JMR20170413: 2nd backup of Economics 101, a Novel, ch_30 -- Fear at Night, and Economics 101, a Novel, ch_31 -- Reality

[JMR201704131336: I decided to give Karel and Bobbie back some of their privacy. And give you, the reader, back yours, too.]

-------------------------
[JMR201704131332: backup of Economics 101, a Novel, ch_30 -- Fear at Night: http://free-is-not-free.blogspot.com/2016/04/economics-101-novel-ch30-fear-at-night.html.]

(The story starts here: http://free-is-not-free.blogspot.jp/2016/03/economics-101-novel-ch00.html.
The previous chapter is here: http://free-is-not-free.blogspot.com/2016/04/economics-101-novel-ch29-dreams.html)

[JMR201607120331:

It's too often thought to be unromantic to talk about sex before a couple actually offers to engage in it, and not to be romantic to verbally make the offer (ergo, to propose marriage marriage and marry) before engaging in sex.

Not so. Proposing marriage and getting married is still an adventure, even if you do things in a proper order. What order you talk about specific things is not particularly pre-set. But you probably should talk about marriage before you do it.

Being too coy makes for some awkward processes re-writing things. It doesn't help when artificial social protocol requires one to be coy in counterproductive ways. (Which basically gives the lie to all forms of "socialism". Social is necessary. Sociable is good. Socializing can be good. Socialisms are all artificial.)

]



Bobbie's eye's opened and she saw the now-familiar stars of the island skies and smelled the now-familiar sea nearby and felt the now-familiar sand and salt on her clothes, and listened to the now-familiar and not-so-distant surf. She felt disoriented, stuck between two roads forward, knowing she had to choose her road, but not sure what it was she had left to choose. There was some vague pining inside her for the world she was leaving behind, but it was evaporating and drifting away in the island breeze.

Suddenly she wanted to hear Karel's voice. "Karel?"

The reassuring hardness of the bedroll on the ground gave her some confidence that the surreal scene she could still see in her mind's eye was in fact the dream, and that the island underneath her was real.

Wycliffe asked Hanaka, "Shouldn't we try to help her, maybe suggest she stay on her side of the tent?"

But Hanaka replied, "Then she'd never know for sure where she would have drawn the line."

"Karel?" She could hear a low mumbling, as if Karel were talking to himself. She crawled out of her bedroll and peeked around the other side of the tent at her study partner lying dreaming under the stars on his bedroll, talking in his sleep, and she smiled to herself.

"... mumble mumble Bobbie mumble mumble love you mumble mumble don't ..."

She suddenly felt an urge to kiss him, and, acting on the impulse, she crawled over to him and did so.

"Ahhhhggggg!"

Karel's body jerked, and Bobbie sat back in surprise, and Karel rolled away almost violently and sat up with his back against the tent wall, not fully awake, genuine terror and confusion in his face.

"Bobbie! What are you doing?"

"Uhm, ..." Bobbie was a bit perplexed. She wanted to laugh and cry at the same time, but the terror in his eyes was real, and not going away.

And she began to feel a bit of fear, and maybe just a bit of anger. "What did I do? I just thought it would be a nice surprise."



From here down, this chapter contains sexually explicit material of the sort that people thinking about getting married to each other might want to discuss before or when they start making serious plans. There's nothing to get too excited about, Bobbie and Karel aren't having sex or anything like that. But I don't want people who aren't interested in reading their discussion of important sexual matters stumbling on it by accident.  

If that worries you, here's the next chapter: http://free-is-not-free.blogspot.com/2016/04/economics-101-novel-ch32-weaving.html. But there's important information here that I don't think you should skip if you are old enough to be reading the rest of this novel. And you will lose track a bit, of what's happening.

To make it perfectly clear Karel and Bobbie do not engage in the practical parts of marriage. (In other words, they don't have sexual intercourse, okay?) They are being good and waiting the two weeks they agreed upon. And looking for some way to be lawfully married.

