No Way Out

AA21E4FB-FBC2-49EE-A12D-B7737BEFF2ABIn his Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie Music Challenge post on Friday, Jim Adams gave us the Allman Brothers Band song “One Way Out” and asked us to use that song as inspiration for our own post.

As Jim explained, the song is about a man having an affair with another man’s woman in an upstairs apartment. He realizes that he is trapped when he hears another man has showed up downstairs. He figures that this is probably her man, so he decides to jump out the window to avoid any confrontation.

This reminded me of a similar “adventure” I had back when I was still a single man and was playing the dating game. I was seeing a woman, Judy, who was separated from her husband, the father of her two-year-old twin boys. She lived with her boys in a small, two bedroom garden apartment in Northern Virginia.

Judy had invited me over one night to watch TV. The twins were asleep in their bedroom, and Judy and I were on her living room couch, let’s just say, getting to know one another a little better. We were interrupted by a knock at her door, and Judy got up and looked through the peephole in the door. She turned to me and said that it was her husband and his mother.

Judy panicked, told me to go into her bedroom and suggested, once she let her husband and his mother in through the front door, that I exit through her bedroom’s window. Her husband was a big, beefy guy, and I was a tall, lanky guy. And like the man in Jim’s song, I wanted to avoid a confrontation. So once I heard her open her front door and let them in, I made my escape.

But there was something neither Judy nor I had anticipated. He brought his mother over to her apartment so she could try to persuade Judy to reconcile with him and to take him back. His plan was to leave the two of them alone to talk. So he dropped his mother off and left. He walked out of the apartment building’s front door at the exact moment that I had just snuck out through Judy’s bedroom window.

Needless to say, bedlam ensued when he spotted me crawling out through his wife’s bedroom window, and before I knew it, this big, beefy guy was pounding the shit out of me.

So thank you, Jim Adams, for triggering, with your post, this long-suppressed, very unpleasant memory.Music Challenge Large

Twittering Tales — Did Not

8E4F9DE7-A730-4EF4-8E41-0027715FF303Sue woke up in the middle of the night, went downstairs to the kitchen, and found the refrigerator door wide open. She ran upstairs, woke up her husband, and said, “You left the fridge door open again.”

Dan looked at her and said, “Did not,” and rolled over and went back to sleep.

(280 characters)

Written for this week’s Twittering Tales prompt from Kat Myrman. Photo credit: NRD at Unsplash.

Hell Hath No Fury

61A1D6D9-F978-4733-B38E-F762948D1B5FI have no idea how it got there, I swear,” Tim said.

“You’re drunk!” Alicia said, tears welling up in her eyes. “You waltz in here at almost midnight, barely able to stand up, slurring your words, smelling like her perfume, and you have the nerve to tell me that you have no idea how her lipstick on got on your collar?”

“Okay, fine, but I promise you, babe, nothing happened,” Tim insisted. “Yes, I had dinner with your sister at her apartment, but it was just dinner and a bottle of wine. We were both a bit tipsy, and she said wanted me to sleep with her. But I told her no. So we hugged before I left, and she must have smudged her lipstick on my collar in order to cause a rift between you and me. You know how she’s always been jealous of you.”

“My husband and my sister, huh?” Alicia said. She smiled at Tim, moved in close to him and whispered tenderly in his ear, “You always said that you’re a family man.”

She plunged the kitchen knife deep into his gut. Still smiling, Alicia said, “Let me remind you of something you should have learned in English lit, Tim. Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned.”

As the light started to fade from Tim’s eyes, Alicia added, “Don’t fret, sweetheart, my jealous sister will soon be learning this same lesson.”

Written for yesterday’s Story Starter Challenge from Teresa (aka The Haunted Wordsmith). The story starter is, “I have no idea how it got there.”

Page 173, Line 4

Here’s another one of The Haunted Wordsmith’s page and line number prompts. The way it works is that we’re supposed to grab a book…any kind of book…and flip to the designated page and then to the specified line — in this case, page 173, line 4 — and take the quoted line and use it in a story.

5f088a83-b07a-4852-9769-5b6bb963b95aThe book I chose for this exercise is “O Little Town” by Don Reid. Line 4 on page 173 reads, “They sneaked around a lot down here behind her husband’s back.” So given that line, here’s my story.

“When was the last time you saw the two of them together?” Detective Morrisey asked the woman with teased up, bleach-blonde hair and way too much makeup who was positioned behind the hotel’s reception counter.

“Oh they were such a lovely couple,” Jean said. “Of course, she was married, so they sneaked around a lot down here behind her husband’s back. They usually arrived on Friday nights and left after brunch on Sunday mornings. It’s such a tragedy that she’s gone missing. I bet it was the husband. It’s always the husband, isn’t it?”

Morrisey was a Joe Friday kind of detective. All he was interested in were the facts. “When was the last time they were here?” he asked, trying to hide his impatience.

“Well,” Jean said looking up toward the ceiling of the small lobby as she was searching her memory. “They had their romantic rendezvous once a month and, if memory serves, it was always on the second weekend of each month. So that would have been two weeks ago, I suppose.”

“Do you have a guest register book where they signed in or something on your computer database to document that?” Morrisey asked.

“Oh honey, we’re just a cozy country inn,” Jean said. “We don’t have a fancy-schmancy computer system. And,” Jean added with a wink and a yellow-toothed smile, “we usually don’t require our regular guests to sign the register, you know what I mean?”

“Do you remember if they left together on their last visit?” Morrisey asked.

“Sorry, detective, but Sunday is my day of rest,” Jean said. “Alan would have worked the desk that day and he’ll be here tomorrow.”

Jean looked at Detective Morrisey and decided she liked what she saw. “If you want to stay the night and talk to him in the morning, hon, I can set you up in a real nice suite and give you some very personal service, if you get my drift.” She winked at the detective again and added, “I won’t even ask you to sign the register book.”

Morrisey reach into his shirt pocket and pulled out a business card. “You’ve been very helpful, Jean, but I need to head back to the city.” He handed the card to Jean. “Leave this card for Alan with a note for him to call me tomorrow, will you, hon?”

As he was exiting the lobby, Morrisey heard Jean calling out, “I bet it’s the husband.”

#FOWC — Double Life

90EEDBE3-DAE6-43D5-94B2-D0F9A0237235“What do you suspect happened here?” Detective Ron Hayden asked his partner, Detecitve Jim Morrisey.”

“I suspect foul play,” Morrisey said.

“So you don’t suspect it’s suicide?” Hayden asked. “It sure looks to me like suicide.”

“I suspect the scene was staged make it look like suicide, but I suspect the vic was murdered,” Morrisey said.

“Who do you suspect did it?” Hayden asked.

“I suspect it was her husband,” Morrisey answered. “The husband is always the most likely suspect.”

“Yeah, I suspect that’s true,” Hayden agreed.

“I looked into the suspect before we got here,” Morrisey said. “He’s suspected of having a different wife and kids one town over.”

“You mean he’s living a double life?” Hayden asked. “We need to bring him in for questioning.”

“I suspect our suspect has already skipped town,” Morrisey lamented.

I suspect you’re right,” Hayden agreed.

Written for today’s Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie Sunday Writing Prompt, which calls for us to write a detective story where someone in the story is leading a double life.

Also written for today’s Fandango’s One-Word Challenge, “suspect.”