Okay, before we got started here, I want to thank everyone who wrote last week to congratulate me about my upcoming wedding. For those of you who were wondering, yes it's true and I think it's right this time. Now this one is a very long story. it's a character study so those of you who hate long stories might want to pass on this one. On the other hand I have been listening to you and I will be alternating shorter stories that will probably be four pages or less, starting with a short one next week. As usual I'd like to thank Mikothebaby for her editing wizardry. Without her you'd bee reading gibberish right now. Here we go!
Somehow ... I got it anyway. That was the thought going through my mind on a bright sunny morning as I drove down the broadest avenue in my small town. The sun had come out that morning after two straight days of rain. This one broad avenue looked more like a part of a major city than the center line and spine of our one horse town. The doctor's offices, the dentist's offices, the police station, the courthouse and the Starbucks franchise were all located on the same street. Believe it or not, there was an actual traffic light and a crosswalk there too.
My midnight blue Mustang GT thundered down the road precluded by the sound of almost five hundred horsepower channeled through a Pype bomb exhaust system. My Whipple twin screw supercharger's whine added a touch of high frequency harmony to the Pype bomb's grunt. The overall sound was not unlike the roar the devil makes when he calls the demons back to hell. It's also my second favorite sound on the third rock from the sun. We'll talk about my favorite later.
Out of the corner of my eye, I noticed an older woman standing far too close to the curb. I noticed her far too late to do anything about it. Too late for even my massive 6 piston Brembo brakes to squeeze the fourteen inch rotors hard enough to stop us. I noticed her far too late also, for me to swerve into the next lane.
So some old lady got a bath as I splashed a puddle of dirty rain water all over her. Good morning lady, I thought as 'Blue' and I thundered by her. If the laws of Karma mean anything, she probably had it coming.
Am I an asshole for not stopping to offer an apology? Probably, but it's too good a morning for drama.
Besides, like I said when I started this story ... Somehow ... I got it anyway. It took a long time for me to realize it. Maybe because it's different from what I expected it to be like, but I got my happy ending.
I thunder down the city's street with the windows rolled all the way down and the stereo rousing late sleepers. I turn my eyes from the road for a Pico-second to check the passenger in the baby seat attached to my Mustang's tiny rear seat. My now two year old daughter is smiling and giggling. I give her a thumbs-up sign and she responds by holding her tiny perfect thumb up as well. Sticking her tiny thumb up causes her to giggle again. For those of you who haven't figured it out yet, the sound of my daughter laughing is my favorite sound. Of course, her mommy makes some noises at certain times that rank up there pretty high too.
This really isn't the way I imagined I'd be spending my middle years. By now I should have been slowly traveling the world with my wife, living out my remaining years in ease and luxury. Instead, I'm raising a child with my young wife. I thought I'd done this already but it looks like I've been given a chance to do it all over again. Just like in the video games, I got a do over. But unlike the video games, I didn't fuck up. I had to start all over again because someone else fucked up. Sometimes, fate or Karma, decide that we get a second chance for what we're all working for. All of us are really only searching for the same thing. We all want a good life with a happy ending. I'm no different. This isn't a time travel story. This is what really happened to me.
My name is Lawrence Clark. I'm fifty years old and about as average as average can be. I have brown hair that is starting to go gray on the sides. I'm just short of six feet tall and I weigh one hundred and seventy pounds.
Four years ago, when I was forty six years old, I was very close to what I thought was going to be my happy ending.
I'd been married to my high school sweetheart for more than twenty years. We got married right out of college and started raising our family. I'm an engineer and a good one. I've worked for Harris International Machine Company also known as HIMCo for most of my career.
Over the years, I've wisely saved and invested my money and with a few bonuses and stock options thrown in, I was looking forward to taking a very early retirement by age fifty. Those last four years would be a transitional period where I'd work less and depend on the younger guys in my department to do all of, or most of the heavy lifting. It would be a great time for my wife and me to start planning our golden years and for our grown children to start becoming independent adults. We'd always be there for them, but they needed to begin making important decisions on their own. We could always transfer money into their accounts from anywhere in the world but mom and dad might be in Europe instead of the next room.
I knew that with both of our kids in college and already involved in secure relationships with partners that we treated more like additional children of our own than just our children's partners my life was great. I was still madly in love with Amanda. She was still the woman I wanted to spend the rest of my life with. I'd been working my ass off all of my life and I was in the home stretch of making all of my dreams come true. I was so close I could smell my 'Happy Ending.' In fact, I didn't see any possible way for my dreams not to come true. It wasn't like I was wishing to rule the world or to be president or anything like that. All I wanted was to travel a bit and spend my last thirty years or so of life, living and loving the woman I married.
My head was killing me as I woke up. It was finally Wednesday, thank God. Wednesday was the only day that the dentist in our town handled people with no health insurance. I'd had a bad tooth for nearly a week and I was so tired of nearly over dosing on over the counter pain relief. The pills did dull the edge of the pain and make it more manageable, but they also made me sick to my stomach so I couldn't really eat.
Then there was the problem that all of the liquor I tended to consume made the pills less effective. But I needed the liquor. In the same way that the pain pills dulled the constant physical pain of my rotting teeth, the liquor dulled the constant mental and emotional pain of my stupidity.
I rolled out of bed and looked around my small shitty apartment. My mind was fuzzy as it was most the time now. There was a time not too long ago that I was one of the sharpest people I knew. I had to be. My husband was an engineer. He sucked knowledge and facts into that giant brain of his like water into a sponge and constantly spat them back out. He also expected me to remember them and I loved him so much that I did. I was a substitute teacher, so I needed to be sharp for my students as well. Those were the best days of my life.
I was slightly confused as I looked around. I was sure that there'd been a man here with me last night. As I leaned forwards in an attempt to stand up, the soreness in my vagina and oh no, my ass, remind me that there had been a man here with me. But he was gone now.
Oh well, I thought. It's actually better that he is gone. It means there won't be any awkward scenes while we try to figure out how to tell each other that last night didn't really mean anything to either one of us. It was just two lonely people reaching out to each other to fight off being alone for a few hours.
Surprisingly, I don't even remember the sex. Since both my ass and my pussy are sore, the bastard had a good time, but I don't know whether or not I did. I do remember that he was big though. I remember him asking me about math too, maybe it wasn't math but he was asking me about numbers.
I grab the bottle of pain pills off of the table and suck a couple down to stop the drums in my head. I'm glad that today is Wednesday. I don't think I can take the pain of this rotten tooth for much longer. I've also heard of cases where people have died from untreated rotten teeth.
I start counting the throbbing in my head and jaw. By the time I get to a hundred the pills have begun to work their magic and the pain is receding. Somehow, with less pain to focus on I can see and think a bit more clearly too. I seem to remember that the man from last night was named James. He doesn't live in my town. He was just here from one of the other small towns in the region looking for a good time.
I remember now that he was divorcing his wife. I remember because that was one of the things I liked about him. I figured that maybe he understood my pain. He'd been caught cheating on his wife and she'd thrown him out. He was trying to learn how to make a go of living on his own too. We had that in common. The difference, of course, was that I hadn't cheated on my husband. And someday I'd get him back. This is not the way I was supposed to be living my life. My husband, Rence, was not supposed to be running around on me with some barely thirty something bitch. We were supposed to be spending our years traveling together and doing interesting things.
He was the one having the affair, so why did I feel so shitty. Then he went and got the stupid bitch pregnant. I'd been hoping until that time that it would run its course but once there was a baby involved...
.... There is more of this story ...