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My name is Sloane Kennedy McLean. I come from a strict Catholic family. We live in a small town near Mt. Hood. There wasn’t much to do growing up and I didn’t have much in the way of friends and so I was always tagging along after my brothers. We grew up spending most of our time hiking in the backwoods.
My brother’s and I were endowed with tempers and wits to match my father’s. My father, although stern, wanted us to be able to be ourselves. We kids were always very well behaved in public, never stepped out of line. Because of this, my father allowed us to have free reign at home, and boy did we.
I was the little sister, the only girl of seven children. Most of my brothers were all grown up and done with school. Finnegan Jr., the eldest, was twenty-eight. He was followed by Brennen, who was twenty-six and then, at twenty-five, Lennon. These three hated school and when my father told them there was plenty of money for them to go to college they refused. They asked dad for the money they would have received for school and started their own business. It wasn’t a surprise when they opened an Irish pub. To my father’s amazement they are doing very well.
Sullivan, at twenty-three, attends the local community college and is majoring in criminal justice. Then there is Regan and Rhyan both at nineteen. No one in my family, except for me, ever knew which was which because the boys never told the truth.
My father, Finnegan, and my mother, Tiegan, were born and raised in Ireland but moved us to the states when my brother Finn was a year old. My father works for the Roman Catholic Church. I was never quite sure how he got transferred to the States let alone Oregon state.
The twins weren’t too keen on school, a family trait, and were held back a year in junior high. Because of this we were in the same class but that didn’t mean anything. We attended a Catholic school and genders were kept separate except for mass every day and so I rarely saw my brothers. There were times when we could socialize between classes but we were closely monitored by the nuns.
“Sloane, you are making us late. Hurry up!”
“Sorry dad, I slept in.”
My father stopped his truck in front of the church and turned a smile on me. “Another day in the grind, hey kids?” My brothers laughed.
“Yeah, living the American dream.” My father and I had a close relationship, I was his only girl and it was no secret that I was his favorite. My brothers didn’t care; they always said they felt the same towards me. Mom and I were the jewels of the family according to the boys; I looked like a smaller version of my mom. My brother’s, except for Finn, were all dark like my father, with bright blue eyes. Finn was the exception; he and I shared my mother’s emerald eyes and auburn hair.
I slung my bag over my shoulder and merged with the steady flow of kids filtering into the church. I could hear my brothers ogling girls that went by. I inwardly laughed at their open vulgarity.
Rhyan gave me a hug before he and Regan left to go sit in their usual pew with their friends. I went directly to the front and sat behind the nuns. I was considered the goody two shoes of the school. I found this odd considering the nuns hated me. Despite them I was the top student. My pew was usually left empty except for two other girls that were ostracized and Jess. Jess was the only person at Sacred Heart that I would bother spending time with.
We had mass every day, alternating between before and after lessons. There was a buzz in the air because old Father Patrick was finally turning everything over to Father McKinnon.
McKinnon was a younger priest from Ireland; he was around thirty years old. He had intimidating ice blue eyes that almost seemed gray at times. Well, I thought he was intimidating, anyway. That didn’t stop him from entering my fantasies like all the other girls at school. I admit I wasn’t as gushy about it as the other girls but I did harbor lustful thoughts for the priest. His dark features, blue eyes, and Irish accent must have seemed comforting to me considering my family.
Father McKinnon always left me feeling a little uneasy though; my heart always started fluttering when I was near him. We have confession on Friday and I had to confess to Father McKinnon for the first time last week. I had only ever confessed to Father Patrick before and so I was fairly closed mouth. Because of this Father McKinnon requested that I confess every day after mass.
“Not to worry. It’ll just be ’till you become comfortable confessing your sins to the Holy Father.”
“I’m not confessing to the Holy Father, I’m confessing to you. Isn’t it natural to be uncomfortable?”
He shook his head. “I’m not asking for a debate, Miss MacLean.”
Everyone stood and I was brought out of my head. When I finally stood, the procession was just passing and Father McKinnon’s eyes locked on mine for a moment and then he smiled.
Father McKinnon made his way to the altar and faced us. His eyes escort ataşehir met mine and locked there instead of scanning past. “In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.”
