It was 3:43 in the morning. She’d waited a whole week. For her, this was extraordinary. Normally, she would wait for just about nothing.

And, she’d only say it once. She knew him; once was enough.

Since Thanksgiving, she’d been thinking about him pretty much c.o.n.t.i.n.u.o.u.s.l.y.

Was this a seduction? Nope. Been there; done that.

Funny, she mused. The Bible said that adultery was when you even thought about, let alone acted upon, wanting to be with someone who was committed to someone else. But, when she thought of him, she just remembered. Remembered being with him. And, she realized that she had never really stopped remembering.

Unconsciously or otherwise, every one who had come after had just never quite compared.

Seriously. She had taken the time to analyze the whole thing. Exhaustively.

And, her realizations were clear:

When they’d met, they were unformed. Both of them – just raw potential. And, they’d each become, to a surprising degree, what the other would never have imagined. To him, she’d just been a waitress, in a morning diner; to her, he’d been the guy who could fix anything that broke. Now, here were the two of them — he, an independent, self made professional, and she, having just performed with Mannheim Steamroller!

Now, not only were they fully fledged, they were seasoned. This was the final third of life. Were it possible for latent seeds to finally bear fruit?

In short, she’d always felt oddly bonded to him. Perhaps it had been the possible conception. Did something happen between two people who conceived together, something over which they had no control but which overtook them, just the same?

Or, had she merely been excited by memories? He’d said it himself. He said that he’d thought of her over the years, several times. But, why? Did he know why?

Over the past couple of days, she’d actually begun to fantasize about meeting his wife. Talking with her. Laughing about him, about things they saw in him, how they felt about life, in general. She’d imagined becoming a family friend, sharing in the family activities, getting to know them all. She’d been straining at the preventive paradigm.

This striving had led her down a radical, vicarious path. She, contacting his wife, via some ruse, asking if they could hang out. Telling about her own life, trying to present her best self. Her goal would be to convince both of them, abhoring any intention of tearing apart either their family or their relationship, to permit her one, humble request: just 24 hours of his company per month.

The twenty four hour grocery store had fresh bouquets, just in time for the holidays. She chose twelve red roses, to suspend from the Tiffany lamp for drying. The check out clerk was half Polish and half Jordanian, he said, and owned several rental properties. He’d gone to Florida State, and earned a degree in Business Administration. She asked him why he was working as a grocery clerk. He said he liked keeping his real identity a secret, so women wouldn’t want him just for his money. Oh; and, his girlfriend had cheated on him with the guy who worked over in Bakery.

Selecting two thin cuts of store brand smoked turkey and Alpine Swiss, she placed them between two slices of  cinnamon raisin bread and sat down in front of the laptop. The chocolate covered cashews consumed in the car would keep her awake for the rest of the night; time to search for another season of “Sister Wives”, to binge before sleep.




© Ruth Ann Scanzillo   12/2/15

All rights solely those of the author, whose name appears above this line. Absolutely no copying, in part or whole, permitted for any reason. Thank you!


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