The following story is completely a work of fiction; just another tale of a husband’s woes in the face of a cheating wife. I hope you enjoy it.
Well here goes:
My name is Jeremy Armacost. Let’s get the preliminary bullshit out of the way. I’m a man. I live in a man’s world. I live in a free country. I read about all the crap other men go through when they find out their wives are cheating on them. We all know the litany. Oh I’m so brokenhearted! My wife doesn’t think I’m good enough. Oh I think I’ll just wring my hands and cry. How can I face my friends? My dick wasn’t big enough? Will I ever regain my self-respect? How could she have done this to me, to our happy home? I can’t bear the thought...
Well shit! I said shit! That’s right - shit! Shit! Shit! Shit! Shit! Got it? Shit!
I’m a thirty-seven year old ex-securities consultant and adviser for a nationally known brokerage firm. I worked out of a branch office in a medium sized city in the Middle Atlantic States; that’s close enough for you. I stand a comfortable 6’ 3” tall, and I weigh in at an even 200 lbs. I have light brown hair and blue eyes.
Most women find me handsome, and over the years I’ve taken advantage of that. I had no trouble getting dates while I was in high school and college, and since college, though married I’ve made it with one or two or maybe three others. I’ll be clear about my infidelities; I’m no wife stealer. If I find out the woman is married I back off, and if I think my wife might know any of the women I nail, why I steer clear of them too. I like women. I like looking at their naked bodies. I like what they can do for me.
I’m pretty muscular. I lift weights. I took boxing lessons in college, and I’ve had a few, not many, but a few karate lessons. I seldom drink, and I never took up smoking. When I do drink I’m careful; I never get drunk. I keep in shape; most women don’t want to sleep with some slack jawed, pot-bellied, potato chip eating doughboy. Of course I said I was married, and trust me I’m faithful in my way.
My favorite hobbies are canoeing, hunting and fishing. I do my canoeing and fishing mostly up and down the many rivers in the northeast, and I have several deer heads in the den I had built over my garage. Several of my friends and I went bear hunting in upstate Maine not long ago. I got one. I’m also a gun collector. By guns I mean all types of firearms from shotguns, to rifles to an assortment of pistols including one old World War Two German Luger. When I get a deer, I skin it, I clean it, I cut it up in steaks, and then I take the residue and make my own deer sausage.
My wife won’t eat deer meat; I guess she’s watched Bambi too many times. Just the same I make her help me with the skinning and the gutting. She gets her hands bloody; sometimes she gets sick. Too bad; women in the old days did it.
Don’t get me wrong. I have a softer side. I like to sing and dance. In fact I’ve tried stand-up comedy at some of the local clubs. I play the piano and I play the violin. If you think I was a stud in college you’re probably right. I guess so far I don’t sound like a very sympathetic person. Well I’d like everyone to reconsider. I love my kids and I’m good to my wife. I’m very fond of my wife. Honestly, everything I do now is about my kids and my family.
Let me tell you a little about my kids. Felicity, she’s the oldest, she loves to dance, and if you ask me I think she’s a natural. Since mom says she doesn’t like to the ferry kids around all the time I take her to all her lessons. I go to all Felicity’s recitals and all the other shows the dance group she belongs to performs. You’d be surprised at how many dance companies there are, how many performances take place, and how much money it costs what with lessons, costumes, and performance fees. I don’t care; if that’s what Felicity likes then that’s it.
Jeremy Junior, he’s my son and second of our three, well he’s likes soccer and lacrosse. I used to loathe soccer, but loved lacrosse. I would have preferred if he’d signed up for football. He’s a muscular kid; he could’ve kicked some butt. Either way in the fall I’m at every soccer match and in the spring I don’t miss a single lacrosse game. I even had my old stick repaired so he and I can practice up in the back yard.