The crowd responded with the sign of the cross and collective “Amen”. I failed to do either as my discomfort grew.
“The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.”
Oh crap, he was doing a long mass. There was a cumulative sigh of premature boredom before everyone responded, “Blessed be God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.”
I simply said, “and also with you.”
Father McKinnon was still looking at me and I saw the corner of his mouth twitch again with amusement at my shortened response. I tuned out much of mass and was only brought back to the priest’s words when I caught him staring at me again.
“Oh, man, those eyes. He keeps looking this way. Do you think he’s looking at me?” Jessica was staring at Father McKinnon with wide adoring eyes but she spoke to me.
“Sure, I guess.” I wasn’t committed with my response and Jess turned to look at me.
“You’ve been weird lately, ever since Friday’s confession.”
I didn’t say anything. I was weird because after confession Father McKinnon told me he wanted me to come after every mass to confess. This wasn’t something normally done and I felt singled out.
He was still staring. “Lord, we have sinned against you. Lord, have mercy.”
“Lord, have mercy.” I recited with the group.
“Lord, show us your mercy and love.”
We all responded, “Grant us your salvation.”
“May almighty God have mercy on us, forgive us our sins, and bring us to everlasting life.”
Again he looked at me and the “Amen” was lost on my lips.
“God, he is so hot. I wish he wouldn’t wear his robe thingy all the time, though. I saw Father Patrick wearing pants and a black shirt this Saturday at the store, why doesn’t Father McKinnon?”
“The robe thingy is called a soutane, Jess, and I guess Father McKinnon is just old school.”
“Must be because he’s from Ireland. McKinnon looks hot in the soutane, though, so it’s all good. I had a meeting with him last Thursday about an English paper I wrote. His accent gets even stronger when he talks to you one on one.”
“I know.” I don’t know why I said that but Jess shot me a knowing look before turning back to stare at Father McKinnon. I started to recite the prayer with everyone. “Glory to God in the highest, and peace to his people on earth. Lord God, heavenly King, almighty God and Father, we worship you, we give you thanks, we praise you for…” I trailed off, totally uncommitted.
The rest of mass was a blur. I barely paid attention to the readings. Father McKinnon spoke of growing our relationships with God and the usual stuff. Everyone got up and left after mass, everyone except for me. I waited for Father McKinnon to come back out. He was now out of the ceremonial robes and in his soutane. The church was quiet and his feet echoed through the cathedral hall. He motioned for me with his hand and I got up and walked over to him.
“In or out, Miss MacLean?”
It was silly to be inside the confessional booth but I couldn’t face him. He must have read the look in my eyes because he just opened the door to the booth and motioned for me to enter.
Once inside I knelt and waited for him to enter and sit. Through the screen I could make out his figure, he was a tall man and he seemed to fill the booth entirely. I quickly made the sign of the cross, “Forgive me father for I have sinned. You know when I last confessed.”
I heard him chuckle lightly. “Yes, two days ago. Do you have anything to confess, Miss MacLean?”
I really didn’t have anything to be ashamed of so I paused to think. I took confession seriously and had never had a problem before. I wished Father Patrick were there instead.
I rubbed the cross of my rosary absentmindedly but couldn’t come up with anything to confess. “I’m sorry, Father.”
“Take your time.” He leaned forward and I could tell by the tilt of his head that he was looking back at me through the screen. I dropped my head.
There were some things I would have told Father Patrick without hesitation and so I mustered up the courage and just started in.
“I have been having lustful thoughts about someone I shouldn’t. I yelled back at my mother yesterday out of frustration. I also told a lie to my father on Saturday to keep my brother out of trouble. Oh, and I was blatantly not paying attention in Mass today.”
“We sometimes have too much on our minds but you must try to focus during Mass. You aren’t usually like this and so it is easily forgiven. Try to rid your mind in prayer before Mass begins next time. Now, your brother, what he did, will it have repercussions?”
“I don’t think so, Father. It was an innocent prank.”
“You should be honest with your father. God wants us to respect kadıköy escort our parents. By telling your father it gives him the chance to decide what action needs to be taken. It is his duty to teach his children. Will you tell your father whatever it is Regan employed Rhyan to do?”
