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On April 16th, in 1972, at 5:03 PM, a Catholic priest named Herman Collingwood removed his smock and collar. He drove two miles to pick up a woman named Natasha Asloo. He was 34 and she was 31. Both carried legal documents with them and they drove for five hours deep into the night.
After midnight, they stopped at a rest area, locked the doors and slept until morning. Herman slept sitting up in the driver’s seat using a pillow that he had migrated with him since college. Natasha slept in the back seat using a white linen dress she had brought with her as a blanket.
When morning arrived, she changed into the dress behind some trees while Herman looked the other way. The public bathrooms were still locked. They drove for two more hours, and as they pulled into the parking lot of a courthouse it was Monday morning and they listened to the news talk about the launch of Apollo 16 the day before. At 10 AM a judge married them.
That evening the husband and wife returned home. Natasha never changed her last name, but took over as his housekeeper. She even moved into an apartment newly built in his basement as part of her salary. They continued this for ten years until she was swollen with child. Herman and Natasha disappeared. A lawyer sold their house and the people, even more swollen with gossip than Natasha’s belly, never got the satisfaction of any further tale.
This is a tiny tale and it may not seem like much. But it is also true. Or at least that’s what the storyteller told me.
What’s your story?
Would you like to share it with us?
ABOUT LETO ARMITAGE
Leto Armitage was born in America under a set of circumstances that prophesied that he would one day unite the lost tribes and return the Ever Summer. Somewhere around twelve, he realized he had been left unsupervised and binged too many Arthurian movies in his formative years and that he was just another kid who accidentally got an education while reading above his age level.
By the time he turned old enough to get a passport, he started finding excuses to travel determined to find out what culture, food and women there were to experience. After learning to grill in Oaxaca, do kinbaku in Japan, and being banned from several former Soviet block countries, he returned home to settle down and see what damage he could do locally.
After working jobs including being a short order cook, bodyguarding strippers and professionally doing reader’s advisory for erotica he realized the most reasonable path forward was to become a writer. Today he lives with cats, dogs, and humans who seem to like him despite actually knowing him. He prefers to sit on his back deck, listening to the birds and Barry the Bumblebear bee, while he writes cozy, uplit romance and raunchy erotica.