Then ‘there’s the baby, little Farrah. Farrah’s still pretty much into dolls and such. I found out they have these doll houses, not the old fashioned ones you can buy that are already made up. I mean the nice ones that have to be put together and painted. I bought one of those kits and spent I bet two dozen nights hiding in my den putting the thing together and painting it all up for her for Christmas. That was one of the greatest Christmases of my life. I remember Farrah came bounding down the stairs to see what was under the tree, got halfway down, sat down on the steps and started to cry. She’d wanted a special doll house like that but she hadn’t told anyone. She gulped and cried, “Look! Santa knew!” Man I almost cried. Remember, real men don’t cry.
So remember, for me it’s about the kids. I love kids.
There is a down side. I was born into a fairly affluent family. My grandfather left me a nice trust fund upon his death. Of course I felt the need to work, but overall I’ve never been especially ambitious.
Of course I’m married, been married for fourteen years. My wife’s name is Greta. She and I met while we were in college; the college is irrelevant. We met when she was a sophomore, and I was a senior. I graduated and immediately continued my education and got an MBA, Greta graduated a little later.
After we met, as expected, she fell madly in love with me. We got married, and went right to work building a family. Greta said she wanted six or seven kids, but we agreed to stop after three; she’d been to the doctors after Farrah and he told her she had some medical problems that apparently precluded any more pregnancies.
Right out of graduate school I landed a plum job, and went right to work. Honestly I had an inside track on the job; friends of my family helped me out. Back then I was on the fast track for advancement; unfortunately that came screeching to a halt shortly after Farrah arrived. It didn’t matter at the time; even without any promotions I was making damn good money. I might as well tell everyone life was good. I had three terrific kids, a loving wife, a great job, and a trust fund to fall back on.
It was just a couple years ago my apple cart sort of got tipped over. I’d foregone the first opportunity for advancement. Mainly I passed on the first chance because Greta wanted to stay where we lived. It’s in the same county where she grew up, and where all her friends and family lived there. I told her it could hurt me later on, but she was adamant, she wanted to stay home.
A few months after I turned down my first chance I got a second offer. I talked it over with Greta again, and she held the same line. She was still afraid we’d have to move. Well I loved living near my family, I found it would please Greta, and I was crazy about her mom, her dad, and her two younger sisters so I turned down promotion number two. Everyone knows how that can play out; offer number two was my last chance. I was stuck where I was, but I didn’t care very much. My job was just a reason to get out of bed and leave the house. My real life began and ended with my kids, and some other stuff like hunting, canoeing, going to the firing range, and yeah, I bought a snow mobile.
Several years ago when the bottom fell out of the economy people everywhere were looking to cut back. At the company where I worked I was perceived as someone with no ambition, they were right, so down the toilet I was flushed. Big job gone I thought I’d scrounge around and find something. I did, I found something working at a local bank giving stock advice to newlyweds. The pay wasn’t as good but the hours were great. Like I said I didn’t care too much; it got me out of the house so I could pretend to be a professional. Actually I considered myself a professional dad more than anything else. I got Felicity her own shotgun as soon as she started the third grade. Wow, was she ever pleased.
By then Farrah was old enough to be put in day care so Greta took it upon herself to make up the lost income by finding something on her own. Heck it didn’t matter if she wanted to get out a little I could find ways to get home early so none of the kids missed much. Oh, maybe there weren’t any more brownies when they got home, but there never had been anyway. Greta never liked to cook.
Am I going too fast for you? We didn’t need the money. I think Greta was just bored. Greta wanted to work outside the house. That was cool with me.
Greta has always been one hot looking babe. She was popular in college; guys chased her all over the place. She had that waifish lost little girl look. She wore pretty clothes that gave her a childlike appearance. I remember those cute little romper and jumper sets. She’d wear white button up blouses, peter pan collars and capped shoulders. She was as cute as a button; kind of a miniature, baby sized, Barbie. Yeah, I tracked her down like she was a young deer. Once I got her in my sites it was all over. Sure bet, I wasn’t worried. I knew when I was ready she’d end up with me, and she did.
Greta’s small; to say she’s five foot two is a stretch and she weighs less than a hundred pounds. She’s petite; she’s got small boobs, a tight little ass, pretty green eyes, and dark brown hair.
