She opens the door and is mildly disappointed Frankie isn’t there to greet her. He’s probably curled up in a ball by the closet or, more likely, sprawled across her pillow. That mystery will have to wait.

She kicks her heels under the couch and turns on the TV. Leno doesn’t make her laugh, but she’s too tired to change it. Halfway through the monologue, her stomach growls, and she wonders, have I eaten today?

There’s some leftover Italian in the fridge. If she’s lucky, it won’t make her nauseous and keep her up all night. If she’s really lucky, it won’t be turning over in her stomach tomorrow when her mom drops hints about the three pounds she’s gained.

She could use a stiff drink, some head, and a full nights sleep, but there’s still work to be done. A young father’s just learned that regaining custody will mean “free money” every month, and free money means more meth. If our hero doesn’t get a temporary restraining order in front of a judge tomorrow morning, he’ll show up at his kids school and reclaim his daughter.

As our heroine opens her laptop, the phone rings, again. It’s her boyfriend this time. They haven’t spoken much lately. “Hey.”

“Hey baby, I missed you,” he says.

“I miss you too.”

“So, how was your day?”

Awful, terrible, shitty, dreadful, the worst, she thinks. “…long,” she says. “How was yours?”

“Eh… So, what are you wearing?”

“Just got home, still in ma’ work clothes.” I should go change, my bra is killing me, she thinks.

“That’s hot, you should take them off.”

“…I’d love to, but now’s not the best time.”

“…It never is.”

She sighs. “…Can we do this later? I really need to get this TRO done.”

“I was hoping to get something done, too…”

“Cute, baby. This really needs my attention, though.”

He sighs. “Yeah, fine. Whatever.”

She hesitates. “…I love you,” she says. She means it.

“…I love you to.”

She wants to say more: to reassure him, to tell him how much she loves him, to say I’m sorry I can’t be there for you, with you, but there really isn’t time – not if Jenna’s grandparents want to keep custody. “I’ll call you tomorrow?”

He hesitates. “…Okay, babykins. Good luck with, whatever.”

“Thanks. Goodnight, my love.”


She hangs up and returns to her laptop. She wonders how many times she’s said I don’t have time, and many times he’s heard it. She wonders how many times he’ll let her say it.

The screen becomes blurry, but only for a second – there really isn’t time for that, either. There’s only time to get back work, keeping her clients safe, and hope that he understands.


Tags: , , , ,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: