Chasing Vivi(5)

By: A.M. Hargrove

“Three would be nice, along with a bagel, toasted with butter, please. And eggs. I’m hungry.”

“Yes, sir. I’ll get that right over to you. Your favorite place?”

“Please. You’re an angel. Oh, and is my father in?”

“Not yet, sir, but your grandfather is.”

“Great. Thanks.” I keep moving into my office and collapse into the chair. The computer comes on at the touch of the mouse and I scan all my investments. Before I’m done, Lynn shows up with breakfast, along with more coffee and water.

God, I love this woman. She’s the closest thing to a mother I’ve ever had, besides my grandparents. “Have I told you I love you lately, Lynn?”

“No, but I love you, too. Also, you look like shit, again. Prescott, you have got to get a hold of yourself.”

Behind closed doors, we’re on a first name basis, but around everyone else, she refuses to call me anything but Mr. Beckham even though she’s in her fifties.

“I know. I’m a fucking mess.”

“Why do you let him get to you like this? You’re so much better than he is.”

I rub a hand over my face and my scruff feels and sounds exactly like sandpaper. Glancing out the window, I can’t even appreciate the magnificent view.

“I just do.” The words come out with a groan. “He keeps making those humiliating scenes in public and I look like an idiot because of him.”

“No, he looks like the idiot. But you’re a grown man who’s acting like a child. Take it like a man, pull up your fucking tighty-whities, and move on.”

“Lynn, you sound like my grandfather—and I don’t wear tighty-whities. I don’t wear any—”

“More than I need to know. TMI, thank you very much. If not tighty-whities then undies. Your grandfather’s right. Listen to him.”

“What kind of grown man wears undies?” I mumble.

“Maybe you need to start or at least pull the ones up that are binding your ankles.”

I let out an aggravated growl. “It just sucks that he wants me out of here.”

She rests a hand on her wide hip. “Have you looked at the name on this building? It’s your middle name. If anyone doesn’t need to be here, it’s your father, not you, you big moron.” With a huge huff and some mumbling under her breath, she marches out. When she gets to the door, she looks over her shoulder and says, “You need to brush your teeth again, because you smell like bourbon. And use some mouthwash.”

Every time I think back to the first time my father’s fucking wife made a pass at me I want to put my fist through the wall. It was back when I was still in college. And stupid, naïve me thought it was a joke. Only she got really nasty, because I didn’t take her seriously. Paybacks are hell and last Christmas she finally made her play. Smack in the middle of Christmas dinner, she told Dad that I was the one who made the pass and she had to fend me off. As if. The fucking cunt.

We were all seated at dinner, ready to dig into our traditional meal. My grandparents were there, along with my cousin and her husband. My step-cunt clinked her glass with a fork and I thought she was going to raise it for a lovely toast, as if she’d ever do something as tasteful as that. But no, she grinned evilly at me and said how wonderful it was that we were all together because she wanted to share some news. At first I thought maybe she was pregnant. Then I wondered whose it was. The pool guy in West Palm? I’d seen her with him a time or twelve. But silly me, I was completely off base. Instead, she announced to the family that I had done something so awful, so heinous she couldn’t bear to hold it inside anymore. With a shudder of fake emotions, she told the entire family that I had attempted—to her utter horror, of course—to fondle and kiss her several times last summer and again at Thanksgiving. Then it happened. I laughed. Red wine shot out of my mouth as I threw back my head and roared a deep belly laugh. Who in their right mind would believe that I’d chase after that plastic-surgeried up bitch, when I had the cream of the pussy crop at my disposal?

Except the joke was on me, seeing as I was the only one laughing. Dad’s face was as red as the cranberry sauce on the table, and my grandparents looked as though they were going to kill her. They hate her as much as I do. And the step-cunt? She sat there acting like a queen.

Then Dad said, “Get out of here.”

“Dad, you can’t possibly believe—”

He stood up, pointed to the door, and repeated, “I said, get out of my house.”

“Fine. I’ll leave.” Before I left, I turned to the lying cunt and said, “You think you may have won, but you haven’t. Just remember, karma is a bitch.”

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