The Id and The Odyssey; Episode 61

The Lover

Rich drove back to the apartment feeling better about myself. By the time he climbed the steps to the apartment his thoughts were about Peggy and the moonlight painting. Something disturbed him about it. He was familiar with the island. He had sailed there before. Why would she go there without her husband in the middle of the night? Why the risk in a small boat? Strange, Rich never pictured Peggy as the type to risk her life to capture that perfect glint of moonlight. Only passion drives a person to do that sort of thing. It had to be passion beyond art.
It was nearly impossible for him to sleep that night and the mystery dogged him relentlessly the next day.
He checked the calendar for the next full moon and hoped for clear skies. He planned to sail to the island the next moonlit night.

It was near sundown when Rich set sail in The Odyssey and skimmed over the choppy waters of the bay and into the open waters beyond. He anchored about one hundred yards from shore on the east side of Mosquito Island and rowed to shore in the dingy. He crept through the underbrush and trees careful not to make any noise. The moon hung above the trees of the mainland to the west. Rich looked across the water and watched the moonlight shimmer and dance on the choppy water.
Rich stealthily made his was to the edge of the beach. He stooped and peered through the underbrush at the beach. Squinting, Rich saw Peggy in the moonlight on the beach standing at her easel gently adding strokes to her painting. To her right a man laid on a blanket not far from her. Rich crawled closer and peeked above a large rock. The man had thick black hair. Dennis was blond.
“It a lover,” Rich mumbled.
Rich found it difficult to breath for a moment. In some strange way he felt betrayed. It was as if he had become the jealous husband. Rich was the one with a knife in his heart. He thought, How could she do this?” His eyes welled with tears. His chest tightened. He felt sick. All Rich could think about was poor unassuming and trusting Dennis.
Rich watched for another couple of minutes. Peggy laid her palate on a case and walked over to the man on the blanket. Near him she loosened her hair and dropped to her knees. The man came to his knees and they began to kiss passionately. Rich could bear no more. He ran back across the island at times falling and stumbling from the thick underbrush He rowed like a man escaping from prison back to The Odyssey.
Rich raised the sails and caught a breeze that carried The Odyssey out into the open waters and back to Rockland. It was two before docking at the marina.
There was bitterness and anger towards Peggy and sympathy toward Dennis. They were his friends. Rich knew something he should not know.
“I should have stayed in the apartment,” he thought. “What was I expecting. I suspected, but I went. Why could I not have just let it alone? My suspicions would have subsided. In time I would have forgotten. I had no business going there. Dennis will not find out from me. What should I do? I needed advice. The only ones I trust to talk with are Sam and Katie and that may spoil the friendship between the two couples.”
“I resolved to ignore it, pretend it did not happen,” Rich thought.

That resolve soon washed away a week later. Rich saw Peggy’s car parked near the breakwater that led to the lighthouse near Rockland Harbor. Rich walked on the breakwater toward the lighthouse.