|The Finish (standard:romance, 1603 words)|
|Author: Patricia||Added: Dec 28 2003||Views/Reads: 2269/1362||Story vote: 0.00 (0 votes)|
|A man re-discovers a forgotten past...|
The Finish "Dinner will be ready in an hour, dear," his wife said sweetly as he passed. He grunted. Whatever. He'd be ready. He always was. He detoured from the fridge, sighing. Flopping on the couch in his boneless way, and listening to his wife make dinner. His eldest son's nascent interest in loud rock music resonated through his body. Irritated by the noise, he moved, twisting himself, trying to find a more comfortable position on the couch. The hard, lumpy, unforgiving and unrelaxing thing that his wife had insisted upon buying. His treasured, molded and worn sofa relegated to the basement as no longer fit for use. Listlessly, he reached over to the coffee table and snagged a brightly coloured book. Just flip through something before dinner. He glanced at the ceiling. Gotta get to that one day, he thought, examining the slightly spotty finish, the stipple beginning to peel in some places. A hole in the roof. Big job. He sighed, and looked at the cover of the book that he had blindly dragged off the table. 'How to Work For Your Marriage' was the title, announced in flowery script, complete with curlicues and roses bordering the cover. A thrill of fear shot through him. What the hell? I didn't buy this? What's it about? Why is it here? Confused, he sat up, setting the book back on the table. His heart thudding in time to the driving rock beat coming from the basement. The conclusion was obvious, inescapable. She thought the marriage was in trouble. She was going to leave him. Another jolt of fear. More intense this time, the hairs on his arms standing amid goose-bumped flesh. Oh my god! She going to leave me! I'm worthless! A bad husband! She thinks I'm unworthy of her. He got up. Trouble was, she was probably right. He stamped to the door, savagely yanking it open and slamming it behind him a he walked through. The mild catharsis of the sound releasing a stifling cloud of flaking paint from the doorframe. Shit. What brought this on, he wondered as he entered the garage. It wasn't like he had cheated on her. He worked hard at his job, bringing home a decent salary, finally able to buy the things that she wanted, the things they needed. Certainly that was enough after twelve years of marriage. What the hell was going on? She has a lover. The thought rose unbidden in his mind. A green swamping miasma, choking his vision, causing him to stumble as he waked to he workbench in his garage. A lover. His hand tightened convulsively on the splintered pine of the workbench, his fingers creaking with the effort, the muscles in his shoulders bunching with barely restrained anger. Small slivers of wood working their way into his callused palms, the tiny pinpricks of pain going unnoticed. Damnit, the bitch! Wasn't he enough for her? Click here to read the rest of this story (145 more lines)
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