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She storms into the room without a word, wild-eyed and shivering with angry engergy. A ceramic lamp is the first victim, sent flying across the room - a tan streak. Exploding beside your head into a million fragments of clay and glass.

Next is the remote. Cheap matte-black plastic casing shatters as she repeatedly smashes it against the hardwood end table, where the lamp used to be. Silver duct-tape comes free and two slender batteries shoot out. One glances off your hand. You don't register the pain, yet. She throws the remainder of the broken device at you. Bouncing off your jacket, falling to beige carpet.

It seems like a good time to leave.
Because she's coming at you.
Eyes hard and accusing and brimming with tears.

"You LIED, you fucking LIED!" Her voice breaks.

Bare feet and tanned ankles manuver around a battered recliner and over the cream-colored lampshade. She avoids the pieces of busted lamp somehow. And is within reach now.

The car keys are still in your hand. The door is cracked open behind you. Just open it a bit more, slip through, hit the remote starter...

Streak of honey-colored flesh. Her fist slams into your chest and you instinctively back up, into the door. It slams shut. The knob against your hip. She's using both hands now. Pushing and pounding and grabbing.

It seems like a good time to say something.
Anything.

"I'm sorry."

Sounds bad, but it's the best you can do.

"It just happened...we were alone and-"

You look down. Her head is against your chest. She's crying. The assault has ceased and her hands grip your jacket tightly. Pale blue nail polish. Frosty-looking.

Her words come out muffled and broken from staggered breaths. "But w-why did you lie?"

"Because I didn't want to hurt you."

Slightly slanted eyes passed down from her Chinese mother look up, brown, debthless. Her Caucasian father's high cheekbones wet and slick with tears. Nude, quivering lips.

You wipe the tears away and hold her face in your hands. "I'm sorry."

Now she's starting to break. Time to go for the kill.

"I would never, ever do anything to hurt you or fuck up three years together." Your concience is screaming now. It's very upset. "We just had a few drinks and she came on to me...and-"

The eyes tell it all. They soften, eyebrows go up into that puppy-dog look of hopelessness and anxiety. "You said nothing happened."

"I didn't want to hurt you." Repetition, bad, time to end this quickly. You plant a quick kiss on her lips, taste the salt there.

She starts crying again. Arms around your waist now. Head on your chest. The smell of her hair reminds you of the other woman.

Her underwear, a wad in your front right pocket, a prize.

"How many times has it happened?" she asks.

"Once."

"Once..."

"Yeah."

Now she lets go and stands up straight, wiping her eyes, sniffing. "Just once? Just tonight?"

"Just tonight. And I'm sorry. I'm so damn sorry..." You take her hands in yours and pull her close. Breathing in the scent of her hair - light, femenine - kissing the smooth skin on her neck. "Sorry..."

"I love you."

Finished. She's broken completely now. Time to go.

You give her one more little kiss, spout some BS about having to wake up early in the morning, project due for work. She just stares down at the carpet and nods.

Door opens, you're out into the cool night. Halfway to your car, something beeps angrily at you. Cell phone. You take it out and check the neon green LCD.

Home.

Probably your wife, bitching about how you've been gone all evening. Out of habit you kill the ringer and get in your car, fishing the thick wedding band from a sea of coins in the drink holder.

Although you suspect she knows about the other woman, you're not sure. And frankly don't care. They're both too weak to do anything about it if they do. All it takes is a little 'I'm sorry.', a few little kisses and some sweet talk. Works everytime.

The wedding band is a little tighter now, and you twist it around a bit. No matter, you're thinking about getting a divorce anyway. The other woman is too tempting, and it's only a matter of time until you slip up and she finds out you're married. Better to be safe than sorry, right?

Beepbeep. Soft, lacey fabric. You fumble past the other woman's underwear and pull the phone out.

It's her. She's apologizing for throwing the lamp and hitting you. Crying. It's okay, you say.

Beepbeep. The LCD displays another number, one without a name attatched to it. You remember the smell of her hair and smile.

It's the other woman. You think about stopping by her house (and further pissing off your wife) for a bit.

Up the long sidewalk, creaky wooden stairs, through plexiglass, you glance at her, staring at you. You wave. She waves.

"Look, I had some extra work at the office to do, I'm on my way home right now."

Beepbeep. A reminder. The other woman is still waiting.

"Yeah, love you."

You switch to the other call, to the other woman, and pull out into the street.

------
And another thing is, no matter how much you think you love someone, you'll step back when a pool of their blood edges too close.


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Comments

The following comments are for "The Other Woman"
by direb0y

er
Yeah I see all the spelling errors. Just copied it out of the forum submit box without running it thru spell checker. Blah. Oh well.

( Posted by: direb0y [Member] On: April 16, 2002 )

Super sleazy
Direb0y,

Now this is something special. The main character is as heartless as a serial killer. Sometimes a character can be more evil if they slaughter the soul instead of the body, and the fact that you captured that so well is really impressive.

Excellent.

Parteepants

( Posted by: Richard Dani [Member] On: April 17, 2002 )

B@$t@rd!!!
Direb0y,
This was a great tale it told a story of a cold heartless...(yeah one of those). I liked it, the main character was easy to hate and he made me want to jump through the screen and beat him. I really do not like cheaters, and with this story you brought that emotion out well. I do believe I will be off and perhaps read some more of your stuff well I am at it.

Later,
Dras

( Posted by: Drastine [Member] On: April 18, 2002 )





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