Did I say; she’s great in bed? Well she’s not; she’s just about the lousiest piece of ass I’ve ever had. I didn’t marry her for the sex though; sex I can get anyplace. I married her because I liked the way she looked on my arm; she’s great eye candy. OK, I married her because she had a great personality, or at least she did once, that’s all kind of changed, but she’ll get it back, of that I can promise.
Greta found something at an insurance company. She started out as a secretary, but with her talent for talking, her bureaucratic skills, and her beauteous personality she was soon the center of attention.
She got herself a new wardrobe that I didn’t like very much. She ditched the childlike elfin look for what she thought was something more sophisticated. I think it was it was a rebellion thing; her parents and I preferred the youthful look, I think she wanted to show a little defiance. I didn’t care, not really. I thought the tight skirts and over short dresses all looked stupid. It was the start of hunting season anyway.
She put in about a year as a secretary, and then bingo she got her first promotion, head of the small secretarial pool. Did I say bingo? I meant to say bang. She was on her way! In no time one thing led to another and pretty soon she was managing their claims department. She’d even been moved past older more experienced employees. In fact her last promotion led to two of their longer term employees leaving. At the time I thought it was just sour grapes that they left. At the time I also never thought anything else about it either. This was my wife after all, nobody messed with my stuff.
Other things started to change for me once I crossed into my thirties. My children had always been top priority, but as they got older and developed their own personalities what happened to them became even more important.
My sexual escapades, yes I admit it I had been a little bit of a philanderer back in my younger days, came to a screeching halt. My kids needed me, and I realized Greta did too. I started to spend a lot more time cherishing and doting on my kids.
Greta might have gotten overlooked a little bit. Still she had my affection. She’d made me my babies, she was a good girl, and lately she’d found a pretty good job. She was entitled to more respect, and I gave it to her.
That’s a wrong statement. Greta always got attention. Remember I cared about her. Once she started work I took an interest in everything she did at her job, and for the longest time she would spend what seemed like hours detailing every single work thing that happened. I paid attention too. She’d talk about new employees, trouble with the computers, the lazy mailman, I mean everything.
Yes, Greta would talk about work, new programs, and all the new rules and regulations coming out of government. She said she hated Obama Care. I didn’t quite get that since her company handled mostly car and home owners insurance. I guess that’s what she heard so she just passed it along. What I mean I guess was she kept me informed about everything that went on in her office. I never got a word in edge-wise. Then one day it was like it all just stopped. It was like out of the blue my normally loquacious wife just shut up.
I never paid any visits to her office. I thought that was hers, and I shouldn’t meddle. I trusted my wife. Oh I knew about all the people she worked with, or at least I thought I knew. Honestly I wasn’t worried. I mean I cared, of course I cared; I just wasn’t worried.
It was OK if she didn’t want to talk about her job anymore because I preferred talking about the kids anyway. But that turned out to be another thing. Once upon a time Greta loved hearing about the kids and she loved participating in all the stuff they did. Damn, most married people know the routine, weekends and summers are always centered on what the kids were doing. Greta and I used to sit down with the calendar and pencil in all the stuff the kids would do; then we argue over who would watch what. I recall Greta used to like to take a folding chair to the lacrosse games and gossip with the other wives, and at the recitals, many of which were held in school auditoriums, Greta liked to sit with the other moms and yes, gossip some more.
Somewhere, or should I say, sometime after her second promotion Greta started losing interest in what the kids were doing. At first I never thought much of it. Then something happened that stirred my rather bland and uninspired imagination.
Shortly after Greta’s second promotion her company’s regional boss decided to have an outdoor barbecue. That sounded great; only problem, no kids. Well that was OK; we’d farm the kids out to her mom and dad. That done it was going to be off to the barbecue for old Jeremy and Greta.
The barbecue was at John Muldoon’s house. He was the head honcho at the insurance company, and he had a big house that overlooked one of the nearby rivers. He had a small pier, a couple boats, and a small boathouse. I’d been there before, but with some of the guys I go hunting and fishing with. Muldoon had a few friends who liked to hunt and fish, and one time we used his small pier as a put in when we were canoeing and fishing. So I was fairly familiar with the lay out. Greta never knew this. I didn’t think it was such a big deal to tell her anyway.
