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She Gave Her All
CHAPTER ONEThis was Adam Lombard's first faculty meeting. He had been looking forward to it for weeks, ever since Gideon Hodgkiss, dean of the exclusive Mekins Academy, had signed him on as the head football coach. Two weeks ago he had come up to the school to meet with the team members, put them through a few preliminary practice sessions and explain a couple of intricate plays he had worked out during the summer.The boys had liked him and he had thought them a fine group of young men. They had all hit it off together just fine. Adam was looking forward to a good season, with pleasant associations. On Monday the main student body had begun arriving. School was officially scheduled to open tomorrow; today the students were settling in and the faculty was holding its first meeting.They were seated in a semi-circle, facing the massive desk, behind which Dean Hodgkiss, a middle-aged balding man, was now sitting. Adam let his eyes wander over the group, knowing that in the days to come he would get to know them all intimately and would be dependent on them for social and academic activities.There were eighteen, in all, eight men and seven women. Adam's gaze passed from one figure to the next. His brief scrutiny of each was almost complete, when his roving eyes stopped and froze. He was looking at a young girl. She couldn't have been more than twenty-one or twenty-two. She was the most beautiful creature that he had ever looked upon. Her hair was a chestnut brown and hung loosely, framing an exquisite face. Her nose was small and slightly uptilted at the end. Her lips were full and rich; her eyes a gray green in color. Her lovely legs were crossed. Her dress had been accidentally caught up when she sat down, and a goodly portion of her bare thigh was exposed.Adam's first reaction was one of embarrassment. He looked up at the girl's face, but her attention was focused on Dean Hodgkiss. She was quite unaware of her exposed thigh.Adam's eyes darted around at the circle of faces, but no one at all was looking at the girl. He became aware then that no one else was in a position to see the delectable portion of bare flesh.His eyes went back to the girl and fastened upon the exposed thigh. Fastened ? They feasted upon it. Without giving it a conscious thought, he imagined his hand touching that silky white skin, caressing it, fondling it. Suddenly he realized that he was becoming aroused. His loins were growing warm. He swore at himself because of the sensation. He thought of the team, of the first game of the season they were scheduled to play one week from the following Saturday. He thought of lovely Betty Walker, the girl to whom he was to be married on the day before Christmas.But all the while he was staring at the girl's bare thigh, and wild thoughts were running through his head, desire was coursing through his body. Remembrance of Betty brought on a feeling of guilt, and yet he kept staring at the exposed thigh. Suddenly he became aware that Dean Hodgkiss had cleared his throat and had begun to speak. Adam wrenched his eyes away and looked at the dean.Hodgkiss was saying, "I want to welcome you all to Mekins Academy's eighty-first year. Since there are several new faces among the faculty this season, I think that the first order of business should be to introduce ourselves and the subjects which each of you is to teach." He glanced at the far end of the semi-circle. "Miss Quimper, will you begin, please?"An elderly, gray-haired woman with a pinched, ferret-like face, got quickly to her feet. "I'm Miss Olive Quimper. I teach English Four." She sat down and the person sitting next to her, a man, rose and said he was Ben Hearst and that he taught algebra.One by one they rose and introduced themselves. Then it was the girl's turn. Adam suddenly realized that he had been holding his breath. He let it out with a great swishing sigh. The woman sitting next to him, gave him a quick look, then turned to look at the girl. She was standing, and it was with a feeling of relief that Adam saw her skirt fall back into place. "I'm Anne Yeaton. I teach English One." Her voice was low and sultry. She sat down.A moment later, Adam was on his feet, announcing his name and telling the assemblage that he was the head football coach. He sat down, and, as though drawn by a magnet, his gaze turned to the girl, Anne Yeaton. To his astonishment, her dress had been caught up again, even more of her thigh was revealed. He lifted his eyes and his heart gave a great thud when he saw that she was looking directly at him. Her expression was one of boldness, almost defiance. The ghost of a smile appeared on her lips as she turned away.Meals at Mekins Academy were served in a building called Fairchild Hall. There was a large room where the students ate. They sat at a half-dozen long narrow tables and were waited upon by fellow students who, by performing this chore, were paying for part of their tuition.Adjoining the large room and separated from it by an open archway was a smaller room. This was reserved for the faculty. They sat at two