me for real, am I ugly?" Esther couldn't talk anymore, she just sat in her car crying softly, high wet tears rolling down her cheeks. She pressed the phone to her ear tightly, as if seeking comfort from it.

"Shh, Esther" began her teacher again. "Everything will be okay, I promise. I know you don't believe me now, but I beg you to listen to me. I'm going to call my husband the Rav, and I'm going to get back to you right away. He is a very wise man and always knows what to do. Okay sheifela?" Esther nodded, then realized her teacher can't see her. "Ok Morah" she whimpered, "Thank you so much" Esther paused and took a breath, "I love you," she whispered, her voice hoarse from crying. "I love you too Esther," Said Mrs. Reisman, "I love you too. Goodbye Esther." They hung up.

To be continued...

Re: The Story Teller (New) 02 Mar 2021 19:00 #364564

  • Grant400
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Righteous Indignation 

Chapter Twelve


June 17, 2011; Brooklyn N.Y.

Esther sat in the car, waiting for her teacher's call. Her brain started to calm down and actually think about what just happened. She started to feel anger besides for the hurt. The more she thought about it, the more her anger morphed into a deep red fury. She felt a fire bubbling inside of her. She was furious with Moe. Uch. Just the thought of him made her want to puke. The scheming jerk. Acting all holy the whole day, running off to yeshiva and minyan, whilst wallowing in filth - BEHIND HER BACK! 

She wanted to wring his neck and throttle him as hard as she could. She wanted to slap him across the face and watch his cheek sting and turn deep red. She wanted him to suffer too, just as she was suffering now.

She opened her phone and angrily pushed speed dial one. As the phone rang she gritted her teeth gearing to lash at out him. "Hello? Esther? What's up? You know I don't like when you call me in the middle of seder" said Moe self righteously. She felt herself shaking in anger.

"Moe, I need you home this instant. Now." She said. "But I-" "Right now. Nothing to talk about," she cut him off, and slammed her phone shut. "In the middle of seder" she mimicked in a squeaky voice. "Such a tzaddik!" She said, sarcasm dripping from her voice.

She put the car on drive, and angrily turned the wheel, merging onto the avenue heading home. She'll confront him, and see what he has to say for his pathetic little self!

                          *            *            *

Esther waited for Moe at home, pacing the dining room floor, clutching the secret phone tightly in her clammy palm. She didn't know what she was going to say, but she knew she had to say whatever was inside. She was going to let it just pour out of her.

She heard the jingling of the combination lock on the front door, and braced herself before seeing his face. 

"Hey - what's up? What's the big emergency? Are you all right?" Asked Moe lightly, coming into the dining room. 

Esther strode angrily toward him and thrust the phone in his face. "This, this! No! No!" Esther struggled to find the words to express herself. "I'm NOT all right! I found your... naked lady phone. You pig. Care to explain yourself, my huge yeshiva tzaddik?"

At the sight of his secret phone clenched in her hand, Moe turned white. "Um, um" he stuttered. 

Esther exploded. "How long have you been doing this, huh? Am I not good enough for you? Why don't you just divorce me and sleep with every woman you see?" She fumed. "Now I know why you put me through all this pain, you and your crazy new ideas, all busy with with it every second. You're a horrible person. I'm ashamed I'm married to you!" She smashed the phone on to the floor in a fit of rage, shattering the screen.

Moe stood there in shock.

"You make believe you love me. You say all your preprogrammed platitudes, you don't mean one word of it! The second you leave the house you are busy watching all those horrible things." Esther started to cry.

"Why? Why? Why do you feel the need? You don't like the way I look? Isn't it about loving each other? Am I just an object to you? Am I just one of a thousand?"  

"Look at this vase," cried Esther, picking up the crystal vase sitting on the dining room table. "You bought this for me for our anniversary, why? Is it a big joke to you? Am I a big joke? Is our marriage a big joke? Here, take this piece of garbage, give it to one of your naked internet ladies! Here! HERE!" Shouted Esther, slamming the vase onto the floor, shattering it into a million pieces. Water and flowers mingled with broken shards of glass, creating a puddle around Moe's shoes. 

Moe stood frozen in place. 

"Say something you! Answer me! Why?" Bawled Esther, tears cascaded down her cheeks. "How?"

Moe opened his mouth. "It's not my fault. It's because you never want to do it. I had to do this! You think I wanted to? I have no wife! I have a roommate. What am I supposed to do? I'm a healthy man!" Exclaimed Moe defensively. "When I come home, stop with your "Ooh Moe, I made your favorite snack " how about being with me instead of going to sleep!"

"Right!" Scoffed his wife. "Why do you think I didn't want to? Huh? It was never enough for you! You always needed more, always needed some new thing you knew I wasn't comfortable with. You killed everything! You made it into a chore. A chore I dreaded."

"But -" started Moe. Esther cut him off sharply. "But nothing. I was taught it was supposed to be a bonding experience between a husband and wife. Loving. It was nothing like that. It was you hungrily devouring your meal. It was you tearing me apart with you desires. Your internet stuff. You needed me to reenact all the goyishe videos you watch the whole day!"

Esther started to mimic Moe in a squeaky voice. "You're sure you're tired?" "You don't like this? Women like this!" " I'm telling you your gonna enjoy this!" "Can we do this?" "Why aren't you excited?" "Why don't you ever initiate?" "Why this, why that..." "Why don't you just play your video's for me and ask me to copy them? I can practice when you are learning your heilige seder, and perform for his highness when you come home!"

Esther looked at him with red eyes from crying. "I called Mrs. Reisman and told her what I found out. She's going to call me back after she speaks to her husband. We are going to do whatever they say!" Said Esther with a finality. 

"No way." Said Moe. "This is your problem. When you learn how to be a wife, we can talk." Moe was angry too now. He bent down, picked up his phone, and stormed out without saying another word.

Esther stood there deep in shock. She wasn't expecting that response. Her fault? How?

She picked up her phone and saw a missed call from her teacher. She dialed her number, and heard it ring.

To be continued...
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