This used to be presented in two versions, a pseudo-modest version that avoided talking about what happened (which I ironically called "reality"), and a more complete version that made it relatively clear.

But I have recently (July 2016) been reading about what has been termed "rape culture", which is another way of describing the legal conceit of consenting adultery/fornication. This includes the spread of raves (Why should anyone believe that, just because we are "modern", raves would not include rape, violent assault, and deaths?) and the difficulty of delivering meaningful verdicts in cases like the Brock Turner case.

I found myself ranting on this at length here: http://free-is-not-free.blogspot.com/2016/07/treating-sexual-relations-too-lightly.html.

It is a legal conceit. There is no true consent unless the consent is formal.

If you are wondering why this has to be brought up -- we tend to whitewash a lot of our romantic ideals, including the sort of proposition this novel is built on. Whitewashing is not good for communication.

Besides, failure to discuss these kinds of things makes it difficult to know what is being agreed to when we do try to get formal consent. (But this chapter does not try to discuss all the relevant issues, just a few from the male point of view.)



Karel leaned forward, hands forming fists over his knees, suppressing a groan. He didn't seem quite able to talk, seemed to be holding his breath.

Caught on the edge of a dream in which his body was preparing for dream-state release of seminal fluids, strong acids were flowing in his urinary tract before they should have, and he was in pain, but Bobbie was not yet aware what she had triggered.

"What's wrong?" Bobbie was not sure what to do. She moved closer to him and massaged his back, and felt his body shudder. Then she remembered some of her nurse's training, and the light came on in her mind.

"Oh, dear. That was not nice of me, was it?"

"Ah, ... " Her words, and her hand massaging his back, too, seemed to have a calming influence, and the fear and confusion in Karel's face faded and he started to breathe again.

"No, it's okay." He took another breath. "Two more weeks. Then you can kiss me when I'm asleep all you want." He winced, and breathed deeply once more and groaned softly and shivered, rocking back and forth, holding his legs below his knees. 

"Are you gonna be OK?"

"Uhm, yeah, I think so. Gonna have to wash my underwear, though."

"Oh. Sorry about that." She felt awkward, knowing that the apology was, at the same time, both not enough and too much. "Can I do something to help?"

Karel chuckled. "You just did." Then he relaxed and lay on the ground sobbing and laughing.

And both of them were praying in their hearts for direction from God.

"Now what?"

"Good ... question." The pain was subsiding, but the discomfort remained.
 
"Ehrm, does this mean, ..."

"Mean, ...?"

"Mean we ..., I don't know what I mean. Do you know what I mean?"

Karel sat back up and breathed deeply as most of the pain drained away. "Did you intend to open my valves?"

"Ickh. No!"

"Then you have not sinned, my daughter," he said, imitating a father confessor he had seen in a movie. (Mormon bishops are not father confessors, and would generally not use such phrasing. The Mormon approach to confessing is a little different, as you can see.)

"You're joking, and I'm a little scared."

"Well," Karel raised an eyebrow and asked in mock inquisition, "what did you intend by kissing me?" Then he grinned.

Seeing him relaxed, Bobbie relaxed, too. "I had a kind of an odd dream, and when I woke up, you were talking in your sleep. So I came around to check on you, and, well, you just looked so sweet and you were mumbling something that sounded like you were saying you love me, and I was feeling a little strange because of the dream," and Bobbie paused for a breath, "... and I just acted on impulse."

Karel looked a little blank. Then he shook his head. "I don't think I see anything wrong with that. What was your dream about?"

[JMR201610281546:

"Oh. You remember the argument we had with Dan and Kristie in the cafeteria?"

"Oh. You remember that long discussion we had with Dan and Kristie in the cafeteria about a year ago?"

"Dan. Kristie. When they told us how unfair it was of us to be dating other people, them, when we were planning to do the research project together, even though we weren't thinking of ourselves as romantically together?"

"Dan and Kristie. How long 'til we can see them again?"

Bobbie bit her lip, Karel sighed, and both looked a little lost.

