Transition Plan Chapter35 - First Homecoming Part 22: Bed Time Stories
Authors Notes: Being the family's leader garners a lot of respect but a lot of teasing too during the excitement of being home, and Terk goes a little too far. Tarzan proves, with a little help from Jane, that he's a good sport as well as a good leader.
There was a lot more to catch up on that first day back together as sunset approached. They all enjoyed dinner but Jane wanted to do something special for everyone. While some of the other stories were being explained, Jane had gathered enough bee larvae honeycomb with bananas and combined that with cracked coconuts that Tarzan had collected for everyone to enjoy a wonderful dessert treat. She knew it was his favorite jungle dessert. She was proud of herself that she hadn't lost the talent to gather the honeycomb without disturbing the bees, though Tarzan was worried about any bee sting venom effect on their baby. She thought it was cute that he was being so protective.
After the dessert, everyone gathered around the couple's fresh new nest that Tarzan and Jane made together on the perimeter of the family nest next to Terk and Kirok as he took leadership of the family again. The pair praised and thanked Kirok for his temporary leadership, and the family whooped and pounded their chests in his honor. Kirok was genuinely moved by the gesture of thanks. It was one of those human habits they appreciated. There was so much to catch up on, so they continued to explain all the rest of their adventures to the family - the fun of the party and other social occasions, the surprise of discovering and confronting the traitors, the seeming impossibility of snow and ice and skating, the walk in the park, the deer, horses, house cats and dogs and the other strange new animals, Jane's estate and the Castle, the terrible attempted murders, the library, the sailing ship Destiny, and how it all worked out with the Nigerians - the only other humans nearby who were now their allies and protectors. Kala cried when Tarzan explained that he'd named his horse for his father in his honor and they hugged for some time.
After all the serious stories, Terk wanted some fun. So with a wry grin, Terk asked Jane, "Seeing you two just like the rest of us, even though you're both a lot more 'fur-challenged', it makes me remember back to the way things used to be with Tarzan when we were little and growing up together. You do know the story why Tarzan started wearing a loincloth only after he got older, right, sister Jane? Surely he told you?"
All the color drained out of Tarzan's face, "Terk… let's not. That doesn't matter anymore."
That emboldened Terk on to continue with the tale now, seeing her cousin squirm. Jane noticed Tarzan's pale look, and it piqued her interest to hear why he was suddenly uncomfortable. But she didn't want to hurt his feelings.
"Tarzan, I would like to know the story. Is that all right? I love stories about you being little growing up with your family."
"Well. All right. I guess so," he reluctantly agreed, mostly because he wanted her to be happy.
With a very gossipy English tone in her voice, which Tarzan caught, "Well then. No, Terk, my dear husband has never mentioned the story. Please. Do tell."
The only thing missing from the scene was Jane sipping a cup of tea with her pinkie finger outstretched. And all of her clothes, Jane noted with amusement, trying to envision a scene like that in the Castle's Tea Room with Hazel, Greenly, and Eleanor. The thought of all four young women sitting naked at formal tea just about made her laugh out loud.
Terk led Jane on, "So sister Jane, what do you think happened and caused my little friend Tarzan to act like a human and wear a loincloth way back when?"
Jane really didn't know, but speculated, "Well, dear Terk, I can only guess. I suppose it's because Mother Kala most likely found Tarzan in diapers when she rescued him in the treehouse, and he was used to that, so he just kept wearing skins and rags after that."
Terk leaned back with a very smug smile, "Nahhhh. Nothing like that, Jane. That makes too much sense."
That elicited a comment and a giggle from Kala, "I thought that boy would never get out of diapers. He was untrainable. Even though we live in the jungle and you can really 'go' anywhere, there are simply places you shouldn't. Like in Kerchak's lap!"
Kala, Terk, and Jane laughed hard together. Tarzan just shook his head. There was no winning this battle with the three headstrong females in his life.
Jane sat up on her haunches anticipating Terk's punchline with a mischievous grin, "So what really happened then, my friend?"
