The quieter you become the more you can hear ~ Ram Dass

Friday, May 18, 2012

Mary #9

If anyone does Saturday Centus you might somewhat remember this story started as a centus.  In  June of 2010, I wrote a few chapters on Mary and then stopped.  I had so much to write about her, writing weekly for centus wasn't enough.  I then wrote and wrote until I had over 30,000 words so far.  In writing it though as I got further and further my original premise somehow got blown out of the water, ha, ha. I stopped writing her story in March of 2011.   I still haven't quite figured out how I'm going to work this out but I thought I would put out what I have so far.   Please remember this is a really rough draft and when I wrote it, I had no chapters.  Before I decided to put this on the blog I had to go back and figure out where I could make them.  I would suggest this is a terrible way of doing it lol.  The first chapter started on March 23rd, 2012.


Johnny felt like a little kid again with Mary home taking the steps by two's.  It had been many years since he was upstairs and he wondered if his Ma had done anything to his room.  He opened the door and it was the same.  The little nightstand he made that his Pa helped him with was still in there.  He went over and looked at it, thinking it still looked in good shape.  Then he saw the little pencil holder he made in wood shop at school still holding the pencils with the name of his high school on it.  He looked in the closet, no clothes but then he saw something on the top shelf.  He pulled it down.  It was his high school letter sweater that he got in 12th grade.  He reached his hand up to see if there was anything else but no.

He then went over to the big dresser.  He pulled out the bottom drawer and all the trophy's he had ever won seemed to be in there, wrestling, baseball, and basketball.  He smiled to himself.  The next drawer were books that he gotten on woodworking.  He loved wood shop and when his Pa helped him make that nightstand, he couldn’t stop making things.  

"What's in this envelope", he said out loud.  He opened it up and it was pictures of everything he ever made from wood.  Also, pictures of him when he thought no one was around cutting wood and sanding.  That's strange he thought, why they didn’t ever show me these.  He looked in the last drawer but it was empty. 

He came to the kitchen wearing only the letter sweater and still wet pants. 

Mary laughed when she saw him.  "I guess no clothes, huh?  Except for that fabulous sweater that's a little too small.   I found these old pair of pants in the cleaning closet if you want to try them on.  We can throw your clothes in the dryer.  By the time we're done eating they should be dry" handing the pants to him. 

He went to the bathroom in the cellar, put the pants on and threw his other stuff in the dryer and came up.  "Let's eat, I'm starving.”

 "It's on the table in the dining room.” 

"The table looks nice, Mar.  I don't know though it feels a little strange eating on Ma's good dishes.  Look you even lit the candles in the candle holders.  All these years, I've never seen them lit.  What do you think Ma would think?” 

"I asked her the other day when I ate on the China by myself and lightening hasn't struck so far.  I think she'd approve and enjoy the fact we were using her candles.”

"Okay” Johnny said a little reluctantly and sat down and started putting food on his plate. 

There wasn't any talking going on and Johnny was almost done eating and was starting to feel a little uncomfortable.  I know I told her no questions but I don't think that means about New York.   It's been so long since we've talked like brother and sister, I practically don't even know her anymore, he thought Then he blurted out, "This is really good Mar.” 

"Thanks, it's one of my specialties.   I don't make it much being the only one at the apartment.  I usually make it when I have friends over.” 

Aha, he had an opening. "Do you have a lot of friends?”  

"I have a few friends and then there's Sadie.  She's my best friend.  I also work with her.  We spend a lot of time together.  I'm so thankful I have her for a friend.  She always has my back at work.” 

“Why does Sadie need to watch your back?” 

"You wouldn't believe how competitive it is in hotel management.  Since I started pretty young and moved up the ladder quickly, there's always someone trying to knock you back down.  Sadie kind of does reconnaissance for me so I know who to look out for so I can head them off.” 

Mary and Johnny looked at each other and started to giggle and then full out laughter came.  They both tried to speak but neither could stop laughing. 

Finally, Johnny cleared his throat and said "It seems like old times, huh, Mary.  You saying something at the dinner table and then you and me start laughing so hard we can't quit.”

 "Yeah" Mary said.  "Those sure were fun times.”  Then the uncomfortable silence came back. 

"Well, I'm about done.  I see you are too; I'll just clean up the table.  Why don't you go sit on the couch and I'll bring you a glass of wine and we can talk, or watch TV.”  Mary got up and started taking stuff into the kitchen.

 Johnny went and sat on the couch and turned the TV on.  He flipped through the channels.  He found an old Laurel and Hardy movie on and decided to keep that on.  He wanted to keep things light. 

Mary came back into the living room with a wine bottle and two glasses.  Over her shoulder, she had his clothes from the dryer.  "Everything's dry, so you can change if you want.” 

"I think I'll just sit and relax awhile.  It was a tough day at work.” 

"Did something happen at work Johnny?”

"Well, you know the economy's not great now and they are laying people off left and right. That means everyone is doing more work.  It's been very stressful.   Since I still work for my ex-father-in-law I wouldn't be surprised if I get the heave ho pretty soon.”

"Aren't you the vice president of the bank still?” 

"Yeah, but ever since Sandy and I got divorced her dad hasn't been so friendly like he used to be and remember he is the president.” 

"I see.  Would you mind if I asked what happened with Sandy unless you think I'm butting into your business.” 

"No" Johnny said.  "It was the craziest thing.  After a year, I'm still trying to make sense of it.  She wanted to have children and I did to.  We tried for years and years but it wasn't happening.  We did fertility treatments, spent tons of money until we almost went bankrupt but it didn't work.  She would get all upset because she wanted to give me a child.  I told her I didn't care all I really needed was her.  She didn't believe me and asked for a divorce and wouldn't take no for an answer.  We still talk now and then.”

"I'm so sorry.  Maybe someday you two will find your way back to each other.”

Mary noticed that Johnny was having a hard time keeping his eyes open and said "Why don't you stay here tonight.  You really look tired and with all the wine we've had, it's probably not safe for you to drive.  Do you want to sleep in your old room or on the couch?” 

"I think I'll lie here for a while and go upstairs later.  Thanks, Sissie.”  He was asleep as soon as his head the pillow. 

Mary checked the fire and it was out.  She covered Johnny with her grandma's afghan.  Turned the lights and the TV off and headed upstairs.  As she crawled into bed she thought there were some uncomfortable moments but overall it went pretty well.  Before she fell asleep she remembered he called her Sissie and grinned.  She remembered her Ma telling her that Johnny started calling her that when her Pa told him a baby sister was coming home.  For some reason, he could only say Sissie and called her that until she was a teenager.   She decided she would make sure she got up early and would make him breakfast.



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