We got to the barbecue about the same time as everybody else, and honestly I had a pretty good time. I drank a couple Coors. I listened to some of the stories the other men told about what they did for a living. I laughed at all the jokes, and I tried to make sure Greta was entertained.
Entertaining Greta; that was an interesting aside; whenever we’d gone anywhere like a barbecue or a dance, or say a party she used to cling to me like a vine. Well this afternoon I hardly saw her. I didn’t think much of it at first until I noticed I kept seeing her with the same guy. I’d never met him, and though I thought knew most of the people who worked where Greta did this guy didn’t ring a bell.
I pulled one of the girls aside and asked her who the new boy was. She gave me this funny look; then she told me he was Greta’s new boss. She explained he’d been with them about three months. She said his name was Gary Weaver, he’d been assigned to their branch office to get some needed experience, and that they expected he’d be gone soon for an even bigger job probably south to like Atlanta or north to maybe Hartford. After that I discreetly kept a little closer watch on my wife. What I saw was kind of disquieting.
The first thing that crossed my mind was how I remembered the way she used to behave when we’d be at functions like this. She’d be on my arm almost the whole time. She’d be with me when we ate, and she’d keep her hand on my arm and we’d promenade about all over the place talking and mixing. What was happening today was this new guy, this Gary Weaver, was usurping my role.
Well, all right he was her boss, maybe she had her reasons. Still I thought I’d sidle over and see what kind of reception I’d get. I strolled on over.
When I got to where my wife and Weaver were I took her arm, “How’s it going honey?” I was surprised; she pulled away.
“I’m fine Jeremy,” then she looked at her nearly empty wine glass and added, “Jeremy be a dear and get me another wine.”
It was then this Weaver fellow looked at me for the first time, he said, ‘Hey pal, if you’re going to get more drinks get me a beer.”
I asked him, “Any particular brand?”
He replied, “A Coors Lite would be good.”
I smiled at the two of them, “Sure be right back.”
As I walked away I heard this Weaver fellow ask my wife, “Who was that guy?”
I heard her reply, “Oh he’s nobody; just my husband,” then I heard her giggle.
Crap, I thought, I’m nobody just the husband. Next I thought, my wife never giggles. I got the wine and the beer and sauntered back over. Was I surprised; they each took their beverages and walked away. She took the wine without even looking at me. Hey I thought; no introductions? I decided not to make a scene, but I watched more closely as they walked away. They didn’t go anywhere. I half expected them to slip down to the boathouse and get it on. I’m only joking of course, but I’d stopped seeing the humor in what she’d been doing. Hell, I didn’t see any humor in anything after that; she’d totally disrespected me.
I thought, well fuck her, two can play that game. I espied one of her girlfriends; a girl I knew who had a reputation. I slipped over to her, “Hey Marge, what’s up?”
Marge gave me a soft smile and murmured, “I saw it Jeremy.”
“Come on Jeremy, I wasn’t the only one. Greta blew you off.”
I played dumb, “She did?”
That’s when she hit me, “You don’t know do you.”
Uh oh I thought, but suddenly I thought I did, “Know what?”
Marge nodded her head.
I was dumbfounded, but I still played it like this was a joke, “Are you telling me my wife is having a case of the naughties?”
Marge rolled her eyes like I was some asshole, “You don’t get it do you?”
Yeah I got it. I was an asshole. That’s when I took her arm, “Come inside. I want to talk.” I cast one more look back at my loving wife. She was still on Casanova’s arm. I kept telling myself, no, this isn’t what Marge wants me to believe. Still I walked her inside and we found an empty room. The room was pretty nice; oriental rugs, a bunch of old Chinese vases, expensive looking wax flowers. I couldn’t think of a better place to find out my wife might be cheating on me.
We got inside and both sat down. I looked at Marge, “Ok, what gives?”
