She sat and stared at that package.
It had been wrapped with love, with excitement, with anticipation.
She got up and walked to the other side of the room. She leaned against the wall, arms crossed.
If she had stayed in her seat she would have torn that package to shreds.
Hate boiled within her. A killing rage.
She turned her face to the wall; its coolness against her forehead. Her arms hugged her body. Tears ran down her cheeks onto the floor.
She was such a fool.
When was she going to learn? When? How many times was she going to be a doormat? Where was her pride?
But he said he loved me. A small voice cried out.
He lied. A harsher voice answered.
It was all a lie. The small voice whimpered.
It was all a lie. The hard voice agreed.
She pushed herself from the wall. For a moment she swayed. Shock, hurt, resignation swirling within her.
She took a deep breath and her resolved harden. She stood tall and firm.
She looked at that package on the counter.
She could throw it away, return it or forget it.
She was going to keep it, as a reminder of lies and betrayal; as a reminder of her stupidity; as a reminder of her new found strength.
In fact, she’d show him.
She looked in the bathroom mirror and didn’t recognize herself – blotched skin, running mascara, wild curls sticking out of her head.
She shook her head and looked away.
She stripped and showered. The water as hot as she could bear.
She looked through her closet and found her favorite red dress.
The woman looking back at her in the mirror was no victim, and would never be again.
The club lights were bright, the music loud, the chattering higher still.
She walked with confidence. Shoulders back. Long legged stride.
She turned heads. Nodded to a few but stopped for no one.
She knew his favorite spot. And there he was, just where she knew he’d be.
Tall, dark, handsome with wavy black hair, laugh lines around a wide mouth made for sin. And his arm around another’s.
She watched. She waited. She followed them back to his apartment.
And at dawn, when her rival left his bed, she used the key he’d forgotten he’d given her. He lay sprawled on the bed. The sheets tangled around him. Sated. Satisfied. Selfish.
Love and hatred warred within her.
She remembered his kisses, his embraces, his whispered promises against her heated skin.
So with one blow she ended his lies, his disdain, his life.
His eyes opened and for one brief moment she saw recognition in them. And, she was glad.
She left him where he so often played.
She didn’t remember the trip home, just the small gift wrapped package on the counter.###
To read more Tuesday Tales, visit http://tuesdaytales1.blogspot.com.
Photo Credit: painting by Tamara de Lempicka.