large round tables and were waited upon by other student workers.Adam spotted Anne Yeaton the moment he stepped into the hall. She was seated at the table nearer the door. Without hesitation, he headed for that table, only to stop in frustration when he discovered that all the chairs were taken. He glanced at Anne Yeaton, but she was engaged in animated conversation with Ben Hearst, who was seated next to her.Disappointed, Adam crossed to the second table, moved to the far side and dropped into a chair from which vantage point he could stare at the back of Anne Yeaton's head. He was furious at himself because of his disappointment at not being able to sit near Anne. He was more furious because that disappointment seemed to have such sharp edges. What the hell was the matter with him anyway? For God's sake, he didn't even know the girl. Moreover, he was engaged to marry the sweetest loveliest girl in the world. Betty was not only sweet and lovely, she was intelligent, a brilliant conversationalist, eager and alive, exciting to be with."My, but you're a handsome young man," someone whispered in his ear.Jolted out of his reverie, Adam turned quickly. It was Olive Quimper, the elderly English Four teacher. She was seated next to him, smiling up into his face.Adam forced a grm. "Why, thank you, Miss Quimper.""Oh, you must call me Olive. We're very informal here at Mekins.""Very well, Olive. And you call me Adam.""Indeed I will, Adam. You mustn't think me forward because I remarked on how handsome you are.""I liked it."Olive Quimper's eyes twinkled. "I hoped you would." She leaned toward him in a conspiratorial manner. "You won't believe this, Adam, but I'm a football buff.""Are you indeed?""I am. I attend all the games, know the players and predict victories and defeats.""Then please tell me how we're going to do against Seabrook High a week from Saturday.""Oh, you'll win that one. Shall I tell you how I know?""By all means.""First, I came up a couple of days early just to check on Mekins' new football coach.""And what did you decide?" Adam was interested in spite of himself."I decided," stated Olive Quimper firmly, "that Mekins is indeed fortunate to have hired such a gifted coach. The boys like and respect you, and that's half the battle."Adam laughed. "I hope I don't have to depend upon that one thing too much.""You won't. You have Doug Gaskins to take care of the plays."Adam nodded. Doug Gaskins was the team's quarterback. He was back for his senior year. After talking with and watching the young man at practice for a couple of days, he realized that the quarterback, who was also the team's captain, was a player of unusual ability and potential. Miss Quimper, he decided, did indeed know her football.Adam started to make some further remark, but the words stuck in his throat. He had glanced across at the second table just as Anne Yeaton dropped her napkin and bent over to pick it up. In the one brief instant Adam glimpsed the cleft and the swellings of two perfectly formed breasts. In the moment before she tucked the napkin back on her lap, she lifted her glance. Briefly, their eyes met. Then she had turned and was again talking to Ben Hearst.The effect of this brief encounter astonished Adam. His insides turned over. He sucked in his breath noisily."Is something wrong?" Olive Quimper asked, concern in her voice.Adam made a gurgling sound, seized a glass of water and gulped down a mouthful. "There. That's better. Something got stuck in my throat, I guess."Two rows of cottages, facing each other, lined Faculty Row. Each was painted a different color. They were frame, attractively de-sighed and most were vine covered. Each contained two bedrooms with adjoining bath, living room, tiny kitchen and a dining area.Two faculty members were assigned to each. Adam's cottage, painted yellow, was at the far end. It was cozy, furnished in maple, and he loved it. His roommate was-or would be, Jeff Carroll, the basketball coach. However, the basketball season would not get underway until late October, and Jeff wasn't scheduled to arrive until then. Hence, for the time being, Adam had the place to himself. This he liked too.Adam wasn't a drinking man, but he always kept a couple of bottles of Scotch on hand, in case some "drinking" friends dropped in, or in the event of an emergency.Tonight there was an emergency. Anne Yeaton occupied all of his thinking. There was a constant picture of her in his mind. It was crazy; it was unreal, but no matter how hard he tried, he could not ignore its presence."You stupid bastard," he thought to himself. "Get hold of yourself. You don't even know her. She's only another girl."But she seemed to be more than "another" girl. A vision of her had captured his mind, and held it captured.It was dark when he let himself into his cottage. "This," he thought to himself, "is an emergency," and went into the kitchen and mixed himself a stiff Scotch and soda. He carried the drink into his living room, switched on the television set and sat watching the San Francisco Forty-Niners clobber the hell out of the Los Angles Rams in a pre-season game. He watched two Gabriel