“I’m sorry Jeremy. I thought, well I thought maybe you knew.”
“If I tell you, you’ll promise not to say where you got it. I don’t want to lose my job.”
“Promise Marge, I won’t tell anyone. Now what is it you want to tell me?”
She peeked out the door, then turned back to me, “This man Gary Weaver tooled into town about three months ago. Word is the people in home office have had their eye on your wife. Jeremy she’s a real good talker and people in the Home Office in New England think she’s got something.”
Wow I never knew that. Then again, it was about two months ago Greta started to get closed lipped. Maybe that was when she got wind of something, “Tell me Marge, you would know, is she that good?”
Marge shook her head sideways, “Greta’s only good at spreading her legs and running her mouth. First, maybe four months ago, she got it on with a supervisor named Larry Hopkins, but he and his wife left town right after Greta got her big promotion.”
“I remember some guy pulled out.”
“That was Larry, something had gone wrong in his department, they blamed him; he got passed over. If you ask me Greta screwed something up, shifted the blame, then they fingered Larry and promoted Greta.”
I thought I knew my wife; that was about the strangest thing I’d ever heard. I told her, “Marge, that’s not like my wife. I tell you she’s a straight arrow. She’d never pulled something like that on anybody.”
Marge flinched, then she went on, “OK, maybe I’m wrong, but have you noticed anything different about her lately?”
I had, but I knew telling Marge wasn’t a good idea, so I lied, “No Marge I haven’t.”
Marge looked at me quizzically, “Everything OK at home; no late nights, no changes in behavior?”
Come to think of it I saw her slip in real late at Felicity’s last recital. She must have missed nearly the whole thing. When I asked her about it she said she’d been in the back talking to some of the other mothers. Then the other day, Saturday a week ago, she’d missed little Jeremy’s lacrosse game. I never said anything about that. I gave Marge the most innocent look I could muster, “No Marge, can’t think of a thing. But thanks for the heads up. I’ll keep a look out from now on.” I stood up and proffered her my arm, “Marge don’t say anything about this.”
She nodded, “You be quiet too.”
I smiled, “Gotcha.”
Together we strolled back outside to the main party. I continued to walk around making small talk. I didn’t try to keep tabs on Greta. If she was up to something, say hiding down in the boathouse, it wouldn’t matter, not to me, not at the moment anyway.
I kept walking around and visiting with the other guests. My antennae were up now though. I kept thinking everybody was sort of watching me; maybe they knew something, maybe they were watching to see what I would do. Then again maybe I was paranoid.
When the barbecue finally broke up I found Greta; she was still hanging on Don Juan’s arm. I tapped her on the elbow, “Time to go.”
She turned, smiled at Weaver and said, “Bye, see you soon.” She didn’t take my arm though; she just walked away toward the field where the cars were parked.
I smiled at the asshole. I saw the look on his face, and I knew right away, I recognized the look; yes he was tapping my meat. I smiled at him, “I didn’t catch your name, but good bye, and take it easy.”
I played dumb all the way home. I talked about baseball and Felicity, and young Jeremy’s next lacrosse game. I think Greta was glad I didn’t ask her anything. I watched her out of the corner of my eye. I knew something was up.
Sunday was church; then we usually spent time around the house just being with the kids. Our kids were still young enough to not want to pretend they didn’t know us.
Felicity had a boyfriend. He lived in our development, and his parents and Greta and I were casual friends. We’d talked things over with the boy’s parents, and we all agreed they could be boy and girlfriend, but they shouldn’t be allowed to kiss. They could walk the neighborhood and hold hands and all, but no smooching. The kids thought that was OK.
After church Farrah said she wanted me to take her out in the canoe sometime. Farrah seemed the most adventurous of our three, so I agreed to set up a day the next weekend. She was pretty happy about the whole idea. After that she asked if she could go over to her friend’s house and watch TV. Greta and I told her to keep her cell phone with her, and that she had to be home by six. She was up for it.
Jeremy said he was going down to the high school and get in a pick-up game of lacrosse. I offered him my old attack stick, but he declined. We told him six o’clock too.
