Tamara was an emotional wreck. She woke up a half hour before her alarm clock went off at 5am. She hadn’t eaten since 3pm the day before. Her appetite was shot. Her patience was low and her disappointment was high. Tamara draped an old T-shirt over her television. She had no desire to watch the nonsense disguised by capitalistic puppeteer’s as entertainment. She was over it. She was over it all.
After showering she stepped out of her towel. She sprayed hair spray under her arms and sprayed deodorant in her hair.
“Oh I’m buggin’ “, she admitted to herself.
She still had Travis on her mind. He was violating her head space. She had no idea why she allowed him that kind of power. People can’t take your power away, you give it to them voluntarily. You have to allow someone to have control over your thoughts. Travis was a jerk but Tamara allowed him access into her temple a long time ago. He had entered her mind, her heart, and other unmentionable body parts. Maybe it was her ego that was bruised. It had only been 3 weeks and Travis had already filled her position in his life. To add insult to injury, she heard through the grapevine that the girl was gorgeous. That was irritating. If she was a mud duck, Tamara would have felt better.
Tamara grabbed an apple and stuck it in her purse. She threw on some slacks, loafers, and a black fitted t-shirt and hopped in the car for work. After attempting to put the house key in her ignition about 4 times, she decided it was time for a rushed telegram prayer:
Dear God, please get me through this day. Amen
She was running late, as usual. She’d make up for it though. She knew how to push that little car to the limit and there was no ticket that her smile couldn’t get her out of. Her thighs were burning. She had been running every night since the “break up”. At first, it was a pathetic attempt to see her charismatic Chest Naked Demigod. Then it became a wonderful way to get her mind off of things. Travis made her feel weak. Working out allowed her to impress herself with her improved strength. Physical pain was a distraction from emotional pain. When things ended with Travis it felt like her soul had been steam rolled over repeatedly and then cars were just driving over her mangled mutilated spirit over and over and over again. So she worked out…constantly. When she couldn’t sleep, she’d walk until she couldn’t walk anymore. Sometime at 3 or 4 o’clock in the morning. She was determined to have a tight body with a broken heart. A heart that pumped resentment.
Deep down inside, she thought Travis would get himself together. She thought he would be remorseful and apologize for the way he treated her. For his emotional inaptitude. For his brute ignorance. He never did and she was starting to turn purple from holding her breath in anticipation. What was that old saying again??? “If you love something, let it go. If it stays gone then it was cheating on you the whole time.” No that’s not it.
Why did she always feel like a reject from an old Ricki Lake episode? What was the problem? Furthermore, why was she so curious about Mr Demigod? “Curiosity gave the cat an infection.” No that’s not it, is it?
Tamara got to work safely and on time. Her day went relatively well. She forced everything out of her mind. Kept that coffee coming. The quart of Poland Spring on her desk was actually Grey Goose straight. Come hell or high water, she was going to make it through. Ten minutes before her shift ended she got a call from the security desk:
“Yes”, she answered in unpleasant anticipation.
“The 98 Midnight Blue Ford Contour in the East parking lot….is that yours?”, he asked quizzingly.
“Depends. What’s wrong?”
“Dont be alarmed but there appears to be a bullet hole through your back window. I wouldn’t drive home like that because one bump and your whole back window will shatter.”
Don’t be alarmed? Is he serious?
Tamara enhanced her calm. She took another sip of her “Poland Spring” and then she spoke,
“Thank s for the call, Chris. I’ll call AAA.”
She made a phone call but it wasn’t to AAA. She dialed the same number she dialed the night before when she had this same felling of loneliness, fear, anxiety, and disappointment. The hairs on her arm stood up. She felt a chill but it was 86 degrees outside. Her lip started to quiver. Her hands got sweaty. Every time she breathed a knot formed in her throat. The phone felt like it rang one hundred thousand times. Finally a familiar baritone voice answered,
“Hello Tamara”, His caller ID gave away her identity. Tamara took a deep breath to keep from crying. She placed her right hand on her chest. She put her left hand over her barren womb. The phone was silent. It was an uncomfortable silence. The kind of silence one would do anything to break. She waited for her courage to build and then she said,
“I think your brother may know about us.”
(To Be Continued)
-Shaun M Nickens