Rated: E · Short Story · Romance/Love · #1879471
2nd post, revised and shorter but tighter. thoughts?
| Julia got into their old blue blazer with the intention of taking Camden to Family Video and then she’d drop him off back at home. She had plans. She should have known he’d have other plans.|
“You’re not gonna be long are you? You know what you want right?” she asked her husband of four years.
“Yeah, but can you run by Eric’s house first?”
Julia rolled her hazel eyes but nodded her head, the natural body of her shoulder length hair bouncing on her shoulders. Eric was his brother but that didn’t mean she liked him. Normally she went nowhere near his house. She parked at the neighboring business if she had to go out there.
Today she pulled up next to Faye’s red car. Eric’s wife was another one Julia didn’t get along with. She was actually one of the one’s that bullied Julia back in middle school, that’s how small a small town is.
“Hurry,” she told Camden, not turning the engine off.
She fiddled with the radio and tapped her fingers on the steering wheel.
Fifteen minutes later Camden strolled out,
“Family Video now?” She pulled off. “Are we ready?” she asked, dreading his answer.
“You gotta, you gotta, you gotta do what?” she said as she glared at the road.
“Gas station for Eric.”
She looked down at her watch. They’d been gone for an half an hour. She was late by ten minutes.
Camden started to speak but she cranked the radio up. An old Cher song came on and they were both happy.
At the gas station, Camden went to get out but Julia threw her arm out to stop him. “I’ll go in, what’s he want?” she said, holding her hand out, palm up.
“Why do you wanna go in?” he asked, raising an eyebrow.
Usually she found that sexy. Today she wanted to slap him. Hard.
“I have to pee.”
“You could ‘a peed at Eric’s.”
“The seat should be tested and disinfected.”
Camden gave her back The Look and slapped a five in her hand hard enough to sting. “Two cokes,” he said as he crossed his arms and looked away.
While Julia was inside, Camden sat in the running car and fiddled with the radio. He wasn’t paying attention to his surroundings, when a man in a black, old-style cowboy hat walked up to his window and tapped.
Camden rolled down the window. “Help you sir?”
“Can you spare a light?” the old man asked through yellowed teeth.
Without saying a word, Camden flipped open his gold Zippo and flicked it. The man leaned in and lit a fat cigar. He inhaled deep and Camden noticed he had thick white nose hairs.
“How’s life been to ya, young man?” he barked out with a cough.
“Eh,” Camden said with a shrug as he lit his own smoke. “Woman’s naggin’ my ass.”
“Woman trouble,” the man said with a deep sigh. “Wish I had those.”
“Wish I didn’t.”
Both men were silent for a couple moments; long enough to make Camden uncomfortable. He fidgeted with his Zippo as he looked anywhere but at the man.
“My lady, lord, she was pearl. An angel,” the man said, pulling his grungy cowboy hat off.
He held the hat to his heart and Camden could finally see his hair. It had gone white but it was dirty. He was balding on top as most guys who’ve always worn a hat do.
Camden now understood the term hat head.
“Did she die?” he asked, feeling he had to say something.
“Don’t know,” the old man was quick to say. “But I died the day she left me so it’s all the same.”
“Said I ignored her. Didn’t pay attention. Over time I realized she was right. Too late though, I realized too late.”
There was silence again. The man seemed to be looking over the blazer and back in time.
Camden thought about Julia and how angry she’d been lately. Had he been ignoring her? Was he not paying enough attention?
“I’d give anything to be back with her. Nothing else matters. Never did. Only her but I was too stupid to see.”
Camden was lost in thought so he didn’t know the man had left until Julia was back.
“You came back,” he said as he flipped the butt of the cigarette he never finished smoking out the window.
“Where else would I go?” she asked, still angry.
They didn’t speak as she drove back to Eric’s. While she waited on Camden, she talked to Eric’s neighbor. After ten minutes of keeping the car running, she hit the horn.
Five minutes later Camden hurried out and got in the car. She could tell by his face, there were more of Eric’s errands. She looked at the clock. She’d never make it in time. Not now.
“Where?” she asked with a growl.
“Mama Ann’s so I can drop off some money.”
Mama Ann was the stepmother, or at least one of them. Once again, Julia didn’t like her; Julia didn’t like much of anyone these days and especially in Camden’s family.
While Camden was inside, Julia decided to clean out the blazer. She’d kept the sack for Eric’s cokes for just that reason.
When Camden finally appeared, he had a box in his hands. He kept a hold of the box as he climbed in.
“Where next?” she asked with a sigh of defeat.
“Let’s go home. I’ve got to show you something,” he said as he patted the box. “And by the way, I love you.”