So you remember when I said I was writing this short story about two women killing someone?
Well I’m done with the first part and I need some feedback. Now’s your chance to be an editor. Yay!
Here it is:
Part 1: Vodka is the only thing that gets out the hurt
I never knew what my husband ever saw in her. Yeah, sure his mistress was abundantly gifted in the womanly areas but she couldn’t add two plus two even if she had help from Alan Greenspan. But to her credit, Monica looked like she was trying to get what I was saying with her manicured powdered pink nails scratching at her temples and an inquisitive twitch of her right eye brow.
“Now, how is it again?”
Her sugary voice dripped with innocence and for once I seconded guessed my choice in accomplice. Monica took a sip of Chardonnay as I looked for another way to explain what I had planned.
“It’s a means to an end. I mean, you must have noticed a drastic drop in attention?”
As it were, today was the day I chose for wife and mistress to join forces against the man who double crossed us both, a man whose thirst for the ladies is only exceeded by his hunger for expensive foods and wines, my husband Jim. So deep was Jim’s lady thirst that he recently added a second mistress, young and spunky Amber, to his regular line up. Amber is Monica five years ago, only seconds older than the most recent newborn and with looks that were more model than bimbo. Ah, but the difference between Monica and Amber is that the new kid on the block is a sharp as cheddar. For her Jim the banker is really Jim Mr. Easy Street lover.
And if that wasn’t the rub, Amber has already extorted more money in her shopping sprees than Monica did her first year. At this rate, I figured that either Amber would shop me out of house and home or Jim would be stupid enough to marry her.
Obviously, something needed to be done.
After a brief conversation with Moncia, I asked her to meet me at the Bon Temps bar, a place I was sure no one would know us. My choice was almost on the nose with what I’d thought Shreveport’s shadiest establishment would be. The bar was a joint that has lost its old world luster but was battling for a comeback. Restored wood beams and accents, tiles arranged in eccentric geographic designs, and enough light pouring through unwashed windows, it would make a bat blinder that folklore gives it credit. Adding to the atmosphere was well-stocked bar and a waitress smart enough to not talk to the patrons.
“Monica,” I started slowly. “I know that there have been some rough patches between us in the past with you dating my husband and all, but I think we need each other now more than ever.”
Her baby blues batted at me and I wondered if anyone was home. I kept going.
“You see, there is a reason that Jim hasn’t been coming around as much.”
“I know. He’s in charge of a big account at the bank that’s taking all his time.”
I grinned. Jim has done a good job training her, I’ll give him that.
“Is that what he told you, Monica? I’m afraid he’s been lying.”
Reaching for my purse, I pull out the secret weapon, the manila envelope from the private detective I hired. Jim was acting fisher than usual and I needed to know why. Heck, you don’t get to be the head of the harem without some intel.
I opened the envelope and slid the pics toward Monica. Putting down her drink, she flipped through them one by one with her brow wrinkling more and more with each one. And then, she gasped. She was looking at the money shot, Jim in bed with Amber.
Monica threw the pictures on the bar, cradled her face in her hands, and began to sob. A good Christian woman would have comforted her, put an arm around her shoulders and given her a hug. But I stopped being a good Christian a long time ago. Her heartbreak gave me only an ounce of joy. For all the times Jim would come home late smelling of her perfume, I cried a river. After awhile the tears dried up and I realized it was either love him for him or leave him. By then I had invested too much emotionally to call it a draw. I had also become accustomed to being a banker’s wife. In the end I guess I traded my happiness for a lucrative dysfunctional marriage. Don’t judge me, I don’t regret my choice.
I motioned for the cigarette smoking waitress.
“Two double shots of Grey Goose.”
As she poured, Monica lifted her head and looked at me, midnight mascara running down her cheeks.
“How could he have done this?”
“Yeah, yeah. We can go down the long line of questions I’ve asked myself for years—I thought we were happy, I’ve given him the best years of my life, blah, blah.”
The waitress slid the shots toward us. I dug in my purse for a fifty and handed it to her.
“Keep them coming.”
She winked and disappeared. Taking one of the glasses, I handed one to Monica but she shook her head.
“Vodka goes straight to my head.”
“Vodka is the only thing that gets the hurt out,” I said taking the shot myself. “Listen, Monica. We can sit here and drink and damn Jim for what he did to us or we can…make justice.”
I took the second shot and motioned the waitress again. Like before she filled the glasses and disappeared.
“What do you mean?” Monica’s heart was on her sleeve and I liked it. I knew that I could trust her with this.
“I mean if it isn’t Amber, it’ll be someone else. Anyone else, except us. Men like Jim are in love with the newest and shiniest toy they can find. And let’s face it sister, we lost our shine a long time ago.”
“But he said he loved me!”
“But he’s married to me and he tells me he loves me every day. Do you think someone who loves you fucks around?”
Monica stared at the pictures, her shoulders slumped and her lustrous blonde hair was now dull.
“Listen, honey. If you want to break up with him that’s fine but let’s face it, I’m in a much better position.”
“What do you mean?”
“Well, I’m his wife. I can divorce him and a judge will give me half, maybe more, of his money. You, well, you’re just the first mistress, the one he’s about to discard. Do you think that if we divorce, he’s coming to you? No. He has a new toy to play with,” I said pointing at the picture.
“That louse! I’ll be left with nothing!”
“Yes! That louse will leave you out in the cold. No more apartment. Clothes. Trips to the beach. It’s so sad really. All that time with him and his bad sex.”
“Oh it’s awful.”
“I know!” I laughed. “Too bad that…oh, never mind.”
Monica’s eyes widened with wonder. A smirk crawled across my lips.
“Well, I was thinking that after all this time, it’s like we’ve both put in time and energy and it just kills me, KILLS ME, that you would be left behind.”
“Well, what if we came to some sort of…arrangement.” I handed Monica a shot glass. “An arrangement that could be very lucrative for both of us. One that would solve all our problems.”
“Killing Amber?” Monica’s eyes were wild and her body tense.
“Not exactly but I like where your head’s at, Monica.”
“If not Amber then who?”
I raised my eyesbrows and my smirk grow into a grin. Monica, dear sparkly and slow Monica caught my hint and a smile grew on her face too. With her free hand she wiped the mascara off her cheeks and raised her glass. I copied and we toasted.
“To making justice,” she said.
“To making justice!”
It’s like I said, Vodka is the only thing that gets the hurt out.