“Yes, Father, I will as soon as I see him today — But, how did you know the situation without me saying anything?”
“What else could have happened, Miss MacLean? Your brothers never act without the other.”
His voice was thick with humor and I couldn’t help but laugh in response. “I guess it is obvious.”
“Now, as for your mother, I bring up respect again. It is your duty to check your temper. I know it is hard sometimes, we all have bad days. You must pray for God to help you with patience.”
I had grown comfortable as he spoke. His speech had a hypnotizing cadence and what he said would have mimicked Father Patrick. However, he paused for a moment and I started to grow uncomfortable again.
“Have you acted on these lustful thoughts, Sloane?”
The sound of my name on his lips made me swallow hard. He had never used my name before. “I — I have committed an offence against chastity.” I blushed when my voice cracked.
“You have committed this offence with someone?”
“N-no, Father, alone.”
There was another pause. “It is normal to have these urges but with the help of God we can try to refrain…” He hesitated. “Sloane,” he was more casual as he spoke now, “I’m not trying to make you uncomfortable and it isn’t proper for me to speak so candidly to you. However, masturbation, I feel, is quite normal as long as you do not abuse such activity.”
I only nodded, I couldn’t speak.
“Good. You are fine, do not worry about this.”
I felt better after what he said even though it had been embarrassing.
“I want you to recite your Act of Contrition out loud.”
“I have been making everyone lately. You would be surprised how many of your peers do not know how.”
I didn’t hesitate. “Lord, I am sorry to offend You. I detest all my sins, because I dread the loss of Heaven and the pains of Hell. But most of all because I have offended You, Lord, who deserves all my love. With Your help I will sin no more, I will do penance, and avoid paths that put me in the way of sin. Amen.”
“That was lovely. Now, I want you to pray to God for strength to avoid such occasions where you grow vexed and lash out or feel the need to fib.” He left out the masturbation part and I couldn’t help but smile. So the priest thought it was okay to masturbate? This was an odd twist.
“For penance I want you to say the Lord’s Prayer and Hail Mary each seven times before you leave the booth. I would also like you to give up three afternoons and help me in my office as an act of sacrifice.
“I could think of something else if…”
I shook my head and groaned. “No, Father, I will be there.”
“God, the Father of mercies, through the death and resurrection of his Son has reconciled the world to himself and sent the Holy Spirit among us for the forgiveness of sins; through the ministry of the Church may God give you pardon and peace, and I absolve you from your sins in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.”
I made the sign of the cross, “Amen.”
Father McKinnon got up and left but I stayed and finished my prayers. I normally would have been pissed but I found myself anticipating seeing Father McKinnon again. This was a strange turn of events.
“Why do you have to stay after though, I don’t get it?” Regan was scowling at me.
“It’s an act of sacrifice. I’m sure you’ve been asked to make one for penance?”
“Yeah, but I never do it. Just don’t go.”
“Regan, just tell dad for me. I’ll call when I need a ride.”
“Fine, yeah, we’ll come get you.”
Rhyan grabbed me and gave me a squeeze then grabbed Regan’s arm and pulled him away. Regan was the voice and Rhyan was the fist. The two couldn’t ever be whole without the other. I loved them more than anything.
I stood at Father McKinnon’s office door. It was ajar and I could see him sitting at his desk. He was bent over writing something. He didn’t see me but he knew I was there somehow. “Come in Miss MacLean and take a seat.”
There was a chair at his desk opposite him. I entered and sat down. Without looking at me he dropped a stack of papers in front of me and then a red pen. “Grade these using your own judgment.”
The papers were essays from a class below me. He knew I would have no problem with these seeing as how I took all of his advanced classes. Before he started staring at me I really liked Father McKinnon, he was my favorite teachers out of Father Patrick and the nuns.
The rest of the time spent in Father McKinnon’s presence passed without much happening except that I caught him looking at me every now and then.
I had to give up two more afternoons maltepe escort bayan with Father McKinnon as part of penance but I didn’t mind. Afterwards I even offered to continue helping him. I had realized in the past couple days that Father McKinnon’s extra time was completely taken up with school work. He greatly appreciated the help.
