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Second Thoughts by Yawatta Hosby

Copyright Feb 2019

Apollo slammed his palm against the steering wheel. “Happy Valentine’s Day, sweetheart.”

His wife avoided eye contact by looking at the dusty dashboard, refusing to speak to him. She wrapped her arms around herself in their stuffy mini-van, the one she rode practically every day to take their two sons to indoor soccer practice.

A dim-lit street light illuminated the middle of the alley. The mini-van was parked in the shadows, lurking behind the hardware store.

Apollo asked, “Are you ignoring me?”

“I’m sorry for what I’ve done.”

Apollo glared at her. “I told you what you could do to make it up to me.”

It was frustrating to him that she still couldn’t bring her deceitful eyes to look at him, to see the pain she had caused him. His wife began crying. She wiped tears with her shirt.

Apollo grabbed her shoulders and shook her, shook some sense into her. “Don’t you dare cry over him!”

She took deep breaths, like she was afraid to move any other way. It wasn’t the first time she had seen her husband’s temper. He dared her to try and escape the mini-van.

He leaned in close to her frigid body, then he put his lips on her neck. He bit down hard. When a drop of blood slid down, he smiled. “I want you so bad,” he whispered into her ear.

“Then have me.” Her voice trembled.

Apollo backed away from her, disgust written all over his face. “All I can think is that bastard inside you…I can’t have you until we do what we gotta do.”

She winced. “Please, Apollo.”

“You don’t get to beg for forgiveness. I told you what you gotta do.”

“If I don’t?” She grabbed his arm and pleaded, “Will you give me a divorce? Split up our family?”

He glanced out the window into semi-darkness, into the empty alley, into the path of the dirty dumpster. “You wish you’d get off that easy.” He gripped the steering wheel. “It’s either him or you.”

Silence.

Apollo waited awhile for her to respond. He wanted to know what she had to say. He needed to know what she had to say. When no words never came out of her mouth, he got impatient, tapping his fingers along the dashboard. He sat up in his seat but still couldn’t bring himself to look over at his wife.

How dare she grieve over that bastard.

“Are you sure he worked tonight? You wouldn’t lie to me, would you?” he asked.

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Keep smiling,

Yawatta Hosby

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