So for the next three or four hours it could be just Greta and I. I thought this might be a good time for us to get reacquainted. I was sure surprised. No sooner had Jeremy pulled off on his bicycle than Greta announced she needed to go the office for a few hours. She said she had some paperwork she had to catch up on.
Now her office was only eight miles away. I knew it was eight miles because it was in exactly the next town, and the signs all said eight miles. I figured if she was up to no good, this would be an easy time to catch her. So I told her sure, go ahead. I told her I thought I’d pull the canoe down from its roost in the garage and check it over for my next weekend trip with Farrah.
Greta smiled, gave me a peck on the cheek, slipped on a lightweight sweater, got her pocketbook and keys, got in her car, and took off.
I sat down on the front porch. It was a simple affair, the porch I mean, just a concrete slab with a small overhang. The real porch sitting took place in the back yard. Like I said I sat down and waited for about ten minutes; that would give Greta enough of a head start if she were going to her office.
I waited, then got in my old Buick and started for her office too. When I got to her office I wasn’t that surprised. Now her office was a medium sized brick house that had been converted to offices. She and twelve or thirteen people worked there. The old backyard had been converted for parking. I drove by the old house, and guess what? The place was locked up tighter than a jug, and Greta’s little Volkswagen was nowhere in sight.
I had no idea where the old stud lived so there wasn’t much I could do right then. I guessed my wife was going to get a freebie today, but I knew pretty soon I’d have to take some kind of action.
On the way home I stopped off at the liquor store and bought a six pack of Coors, my favorite beer. Usually I had no beer at home. I wasn’t much of a drinker, and besides I didn’t like the example it set for my kids. We had a small wine rack, and we kept a few bottles of hard stuff in a cabinet in the living room, but that stuff was all pretty much just for show. I didn’t like the real drinking stuff, like beer, out around the kids. See what a good dad I am?
I drove on home. Took my beer and put it in the refrigerator I had in my den, that’s my hunting lodge above the garage. I opened one up and started to stare at my deer heads and my bear skin rug.
Of course I was brokenhearted. I was pissed too. I covered all the emotions I guess a man normally covers in situations like this. Was she getting ready to leave me? Damn that was a real possibility if Marge was right about the home office thing. Was I good enough for her in bed? Well damn, I knew I was better than good. She was as lame as a piece of particle board. Gosh, I thought if old Gary Weaver was toasting marshmallows over her pussy he’d need a can of sterno to get the job done. I just couldn’t imagine any man, even if they got into little Greta’s pants a first time, I couldn’t imagine them going back for seconds. I mean hot she wasn’t, not in the sack.
I wondered did she love me? That was a no brainer, if she loved me she wouldn’t be out with Brad Pitt right now would she? That was another thing that bothered me a little. No it bothered me a lot. The guy didn’t look like half the man I was. He was shorter than me, he had a receding hairline, I thought I detected a bald spot in the back, and I swear that was a pretty good sized pot he was carrying around out in front. Now I’m thirty-seven, but my waistline is still a pretty svelte thirty-four. I bet he was looking down at forty inches at least. That was when it hit me; Greta wanted another promotion. My wife had been bitten by the unholy bug of ambition. She wanted to go big time; she wanted home office, and she figured old flabby fella with the receding hair was her ticket to ride.
Suddenly an old song crept into my head. Lynnrd Skinner had done a song. I think it was titled ‘Three Steps’. I kept humming, ‘Hey fat fella with the hair colored yella... ‘ Hm, now who was I? Was I the kind of guy to give old ‘Fat Fella’ his three steps? I didn’t know, but I remember old Linda Lou’s boyfriend had a forty-four.
I could hear Greta already, “Jeremy I love you, but I’m not in love with you. Jeremy I want my freedom.”
I thought about that long and hard. First of all, though old what’s his name was probably slipping my wife the salami right now he wasn’t going to get away with anything. No sir I was no cuckold; well at least not long term. The next thing that crossed my mind was what to do about little Greta. That was a real problem.
