the making of a baby

I started this the other night and wondered what it felt like … send me your comments

How can anything matter anymore? I wiped down my dress and pulled the leaves from my hair as I walked towards my car. The sun was setting and I was glad. When the sun came up tomorrow I’d have another chance to be a totally new person. Today I failed myself and I didn’t understand why. I knew how much I missed the old me and the rest of the world too, but who was the old me really? Did I really want to be the girl who became depressed and suicidal at the drop of a hat because life wasn’t playing fair? Was I still the girl who wanted stardom and material things? Did I still want to be alone and yet be surrounded by throngs of acquaintances who all knew my name and wanted something from me and gave me nothing back in return? No, that wasn’t me anymore. I couldn’t live to please anyone other than myself and now that was clearer to me than ever before in my whole life.

“Are you okay?” I heard a voice say.

“No.” I said back helplessly at the voice.

“Do you need any help? The voice asked again.

“Do you know Doctor Phil and Oprah by any chance?” I whimpered back.

I heard the voice laugh and thought; I’m losing my mind and mocking myself. Then suddenly there was a knock and I opened my eyes and realised that I wasn’t talking to myself there was a man standing at my window looking in. I jumped. It was after six in the evening so I knew he wasn’t a ghost and it was still too light for him to be a vampire. Yes, I was actually considering vampires. He’d actually laugh because of this later and would say he finds me rather endearing and wonderfully strange.

I write for a living, of course I’m strange. I rolled down my window a centimetre.

“I’m okay. I just needed to rest for a while.’

He laughed again.

“Good place to rest, except those who move in here never leave.” I noticed the weathered creases around his hazel brown eyes.

“Yeah, I’m pretty aware of that.” I winced.

I didn’t want to talk to this stranger anymore. I needed to leave. I started the car, rolled up my window and backed out. I saw his dark figure, hands in pockets as I turned down the road and that was the last of the strange meeting.

Getting home I turned on the lights and headed for the kitchen. Oak looked up at me and put his head back down again. He was feeling as low as I was today.

“How about I cook us dinner and run a bath for myself and then we can settle in and watch a movie in my bed tonight? Would you like that Oak?” He trotted to me, tail lightly wagging. The dog was a gift. He kept me company and I really needed it now and when dinner was done and I’d had that bath and we’d watched a Audrey Hepburn movie I put out the light and looked up at the ceiling as I did every night now and let the loneliness engulf me.

“Who was the man I saw talking to you today?”

“I thought you might see that.” I whispered. “I don’t know who he was and I don’t really care.”

“When will you make a new friend?”

“I have you. I don’t need a friend.” I whispered again.” And in any case nice men didn’t hang out in those places and talk to strange women sitting in their cars. I kept laying that way for hours until I realised the sun was coming through the curtains and I rolled over on my side. It was nearly 07.00 and I hadn’t slept all night. Again I’d just lay there like a blank page. I decided to throw the duvet off myself and face the world. I wrapped myself in my towelling gown after I had a shower and flinched at the dark circles under my eyes. I looked battered. I couldn’t decide whether I’d have coffee or the last of the bottle of tequilla under my bed with the alcohol drenched worm my single reason to hallucinate.

“You should eat, have a shower and get some sun.”

I sat in the backyard with a cup of coffee and a cigarette dangling from my lips like a real French suffering artist. My lips were raw. I’d been chewing at them all night without noticing. The coffee burned down my throat and the cigarette made me feel sick. I didn’t smoke. One of the guests had forgotten their pack here and I’d been toying with them for days now. I sat imagining that I was anywhere but in a big empty house all alone and wishing that he were here. Wishing that he’d never left. Was I to move through the world numbly forever? My eyes fell on the damp leaves blowing around on the grass. The wind was picking up. A shower and the bookstore will be good and needed. Today will be good. It would get a teaspoon better than it had been yesterday. Everyone had told her that. Everyday would be better than the last and then one day it wouldn’t hurt anymore.

“Oh God! Please let that day come quickly.” She let out a laugh and a sigh and shuffled through the lounge to the first bathroom and turned on the taps. She peeled her pyjamas off her body and stepped in under the hot pulsing stream of water. It soothed her sore muscles and she curled her back in under the current. If only it could get in deeper. If only it could wash everything away.

She’d see Thomas and they would have a cup of coffee. He wasn’t her best friend but he was good to her. Thomas made sure she had food in the fridge and clean clothing in her cupboard and enough books to keep her occupied. He’d been the caretaker in those first few days. He made sure she remained sane.

-2-

Ambrose rose from the bed and looked back at the sleeping beauty. He picked his trouser up from the floor and headed for the shower. After turning on the taps he picked up the bottle of soap from it’s usual place and started lathering up. It smelled different. He looked at the bottle and noticed the pink roses and it hit him. She had to go.

He turned the taps off immediately and got out the shower quietly and stood listening. No sound. He dried down as quickly as he could manage and grabbed a t shirt from the basket standing close by throwing the shirt over his still damp back. It had to happen, it always did. He had luckily left his dry cleaning in his car and he would buy anything more as he went along. He was out the door and down the street within minutes but not without leaving her a note. “It’s been fun babe. I’m out.”

He’d get the cleaner to pack her bags for her in a few days if she didn’t get the message and he’d stay at a hotel for a few days until her mental rage blew over. He’d learned that lesson the hard way. Maybe, he thought as he stopped at the garage to fill his tank, it might actually be time to move. Find a new job. A new city would be good. A clean break from all the weeping women he had to leave behind. Maybe get into the chocolate business with his best friend. He decided right then and there that he wanted, needed to go home.

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