Monday, April 25, 2016

U Is For Unfinished #AtoZChallenge

    Previously written for a prompt (revise a boring opening).

      Sara limped down the steps of the brownstone, holding the rail with one hand while wrestling a bulging tote into submission with the other.  Cars honked and slalomed along the flooded street, coating sidewalks and passersby with an unspeakable icing.  She wished, not for the first time, for an additional set of hands to cover her ears.
     Four hands. My client list would double. Sara grinned and briefly entertained the idea of returning to his apartment and waiting out the weather.  But she had to get home.
     Rabe waved from the attendant's booth as she headed for her car.  A loud screech announced the opening of the fly specked service window.
     "Hey babe, if you're sellin' I'm buyin'!"
     Sara flipped him off with practiced ease and swung her bag forward to search for her keys.  Half of a scarlet bra was dangling cheerfully from the hastily zippered front compartment. There was a time when she would have felt humiliated, but that was $100,000 ago. The Push Up Killer Extreme Size 36D sailed in an impeccable arc through the window and into Rabe's ample lap.  He solemnly placed it on his head.
     "Thanks honey. You be safe tonite. Hear me?"
     A random note of kindness in the cacophony of life.
     She gave him a thumbs up as she slung her bag in the back dented Buick, made sure that her left buttock was situated over the partially exposed spring (otherwise, she'd be a fascinating story at some gynecologist's cocktail party) and fastened her seatbelt.  One deep breath stifled her sudden urge to cry. Another deep breath cleansed some of the anxiety from her mind. No time to indulge in histrionics, as her husband dearly loved to point out.
     Time. She had to be home in time.

     Snaking through the clogged expressway (a misnomer if there ever was one) gave her time to think. It wasn't humanly possible to cram everything that had to be done into the time allotted. She could round up a few people to help, the few who still owed her favors, but that would create an additional set of problems. A defeated sigh morphed into a tremendous belch, promptly steaming up the windshield.
     Jessie would die laughing.  There was a thought.

     She hit the call button on her steering wheel, the one high-end option that still worked. “Call…” She faltered. Did she really want to do this?
     The last call to Jessie had ended in a vicious quarrel over something that had happened years ago.  That seemed to be a hallmark of all close relationships;  you nitpicked over some imagined slight, then proceeded to drag up and rehash every single thing that each of you had done to one other over a lifetime.  Even if you apologized, it still came back to haunt you. The trash might be gone, but the smell seemed to linger forever.
     Still, Jessie was the one person who might be equipped to deal with this particular clean-up job.


      Her finger hovered over the button.

Your turn! Did she call Jessie? What was the "clean-up" job? Leave your thoughts in the comments!


  1. Ooh, this is fun. Love that line about trash and the smell.
    I think Jessie called her just as she was about to hit "call" on her phone!

    1. I could go with that. Maybe Jessie also needs a favor! :)

  2. Replies
    1. Could be! But then I keep thinking that maybe it needs a comedy twist. Perhaps she's a wedding planner for rich people with spoiled dogs (ever seen those weddings?) or a professional cleaner for frat parties! Too many ideas, not enough...focus. Right now I lack focus.

  3. nicely written, like the comment about imagined slights

    1. Thank you! I think that often happens with close friends - and siblings!