After a bit of thought, Karel continued, "Which long discussion? At the end of the dating experiment?"

"Yeah. That one. When they kind of tried to argue that the unfairness meant we should just give up the research project."

"Yeah. When we all tried to convince me to quit trying to figure out what I was waiting for."

"And then, instead, we both just admitted we guessed we'd been dating them too long. Boy were they upset. Not that I blame them, really. We had been dating them too long." They both said nothing for a moment. "And they started dating each other after that."

"And they told us we were being unfair to each other, and to them. And they said they were going to date long distance during their student teaching, and we would have to figure each other out on our own."

"Yeah, they did." ] More silence. "I got a wedding announcement from them about a month ago."

"You did? Wonder why I didn't."

"It came addressed to me, but it had both our names on it. Sort of. 'Bobbie and Karel Pratt.'"

Karel burst out laughing, and Bobbie joined him, their laughter echoing across the moonlit island.

"I guess I didn't want to show it to you at the time."

When their amusement subsided, Bobbie continued. "It was like that time, but how it might have been if everything that has happened in the last four months, including Wycliffe's kidnapping us, were just a long and detailed, continuing dream we had both had separately, together, to warn us to get married before we came."

"Really? Interesting."

Karel did not raise an eyebrow. No, they would not have thought of a Spock impression if he had. That TV show had not yet been broadcast. I'm not sure whether it was in planning yet, even.

"And I was dreaming it in the omniscient point of view." She paused. "Pure Harlequin Romance stuff. [JMR201610281603 (split paragraph): "

"Harlequin Romance?"

"As if it hadn't been just an experiment."

"Huh?"

"As if they had been hiding their true feelings for us all along?"

Karel was still shaking his head.

"They were chasing us and we were trying not to disappoint them."

Karel raised his eyebrows.

] "You come in, dodge their questions, tell me you're having nightmares about being alone with me on an uncharted island. And I know what you mean, but I'm scared to admit I've been dreaming the same things. So I quibble about you finding my company unpleasant."

They both smiled at the thought.

"And you come just right out and tell me it's rather the opposite. And I say that, if we are going to be kidnapped, we should do something to avoid the nightmare."

Karel pursed his lips thoughtfully as she continued.

"And you realize you hadn't mentioned the part about being kidnapped, so you know I must be having the same dreams as you."

Karel nodded.

"And Dan and Kristie have no idea what we are talking about, of course. And they are a little over the top with their attempts to defend their territory. And you and I walk off together to talk about making sure we would not be single."

"Sounds surreal, alright. [JMR201610281613: Maybe some regrets?"

"Of course regrets."

"Both of are still wishing for a present reality that isn't, aren't we?"

"Yeah. ] When I woke up, I wasn't sure where I was at first. The dream had left something empty in me, but that emptiness went away as I recognized the stars and smells and sounds of the island at night. Even the hard ground was reassuring. But I wanted to hear your voice. I listened for you, and I guess I was going to crawl out to make sure you were there anyway, when I heard you talking in your sleep."

"Oh. And then I looked cute in my sleep and ...?"

"and I wanted just a little more reassurance that this is all real."

"Wow. So. You think you're happy here."

"I don't think I'd be happy if this were taken away from us." Bobbie's face crinkled into a strangely shy smile. "What was your dream?"

"It isn't obvious?"

"Why would it be obvious?"

"Oh, well, we were arguing about something inconsequential, and I kept trying to tell you I love you. I love you, by the way."

"It's nice to hear. I love you, too. What were we arguing about?"

Karel winced and tilted his head as if he wanted to dodge that question. "Do you really want to know?"

"I told you what I dreamed."

"We had some disagreement about getting married. I'm not sure what it was. Maybe it was about the marriage license."

"Have we ever really argued? Oh. Yeah. Never mind. It's easy to forget. That was all?"

"You, uh, said you didn't want to wait, and started taking your clothes off, and I was trying to stop you."

"EW! YUCK!"

"See. Sometimes it's better not to know things."