passes being intercepted, the second resulting in a touchdown, and switched off the set in disgust."So what do I do now?" he wondered,' and tried to drive the picture of Anne Yeaton from his mind, without success. He gulped the remainder of his drink and was heading for the kitchen for a refill, when his doorbell rang. "Now who the hell can that be?" he mumbled, crossed to the door, switched on the outside light and opened the door.Anne Yeaton was standing on the threshold. "Hi," she said. "Can I come in?" She stepped quickly inside. "Turn off the light," she said.Automatically, Adam turned off the outside light. He didn't say anything. He just stood there, staring at her stupidly."Don't look so surprised," she said. "I just couldn't stand it any longer.""Couldn't stand what any longer?" Adam asked."Quimper. They put me in the same cottage with Olive Quimper because we both taught English and they thought we'd get along. I don't suppose you have a drink? I need one.""Of course. I was just about to build another one for myself. Come on into the living room."He ushered her into the living room. She sat on the sofa and her skirt rode halfway up her thighs. Adam stared. He couldn't help himself. She was wearing the same dress she'd worn at the faculty meeting, yet somehow she looked more voluptuous, more desirable.He tried to think of something to say, and finally came out with, "What's wrong with Quimper? I rather enjoyed her at dinner. She's a football buff.""That I know. When she's not talking football, she's talking English. Over and over again. She's a bore. Well, are you going to get me that drink, or are you going to just stand there staring at my legs?"Adam flushed. He gulped. "Sorry." He picked up his own glass. "Don't go away. I'll be back in a minute." He hurried into the kitchen, his insides churning. He slopped Scotch into the two glasses, added ice and soda, and went back into the living room. He had half expected that she would be gone, but she wasn't. She was still on the sofa, her legs crossed, her thighs still revealed. He handed her one of the glasses."Sit here beside me," she said.He did so and watched her gulp down half drink. She gave a grateful sigh. "That's good. You know, I thought I was going to be bored stiff at this place, until I saw you.""Oh?" said Adam.She stretched out her legs. "Do you think I have good-looking legs? I saw you admiring them at faculty meeting."Adam began to tremble. He set down his drink for fear of spilling it. He moistened his lips. "Yes," he said, "I think you have good-looking legs.""Do you think they're sexy?"The same overwhelming desire flooded through Adam as before. The blood ran hot in his veins. He wanted to reach out and touch one of those silky white thighs. He wanted to caress it, to feel its warmth beneath his hand. And suddenly, all control lost, he did just that.Instead of objecting, Anne gave a little squeal of delight. "Oh!" she exclaimed. "That feels good!"Abruptly, without either of them knowing exactly how it happened, she was in his arms. Her body, her breasts, were pressed hard against his. Their lips sought each other's. They kissed long and passionately.What happened next was never quite clear in Adam's mind. It was only the end result that remained clearly etched. He remembered slipping his arm beneath both her bare thighs. Her arms encircled his neck as he picked her up and carried her into his bedroom.It was four o'clock the next morning when Anne prepared to leave. They were in the kitchen, having a final drink."I'd better go out the back door," Anne said. "I can skip along behind the cottages. The one that Quimper and I occupy is the blue one, three down.""Will you come again tomorrow night?""Do you want me to?""You know I do."She looked at him archly. "How much?"Adam took a deep breath. "I think I want you to come more than I've ever wanted anything in my life.""Then I'll come." She lifted her face and he kissed her, holding her tight, fondling her. At last she pulled away. "Until tomorrow night then, darling.""I'll be counting the minutes.""As will I."He held the door open for her, kissing her the while. And then she was gone.CHAPTER TWOSomehow Adam got through the next day. He wasn't quite sure how he managed it. It was a period of constant torment, of excited anticipation, of recriminations and guilt. A picture of Anne was always there in his mind, tormenting, teasing. Subconsciously he realized that she had the Indian sign on him. The knowledge confused and bewildered him. She was a sorceress, a witch, and a bitch. Consciously he admitted these facts, then chastised himself mentally for having entertained such thoughts. She was a dear, sweet girl.At football practice that afternoon he was standing near the fifty-yard line, watching the first-string varsity scrimmaging with the second team. Much to his own annoyance, he kept glancing at his watch. "Two, three, at the most five hours," his mind kept repeating, "and she'll be in my arms. We'll be in bed." He swore to himself, and looked up. Doug Gaskins, the quarterback, had come up and was respectfully waiting to speak."Well, Doug, what is