SPIRITUAL STORIES ARCHIVE
Written By Mark Edgemon
Story Editing by Bill Wolfe
Synopsis: A woman waits for indisputable word from a hired detective that her husband has been having numerous affairs. Now she must make a soul wrenching decision, but ultimately learns something that causes her to drastically change her plans.
Genre: Romance, Realistic Fiction
I love him! So why am I not enough for him? I’ve loved him in every possible way for twenty years and it wasn’t enough for him. I feel as if my soul is being ripped from my chest, Felicia thought to herself as her phone rang, paralyzing her where she stood. The second ring stunned her even more than the first, fearful to answer the call and scared to the bone not to answer it. When the third ring followed, she knew that in the next few seconds, her life would change forever.
She wished that this nightmare was over, whichever direction it took.
She finally answered the call, snatching up the receiver.
“Hello” Felicia said nervously in her subdued frantic state.
“Mrs. Donne,” the man on the other end of the phone said, “I have the motel room under surveillance. A dark-complexioned woman has just left, looks like a prostitute. Yep, she has to be a hooker cause businesswomen do not frequent motels. Do you want me to approach her?” he asked waiting for a response.
“Yes” she paused for second and then reaffirmed her answer, “Yes!”
“Alright then, I’ll call you back,” and with that, he clicked off his cell phone.
She now heard only dead air, just silence lingering on the other end, so she hung up, even more anxious than before.
“Oh my God, why would he do this to me,” she agonized with her hands covering her face, weeping out loud, taking her husband’s promiscuity personally as if he was doing a deliberate act to hurt and afflict her, when she had been so good to him.
She was drained, fatigued from the stress and the fear. She moved toward the bed and stopped, thinking on how many times he had made love to her in this sacred place, a place she now realized that she had shared with who knows how many other women symbolically through her husband’s sexual relationships.
The phone rang once again. This time she ran to the phone hurriedly and picked up the receiver and said, “Hello, did you find out anything?”
“Yes ma’am. She calls herself Ivy-as in Poison Ivy-and well, she is definitely a prostitute. Knowing I was a cop, she still propositioned me. She said the client in the motel room called himself Racer. She described him as 6 feet 2 inches, thin with a muscular chest, smelled like Old Spice after-shave. Does that sound like your husband?” he inquired, wanting her to say yes.
“Has he come out yet? Can you see his face?” she asked, ignoring his question and with great sadness.
“No, but we’ve got him pinned down. I can see through the curtain that he is pacing, looking out the side of the curtain every 5 minutes seeing if I have left. He may have seen the telescopic lens on my camera. Nevertheless, there is no way out but through the front door and so he’s got to show his face some time.
Do you want me to see if I can get the hotel manager to knock on the door or enter with a passkey?
She paused for a moment and then said, “No wait and see if he comes out and if he does, get pictures of him, especially the face. I will need it for the lawsuit.” And with that, she hung up the phone and walked into the bathroom.
She opened the medicine cabinet and stared at his Old Spice aftershave for a moment. She splashed some on her hands and began to smell it, thinking how she had grown to love it since it reminded her of him. Now it reminded her of his whoring after other women and it repulsed her, making her want to throw up. She thought about pouring it down the drain and almost did, but instead put the cap on the bottle and placed it back on the shelf.
She was thinking how he had pulled away from her over the last several years, showing her less attention, which she desperately needed. It was the other women that had his affection. He must have felt guilty and was unable to touch her.
And then the thoughts of how he gave away to strange women the very thing she needed most, the affection and intimacy that she should rightfully have as his wife while she stood by him over the last two decades, it was more than she could bear.
“You lousy bastard!” She screamed at the top of her voice as if he was in the room.
She contemplated every reaction when he would walk through the door later in the evening. She even imagined shooting him, but only for a moment but then she let the rage pass through her. She could never do something like that. She was tender hearted and loved life greatly. As for her husband, she didn’t know how she felt about him; she just knew she was hurting to the core of her being.
She picked up the phone and called the detective once more for further developments.
“Yeah” the detective answered his cell phone not knowing who was calling.
“Has he come out yet? What’s happening now?” she asked, hoping for resolution.
“The same, except that he is pacing frantically inside the room. I can see his shadow walking back and forth in an agitated state. Yeah, we’ve got him now. He’s probably scared out of his mind. I’ve seen it a hundred times. It’s like stalking a wild animal and finally getting him cornered, seeing the fear in his eyes right before you blast away. The photos are like saying gotcha; it’s like the trophy after the kill,” the detective said showing the first bit of excitement since taking the case.
