The next morning, for the first time in a long time everything felt good. It was as though heaven and earth knew too. There were birds chirping, the sun sent warm rays of greeting and I was smiling, morning smiles are a rarity. I moved closer to him, lifted his arm, put it over me and snuggled with him. He made a weird little blowing air sound, kissed the top of my head and went back to sleep.
I really, really, really did not want to go to work this morning. I wanted to lie there and smile all day. I would get up in a little bit and make pancakes for breakfast, then maybe we could go for a walk in the park and tonight would be perfect, I could make his favorite dinner – pork chops and candy apple potatoes, we could be so great.
You know that feeling when you’re a child and you’re so excited about something that that you become so erect that you shake – it’s a weird explanation but just think about it. You are so excited that you have to make yourself stop from shaking in excitement and you have to stop yourself so hard that you shake from the exertion – one must be over-the-moon excited for that to happen.
The alarm beeped and I got off the moon to shut it off. As wonderful as all this is, it is time to go to work for there are bills to pay. The first person I encountered that morning was Sue. I gave her the ol’ office camaraderie-inducing good morning.
“Hey, mornin’, man today sucks, I got stuck in traffic for like half an hour and my kids’ babysitter was sick so I had to drop her off all the way at my mom’s, it’s like at least 10 minutes out of my way, man what a morning, this is hell,” she said.
It was the secretary’s birthday today, so that meant pitching in for cake and a present and I didn’t have any cash. Hmmm. I’d have to sneak out, down the street and pick it up, I’d offer to get donuts. I did some work and then grabbed my coat, this was actually perfect because I was hungry. I went out through the back door and into the back parking lot and then realized I had left my keys on my desk.
I trudged back inside, grabbed the keys off my desk and did round two of what I should have accomplished round one ago. It was strange, but the spot where I thought I had parked had a grey van in it. I walked past the grey van, past about four or five other cars in the same row and nada.
So I walked back to the grey van and then walked down the row it sat in. Oh there it was, but it seemed like a different color, almost blue, but perhaps it was just the light casting colors on the car. Nope it wasn’t it. I went inside and to the front desk.
“My car is gone,” I told our receptionist.
“What, what do you mean?”
I explained to her that I’d parked my car in the back parking lot and it wasn’t there now.
“We have to call the police.”
As soon as she said that something hit me.
“Oh wait, just a sec, I can’t remember if my boyfriend said he needed it, maybe he picked it up, sorry just a sec,” I said to her and half-jogged back to my office.
I called him over and over again.
My computer pinged.
Oh gosh, I can’t think, I can’t think.
What am I going to do here?
The phone rang.
“Did you find your car?”
It was our receptionist.
“Yes, everything is fine, thank you.”
I knew it had to be him, maybe he was going to make a surprise, a good one. I grabbed the files I needed and headed to the meeting. Everyone was already assembled and looked up when I walked in.
“Are you cold?”
I realized I was still wearing my coat. I laughed and said all girls are cold all the time.
We started the meeting.
I wanted 5 to come and I didn’t want 5 to come. If he didn’t answer the telephone, I would need to call a taxi. And then everyone would look at me quizzically, wanting to ask and not to ask at the same time. And then, gawd, I just don’t know, I don’t know. I will drink some coffee or at least a sip of it before it gets cold.
It was 4:47 p.m. when the phone rang.
“Hey, I’m waiting outside, when are you coming.”
I really couldn’t believe my ears, the telephone call, him. Ok, he had taken the car without telling me and had left me to worry all afternoon, but he’d showed up to pick me up. I told myself I wouldn’t get mad, I would be calm and ask him to explain what exactly would have propelled this event. I dashed outside at 5 and there he was waiting for me. He was smiling.
“Guess what, I have found myself in the way of $5000.”
I asked him how. He told me not to worry about it. We stopped by his friend Dirk’s. He is rude, crude and has a beautiful wife he treats like crap. We walked into the house and Dirk was plopped in front of the television with a cigarette in his mouth and an energy drink in hand.
His wife came into the room to greet us and we said our hellos. Dirk told her to go get a few refreshments, with a few expletives thrown in. She came in with a tray and set a drink down in front of each of us. When she set down Dirk’s drink, a drop flew over the side of the rim and made a sploshing sound that was much louder than its size. He grabbed her cheek and pulled her face close to his.
“Are you fucking stupid.”
She murmured a no.
How could this greasy excuse for a man possibly speak to her in such a way? She is a person, he is a person. What in any way allows him any sort of power over her? What is it about it? What is the thing? She was once this little beautiful baby, and now she is the beautiful young lady. And at some point between the one that is and the one that was, she began to believe there was logic in another human being, just another being, walking around this earth taking power over her.
The next day I got home and saw the apartment was in shambles. Seat cushions ripped out, broken glasses, photographs lying on the floor … nails sticking out … shards of glass. He was sitting in the midst of this when I got home, glossy-eyed and evil-spirited is the only way I can put it. The thing lunged at me and grabbed my bag, shouting curse words and the like. I had just taken out some money to pay the water and electricity in the morning.
He grabbed the dollar bills with a growl and I fought him back. I pushed him and due to his haze he fell back, I grabbed the money out of his hands and ran to the bathroom. I pushed the door shut, but before I could lock it, he whipped it open. I pushed as hard as I could… I tried and tried and tried. But he won. I jumped into the bathtub and pushed the money into my pockets.
He grabbed my head and slammed it down on the bathtub floor. I swiped at his jaw, and then he grabbed my neck, I couldn’t breathe. When a little air returned to my lungs I tried to pry his hands off of me, he let go. I looked up at him panting, he looked down on me with a gargantuan smile on his face.
“Give it to me bitch,” he said.
I tried to kick him in the face. He punched me in the nose, I can’t remember much after that.