So, I have a hard time keeping myself disciplined to keep up with my other writing goals. I thought if I posted a piece of original fiction in installments every Friday it would keep me on track. So here is the first installment of a piece I have titled: “Kissing Frogs.” To read it all as I post it, click on the “Kissing Frogs so far” link at the top of the page.
Tracey’s diamonds sat in their velvet case on the otherwise empty leather passenger seat beside her. Shot taffeta tickled her ankles, her Prada shoes tossed aside for the unsightly comfort of well-worn slippers. As she maneuvered her Jag through the familiar streets of home, she looked wistfully at the homes she passed. Happy tableaux of “traditional” holiday celebrations were played out like shadow boxes in the windows of house after house causing Tracey to ponder her own family traditions. Formal dinner at Daddy’s club followed by a gift exchange that doubled as an interrogation.
“What about that nice boy you brought to Easter” . . . or Mother’s Day . . . or Thanksgiving . . . or any wedding in the last year.
“I thought I saw you with a nice looking doctor three weeks ago when we ran into each other at The Grill.”
“Well, you do get around, don’t you dear.”
With no thought to tact, nor care to feelings, her mother and sisters-in-law would manage to imply that she was both too easy and too picky and in the end she would resort to her time-honored traditional retort, the response that signaled to the family that discussion of her love life was over.
“Well, you know how it is. If you want to find your prince, you’ve got to be willing to kiss a few frogs.”
Probably the worst part of it all, was that none of them appreciated the intrinsic irony of the statement.
The loneliness of Christmas descended on her chest with leaden weight. It rolled with her through the sleepless night. Her only comfort as she tossed and turned for hours in the queen sized brass bed was the familiar warm weight of Stan beside her. Seemingly undisturbed by her restlessness, he buzzed quietly in his sleep, occasionally twitching his whiskers, or extending his claws at some dream mouse, or phantom cricket. Her friend Joanna repeatedly called her the crazy lady with the cat, but if truth be told, it was Stan who kept her sane, who lasted through the frustrating relationships and the all too frequent break ups. At the end of a frustrating, lonely day, she knew that she didn’t have to come home to an empty house, and that, alone, was enough.
It had to be. It was all she had.