‘I can’t do this… I’m sorry but I can’t marry you.’
She stood there, frozen, her jaw hanging loose like an unhinged door yawning open. ‘Why?’ is all she could manage.
He could see the trembling in her dainty hand, the same hand where only a week ago he had slipped an heirloom ring while they lay lazily under a canopy of stars.
‘I’ll be your forever,” he had promised her. His words stung in his eyes now but he dare not cry. He didn’t deserve to cry.
‘WHY?! Answer me!’ She threw the book she had been reading at him. It hit him square on the forehead. He hadn’t flinched to avoid it. He figured if he couldn’t be ‘the’ man for her, the least he could do was be the object of her abuse like a man.
He had no answer for her whys. All he had was bucketloads of regret and cuss words for himself. But an explanation was warranted.
‘Because I cheated on you,’ he left out the once when I was drunk part. No explanations could remedy what he had done. No explanations could undo the consequence of that ‘once’.
‘And because I’ll be a father soon.’
What happened next was anybody’s guess. There were more books aimed at him. An assortment of other things too, that heirloom ring being one of them. There were cuss words and entreaties to not leave. He bore it all and left when she had no more strength to throw things at him.
How he wished he could turn back time so he could correct that mistake. Erase it from its inception. How he wished he had never been drunk that night.
One friggin dance and a couple of drinks… are you that easy? Aaaghh, you sonofabitch, what have you done?! He rammed his fists into his car but pain was useless.
God, why don’t you kill me for this? Kill me….
He pled to an impotent, cloudless sky.
That night a freak storm hit the city and a car, driven by a drunk driver, hydroplaned on a slick road, and tumbled down a deep ditch. They recognized who it was by the heirloom ring found in the body’s pocket.
He couldn’t have known that some prayers are answered, or he wouldn’t have prayed for redemption.