“I’m David,” the guy said, extending his hand.
His handshake was firm, and while the whole situation caught him by surprise, he was glad it was over. He had always wondered what it would be like to meet the ex’s boyfriend. No big thing. In a way he was almost glad to see that she’d latched on to someone else. Maybe there’d be a day when he’d finally be done paying her way.
The next time he saw the two of them, Pete noticed nicely wrapped presents under a well-placed Christmas tree. Seemed like a lot considering Santa hadn’t come yet.
“Whatever,” he thought, brushing off any emotions.
Perhaps it was the monotonous sound of the shovel against the concrete, but a curious thought formed. Standing still, the shovel parallel to the ground, he thought, “Wasn’t her long-lost love named David?” Thinking back to the news video she showed him of this David on the computer screen in his parent’s basement years ago, he instantly flew into a rage. “You gotta be shitting me. No way. I can’t believe it. She’s back with the guy that didn’t take her with the first time around. What the fuck?
“Why would she ever marry another man and have a child with him if all this time she just wanted this other guy? Holy hell. I have never felt so used in my entire life. It’s like I’m slowly becoming white-trash because I met one person,” he thought, as a feeling of madness encroached.
“I can’t wonder on this one; I have to know for sure.”
He pulled his glove off, and took his phone out of his pocket. Looking around to make sure no one saw him texting-while-shoveling, he shot her a quick inquiring text, “Is that David the ol’ PJ, love of your life David?”
Trying to calm himself through work, he found snow-removal’s singularity only accelerated his passions.
“It all makes sense. She didn’t work a day during the marriage. And from what I remember this guy is not one to want for money. Here I am essentially working two jobs to pay her off and stay out of debt that should have never accrued, and she’s living the high-life with an old fling. Are they living together? She better not be planning to do something stupid like move out of Denver. There are things I can take, and things I can’t. I’m not fighting a woman for my child because she’s a gold-digging, lazy, negative louse. Her and her folks. The whole clingy, enabling lot of them can join in a chorus of ‘blood’s thicker ‘n mud’–I’ll stick with right action.
“Surely she’s responded by now.” He checked his phone. “Nope. Why not? I know they’re awake. The little girl can’t sleep past 7:30 for anything. I should’ve seen this coming. I’d always heard about women, and yet I thought I was smarter than other men. So much for that. Should’ve never spent a day with that girl. My God, what have I done? It’s like crazy Charlie Sheen said, ‘You don’t pay a prostitute for sex, you pay her to leave.’ Isn’t that turning out to be the truth?”
He anxiously checked his phone again.
“At last a text!” he muttered. It was just the library letting him know the book he ordered had arrived.
“Come on woman.”
Now inside, his warming fingers checked the device again. Finally she responded. Her text was beautiful for its simplicity: “No.”
“Perhaps she’s not entirely an evil succubus,” he thought, his relief more acute than his shame.