She didn’t like that, comparing her husband to a cornered animal. She never understood the attraction to hunting a defenseless animal to begin with and now hearing the bloodlust in the detective’s voice, she hated it even more.
“I’ll call back…or…you call me when he comes out,” she told the detective and with that, she hung up the phone.
The image of her husband scared and pacing the floor didn’t sit well with her. She had him where she wanted him. He wasn’t good at lying or deceit and this incident was proving that fact.
She had gone through his things time and again looking for evidence of his affairs, but never found anything. She had gone through them again that evening while waiting for the detective’s first call and now decided to put every personal effect back into the boxes they were stored at the bottom of his closet. As she was placing each item carefully into the box, she came across a model racecar that he owned when he was a little boy, a priceless memory; being his once-favorite toy when he was growing up. She looked it over thinking he had once imagined being a professional racecar driver. As she examined it she saw on the side of the car door the word…”Racer”.
And then it struck her, how he had used that name with the prostitute. Why would he do that instead of calling himself James or John? She pondered it for a while and then realized, he is a boy in a man’s body. Still not understanding why he chose to have relations with other women, she visualized him in the motel room, scared of being caught as if he still was a little boy and somehow this changed things for her, she couldn’t explain it, it just did!
Felicia picked up the phone and called the detective once again to see where things were at the moment. She didn’t know what she wanted to do yet, but she just felt like calling.
“Yes ma’am” the detective answered the phone. He figured it must be her. Who else would be calling at 3:00 a.m.?
“Hi, I just wanted to know how things were going…how, I mean what is he doing?” she said nervously and finding herself surprised by her feelings of great pity for her husband, even if it was he who had gotten himself into this mess.
“What he is doing is banging off the walls. He is looking out the window every few minutes like I’m going to leave or something. I think he even contemplated running out with a sheet over his head,” the detective mused.
“Let him go! You’re done! How much do I owe you?” she said resolute in her decision. Yes, for her, it was over.
“What, man are you kidding me? We are just getting ready for the pay off! I worked three nights on this case to catch…” the detective was cut off and was obviously agitated and disappointed not to get the satisfaction of humiliating the man he had been hunting.
“How much do I owe you for your services?” she said wanting to wrap up the case and the conversation. She did not like her husband being in the hands of such a predator type detective no matter what he had done.
“Twelve hundred and twenty-three dollars,” he said, angry that he was being pulled off the case.
“I’ll have a check in the mail for you tomorrow. Meanwhile, I want you to leave…now!” she said with a definitive determination she had not had before.
“Whatever you say lady.” And with that, she hung up the phone glad it was over. She still did not know what she was going to do, but at least this part was over.
Felicia straightened the house and boxed up his keepsakes in the closet until she came to his little model car. She stared at it for a moment and decided to set it on the bed while she finished packing the remaining items into the boxes and placing them where they had been at the bottom of his closet.
She placed the little car on the nightstand on her side of the bed and looked at it for awhile until she drifted off to sleep. A couple of hours later, she heard the front door open and some rattling around in the kitchen, but she was contented to stay in bed for she had been exhausted from the night’s stress.
Then suddenly, the bedroom door opened and for the first time, she had to deal with how she would react to the events that had been set in motion three days earlier. For now, she would lay still in bed.
He was getting undressed, draping his shirt and pants on the wooden chair near her nightstand. She could smell the aroma of Old Spice in the air as he began to walk away from where he had been standing. Then all of a sudden, he just stood there, motionless for what seemed to be several minutes. She was unsure what he was doing, but was unconcerned. And then she saw what he had been doing. He picked up the racer from her nightstand and held it for a moment and then placed it back where it had been.
He walked around to his side of the bed and laid down facing away from her as he had for the last couple of years. As she started to nod off to sleep, she felt the bed starting to move quickly from side to side which startled her. She wondered what was causing it to vibrate until she heard him quietly sobbing. She rose up and turned toward him seeing him shaking with the covers clutched to his chest.
Whatever would happen tomorrow, she responded in the way her maternal instincts led her to, she lay behind him and wrapped her arm around him. He began to cry more vehemently until his sobs became great lamenting. She turned him around until he was facing her and pressed his face to her chest.
“I’m sorry, I’m sorry, Oh God I’m sorry, I’m sorry, please forgive me…forgive me,” he cried as he sobbed. Time stood still for the both of them.
As she held him, she knew what she was now going to do. She would forgive him and found peace in her decision. Her boy made a mistake and came crying back to her giving her what she wanted all along…for him to need her, for she longed to be needed by him. And despite his unfaithful wondering, this was what he needed too.
Copyright © 2009 Mark Edgemon
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