"After his looong diaper stage," Terk paused for another snicker, "Tarzan ran around buck naked all the time like everyone else until he got to be eight years old."
"Oh my! He did, did he?" Jane faked embarrassed surprise and fanned her face like she was going to flush and faint like an English noblewoman, encouraging her friend further, and winked at her husband. He just raised an eyebrow.
"Hey! That's not too long before you guys met me! This is got to be good," snickered Tantor, listening to every word all night long.
Everyone had a good laugh at Tantor's anticipation, even Tarzan.
Jane tickled Tarzan in a sensitive place and emphasized with a wide grin, "Buck naked, do you say, Terk?"
Seeing Jane's playfulness, Terk emphasized, "Completely, Jane. You would have really liked that."
"Just like I do now?" she winked, leaned in closely, and kissed his cheek. Tarzan responded with a smile. Her cute comments and her gentle kiss made the story much more tolerable.
"Yep Jane. Young Tarzan was always naked as a jaybird. Every day. And loved it," Terk milked the story for everything it was worth.
Jane giggled imagining a cute little naked eight year old Tarzan in his dreadlocks running all over the jungle with all his gorilla friends. Unexpectedly, Jane had a sudden vision of their own eight year old boy running naked in the jungle some day, and wondered why an image of a boy came into her mind, when their baby could just as easily be a girl too. It was a pleasant thought, and she squeezed her husband's hand. He didn't understand why, but he enjoyed the affection.
Jane's nice premonition was interrupted by the squawk of jaybird directly above them complained in a grouchy mood to his gorilla friends below, "For the record, jaybirds are never naked…"
Everyone laughed at that, even Tarzan.
"Sorry... No offense meant," apologized Terk.
"None taken. Just get your facts straight next time, Terk," the bird scolded, and went back to his business of digging grubs out a dead branch, while thinking, "Gorillas. Hmpf. Always exaggerating about things. As bad as humans…"
Terk continued her story. She raised one paw and made a space between her thumb and first finger about an inch apart, "Back then, he had such a cute little pink pe…"
"Terk!" Jane instantly interrupted, her eyes wide, and she was a bit irritated. Tarzan was pleased at Jane's quick defensive objection. Kala suppressed a motherly laugh. She remembered her son as a little boy fondly.
Terk smiled more broadly, knowing Jane would object. She didn't skip a beat as she held both paws apart starting at nine inches apart, which Jane knew was correct, and just kept spreading her paws wider and wider to over three feet apart, "But not like now. Tarzan is certainly not little any more!"
Jane's and Tarzan's eyes widened, their cheeks turned beet red, but Terk's ever-expanding exaggeration was outrageously funny, so they started laughing hysterically. The entire gorilla family erupted in enthusiastic cheering and whooping at Terk's indication of their alpha male's size. Everyone could see the hard factual truth at a glance anyway.
"Maybe this story does have its positive moments," Tarzan thought as Jane caressed his arm and kissed him with an purposefully audible smack, and the cheering got even louder.
Jane attempted to guide the story back on course, "What was special about eight years old, Terk? Some right of gorilla passage to be more modest? Some realization he was different than the gorillas?"
Terk dismissed all her logic, "Nope. It's all very simple, Jane, my dear friend. We got to running and jumping and climbing and wrestling one day, like we always did. I always beat him, until he started to catch up in size and strength with the rest of us. I was totally shocked that he had me pinned, and I was mad and complained about it, so to get loose, I just swung both of my legs hard and kicked him right in the nu-!
Tarzan immediately interrupted, "That's enough, Terk!"
Jane doubled over in totally hysterical laughter and just could not stop.
Terk added, "After an hour, he finally stopped hopping around in pain and holding himself. After that, he always wore a loincloth for more padding down there from then on!"
That made things even funnier for Jane. She laughed so hard she had to take in great heaving gulps of air just to recover. She snorted. The entire family laughed with her. They'd never seen Jane more amused.
Tarzan survived the all the joking, so she hugged and kissed him affectionately to lighten his embarrassment. But she still couldn't control herself. She kept right on laughing and snickering between her kisses and hugs with him, trying to be sympathetic to all the teasing. Jane totally lost it twice more, just by looking at him. Terk laughed right with her.
