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Molly & Jeff (standard:romance, 2622 words)
Author: BENTLINKAdded: Jul 08 2005Views/Reads: 2663/1777Story vote: 0.00 (0 votes)
Molly leaves Jeff a message on the slipcovers.


Jeff was very late even for a payday.  Shortly after Molly told herself,
"If he isn't here by eight o'clock I'll start calling bars and 
hospitals", a single head lamp made its lone, lonesome way up the long 
gravel drive from the state highway towards their house.  As the one 
light drew nearer and was reflected from the old farmhouses white 
clapboards she saw the crumpled fender and passenger door of what this 
morning had been Jeff's almost perfect Ford pickup truck. Jeff 
dismounted from the driver's side of the damaged pickup and as he 
approached the steps started the slurred swearing that was her tip-off 
he had too much to drink. "God dammed drunk could have killed me, ran 
my ass right off the road and into the Potter's mail boxes. Now I got 
to go down there tomorrow and put up three new boxes. God dammed drunk. 
 And just look at my truck. Never could understand why the Potters need 
three boxes anyway its just the old man and the two boys" He said in 
way of a greeting. She noted he as usual offered up no excuse or reason 
for being more than four hours late coming home from work. Molly knew 
old man Potter insisted on three mailboxes because of his sons varied 
lifestyle but wisely held her tongue.  No need to give Jeff any more 
targets to blame for the pickups damaged fender and door.  Hard won 
experience told her that asking why he was so late or explaining the 
need for the Potters, three mailboxes would only provide him with more 
fuel for his anger. The anger he seemed to need to keep from feeling 
any guilt about being so late coming home.  No need to take any chances 
with Jeff and his anger when he had been drinking!  As he moved from 
the shadows cast by the porch post and fully into the light she could 
see he was flushed and sweating and as he drew near she could smell the 
cheap bourbon.  "Good choice on the mailboxes Molly" she thought and 
turned to reenter the house.  "Not so fast little lady." Molly froze. 
"How bout a little kiss for your old man."  She let out the breath she 
had been holding, turned placed a feathery kiss on his cheek then 
slowly drew away.   He seemed not to notice her tension or distancing 
movement for his attention was now directed toward the truck as if in 
the glow from the porch light he was seeing the true extent of the 
damage for the first time. "Dammed drunk could have killed me". 

Jeff had come home late and drinking almost every payday for more than a
year.  This payday was different not only because of the damage to the 
truck but this payday was also their fifth wedding anniversary.  Not 
that she had held out any great hope Jeff would remember their 
anniversary, but because today was special she had earlier fixed 
meatloaf and scalloped potatoes for dinner and, put a bottle of red 
wine in the fridge.  Jeff always said he loved her meatloaf and red 
wine sometimes put the two of them in a romantic mood.  She had even 
taken the time to search out a vase for the flowers she hoped he might 
bring as he had sometimes done when they were first married.    As she 
cooked then showered and put on makeup she daydreamed about how Jeff 
would come home on time, sober, flowers in hand and be happy to see 
her.  "So much for dreams Molly," she declared under her breath as she 
stepped from the porch into the farmhouses' large old-fashioned living 

Earlier in the day after finishing her shower she stood in front of the
full-length door mirror in the bath and let her robe fall into soft 
folds around her ankles.  The mirror was somewhat fogged from the moist 
air so at first the small satin stretch marks on her stomach and breast 
did not show.   She had shed all the weight gained during her pregnancy 
and now weighed four pounds less than when she and Jeff married. She 
slowly turned to view herself from the side and then twisted her head 
to view her back and buttocks.  Men were nuts, she looked great; much 
prettier than those women who hung around that hole in the wall joint 
"Bar None" where Jeff did his payday drinking.  She once ask Jeff about 
bring some of his friends and a bottle home on payday but got no reply 
other than "I'll think about it". Her satin stretch marks were part of 
the price she had paid for Jeff Jr. the true love of her life.  He was 
a smart baby, had started talking early and was going to walk any day.  
Jeff Jr. watched big-eyed with out making a sound every time she and 
Jeff argued about money and the late hours he was keeping with his 
friends.  Earlier in the day she had packed Jeff Jr., his favorite 
stuffed toy, and three jars of baby food off to her mother's home a 
couple of miles up the highway, so she and Jeff could have their fifth 
wedding anniversary all to themselves. Not that it seemed to matter now 
that Jeff was drunk and would soon be passed out on the sofa or worse 
in their bed in his greasy work clothes atop the hand stitched patch 

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