"Well, maybe not so ... yucky." Bobbie wondered whether Karel could see her blushing in the moonlight. "If you're going to dream about a woman taking her clothes off, I'd sure rather it be about me." And she giggled, of course.

Wouldn't you giggle?

"Erm, I'm glad you're not offended."

"Dreams shouldn't be taken literally. Are you blushing? It looks like you're blushing, but I can't really tell in the moonlight."

"Yeah. I'm sure I'm blushing."

"Me, too. Well, should we go wash your underwear?"

"We? Together?"

"Are you forgetting the buddy system?"

"Oh. Well, we could wait for our morning swim."

"Won't it come out cleaner if you wash it now?"

"Probably. I guess we can go for a midnight swim."

And they both stood up and started walking toward the beach, but then Bobbie stopped. "Wait. This isn't going to work very well."

"Oh. Yeah. We aren't married yet. We can't go skinny-dipping together at midnight just yet. Otherwise, why would I have been arguing with you in my dream?"

And they both started laughing again and continued talking as they went back to the tent to change to their swimming suits.

"So my kiss helped you?"

"Why do you want to ask such a question?"

"Just curious. You said I had helped you already when I asked if I could help."

"Oh. Well, that was the talking to me and rubbing my back. But I'm not going to trade that kiss for all the gold in the world. Just, ... not until we get married properly. No more 'til then, please."

And Bobbie gave Karel a hug. "Thanks. You change first."

They changed in silence, both thinking their own thoughts. After changing, they continued talking as the walked to the beach, Karel carrying his soiled clothes.

"Will that always happen when I kiss you in your sleep?" Bobbie asked.

"Oh, no. I've just been, well, sort of practicing my endurance."

Bobbie gave him a quizzical look.

"We've talked before about my reasons for not always being able to use my temple recommend before, ..."

"Yeah. You've tended to interpret the law of chastity as including a ban against masturbation. Your current bishop back at the university seemed to agree with you, and my bishop seemed to think he should call your bishop and ask why, but, at the time, we were still not admitting we were interested in each other, so he didn't."



Back around the 1960s or so, there seemed to be a bit of disagreement among the leadership of the Church on this point.

Some people think there still is. For those who might have questions on the subject, I suggest discussion with your nearest bishop. Other than to say we are neither Pharisees nor hedonists, it is not my place to state Church policy on the subject.



"Odd that we would talk about such things even though we didn't think we were interested in each other."

"We just felt comfortable together. Mom and Dad both noticed that."

"Well, I haven't masturbated since a little bit after I broke up with Kristie. Wait. That doesn't sound right."

"I know Kristie, and she is a sweet girl, but she was too physical with you. And I told her so, but she wouldn't listen. It's funny, but I don't think she was that way with Dan, at least not while we were there."

"I always thought that she and Dan had better chemistry. She seemed not to be trying to prove herself all the time the way she was with me."

"When you went home after your dates with Kristie did you have to get relief?"

"Ouch. That's a personal question. But, no, she wasn't that physical with me, even when we were alone."

"That's nice to know. I didn't think she was the kind to try to hold a guy by keeping him frustrated."

"The fluids regularly build up anyway. And they have to be released every now and then. Nothing like you're your cycle, of course, but they do build up."

"And we've talked about this before, and I've offered my opinion as a nurse."

"And some of the leaders of the Church say that the only legitimate way for the release to occur is nocturnal emission."

"Yeah, and we've talked about that, too."

At this point, they had waded into the water up above their waists, and Karel started to wash the underwear and trousers that he had been wearing.

Bobbie continued, "And that was what I interrupted when I kissed you. Dreams that often occur with nocturnal emissions. So it was just a matter of bad timing."

"Yeah. But if you make a practice of kissing me in my sleep, the fluids are likely to build up faster."

"Of course. I really was not thinking clearly."

"Middle of the night, strange dreams, and this ambiguous situation we are in, it's hard to keep a clear head. For both of us. Okay, Turn around."

"Hmm? Oh. Yeah."