Tarzan just rolled his eyes and took it all in stride, trying to be a good sport, "Sooner or later, Terk, I'll tell an even better story about you, my friend!"
Jane finally regained her composure and wiped her eyes of her laughter-induced tears, "Oh dear, Terk. That was the funniest story ever heard about Tarzan. I must admit that I am certainly grateful he wore a loincloth when we first met. That would have been too much then for me as a 'proper' English woman."
Tarzan recalled those first awkward but exciting encounters.
"But not now…" she smiled hungrily at her husband and kissed him full on the lips and her tongue parted them with a deeper second kiss that lingered enticingly. She could hear the whoops of the family all around them at this. When they broke the embrace, Jane saw hurt feelings on Tarzan's face in spite of all the humor.
She snuggled up very close to him, affectionately hugged him, looked at him very seriously, and whispered, "I'm sorry dear. I didn't mean to laugh so hard to hurt your feelings. I do so love hearing stories of your childhood."
She hesitated a bit, grabbed his hand and placed it on her pregnant stomach for emphasis, and soothed him by gently grasping Tarzan in the area they were describing and gave him a big smile, "Besides, these 'guys' work just fine, as it turns out, don't you think, Jonathan, dear?"
His hurt turned to a good chuckle at her comment, rubbed her belly affectionately, and felt better - especially with her soft hand caressing him, "That is for certain. It's fine, Jane. It was a good story to celebrate us being home again. As only the way Terk can tell a story. I'll be all right."
She remained unconvinced of that assurance, and waited for the right moment to 'make things right' for him. She'd never really seen him emotionally vulnerable before, and it was touching. She felt a little ashamed she'd missed his hurt feelings and that she laughed so hard at what was assuredly an awkward moment for him as a boy. She'd actually done the same thing to her cousin at her estate's pond as they played that one summer when they chased each other as they swam.
To help Tarzan feel better, Jane started a conversation about everyone else's most embarrassing moments. Jane started by telling everyone about her being discovered and punished by her mother for skinny dipping at her pond all summer with her cousin at age ten, and how much she had loved that natural feeling and that she could now experience it all over again with Tarzan and her gorilla family and the Nigerian natives. Tarzan really enjoyed hearing that story again from their first morning at the beach as newlyweds, and it made him feel much better, knowing how comfortable Jane was living just like her Mangani sisters.
Terk was entertained by her story too, "Well, Jane was one of us even then! Who knew? You got yourself the best human mate ever, cousin!"
"I knew that already, guys," Tarzan said proudly.
"You guys would have been cute together in the jungle as kids," Terk offered whimsically.
Jane squeezed Tarzan's arm contentedly. And for just a moment they let themselves imagine being feral childhood sweethearts running and playing in the jungle while falling in love, and kissed.
It was a wonderful homecoming, and for the first time in months, Tarzan and Jane felt happy and carefree, which was exactly what they wanted. They just leaned against each other's sides, and for a moment, quietly took in all the chatter and fun of the family going about its daily routine they missed so much. She looked up into his eyes in complete contentment with him and the family.
"I have missed this so much, Jane," he whispered to her in an aside while Terk excitedly embellished some other wild story about Tantor and her and Tarzan feeding a flock of birds a natural laxative plant, causing the jungle birds to dive bomb poop all over the water buffaloes. He recalled how angry Kerchak was at him after the bull buffalo's blistering argument with the Silverback.
"I know Tarzan… I love being here with them all again," she pressed up harder beside her mate, and kissed him.
Tarzan loved the thrill of having the total expanse of her soft skin against his on a constant, everyday basis. Her pregnancy made it even better. She simply had more skin to touch. She felt exactly the same excitement feeling his rock hard physique against her body. It suddenly made them want each other.
