The next morning Jennifer woke up slightly dazed. She and Fagan had left
the party and gone out for drinks. They spent until the early hours of the
morning in a small club watching a Frank Sinatra impersonater and drinking
martinis. Stumbling out of bed she rubbed her forehead slightly, she felt
Jack rub up against her leg and purr.
"Hey kitty,"mumured Jennifer softly,"We'll get you some food." She walked
out to the kitchen and flicked on the light yawning. Shuffling in she
found the bag of dry cat food and poured it into Jack's catfood bowl.
Looking around she realized today was her first day alone, Fagan was at
work til four, she had no work to go to.
"What am I going to do today?"mumbled Jennifer to herself as she thought
about it, she'd never really had a day to herself where she could do
whatever she wanted and she could do it all on her own. Walking into the
living room she turned on the TV to the morning news to see what was going
on in the world today. She peaked out the curtains and seen a cloudy sky.
Quietly she flopped down on the couch and watched the news.
An hour later she had gotten restless just sitting there so she ended up
getting dressed. Dressed simply in a pair of black pants and a shirt she
got on her jacket and left her apartment, keys and wallet in hand.
Harry sat in the coffee shop with Ashley and Kevin, on their request. He
was recovering from another night of drinking and according to Kevin,
Ashley was concerned with his drinking and thought he needed to know he had
people who cared about him. Harry just shrugged at the thought and went
along because Ashley offered to buy the coffee. Now both Harry and Kevin
sat listening to Ashley yammer on about the party from the previous night
and business deals that would come from it.
"Everyone was a drag,"huffed Kevin,"Boring and stuffy."
"True,"said Ashley taking a drink from her coffee,"Except for that Fagan
man, he was just out right rude."
"Oh shit, Harry guess who we ran into last night,"said Kevin perking up.
Harry looked at him waiting for an answer.
"Oh right, with Fagan,"said Ashley nodding.
"We met Jennifer Meadows,"said Kevin. Harry now was interested in what
they had to say.
"But she was with another man,"said Kevin. Harry's expression dropped
about ten feet into the ground. Ashley hit Kevin on the arm scoldingly.
"She was but he was gay, they were friends,"said Ashley,"He was the rude
one, told me my company was bad because we test on animals or such."
"Did ya know she was a lawyer?"asked Kevin,"She had like some freak out
after her wedding and quit her job and everything."
"Did you say anything?"asked Harry.
"Nah, didn't really click in to who she was until after she left,"said
"Ya know Harry you should just forget about her,"said Ashley,"She's
obviously got some issues."
"Normal people have issues,"said Harry.
"Normal people run out before they say I do,"said Ashley.
"And speak of the devil, look who just walked in," Harry and Ashley
followed Kevin's direction to the door. There stood Jennifer unwrapping a
scarf from her neck. Harry watched almost in awe as she stood in line
waiting to place her order.
"Go talk to her,"said Kevin nodding in her direction.
"No, don't bother with her Harry, from what we've heard she just burns men
for fun, ya really don't need that,"said Ashley.
"I'll wait until she sits down,"said Harry softly still watching her. She
stood there in her own personal world without even a clue that the three of
them were watching her intently.
"Harry didn't she leave you the first night when you were with her without
"He's a grown man,"huffed Kevin softly, he had to admit Harry was right she
was goregous, it was easy to see why his eyes lit up when he looked at her,
if it weren't for his relationship with Ashley he'd be pushing Harry out of
the way to talk to her.
"She's a mistake,"said Ashley. Harry watched as she made her order and
waited off to the side well her coffee was prepared.
"I don't know where she's gonna sit, this place is full,"said Kevin looking
"Probably outside in the gutter,"muttered Ashley turning her attention back
to her coffee. Kevin nudge Ashley softly and gave her a warnful look.
"She's got her coffee to go,"said Kevin,"And there she goes." They watched
as she grabbed her cup of coffee and quickly made an exit from the building
back out on to the street.
"For the love of God, go,"said Kevin rolling his eyes. Harry grabbed his
jacket and got up.
"Thanks for the coffee, Ash,"said Harry before he followed Jennifer out of
the coffee house. Ashley turned with daggers in her eyes to Kevin.
"He's your best friend and you're encouraging him to go to that woman,"said
Ashley,"She's just gonna hurt him and then he'll even be farther down than
he is now."
"Yeah, true enough but since all the bullshit started, this is the first
time I've seen him smile,"said Kevin,"If the guy wants to go after her and
be with her then by all means it's his business."
