After Quaid was gone and the officers had the shackles off my ankles, I followed them back to the cell and swore softly under my breath when I noticed that gremlin-girl was gone but psycho-wife remained. She was sitting on one of the bunks hunched over and sobbing uncontrollably into her hands. She sounded like a suffering animal and I knew it was only going to take a few minutes for the noises she was making to have my head pounding. It was going to be another sleepless night and not because I was turning over and over in my head what my dad was going to say when Quaid called him.
I shot the cop on my right a look as he opened the door to the cell for me to go through. He shook his head and muttered so that only I could hear him, “The husband served her with divorce papers and a bill for the car and the house. It’s gonna be a long night in lockup.”
That was putting it lightly.
As the barred door slid shut behind me, I stuck my hands through the slot so the cuffs could be removed. It was all very Orange Is the New Black, but far less entertaining. I silently prayed that I wasn’t here long enough to draw any more parallels like that one.
I made my way to the opposite wall of the tiny cell and propped a shoulder up against the hard cement wall. I pushed some of my faded pink hair out of my face and winced when my fingers brushed over the bump that was between my eyes. I hissed out a sound of pain and met the bloodshot and watery eyes of the woman across from me.
I leaned my head back against the wall and stared up at the industrial ceiling transfixed by the fluorescent light as it buzzed above me.
“When I was little, my dad used to tell me that bad decisions made for good stories. He told me that while I was crying in the hospital, getting a metal plate in my arm, after I fell out of a tree he told me not to climb. Again, he told me that when I crashed my first car, which he said I wasn’t ready to drive during the winter. He also told me that when he caught me smoking my first cigarette and it made me sicker than a dog.” I tilted my head back towards the woman who was still crying, albeit silently now as she watched me intently. “He was right. All those stupid things I did, even though he told me not to, led to some pretty good stories over the years, and I’ve always appreciated the battle scars that serve as constant reminder that Daddy does indeed know best.”
The woman sniffled loudly and wiped a hand across her damp face. “Why are you telling me this? I don’t think the fact that I drove a car through my own home will ever make for a good story. I’m sure my kids aren’t going to appreciate the fact that my bad decision is more than likely going to result in their mother going away for a long, long time.”
I turned my head back towards the ceiling and concentrated really hard until I could hear Brite Walker’s deep and rumbling voice whispering to me: Bad decisions make for good stories, Sprite.
I hadn’t been telling her for her … I had been telling myself because I needed to hear it … now, more so than ever.
Who would give a law to lovers? Love is unto itself a higher law.
I pulled my already loosened tie the rest of the way off and kicked the front door of my loft shut with my foot. I threw my leather satchel towards the big sectional that took up most of the open living room and swore when it missed the mark by a hair and went careening to the floor. My laptop clattered and slid out of the top flap, taking with it the file from the last case of the day. I pushed my hands through my hair in aggravation and blew out a frustrated breath.
I was home hours before I had planned to be and I was alone, something else I hadn’t planned on being by the end of my date. The rejection and subsequent dismissal from a woman that was not only beautiful but as smart and successful as I was had left me edgy and antsy. I was also grumpy and short tempered due to sexual frustration and the unfamiliar feeling of being denied something I wanted.
What I currently wanted was a shot at getting Sayer Cole in my bed.
I was married the first time I was introduced to the stunning family-law attorney but it was a marriage well on its way to crashing and burning. I wasn’t married anymore, and as far as I was concerned, Sayer was the perfect woman to celebrate my newfound singleness with. She was gorgeous and she didn’t need anything from me. She made the same kind of money that I did. She was already a partner in the firm she worked for, so she didn’t need my name or reputation to get ahead in the legal game. She had been unattached the entire time she was in Denver, so I didn’t have to worry about her clinging to me. She didn’t seem like the type that was husband hunting, which was perfect, because I wasn’t going to be anyone’s prey. I was much more comfortable being the hunter rather than the hunted and nothing appealed to me more than a woman that had absolutely no reason to bleed me dry. I knew that even though she came across as chilly and reserved, I could warm her up if I got her naked and underneath me.
I should have taken the hint after the second time Sayer rescheduled on me. Women never bailed on me. In fact, more often than not, women chased after me and I had to bail on them because I was busy or because I was bored. After my divorce was final, I went on a sexual bender. I was hurt and reeling from my ex’s betrayal, so it was obvious that I was trying to even up the score and soothe my wounded ego with an endless string of willing bed partners. I was trying to screw wasted years, wasted money, and a broken heart out of my system. It became clear from the get-go, that even meaningless one-night stands wanted more than I was willing to give.
One wouldn’t leave the next morning until I threatened to call the police. One acted like she was waiting for an engagement ring after one night together. One disappeared with my favorite Tag Heuer watch. One showed up outside of court after an intense day at trial and wanted to know when we were going out again. Then there was the one who called the top partner at my firm, the guy with his name first on the sign, and asked him for an interview claiming me as her reference. That one led to an embarrassing explanation and a ding on my nearly spotless reputation within the firm. I wanted my name as partner on that sign in the near future, and I wasn’t going to let my vengeful dick or my anger towards my ex hinder that possibility.
I stopped sleeping around, set my sights on Sayer, and waited for her to get on board with my plan. Only she wasn’t interested and sent me on my way, frustrated and at a loss for what to do next. I didn’t have a backup plan because I very rarely needed one.