Most of the family was all tired from the excitement of the family reunion, it was getting late, and their tongues were tired of storytelling. It was very dark except for some limited filtered moonlight, so they all went back to their individual nests. Most singles or pairs were yawning and stretching nestled together for sleep, others wanting affection from a mate, and some were trying unsuccessfully get their over-excited children to sleep. A new mother gorilla was working out the intricacies of nursing her hungry newborn before going to bed, while her male mate looked on in amazement at the mother and child bonding. One pregnant pair was simply caressing her belly surrounding their child-to-be, having seen Jane and Tarzan do the same with their coming baby. Some still-wound-up juveniles were pestering each other across their nests. One adolescent, wanting a mate, tried successfully for his smiling girlfriend's affection. Jane always knew that pair would end up together and it made her happy seeing their first time intimacy. They stopped for a moment and looked for Tarzan' approval and he gave them his blessings, and they eagerly finished consummating their mating. Jane looked on and thought how tender and innocent they all were, and squeezed her husband around the waist. She noticed that Kirok and Terk were engaged in the same activity. It looked like a really good idea.
It was just another day in the life of the Mangani all happening before them that they had missed so much in the months in England. It was a simple, wonderful life.
Jane and Tarzan just sat close together in their personal nest overlooking the family's nesting place, happily absorbing the waning nighttime sights and sounds of the activities of their simple jungle family. It was all soothing for Tarzan to be back to a familiar uncomplicated existence, and to have the pregnant love of his life nestled up against him as close as she could possibly snuggle.
With nearly everyone asleep, Jane felt very safe and secure being home. She knew it was the right time to put the exclamation mark on their jungle homecoming.
To make up for all the teasing and hurt feelings, she silently slipped from sitting beside him to sitting cross-legged in Tarzan's lap in between his own crossed legs, like they often did in the love seat at the Castle library. But with the feeling amplified by being natural together, her action caused an instantly strong response from her mate. Jane smiled over her shoulder at him, kissed him on the cheek, took his hands and arms and wrapped them around her, framing the top and bottom of her baby bump. She leaned back against him and closed her eyes with a sigh, feeling the effects of his hands as they roamed deliciously above and below where she put them initially. She readjusted herself in his lap, and they both pleasantly discovered they were quickly joined. She gasped with the sudden familiar feeling of fullness within. This brand new intimate embrace felt absolutely wonderful to both of them, and didn't squeeze their baby. And more importantly, no one saw what just happened.
"Surprise, Jonathan", she cooed.
This moment reminded Tarzan of how she'd surprised him like this one other time in an even more discreet manner in the library at Castle Greystoke during a rare alone moment while all the servants were in town shopping for supplies. That one special afternoon by themselves, she had plopped herself enthusiastically on his lap, barefoot and stockingless, intentionally disturbing his reading of a Dickens' autographed version of "A Tale of Two Cities". Her cute affections and the pile of stockings and undergarments at the library door should have given him a clue something was afoot. She had draped her shin-length dress all over his suit coat and pants. He tried to scold her for interrupting him, but he discovered quickly that, underneath Jane's pretty new maternity dress, there was nothing at all. As wonderful as that day had been, this was even better.
No one noticed their hearts begin to race. The only thing those left awake or nodding off could see that Tarzan and Jane were holding on to each other closely and Tarzan was sweetly cradling her in his arms from behind as they sat together. It was very reassuring to the family to see them back with them and so close, and watching over them all. With everyone almost asleep, their desire for each other intensified, and Tarzan ached for her, so united in this new seated position, they started into a gentle cadence that increased in its urgency.
Nestled beside the sleeping form of Kirok, having finished their own lovemaking, and seeing what had begun between her friends, Terk was about to make another wisecrack, but knew she'd teased them enough for one day. She noticed how lost Jane and Tarzan were in each other's new embrace, and that they had quietly figured out a way to be joined discreetly. She just gave them their privacy, rolled over in Kirok's arms to sleep, and Terk softly said to them, "Good night you two lovebirds. Welcome home…"
Tarzan and Jane smiled at Terk and continued their loving activity until its inevitable peak, then slept soundly holding each other closely.
The first day back could not have possibly gone better. But there was serious work ahead.