Toni Vale Pebbles
She Took Everything

She took everything.

The furniture, the food, the dishes--even the dirty laundry. Everything.

Jake was still stunned. That fancy sofa he'd just finished paying off was gone. His shirts and pants drooped from wire hangers in the bedroom closet, his underwear tossed helter-skelter into a laundry basket. Sheets and a blanket were piled on the mattress, which was pushed into a corner of the floor. He kicked at the box springs. Jeez, at least she could've left him a pillow.

He stomped into the kitchen and opened the refrigerator. Three beers and an apple. He grabbed the bottles and slammed the door shut. He pulled open a drawer. Empty. How was he supposed to eat, when there wasn't even a fork?

Jake sat down at the small wooden table and looked out the windows. He wondered where she'd gone. He'd be damned if he'd miss her. He turned on the small TV to watch some baseball, but the chair was too hard, and the Tigers were playing their usual piss-poor game.

He held a beer bottle up to the light of the one remaining lamp and then poured the last few drops down his throat. It's a good thing he'd stopped by Shorty's for a pop on the way home, he thought. If he had walked in on her stealing everything he owned, he'd be sitting in a jail cell tonight.

What kind of a woman does that?  Hadn't he taken care of her, put food on the table, bought her a dress last Christmas?  Years of sweating it out on the line and all he had left to his name was a table, a chair, a TV and a lamp.  Oh yeah, and his mother's photograph.  She'd always hated his mother.

He picked up the last cold beer, using the table edge to knock off the cap.  Bitch even took the bottle opener! And the aspirin. Leaves the damn cat's medicine, but takes the aspirin.  What was he supposed to do in the morning if he had a headache?

No more beer. No food. Is this the thanks he gets for being a good husband all these years? He might as well head back to Shorty's. They'd run a tab for him there. No point in staying here. No point at all.


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