Handsome

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The cardboard box in Marie’s front seat jingled as the car came to a halt. It had recently been filled with her personal items from a cramped desk after she was emailed a layoff notice. She sighed as she yanked her purse from beneath it and left the car.

Woody’s was her normal haunt on the weekends, a means of celebrating her often short-lived weekends with her friends. During the week, like this particular Wednesday, the place resembled a ghost town.
“Whiskey, please. Make it a double,” she said, perching on one of the lesser worn stools at the end of the bar. The bartender, one of the weekday workers, poured the drink swiftly and slid it in front of her. Marie downed the drink in one gulp.
“Another one, please.”
“Looks like you had the same kind of day I had,” said the man several seats away.

She hadn’t noticed him, at first. She’d been too preoccupied with her drink choice before deciding it didn’t matter; it wasn’t as if she had to work in the morning. Now, looking at him, he was far more attractive than his surroundings. “Well, I just lost a really cushy job. Of course, they wanted me to finish the day first,” she said, taking a sip from the fresh glass in front of her.
“I guess we both learned how little we matter today,” he said. His words stung a little deeper than she expected.
“I’m sorry. My girlfriend…she left me today,” he said, shaking his head before sipping the clear drink in front of him.
“Her loss,” Marie said, raising her glass and taking a sip as well. The man wiped his hand on his jeans before extending it to Marie, leaning across the seats between them.
“Jefferson,” he said with a grin.
“Marie.” Continue reading

Photograph

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“I wanna meet this girl who’s been occupying all my baby’s time,” Ricky’s mother, Phyllis, said. Before her son could reply, the waiter returned and deposited their brunch in front of them.

“Things are still new. I don’t wanna chase her away,” Ricky laughed before scooping potatoes into his mouth.

“Tell me all about her.”

“She’s wonderful, really. Smart, funny, gorgeous. She keeps me in check.”

“I love her already.” Time with his mother was precious to Ricky, since he’d so nearly lost her at the beginning of the year. The one thing she wanted was to know her son would be taken care of. He hadn’t told his mother, but he’d already begun falling in love with Alex.

“You should bring her to the barbecue this weekend. I promise, no grilling,” Phyllis said, mimicking the Boy Scouts pledge.

“I’m going to see her tonight so I’ll bring it up. No promises,” Ricky said. He was excited that his mother was excited about his new relationship, especially since she had been so negative about the girls he liked.

“Just promise me you’ll try and make this work. Treat her with all the respect and dignity you show me,” Phyllis said, taking her son’s hand. Ricky smiled and nodded, giving his mother a squeeze back.

“I promise.” Continue reading

More of the Same

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The stove’s clock changed to 10:52 silently. The flat was dark, except for the dim light that shined in from outside. Sonia sat at the dining room table, spinning her 3rd glass of cognac between her fingers. The last 6 years had been the same: her husband would walk out the door for work and manage to find his way between the legs of a young co-ed. Marcus was beautiful and charming in the beginning. He’d lavished her with gifts and trips, promising that she was the only woman he’d ever loved. They consummated their relationship in the balmy waters of Santorini & they were inseparable from then on. The first year they were married was everything she’d hoped. He spoiled her, prompting to her to quit the measly desk work she’d believed was her career. He helped her mother & sister move to a better home in a better community and doted on his wife, loving her as largely as he could. Continue reading

Chocolate High

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How can I tell you no when you shake me in parts I never knew of? You only want me because you know what you do to me. You get your kicks on my yearning, how bad I want you to touch me there, to wrap your fingers around my love for you. Even after my world fell apart, even after you broke my heart. I wasn’t enough. I wasn’t “her”. The words were there, sure, but the rest of it, the parts that matter don’t belong to me. They belong to her, wait, to her, no no, for sure they’re hers. What did I do to deserve this feeling? I just wanted your body; how dare you make me love you? How could you whisper in my ear, all the ways you need me, literally sweet nothings that made me cling to you tighter and give you every single little drop…? How did we get here? What voodoo do you do and where the fuck are my panties??? My brain is screaming to me, trying so hard to shut me down but damn, my body’s humming to that strumming. This body is a slave to you & I’m trapped in my mind, trying to rationalize our betrayal. The wrong thing is on my mind, this love I’ve been burning for; baby it’s hers. Mine isn’t up for grabs, I took it away so long ago. Can someone please inform my loins? You never belonged to me, so what is it about this flame? Why does it still burn so hot for you and why do I keep getting burned?

Pillow Talk

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He had been watching her for a while.

She laughed loudly with her friends, taking occasional sips of her Cosmo. Her hair was slicked back neatly into a ponytail, accentuating her face.

He had finally worked up the nerve to talk to her, pouring the last of the whiskey into his mouth. “Amanda”, but her friends called her “Mandy”. They talked, she flirted; batting her long eyelashes and touching his arms. She took the final sip of her drink and he could tell she was already drunk, even though it was only 9pm, even though she did her best to remain poised.
Let’s get out of here.

The motel was clean enough. She paid no mind to its order; she was too excited about being entangled in the arms of this beautiful man. They stood in the doorway, entertaining the empty parking lot with their kisses and groping. She gasped as he bit her ear and kissed her neck. She wrapped her leg around his waist and pulled him closer to her. He lost himself in her perfume, pushing his face into her bosom. They made their way to the bed, the heavy door snapping shut behind them. He tossed her onto the bed, sending her down with a squeal and a giggle. She began undressing and kissing his body. He was beautiful, muscular and lean. She opened his jeans and took him whole into her mouth. He moaned at the feeling. It has been so long since he felt this way. He gripped her ponytail and guided her head in her motions, giving her as much as she could handle. She felt his legs quiver and she stopped to shed her clothes.
Take me now, she moaned, laying back onto the bed.

The pillow was on her face before she couldn’t react. He was on top of her, pinning her arms to her side. She screamed into the fabric, muffling her voice as she fought. Confusion, fear and survival flooded her mind as she fought but he smashed the pillow harder into her face. In a brief moment of clarity, she searcher her mind frantically for an answer. Surrounded by darkness, her thoughts grew foggy, her screams quieted and her jerking stopped. She felt herself slipping away, out of the bed, somewhere else.

Then she was still. He held her for a moment longer, angry tears sliding down his face. His breathing quickened and his heart sank down to his stomach. It wasn’t his heart that escaped from his throat but bile that escaped out onto the floor. Now he had nothing.
He wiped his mouth and sat on the edge of the bed and dug into his pocket for the newspaper clipping. The picture was one he had taken on his daughter’s 8th birthday, the pair of them smiling brightly. He had finally gotten the monster that took his family away from him. He reread the clip again: Mother and daughter slain by drunk driver. Now he had nothing. No wife, no daughter, no obsession.