Saturday, May 25, 2013
Wind in White Birch - Issue # 21
Hello all! My name is V.L. Locey. I am a self-published and traditionally published author that lives in the mountains of Pennsylvania with my husband of over twenty-one years, my seventeen year old daughter, a herd of dairy goats, chickens, geese, ducks, turkeys, two dogs, two cats, and a partridge in a pear tree. For more info about me and contact links, check out the author bio tab up above.
Enough about me, let`s get back to Wind in White Birch and our lovers Jonah and Dana.
Wind in White Birch
The sun was far from creeping up over The `Burgh when I was gently nudged awake. The smell of hot coffee was directly under my nose. I reached for the cup blindly, my eyelids creeping upward after a brief struggle with the sleepy dirt determined to keep them closed. My ex was hunkered down in front of me, his face unshaven, his eyes puffy, and his blond hair ruffled. Rhick always looked incredible in the morning, as if he had just been loved roughly. I carefully took the Styrofoam cup from his hand.
“Thanks,” I murmured, glancing at my son still out cold. “What time is it?”
Rhick glanced at his gold watch. “A little after five,” he stood up then sat down beside me, taking care not to allow our elbows to rub. I sipped warily. The coffee was made just the way I like it. “Look, about the shit I said last night about that kid you`re dating . . .”
A rusty blade jabbed into my side at the mention of Jonah. Where was he? I had sat here next to Rhick for hours, biting the inside of my mouth to keep the tears at bay, worrying over where he could have gone and what would remain of our relationship, if you could really call it a relationship.
“He`s not a kid, Rhick.” I spoke into my creamed and sugared softly. “He`s twenty-six.”
“And you`re thirty-six. Jesus, Dana,” he grumbled, swirling dregs of sugared but black in the bottom of his cup.
“But it`s okay for you to shag a twenty-two year old? God, I hate double-standards!” I seethed, slurping more loudly than I had planned.
“Well, maybe if you saw the dinner conversation me and the twenty-two year old have, you`d steer clear of that young buck.”
I glanced from the monitor telling me my son`s temperature, blood pressure, and heart rate were normal to my ex. He had just shoved his hand through his golden hair making it even more a mess.
“Having trouble finding things to talk about with her?” I asked with a trace of humor. Okay, it wasn`t a trace of humor. It was a snort of sarcasm topped with a fluffy dollop of ‘Ha-Ha!’
“It`s like sitting down to eat with a teenager. The language barrier doesn`t help either,” he exhaled, still spinning his dregs. “Sometimes I wonder if she didn`t marry me just to get into America.”
It was right on the tip of my tongue. I was good though and did not hit him with the ‘I-Think-I-Mentioned-That-Possibility-When-You-Handed-Me-Divorce-Papers-Asshole!’
The squeak of a passing nurse`s shoes entered our tiny room.
“I doubt it,” I said hoping to be the better person. “I`m sure she loves you. You look great for forty and it`s not that way with Jonah and me.”
Rhick looked at me for a long moment. “I`m sorry for being such an ass,” he told me earnestly. “I guess I never knew how much I still cared about you until I saw you on the arm of another man. I`m going to call and let her know how Rhett is,” he rose and left me sitting there with my jaw on my chest.
After a moment I got to my feet to pad over to the window. I pushed the slats of the blind aside and looked down on a massive parking lot. Yes, I was looking for Jonah`s truck. I didn`t find it, but that didn`t mean he wasn`t here. He might have had to park in a different lot when he returned.
Letting the vertical blinds slip closed on the night, I checked on my son`s temperature. Mom-hand is always so much more reassuring than any artificial device. Rhett`s forehead was cool. Tension began to slip away. I pecked his cheek, covered him back up, and then stepped out into the hall. Rhick was ensconced in a corner by a bank of pay phones, his cell to his ear. He looked up then gave me a wobbly smile. I raised my cup to him then went out to the waiting room. The only person in sight was a janitor who was running a wet mop over the tiled floor. I stepped around his bright orange collapsible ‘Wet Floor’ sign, getting a dark look for mussing up his mop job.
Outside the night was brutal. I hugged myself with one arm then drew a shaky sip of coffee over my lips. It was terribly cold here under the porte cochere. I felt like a fool who had spent far too much time reading stupid romance novels. I should have known that Jonah wouldn`t be waiting here for me like some hero from a historical love story. This is real life. Men don`t act like fictional men do. If they did the romance novel industry would cease to exist.
Real men got really mad and hurt and confused. They acted like hotheads. They yelled and shouted and divorced their wives to leap on some bimbo that they hope will keep them young. They left you alone with a sick son to sulk. Maybe Jonah wasn`t quite as mature as I had thought he was. Perhaps Rhick was right about the age gaps being too wide. I needed a man that stayed with me when it got rough, not one that went off into the night in a cloud of bruised ego.
I spun around and slammed back inside. I stopped to use a nearby ladies room, freshening up the best I could then returning to my son`s room. I smiled a false smile for the young man who was now awake, hungry, and ready to go do the fun stuff we had planned to do with Jonah. I grinned wider and started making excuses.