"But her story should be enough for you to talk some sense into
"Well we don't know her whole story,"said Kevin,"Look we'll just keep an
eye on them and if she does anything we'll let Harry know and open his eyes
to it." Ashley shook her head in disbelief, 'men are so stupid' she thought
as she went back to her coffee.
Harry dodged people on street as he walked quickly to catch up to Jennifer.
He seen her just a few feet a head of him. Reaching out he lightly grabbed
her shoulder and got her attention. Jumping slightly as she felt a hand on
her shoulder Jennifer quickly turned to see Harry. The alertness faded
from her face as she smiled friendly at him.
"Hi,"said Jennifer,"I didn't expect to see you."
"Yeah, I uh, seen you in the coffee house,"said Harry. Jennifer nodded in
"So how are you?"asked Jennifer.
"Um I was wondering do you want to get a drink or something?"asked Harry.
"I have one,"said Jennifer holding up her cup of coffee.
"Oh yeah, well we could uh,"stuttered Harry.
"Go talk?"answered Jennifer finishing his sentence for him.
"Okay,"said Harry nodding. Jennifer turned so they could start walking
down the street.
"I'm surprised to see you,"said Jennifer taking a sip of her coffee. She
had to admit she felt awkward about seeing Harry again, she knew she wanted
to see him again but she didn't want the confusion of it, she didn't want
anything heavy from it.
"I was hoping I'd see you again,"said Harry,"You left early."
"I had work,"said Jennifer softly. They continued on in silence, both were
consumed by their own thoughts on how strange things were. Jennifer
admitted was happy to see him, she would've been satisfied just going home
with him and spending the rest of her life in bed with him, but things
just didn't work out that way.
"Here?" Jennifer looked over to where Harry was reffering to, it was a
quiet, almost ghost town mall. Jennifer nodded and followed him. The mall
had that dark, orangish seventies look to it, it was littered with low
income looking people and seniors. Once again they were silent as they
wandered through the mall finally finding a small food court. The two of
them took their seats and were faced with the dreaded conversation part.
"Um, can I ask you a question?"blurted out Harry. Jennifer nodded her
approval and took a sip of her coffee.
"Are you married?"asked Harry.
"You read the paper,"said Jennifer softly,"Um, well yes techinically."
"Okay,"said Harry softly looking away.
"The night we were together was my wedding night,"said Jennifer,"Um seems
kinda ironic now."
"Yeah I figured that out,"said Harry,"You didn't say anything."
"I didn't want to be married,"sighed Jennifer,"If I ignore it, it never
really happened." Harry could see the sadness in her eyes, it was touchy
"I realized I didn't love him,"said Jennifer looking down at her coffee
cup,"I sat there staring at all those happy people, and that large wedding
cake, and people kept calling me Ms.Ballard and finally those walls that
were closing in just collasped, I just walked away."
"You just left him at the reception?"asked Harry,"Did you talk to anyone?"
"Not besides you,"said Jennifer,"No one woulda understood, I was scared to
talk to them because I felt like I was being forced to marry him."
"A forced marriage?"asked Harry rasing an eyebrow.
"No, not like that, but like it was expected of me,"said
Jennifer,"Everything's been like that."
"I kinda wished you had said something,"said Harry.
"Would you have still slept with me?"asked Jennifer.
"I don't know,"said Harry.
"Why do you want to know all of this?"asked Jennifer.
"I've thought about you alot,"confessed Harry. Jennifer looked away, true
enough she could've confessed the same to him but she was allready in a
mess she didn't want to dive deeper into misery. And why was he thinking
about her if she knew what she had done, the paper wrote her up to be the
wicked witch. Most were sympathic to Matt and were suggesting Jennifer had
mental conditions, and she could only imagine what her former colleauges
were saying about her.
"I'm not crazy,"said Jennifer out of no where, she could've put her last
dime on it that Harry thought she was a nut case, just a money grabbing
whore who decieved her own husband on her wedding night of all nights,"And
I'm not a whore."
Harry sat there confused at what she had just said, 'where the hell did
that come from?' thought Harry as she looked at him with convincing eyes.
She looked like she was on trial and trying to convince him she was
"I never said anything like that,"said Harry softly.
"You've read the newspaper, you know what I did,"said Jennifer,"Kinda can't
blame if you thought that about me."
"Can I ask you a question?"asked Harry. Jennifer nodded.