And Karel took off his trunks while Bobbie's back was turned and bathed himself in the salt water.

"So, anyway, you're worried about whether we have ruined our purpose in waiting until we have the marriage license to actually get married in the practical sense?"

"Nope. Now I think I understand better why we should wait. Is it going to be hard?"

Karel put his trunks back on. "I don't think so. I'm done bathing now. Do you want to bathe while we're here?"

"Mmmm No, I'll do that in the morning, like usual. Let's go back to camp."

"Okay." And they headed back to camp.

"It's funny about this," Karel said as they went. "When I'm with you, the stresses are good or something, and the seminal fluids don't build up so fast."

"Hmmm. That's kind of neat. Nice to think I'm so good for you."

"I hope I'm as good for you."

"You are. The feelings I have now are about the best feelings I've ever felt with a guy. Can sex be any better than this?"

"Mom told me once that the pillow talk was more important than the acrobatics."

"You didn't have to say that."

"Woops."

"But, all those people getting excited about sex, and they're missing the best part?"

"I shouldn't have said that. We can find out more when we are properly married. For now, this is good enough for me."

And they fell silent, and just held hands as they walked back to camp. After they changed again and hung up their swimsuits and Karel's trousers to dry, they went back to their bedrolls under the stars, with the tent between them.

"Stupid ambiguities."

"Agreed. Good night, Karel. Sweet dreams."

"Good night, Bobbie. And thank you for being you. I can't imagine why we ever thought we would not want to be married to each other."



Some people will say that Karel is rationalizing.
If you lean that way, I'll ask you -- is he rationalizing his own behavior?

Is he making excuses for Bobbie because he wants her to do it again?

Is he using a moral bribe, trading forgiveness for her lapse of control for his future imposition of a meaningless imitation marriage license?

I guess I'll have to (sometime) add chapters 1 through 9, to lay groundwork for my claim that our co-protagonists really do love each other, but I'll admit that we really can't know for sure what Karel intends at this point, relative to their eventually being rescued. I personally think that being so suspicious of people's intentions tends to lead more away from happiness than towards.

(The link to the next chapter is here: http://free-is-not-free.blogspot.com/2016/04/economics-101-novel-ch32-weaving.html.)

(The chapter index is here: http://joel-rees-economics.blogspot.jp/2016/04/economics-101-novel-index.html)


[JMR201704131332: end backup.]


[JMR201704131308: backup of Economics 101, a Novel, ch_31 -- Reality: http://free-is-not-free.blogspot.com/2016/04/economics-101-novel-ch31-reality.html.]

[This chapter has been superceded. Go here, instead: http://free-is-not-free.blogspot.com/2016/04/economics-101-novel-ch30-fear-at-night.html.]






(The story starts here: http://free-is-not-free.blogspot.jp/2016/03/economics-101-novel-ch00.html.

The previous chapter is here: http://free-is-not-free.blogspot.com/2016/04/economics-101-novel-ch30-fear-at-night.html. If you missed that, there will be some discontinuity here, so you'll probably want to go back and read it.)





Karel just stared at her with that frightened expression.

"What's wrong?" Bobbie was not sure what to do. She moved closer to him and massaged his back, and then a light came on in her mind.

"Oh, dear. That was not nice of me, was it?"

"Ah, ... " Her words, and maybe her hand on his back, too, seemed to have a calming influence, and he relaxed, and the fear and confusion in his face faded. "No, it's okay. Two more weeks and then you can kiss me when I'm asleep all you want."

"Are you gonna be OK?"

"Uhm, yeah, I think so."

"Sorry about that." She felt awkward, knowing that the apology was, at the same time, both not enough and too much.

And both of them were praying in their hearts for direction from God.

"So, why the kiss? Not that I'm really complaining that much."

And Bobbie relaxed, too. "I had a kind of an odd dream, and when I woke up, you were talking in your sleep. So I came around to check on you, and, well, you just looked so sweet and you were mumbling something that sounded like you were saying you love me, and I was feeling a little strange because of the dream," and Bobbie paused for a breath, "and I just acted on impulse."