it?" Adam snapped, and immediately regretted his tone of voice.Doug said, "We just tried that end-around play. Did you see it?""Of course.""What did you think?""It was all right. Why?"Dong shifted from one foot to the other. "I was thinking. What if I tossed the ball back to Ferris and he threw the pass to Forbes? That way, Forbes could step outside, even if he was nailed at once. That way, we'd have an automatic time out."Adam took a deep breath. He must get control of himself. It was a good suggestion. He should have thought of it himself. "It would be fine, Doug, but only if we were crowded for time. I mean, it would be a sort of crisis play.""Good. I thought you'd agree." Doug started away, but stopped, searching Adam's face. "Is anything wrong, coach?""Wrong? With me? Why do you ask?""I don't know. You look sort of beat.""Not beat. Worried. Seabrook isn't going to be easy to beat."Doug grinned. "Then you can stop worrying. The game will be a shoo-in.""I hope so." Adam smiled, adding, "I do have a hell of a headache. But it will pass. I've had them before.""Anything I can do?""Just don't mention it to anyone else. If it gets worse, I'll ask Nels Darcy to take over for the rest of the afternoon." Nels was Adam's assistant coach.Adam hurried through his meal at Fairchild that evening. Anne didn't come in until the dinner hour was almost over. His heart leaped at sight of her, but she didn't even glance in his direction. Instead, she sat at her usual place at the first table with her back to him and didn't once look around.It was after eight when Adam got back to his cottage. He glanced at his watch. Perhaps she'd come earlier tonight. Perhaps she'd be here within the hour. The thought sent shivers up and down his spine. He busied himself by crumpling up some newspapers and laying kindling atop them in the fireplace. He sat on the sofa in front of the grate and imagined how it would be: He'd hold Anne in his lap, kissing and fondling her. Then, when they were both aroused to an unbearable state, he'd pick her up and carry her into the bedroom. The thought excited him to such an extent that he rose and began pacing the room, aware of the warmth in his loins, of the rapid beating of his heart.When nine o'clock came and still Anne didn't arrive, he began to grow tense, listening with tightened muscles to every sound, hoping to hear her light step mounting the steps to his porch. He went into the kitchen and unlocked the back door. She'd come that way! Naturally she'd not want to be seen entering the front door.By eleven o'clock, Adam was beside himself. Should he call her cottage? No. That would be downright foolish. What if Quimper answered? What explanation would he give for calling at that hour of the night?Damn her! She'd lied to him. She'd aroused him to the point of insanity, had promised to come back tonight, and then had forgotten all about it. Tears of frustration filled his eyes. How could any woman treat a man like that? Perhaps she was with another man. The very thought turned on a frenzy of jealousy. He tried to reason. She'd said she had expected that her tour of duty at Mekins would be a bore until she'd seen him looking at her legs. She'd been sincere when she'd said that. He was sure of it.At eleven-thirty Adam went into the kitchen and mixed himself a stiff drink. He sat at the table there, gulping it. "I've got to cut this out," he said savagely. "I'm not going to turn into a damned alcoholic. I've got guts enough to lick this thing without help." And then he tossed off the remainder of the drink, and poured another. Once he froze, his fist tight about the glass. He thought he'd heard a sound, a step, a subdued voice. An instant later he relaxed when a cat squalled just beyond his door.It was after one when Adam finally went to bed. He was stoned. Standing in the middle of the bedroom, he tried to remove his trousers, tripped and fell flat on his face. For a long time he lay full length, breathing hard, cursing. "Goddamn you, woman, what are you doing to me?" He began to cry. "You weak sonofabitch," he reprimanded himself, "get hold of yourself. What kind of a man are you?" Whimpering, he managed to tug off his trousers and climb into bed. Still whimpering like a chastised puppy dog, he fell into a drunken slumber.The ringing of the telephone awakened Adam the next morning. Groggily he reached for the instrument and fumbled the receiver off the hook. " 'Lo," he said thickly."What's with you, man?" a male voice asked."Who's this?""Ben Hearst. Thought we had a date for a set of tennis a couple of hours ago."Adam stiffened. Christ! He'd entirely forgotten that he'd promised to meet Ben at the courts before classes started. "Damn it, Ben, I'd forgotten entirely. No excuses, except that I had one of those bloody headaches last night and took a couple of belts before going to bed. Overslept, I guess.""How do you feel now?""Okay. Is it too late for a game?" He hoped to hell Ben would say it was. At the moment Adam doubted his ability to get out of bed." 'Fraid so. I've a class in fifteen minutes.""I'm sorry as hell, Ben.""Forget it. We'll make it another time."