To love and cherish, in sickness and health, to death us do part. Hmm. Now marriages last a year or two instead of a couple working things out communicating. We believed that marriage was one long conversation and we’d ride into the sunset together. Divorce lawyers are the winners here and kids are the losers.
Where does all this introspection come from you may wonder? The other night I watched Open Range starring Kevin Costner, Anette Benning, and Robert Duvall. Pioneers struggling to make a life in bleak untamed country. She’s the doctor’s sister and he’s a gunman with a past. Of course they fall in love. Beautiful and heartwarming. He asks her to marry him, an uneducated cowboy; she an educated woman. Not a typical romance but she accepts. At the end before he rides off, he wants her to turn back while she can still see some roof tops. Not leaving, remaining on her horse, she grins. Finally he says, “How’s this gonna work out if you don’t do as I say?”
That’s like saying obey as in the old wedding vows. And she, a woman before her time, sticks to her guns and does exactly as she pleases. Just a movie yet oh what fun. Woman, hear me roar.
I never learned how when I was young . I’m learning.
In my book To Be Continued, Beth Malone was abandoned by husband Frank. She’s learned to Survive & Thrive. In this scene Frank returns.
Wrapped in a towel after the evening swim, Beth strolled back
to the house after locking the enclosure. Her mind focused on
dessert for the first party. Three flavors of crème brulee served in
small ramekins along with everyone’s favorite, tiny chocolate chip
cookies, or? No, leave it be.
Before entering the kitchen Beth paused to gaze at the sky.
Peppered with a generous dose of stars, a dash of billowy clouds and
one sliver of golden moon. A recipe if she ever wrote a cookbook
for romance. She reflected on the darkness, losing one minute a day
until daylight saving time. Clocks fall back in one month. Survival
one season at a time. So far—so good.
Locking the sliders, Beth turned to see a body peering into the
Oh my God! I’d know that ass anywhere. Jaw dropped, Beth
Frank Malone straightened up, cheese in one hand–tomato in
the other, a huge smile on his whiskered face. “Lizzie,” he said,arms outstretched as he advanced. “I heard about Susie’s
pregnancy. We’re going to be grandparents. Can you believe it?”He moved to embrace her, food still clutched in both hands.
Beth ducked under the tomato and said, “Get out.”
“Ah Lizzie, I must’ve been having a mid-life crisis and now I’m back.”
Face contrite, ever the performer. No wonder his patients loved him, she thought. He could appear boyish, serious, sympathetic,
sexy, kind; whatever he believed his audience required.
“No more, Frank; show’s over; long run ended when you walked out.”
For a moment he appeared startled. “But this is my home, our home. I have nowhere to go.”
“Wrong. This is my home now. Maybe Susie will take you in or your buddy, Bruce. For the last time, get out and give me the key.”
Bewildered, Frank plodded toward the front door, glancing left and right as if taking a quick inventory of changes made since his departure. Pausing at the door to what used to be his office/trophy room, he opened his mouth to speak. Beth cut him off. “Keep moving. It’s my home.” At the door, Beth held out her hand. “The key.”
He made a big show of removing it from tight jeans and slapped it in her hand as if it were a surgical instrument. The door closed
behind him with an audible click of the lock.Heart pounding, back pressed against the door for support, Beth said out loud, “Just when you thought it was safe to go into the water. . .” Even though Frank appeared to deflate as she marched him out, Beth knew he’d pump up soon enough. She hadn’t seen or heard the last of Frank Malone.
To Be Continued- co-winner of the first iBookBuzz.com Book Club!