La Feria News

The Love Affair: Ch.6

By Nandy Ekle

Being with Jose, she was able to forget Bryan’s neglect, the splatters of beer on the floor around him, and the cookie and chip crumbs thick as piles of sand. She could forget the glob of mustard that had landed on her new dress. She could forget the fact that the real competition was not between the jerseys chasing the ball on the television, but between those jerseys and her. And she could forget the fact that the jerseys would always win.
So she relied on Jose to bring the romance and adventure to her boring existence. She might be a shadow behind Bryan’s games, but to Jose, she was life.
“The End,” Jose whispered sadly.
Christine sighed. As she rubbed her hand across Jose’s face one last time, she closed his jacket and set him on the coffee table.
“You know I’m always just an arm’s length away,” she heard him whisper as she gave one last caress to the front of his face.
“Oh, Babe! What a great game! Did you see that last play? Did you see it?”
She blinked her eyes to clear thoughts of Jose Amante from her head, then she looked at her husband. Overweight, greasy and powdery with potato chip leavings, a scruffy beard on his face. She wondered why he couldn’t be more like the heroes in her books—so genteel, so handsome, only desiring to please their lady loves. Completely the opposite of this mighty cave bear.
She looked away nearly in tears.
Bryan sat on the couch and placed his hand on her bare foot. It felt warm and comforting to her. “So, how was the book?” He asked.
She sighed and smiled. “Good, as always. Tell me about your game.”
He opened the wine, filled the two glasses, and handed one to her. “Oh, good, as always. Hey, nice dress.”
Christine wasn’t sure she heard him correctly. “What?”
“I like that dress.” He looked at her for a moment and she wondered what he was thinking. “How long has it been since I told you I love you?” As she took the glass, he reached out a hand and tucked a strand of hair behind her ear.
The goose bumps were back.
He brought his glass up, indicating for her to do the same.
“I guess we’re going to toast the champion?” she asked.
“You bet.” She took a deep breath and closed her eyelids so he wouldn’t see her eye roll. “To Christine, the champion of my life. Thanks, Babe, for being so patient.” They clinked glasses.
“Hey, do you still have that little cheerleader outfit you used to wear during the games?”
“Oh, Bryan. That wouldn’t even fit my big toe anymore.”
“Show me.”
He stood, bent down and hefted her off the couch. She giggled as they headed up the stairs.

The End.

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