I thought long and hard for another ten minutes. I said OK, times up! I could divorce her. Yeah right! I had a few friends who’d gone that route. They all got hosed. They ended up losing their houses, their kids, half their assets, and they got stuck with child support and alimony. Yeah sure, like I was going to divorce her and lose my kids; that wasn’t going to happen. And oh yeah, she wasn’t divorcing me either. Damn, that was the same turd just different toilet paper. No ma’am little flat chested, lousy fuck Greta wasn’t going to get away with anything.
I sat there; my first Coors was still unfinished and had become lukewarm. I got up and dumped it down the drain. I sat back down and thought some more. What was I going to do? I sat there. I looked at my deer heads. I stared down my big dead bear. I glanced over at my gun collection; my rifles, my shotguns, and all my pistols.
Did I tell anyone I was a history buff? Well I was and still am I guess. My favorite period in American history is the Revolution. Man I love George Washington; there was a man who never took any shit off of anybody. My second favorite was the Civil War. I thought about Nathan Bedford Forrest; he was one tough customer. “Put a scare into them,” he used to say. My third favorite was World War Two, George Patton. What was it he said? “Don’t you die for your country; make that other poor dumb bastard die for his country!”
Ah yes World War Two. I thought about an old Tom Lehr song from the 1960’s. My father, bless his heart used to sing it to me. How did that one verse go? Let’s see, ‘Once all the Germans were warlike and mean. But that couldn’t happen again. We taught them a lesson in 1918, and they’ve hardly bothered us since then’. Great song, catchy tune
Oh those rascally Germans, that big meanie old one testicled Hitler. Oh yes, Hitler. I read something in an old American World War Two book. Let me try to remember. Oh yes, Hitler was talking to all these German industrialists about what he planned to do with the Jews, how he’d see to it they’d all just disappear in the night and fog. He was pretty grim, pretty sanguine about the whole thing. Before I go any further; I’m no bigot, in fact my grandmother on my father’s side was a Jewish girl. So I guess Hitler would’ve wanted to get me too.
Well these industrialists were all upset about Hitler’s plans. Some of them said something about international law or something. I remember reading what Hitler said. He looked at those industrialists and he said, “There you stand with your law books, and here I stand with my bayonets. After it’s over, and after we’ve killed everybody who disagrees with us, I’ll decide what’s right and wrong.”
I went back to the refrigerator and got out a second Coors. Good old Greta had the law. Me, I looked over at my gun collection. I thought about what I wanted. I wanted my children. They were my sunshine, and ain’t nobody taking my sunshine from me. Yeah no matter how you cut it, if it came right down to it, little Greta had her law books. All I had ... was ... well ... that was a damn fine Beretta; I loved my old Glock, and oh baby that Smith and Wesson was a beauty.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not a violent person. I’m a civilized man, but I knew my history. Back in the day every man had his lentil, and above every lentil? Sure I belonged to the NRA. I liked reading the magazine, but I never saw any reason for a sixty round clip or owning an AR15. I mean if somebody else wanted one that was their business; we all had a right. Would I use deadly force to protect what was mine? I knew the answer to that.
Sure, and what was that woman’s name, that Hollywood movie star? Was it Carole Landis? No, it was, I think, Jane Greer. No it wasn’t her, but it was some big 1950’s movie star. She was married, but she’d been boffing her agent, and her husband found out about it. What did he do? Did he go off and cry someplace? NO! Did he beg her not to leave him? No way! I remember what he did. He got a pistol, found the guy, and shot him in the balls. It went to court, he pleaded temporary insanity and got four months in a minimum security prison. Oh yes there was a precedent. Ha ha!
Greta got home about 5:45, just ahead of the kids. We had a little talk.
She asked, “Did you get the canoe down?”
I told her, “Nah I bought some beer and went to my ‘hunting lodge’ and thought about what we’d do when the five of us went on vacation this summer.” I watched her face. She was inscrutable, so I asked her, “You have any ideas?”
She gave me this silly smile, “No, I haven’t, not really”
I thought yeah, ‘I bet you haven’t.’ I let it go.
