"Here we are," he says, washing a plate and handing it over to me to rinse and dry.
"Mmhmm," I say, drying the plate, wishing I could slap him with it, for all the times when I was young that he made me feel horrible about myself.
"Washing up all the dishes," he continues, passing me a glass.
"Do you have a point?" I ask. I leave the glass in the sink, and bunch the little yellow dishtowel on Janet's pretty granite counter. Crossing my arms, I stand firm, though my inner child is still cowering.
"Just that it's like old times," he chuckles, as if we're old friends. "Cleaning up the mess after the family piggy has her slops."
"Yep. And just like old times, you're being an insufferable bastard." With that last statement, I leave the glass, and I leave the towel. I leave the kitchen entirely, and I tell Janet that Rick has offered sweetly to finish the kitchen so that I can get home before it's too late.
I kiss my mama Janet, and I hug my sisters, then I gather my purse and dig out my keys. Making the necessary promises to call when I get home, and swearing that I can't stay overnight because I have to work tomorrow, I peek through the kitchen door one last time. Rick is washing furiously, scrubbing a cookie sheet in what looks like a vicious rage.
"Thank you so much for doing all that, Ricky," I call sweetly, knowing how much he hates the nickname. "I just love that you thought of my safety so that I could get home early. Have a good week!"
Walking out of the house, I know that Rick will finish the kitchen alone, and I celebrate my little victory. It's only one day, but for the first time, I didn't cower away from Rick, I didn't let him tell me who I am, or what I'm worth.
For the first time, with Rick, anyway, I stood up for myself. I'm not thrilled that I had to do it in such an ugly way, and I'm not thrilled that I had to be cruel to myself in order to get the job done. It felt good though, even the nasty things that I said, because I got to watch his eyes grow wide with surprise, and I got to see a glimmer of respect in them.
Thursday, January 17, 2013
Fat Chance Excerpt #2
Sneak peek number two, and not much longer until Fat Chance releases to Amazon Kindle! Thanks to the loyalty and activity of the facebook page fans, here's a sample of an encounter between Cass and her "frenemy."