"I don't think I see anything wrong with that. What was your dream about?"

"Oh. You remember the argument we had with Dan and Kristie in the cafeteria?"

"Dan. Kristie. When they told us how unfair it was of us to be dating other people when we were planning to do the research project together, even though we weren't thinking of ourselves as romantically together?"

"Yeah. That one. When they tried to argue that the unfairness meant we should just give up the research project."

"And then, instead, we both just admitted we guessed we'd been dating them too long. Boy were they upset. Not that I blame them, really. We had been dating them too long. And they started dating each other after that, didn't they."

"Yeah, they did. I got a wedding announcement from them about a month ago."

"You did? Wonder why I didn't."

"It came addressed to me, but it had both our names on it. Sort of. 'Bobbie and Karel Pratt.' I didn't want to show it to you at the time."

Karel burst out laughing, and Bobbie joined him, their laughter echoing across the moonlit island.

When their amusement subsided, Bobbie continued. "It was like that time, but how it might have been if everything that has happened in the last four months, including Wycliffe's kidnapping us, were just a long and detailed, continuing dream we had both had separately, together, to warn us to get married before we came."

"Really? Interesting."

"And I was dreaming it in the omniscient point of view. Pure Harlequin Romance stuff. You come in, dodge their questions, tell me you're having nightmares about being alone with me on an uncharted island. And I know what you mean, but I'm scared to admit it, so I quibble about you finding my company unpleasant. And you come just right out and tell me it's rather the opposite. And I say that, if we are going to be kidnapped, we should do something to avoid the nightmare. And you realize you hadn't mentioned the being kidnapped, so you know I must be having the same dreams as you. And Dan and Kristie have no idea what we are talking about, of course. And they are a little over the top with their attempts to defend their territory. And you and I walk off together to talk about making sure we would not be single."

"Sounds surreal, alright."

"When I woke up, I wasn't sure where I was at first. The dream had left something empty in me, but that emptiness went away as I recognized the stars and smells and sounds of the island at night. Even the hard ground was reassuring, but I suddenly wanted to hear your voice. I listened for you, and I guess I was going to crawl out to make sure you were there anyway, when I heard you talking in your sleep."

"Oh. And then I looked cute in my sleep and ...?"

"and I wanted just a little more reassurance that this is all real."

"Wow. So. You think you're happy here?"

"I don't think I'd be happy if this were taken away from us." Bobbie's face crinkled into a strangely shy smile. "So, what was your dream?"

"I don't want to talk about it."

"Oh, come on. Tell me."

"Well, we were arguing about something inconsequential, and I kept trying to tell you I love you. I love you, by the way."

"It's nice to hear. I love you, too. What were we arguing about?"

Karel winced and tilted his head as if he wanted to dodge that question. "Do you really want to know?"

"I told you what I dreamed."

"You were asking me why we needed to bother with the marriage license, and with waiting two weeks."

"Oh. I have to admit, I have been wondering why we should wait for two more weeks. But I think I understand better now."

"I think I understand better, now, too. We need to believe this is really what we want to do."

"Sorry to wake you up. I really was not thinking clearly."

"Middle of the night, strange dreams, and this ambiguous situation, it's hard to keep a clear head. For both of us."

And they went back to their bedrolls.

"Stupid ambiguities." Karel grumbled from the other side of the tent.

"Good night Karel. Sweet dreams."

"Good night, Bobbie. And thank you for being you. I can't imagine why we ever thought we would not like each other."


(The link to the next chapter will be here when it's ready is here: http://free-is-not-free.blogspot.com/2016/04/economics-101-novel-ch32-weaving.html.)

(The chapter index is here: http://joel-rees-economics.blogspot.jp/2016/04/economics-101-novel-index.html)
[JMR201704131308: end backup.]

[JMR201704131255: Previous backup here: http://free-is-not-free.blogspot.com/2016/07/jmr20160710-backup-of-economics-101.html,]

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