A story inspired by the book of Hosea

Jan 29, 2015

Chapter 2a

   Sal knelt by Joey’s race car bed. When they purchased it for his birthday last year, Joey pretended he was a driver in the Indy 500. Like his father before him, NASCAR was one Sal’s favorite pastimes. The tradition continued with Joey. Sal gently kissed him on the forehead before he left. He didn’t want to wake Vickie before he left, for it’s the only time she looked peaceful. He loved to watch her sleep. Her beauty wasn’t the only thing that attracted him. Her vulnerability made him feel needed. Would he have married her even if she weren’t pregnant? Something about her captured his heart. Inventory was an eternal taskmaster, so he needed to get to the store. He grabbed his keys from the hook on the wall next to the door and headed out. He preferred to walk down the stairs instead of taking the elevator. That thing was old, made too much noise and shook as it went up and down. When he reached the front door, he heard a familiar voice call out to him.

   “You hoo, Mr. Martinelli!”

   He turned around and saw a big smile on Marie Delfeno’s face. “Good morning, Mrs. Delfeno. You’re up early this morning.”

   “Why yes,” she smiled shyly. “I came out to get my paper... How are you all doing?”

   Ah, a loaded question. Translated—how’s Vickie and is she still clean? He couldn’t fault her with that thought. Mr. & Mrs. Delfeno weren’t only good landlords, but also friends. They’ve helped out with Joey more times than he could count. “We’re doing great! How are your knees coming along since the operation?”

   She chuckled softly, “Oh, you’re such a sweet young man. I’ve always said to Al how lucky we are to have such a considerate young man living in our building. I’m doing much better. I really like physical therapy. My therapist is a nice young man with great hands. He reminds me of you, not the hands part...” She blushed. 
   “But he’s so kind and gentle... anyway, he reminds me of you.”

   “Thanks... um... look at the time, I’m running late this morning. Will you give Mr. Delfeno my best?”

   “Of course dear. I’m going to bake some chocolate chip cookies today, I’ll bring some by for Joey.”

   “He’ll be thrilled. He absolutely loves your homemade cookies.”

   As he headed for the car, he turned around and looked up at his apartment window. He felt uneasy about leaving today. Maybe I should just... no, I needed to do inventory and place an order. He decided to go to work and come home as quick as he could. Margaret could handle things by herself after that. It’s not as if there were ever a candy emergency that needed his attention. He wished he could shake the uneasiness he felt. It was probably nothing, probably just his overactive imagination at work. 

           *          *         *         *          *          *          *         *         *          *          

   As she lay on the bed, Vickie stared at the ceiling. She wished being married to Sal was all the satisfaction she needed in life, but it wasn’t. He was a good man who loved her but she missed her freedom. She loved her son, but being a wife and mother was tedious and left her unfulfilled. I feel like a hamster on a wheel, forever moving... never getting anywhere. Her cell phone rang. She picked it up and saw that it was Phil calling again. She paused for a second; thought about Sal’s reaction, but decided to answer it anyway. “What do you want?”

   “Hey, baby doll. What’s with the icy tone?”

   “Look Phil, I told you before I can’t talk to you.”

   “Yeah, then why did you answer the phone? I think it’s because you miss me.”

   “What do you want Phil?” she asked sharply, as if she didn’t know. The games she played with Phil were to ease her guilty conscience. It somehow justified her actions in her mind if she put up a fight. 
   “You know what I want. I want you to come out and play.” Vickie didn’t respond. “It’s been too long baby. I miss hangin’ with you. I just want to come by... see your pretty face... say hello. Is that so bad?”

   “I don’t think my husband would like me hangin’ with you.” 
   “Your husband doesn’t like a lot of things. Maybe that’s why you answered the phone.”

   “I’m hanging up.”

   “Wait... wait... don’t... aren’t we adults? Can’t we be friends? There’s no crime in talking. Last time I checked talking with a married woman wasn’t a sin.”

   Vickie thought about it for a moment. The sound of his voice comforted her in a peculiar way. Sal would probably be at the store for a while, so she relented. “Okay... but you can’t stay long.”

   “I can’t wait to see ya, baby.”

 © Nadine Zawacki 2015

1 comment:

  1. What an intriguing, page turner you have written, Nadine! Definitely buying your new book as soon as possible. You are a talented writer. I love the inspiration that hovers around your story. Can't wait to see what happens next. May this book sell like hotcakes at IHOP. Love, Donna