by Mari McKee
A married couple needs to put a spark in their marriage, so they go on a date
A Significant Date
Cyrus and Dianne had been married for eight years. The spark was gone from their marriage. Dianne was constantly harried from taking care of their three small children, keeping the house clean, the laundry done, and cooking dinner each night. If she did not have to go do errands, she stayed in her sweat pants, in which she had slept. She barely combed her hair, opting to pull it on top of her head with a rubber band. She did shower and brush her teeth, but she wore no make-up.
After cleaning the kitchen after dinner, she and Cyrus bathed the children, read them bed-time stories, listened to their prayers, and kissed them goodnight.
When the kids were asleep, they would go to the den, look for the T.V. remote control that the kids had hidden, and then stare aimlessly at some inane program. They did not like the same programs, so they alternated nights as to what they would watch. Cyrus would sit in the recliner and Dianne would lie down on the couch and fall asleep if they were watching his program. When it was over, Cyrus would go to bed and leave Dianne asleep in the den. Eventually, she would awaken, go to bed, and occasionally tried to waken Cyrus, if she was feeling frisky.
Eventually, Dianne realized that neither of them was happy. She began to fear that Cyrus was having an affair, or would simply leave her and the children in a divorce.
Dianne began making an effort to win Cyrus back from the indifference to wanting to be with her. Before he returned home from work, she began getting dressed in attractive clothes, putting on make-up, and wearing her hair in sexy, long styles. She greeted him at the door with long kisses. Once the children were asleep, she would sit on his lap on the recliner and watch his favorite shows. She went to bed when he did and initiated sex.
She thought all of her efforts would be appreciated and bring him back to her. While Cyrus enjoyed her efforts, he still felt a gnawing resentment and discontent. The more she tried, the more he felt that his love for her had died. He, however, pretended, that there was as awakening of his former love for her, and that all was good in suburbia.
Diane sensed that not all was well with Cyrus, despite her best efforts. She thought about their lives before marriage. It was a magical time when they were inseparable. They had not been on a date for years. It was too much work to find a safe, reliable babysitter. She decided they needed to date again and do some fun, different things. She would find a babysitter, even if they were less than her ideal sitter.
Meanwhile, Cyrus had betrayed Diane with a piece of sexy eye candy who worked down the hall from his office. He was having a hot, torrid affair and realized he was in love with his mistress.
With that special sense that married women have, she suspected that Cyrus was having an affair. She checked his cell phone and messages at every chance, but found nothing suspicious. Had she been wiser, she would have torn the house and his automobile apart looking for a secret cell phone. He, indeed, had a 2nd cell phone hidden in the spare tire well in his trunk.
Not knowing about Dianne’s suspicions, he continued to be pleasant with her until he decided when the time was right to tell her he wanted a divorce.
Diane decided on a date that would appeal to his first love, anything athletic. They would ride their bikes about five miles to a State Park that had a magnificent water fall, surrounded by beautiful boulders and rocks. They would leave before dusk and return later that night. She planned for them to scale the rocks and make love behind the waterfall.
That night she excitedly told Cyrus about the date she had planned for Friday night. She had found a babysitter, as well.
Cyrus pretended to be excited while his mind was whirling with thoughts.
Dianne spent Friday morning cleaning the spider webs off of her bike. Later, she picked up the babysitter before Cyrus came home. After they put on their biking clothes, Dianne grabbed her backpack holding a flashlight, white wine, freshly baked French bread and 4 different kinds of cheeses from the delicatessen.
They got on their bikes and rode to the State Park, even though Dianne’s knees were throbbing. Once they entered the woods they had to walk the bikes to the waterfall. The waterfall was more magnificent that she had remembered.
Cyrus asked if she was going to be able to scale down the boulders. Excited and confident, she said, “Of course, I can!”
They parked their bikes at the top of the waterfalls and approached the boulders. They were halfway down when Dianne lost her footing and plunged onto the lower boulders.
Cyrus rushed to her broken body and saw that she was dead. He tried to call 911 but could not get a signal. He began CPR and continued for over thirty minutes. He climbed back, retrieved his bike and ran it out of the woods. Once out of the State Park, he was able to call 911 and waited for the police, ambulance, and fire trucks. He led them to her broken body.
He was taken back to the Police Station and was questioned unmercifully for six hours. When they concluded, Cyrus was arrested for murder.
At his trial, months later, his mistress was a witness for the prosecution. She told about their love affair and how they were going to be together, after he got rid of Dianne. He never mentioned divorce.
Cyrus was found guilty and sentenced to life in prison with no possibility of parole.
Word Count: 997
Written for “Holiday Short Story Contest”
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