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Of Love and War (Exerpt)

July 4, 1943

John Jameson was distinctly hot and sticky, even in his tropical-weight khaki uniform. The breeze coming off the ocean should have kept him cool, but the press of bodies slathered in suntan oil denied him even a breath of air.
        He didn't know why he had let his parents talk him into coming down to the boardwalk on a holiday. It was fun when he was a kid and he could run around with his buddies. Fondly he remembered those days. When John was little, Mom held tight to Cal's hand, while Dad kept a firm grip on his shoulder. He could still feel the warm strength of Dad's hand. There was so much to see and do, then. Rides to be ridden, dripping ice cream cones and sticky cotton candy to be eaten.
        They couldn't go on the beach because that's where the fireworks were set up, but John loved to watch them get ready. Swarthy Italian men dripped sweat and cursed loudly. Mothers covered their children's ears and young girls squealed in delight at the sight of well-muscled arms and chests arrogantly displayed by the men.
        As he grew older, John and Cal with a group of boys, went to the boardwalk on their own. Mom and Dad stayed home, preferring to climb onto their roof to watch the fireworks. That left the boys free to indulge in their favorite pastime; harassing girls.
        By then, the bathing suits the girls wore left a lot less to the imagination. Budding breasts and slightly swelling hips barely concealed by the brief costumes were too much temptation to resist. The boys slithered through the crowds like eels, one knocking a girl into the arms of another, ready to keep her from falling by grabbing whatever came handy tits, ass, it was all the same. And one glorious time, John managed to slip his hand right between Sally Henderson's legs.




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