The kids all came home. Greta ordered out for pizza, and we all had a good time.
The next several days kind of caught me off guard. Greta was home late more often than she was on time. She certainly seemed preoccupied, and every time I said anything to her she nearly tore my head off. I remembered my talks with the guys who’d been crucified. Greta’s behavior was a pretty close approximation to what they’d described. My guess was the barbecue kind of set Greta’s little wheels in motion. I knew I was probably running out of time’ or Casanova was running out of ‘balls’ time.
Understand I’m not a violent man. I already said that. I’ve killed things. I’ve killed many things. I’ve killed rabbits, deer, squirrel, doves, ducks, geese, and one bear. Actually I only killed one squirrel. I got one when I was seven; shot it with a sixteen gauge. Once I got it my granddad, the same one who’d married the Jewish girl, grabbed me and the squirrel. He pulled out his pen knife, opened the dead squirrel’s mouth and cut its tongue off. He said, “Here eat this and it’ll guarantee you’ll get another squirrel.
Well he was my granddad. He’d let me drink his moonshine. I ate the tongue. It tasted awful, all grisly, but it made him proud. I kept it to myself, but I was determined never to try to kill another squirrel again as long as I lived. So far I haven’t.
I wonder sometimes how he ever ended up marrying a Jewish girl. You know the stereotypes about Jews; they’re all into business and money and clothes and shit. I guess I’ll never know; they’re both dead now. Love is just a funny thing; pretty Jewish girl rich family, and hardworking hard drinking farmer. I know one thing; they sure paid attention to each other. It was like he was Solomon and she was the Queen of Sheba. I thought Greta and I had that; I guess I was wrong.
I’ve never killed a man, but I sucked it up; the bastard was screwing my wife, and if she got her way I’d lose everything that mattered to me. I mean I felt guilty, real guilty. But the way I saw it; it was either him or me. I chose me.
Still, this was a big step; I better be sure. First I started to keep track of Greta’s activities. I got myself a little spiral pad and started writing down all her comings and goings. It didn’t take long to figure out a pattern; at least a pattern about her late arrivals home.
From there I took a couple days off from work so I could track what she did on the days she came home late; the things I found out were enervating. My Greta and Rambo had a regular thing going at the Holiday Inn. Every Tuesday afternoon, and nearly every Sunday after church they teamed up for what I guess was a little love in.
I followed him home one afternoon after one of their trysts. He lived in a pretty nice condominium. It was an older facility; something they built in the 1970’s called a quadruplex. It entailed four separate townhouses all in one big square building. Each had its own front door, but there were no back yards or anything. Chances were the things were pretty soundproof. I hoped so anyway.
So I knew my wife was a cheat. I knew where they were doing it, and I knew where he lived. I guessed there was still at least one more thing to do before I went on automatic pilot. I had to have a sit down with my wife.
I figured a Monday night was the best time. She would be home at her regular time. Felicity would be at dance. Jeremy would be at lacrosse practice, and I could find a way to farm out Farrah.
Monday came. Farrah was at a friends and the other kids were busy. Greta got home and started for the bedroom to change. I stopped her at the front door, “Greta I need you for a minute.”
Her response was predictable, “Can’t it wait. I’m tired. I want to get out of these things and lie down awhile.”
I stood in front of her. I hated the shit she wore nowadays. I left my arms hanging loosely at my sides to be as nonthreatening as possible. I told her, “No it can’t wait. We need to talk now.”
I’m sure she didn’t suspect anything. I think she thought she’d covered her tracks pretty well. She replied, “OK, make it quick.”
I spread my right arm in the direction of the living room, “Let’s go in and sit down.”
She shrugged, “This had better be good. I already have a headache,” she plodded her way into the living room.
While she took a seat in an easy chair, I took up position on the sofa. I noticed she chose the chair; a good way to avoid intimate contact. I asked her, “Can you remember the last time we made love?”
She started to get up, “Oh that; is that what this is about?”
I motioned for her to stay seated, “No, it’s more than that.”