Eventually I was very comfortable around him and he told me I didn’t have to confess every day anymore. However, I continued to do it anyway. I even managed to get a couple of the other students involved in daily confessions. Father McKinnon was pleased with all the extracurricular activities I was doing and so he wrote a letter to the Archbishop of our diocese nominating me for a scholarship.
Three Months Later:
I sat at Father McKinnon’s desk, in his seat; he stood behind me putting books away, he had just finished putting a lesson plan together. “Sloane, have you ever thought of becoming a nun?”
I looked up and just gaped at him.
He turned and looked at me. “You are one of the most devout students I have ever come across. You are smart and ambitious. You could make it far in…”
“I could never be a nun,” I cut him off.
“You want me to be frank or sugarcoat it?”
“I would prefer frankness.” He was smiling.
“It is a man’s world. I would never be able to rise as high as a man so what would be the point?” I could tell he wanted to argue with me so I went further. “I wouldn’t be able to be me in that world. Besides I dislike nuns. I think they are unnecessarily harsh with their pupils, they take out their personal frustrations on us…”
Now he cut me off. “I admit that they can be harsh disciplinarians but they do it to push their students. It is how they were taught. If you take the vows you can act to change the ways in which we teach.”
“Father, I just couldn’t do it!” I was fervent on this, I had my reasons.
“It was just a suggestion, Sloane, calm down.” His eyes were laughing. “You couldn’t be a nun, you are right.”
“You are too passionate.” His eyes roamed me now and I blushed.
I had to admit that he was an attractive man and when he looked at me that way it forced me to look at him as that man. I didn’t like it, I had always thought of priests as something above man. Father McKinnon was too handsome to be a priest, it was distracting. What mad it even worse was that I couldn’t stop the wild fantasies I had about him. It was disturbing that my mind always went in that direction but I couldn’t help it. I wasn’t attracted to the guys my age; I hadn’t really been attracted to anyone before Father McKinnon. My liking for him started gradually, I hadn’t even noticed it existed until he started staring at me.
“I am not too passionate.”
“You are, you are a wonton little thing, I can tell.” He was still staring at me, maybe more intently than before.
My mouth dropped in shock. Had he really said that? “Father, you seem to want me to feel comfortable enough to talk to you about anything?” He nodded. “Can I ask you something, then?”
“You can ask me anything.”
“Why do you look at me the way you do sometimes?”
His mouth twitched as he thought what to say, he obviously hadn’t expected me to ask that. “My body reacts to you. I try to hide it but I do a piss poor job, I know. I’ll try harder in the future.”
“You are a priest, you can’t seriously think of me that way?” I couldn’t stop my eyes from roaming his form. Why did he have to be so attractive? Was his voice naturally sexy? My imagination was going wild.
He leaned down and looked me in the face, his hands resting on the chair’s armrests “I am only a man, what do you want from me?” His voice had grown softer, silkier.
I felt a warmth pool in my loins at his words. I wish he weren’t a priest. I tried to banish the thought but I would willingly give myself to him if he asked. What I really wanted from him would surly shock him. “I don’t want anything from you,” I lied.
“You are a smart girl, Sloane.” He turned from me then and started to head out of his office. “We are done for the day, Miss MacLean.”
I stared at his retreating form feeling a little foolish. I couldn’t believe he actually admitted his attraction to me. But then, why shouldn’t he be honest? He was a priest and would never act on such thoughts.
I was too embarrassed to show up after school the next day. So, the day after that, it was no surprise when he stopped me after English class.
“You didn’t come to my office yesterday. Are you upset with what happened in my office?”
I shook my head. “No, Father, I figured distance would help.”
He smiled and laughed. “Sloane, I will not betray your trust. I would never act on such bodily urges. However, if the idea makes you uncomfortable I understand you not wanting to continue the Teacher’s Aid program.”
“No! I am not uncomfortable I just… I don’t know. I’ll be there today, Father.” I didn’t want to go but at the same time I did want to go. It was a battle in my brain. I loved being around Father McKinnon, he was laid back and easy to talk to. It was nice to run my thoughts by someone who could give me unbiased advice. So, I would get over my crush and go.
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