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In a game of wife-switching, the mixed foursome found some strange surprises

"Night In Suburbia"

by George H. Smith



Vol. 6, No. 1, 1961

     AFTER THE VERY dry martinis had been drunk and the charcoal broiled steaks had been eaten, Stan Gibson and Jim Fredrick went inside the house to watch Gunsmoke. Lura Gibson and Doris Fredrick remained in the patio sipping highballs.
     Lura leaned toward Doris. There was a slight slur in her voice as she said "You know sometimes I get so jealous of you that I could yank you baldheaded."
     Surprise flashed across Doris' attractive face. "Of me...?"
     "Yes and don't give me that baby stare."
     "But, Lura...I don't understand." 
     "Oh, no? Listen, honey, I know your type--you always act sweet an' innocent but when you're alone with a man you really turn on the sex."
     Doris leaned forward and put a hand on Lura's knee. "Darling, I honestly don't know what you're talkin' about.
     "The hell you don't--you've had my husband panting for you for months."
     "Stan...and me? Oh Lura, you're wrong--there hasn't been a thing going on between us."
     "That's what you say." Lura's voice blurred and she spilled some of her drink as she lifted it to her lips. "But that's not what Stan says. All Stan can talk about is how sexy you are and how much he'd like to go to bed with you."
     "Stan says things like that about me?" The surprised look on Doris' face had changed to a speculative one. "I...but he's never said anything like that to me...I...and that's the truth, Lura."
     Lura Gibson glared at the other girl over the top of her drink. "Well, of course you wouldn't admit it if there was anything going on."
     "But there isn't. Believe me...Stan I have never even so much as kissed."
     "Well...that's not the way it sounds to hear him talk." Lura sounded somewhat mollified. "He spends most of his time talking about how great he thinks you are."
     "Does he really?" Doris said. "You mean he says things like that about me in front of you?"
     "In front of me--in front of anybody else, too." Lura was looking into her empty glass. "I need another drink."
     "But he's never said anything like that to me," Doris said. The interest in her voice was obvious but Lura didn't seem to notice it.
     "Oh...he's kind of backward about starting something with a girl but once Stan gets started...wow!" 
     "No kidding?"
     "'S'way he is...believe me I know all about him. Thinks he's sly, but I know him." Lura stood up swaying slightly, her empty glass in her hand, and went to the sliding glass door of the living room. "Hey, how about one of you big strong men mixing a lady a drink?"
     Stan Gibson came to the door and put his finger to his lips. "Shhh..." he said. "Old Jim has kind of passed out on us."
     "Well...your arm isn't broken hubby mine--fix me a drink." 
     "We're out of bourbon-how about something with gin in it?" 
     "You know damn well I don't drink anything but bourbon. Drive down and get some."
     "Well...I suppose I can," Stan said. "But the place at the shopping center is closed--and it's a half hour drive into Moorepark."
"Ah s'what--I wanna drink," Lura said with all the belligerency of someone who has already had too many drinks.
     "Oh what the hell--I'll get my coat."
     "Why don't you get Jim to go with you? It's a shame to drive that long way all by yourself," Doris said.
     "No--the poor guy's had it," Stan said. "Better let him sleep." 
     "Well, then, why don't I go along to keep you company?"
     Lura had collapsed onto the chaise lounge and her head had fallen forward on her chest.
     Stan looked from Jim to his wife and then at Doris.
     "It isn't as though either of them really needs any more..."
     "But why don't we go anyhow?" Doris said moving very close to Stan. "There's something I've been wanting to talk over with you."
     "That's funny," Stan said. "I've been wanting 'to talk to you too." A few minutes later the car was pulling out of the driveway and Doris was sitting very close to Stan in the front seat. His right hand edged over to her knee. She smiled encouragement.
     At that moment, inside the house, Lura looked up and watched the car's tail lights. When they were out of sight, she sat up and put her empty glass down. There was a sound from the next room and Jim Fredrick appeared at the doorway.
     "It worked like a charm," he said walking toward Lura as straight as though he hadn't had a drink all evening. "As soon as I started talking about how interested Doris was in him, Stan started getting excited over her."
     "So did she," Lura said, "And it's about time. I thought we'd never get them interested in each other so that we could have a little fun without them being around."
     Jim took her in his arms and pressed her down on the chaise lounge,  his hand already moving beneath her skirt. 

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