"Are you happy?" Jennifer was slightly stunned, no one had ever asked her
if she was happy, was she? 'well I'm not depressed, or at least suicidial'.
"You don't need to answer,"said Harry sensing she was uneasy with the
"I don't know,"said Jennifer softly as her eyes rimmed up with tears,"I'm
alone in this world and everything I did have I didn't want. I had the
perfect family, buncha bible thumpers none the less and I didn't want them,
people envied me, my family didn't have a problem in the world and I
couldn't stand it, then my parents died and I had my brother and I
should've been thankful but I didn't want him, and I went to law school
because I thought it would get me away from everything and I'd be happy but
then everyone expected me to do well and succeed and I did and most people
would be overjoyed but I hated it then I met Matt and we were going to be
the perfect family and I looked at him at that reception and I, I just
couldn't do it anymore, I was under someone's thumb and I needed to break
free then there was you and I met you and I was free to do as I wished."
At this point the tears were spilling over and down Jennifer's cheeks, she
looked away from Harry and lightly brushed them away.
"Now I sound crazy,"muttered Jennifer softly smiling.
"No you don't,"said Harry.
"You were my first one night stand ya know,"said Jennifer before smiling to
herself,"I think I need a psychartrist."
"I think you just need to live life to your own terms,"said Harry.
Jennifer inhaled deeply as she lightly dabbed her cheeks dry. She
definately was not expecting her morning to turn out as it was. Looking up
at him she smiled and tried to pull herself together.
"Can we talk about something normal?"asked Jennifer,"Something that doesn't
make me cry? Like the weather."
"Well we can't talk about the weather,"said Harry,"That makes me cry."
Jennifer snickered slightly as she smiled. 'God he's handsome' thought
Jennifer as she stared at him.
"Where do you work?"asked Jennifer.
"No where, I lost my job on your wedding day,"said Harry.
"Oh,"said Jennifer,"Well least you'll have a friend in the unemployment
line. We can take turns, one month you hold the spot the next month I
"You bring the music I'll bring the beer,"joked Harry. Jennifer smiled
slightly at their conversation.
"So where did you work?"asked Jennifer.
"I was a high school teacher,"said Harry.
"That's good, maybe that's what I shoulda done ya know, well I was screwing
up myself fuck up some young minds well I'm at it,"smiled Jennifer.
"Don't worry, they're doing a perfectly good job at that on their own,"said
"I wouldn't doubt that,"said Jennifer remembering her days in highschool
and only imagining what it was like now.
"So what were you doing today?"asked Harry.
"Nothing really,"shrugged Jennifer,"About the only person still talking to
me who just isn't trying to find out all the gritty details of my wedding
is at work and since I had no where to go I thought I'd go wander the
streets til four."
"Sounds like a good plan,"said Harry,"I was just having coffee with some
"Oh well you didn't have to leave them for me,"said Jennifer.
"It's okay, actually they were the ones who pointed you out,"said Harry.
Jennifer looked confused as she shifted back and took a sip of her coffee.
"How do your friends know me?"asked Jennifer.
"Well um' apparently you met them, Kevin Riley and Ashley Moore, they were
at some party you were at,"explained Harry. Jennifer thought for a moment
then remembered who they were, the one Fagan had offended with the
"Yeah, the girl, she's part of the company who's doing business with my
friend's firm,"said Jennifer nodding, figuring that from the news articles
they must have put some connection together, either that or from the rumors
that were being whispered around at the party. They sat there in silence
from there on, Jennifer was going over the coincidence that of all people
she was to run into today she ran into Harry. It wasn't a bad thing and if
she could push herself to the point she'd tell him she was joyed to see him
and wanted to spend the rest of the day with him even if it was sitting on
a bench watching ducks float in water.
"Uh, I think I'm gonna go home now,"said Jennifer pushing her coffee
away,"I'm not feeling too well, drank a little too much last night I
guess." She went to get up, along with Harry who was now looking concern
that he was going to let her walk out on him again.
"Can I walk you home?"asked Harry.
"No, it's okay I'll be fine,"said Jennifer nodding slightly, 'cause if you
walk me home, chances are you'll come up to the apartment door, then make
it to the bedroom door then right into my bed' thought Jennifer.
"Are you sure?"asked Harry. Jennifer nodded again, she turned and walked
away leaving Harry stunned. He stood there yelling at himself to move, go
after her but he couldn't move. Slowly she disappeared, sitting back down
Harry ran his hands through his hair and cursed at himself.