1. Wreck of the Day
Song choice: Wreck of the Day
Rating: T to be safe
The driving rain beat a scornful rhythm against his car's windshield, in the distance headlights and road markers blurred in his vision- a side effect of the downpour outside? No, Will realized, his own eyes were foggy with unshed tears, a feeling of tremendous anxiety had settled in his stomach and refused to be pushed out.
Calm down Will, he coaxed himself mentally, calm down. There's no need to cry. His attempts at self-comfort were wasted because as soon as the prickling feeling behind his eyelids lessened, he caught the glimpse of his black suitcase edge in the rear view mirror. The big suitcase containing all of his material possessions- or at least, the ones he'd been allowed to take with him. He wasn't actually sure what the bag held; Terri had greeted him at the door with it that evening, handed it to him, and slammed the door in his bewildered face.
His resolve crumpled like an old man sans Viagra and a new wave of tears cascaded over his face, coupled with exhaustion and utter despair. He remembered back when his marriage had been fresh and new, back when he'd believed that he and Terri could overcome anything as long as they were together. He'd been naïve to think that they would be different from every other couple out there- that they'd be impervious to fights, unspoken tension and infidelity based on the fact that they loved each other. Sometimes love just wasn't enough.
But how could it not be when they'd been together so long? They were the fairytale couple, having met each other in high school, beating the odds of popularity and social normalities (she was a cheerleader, he was the lead singer of the glee club. It normally wouldn't have been an acceptable mix) that had been stacked against them. They'd seen their fair share of problems afterwards as well- Terri had no ambition to pursue post-secondary education. She'd been raised to believe that women stayed at home and minded to the children, not went out and made money to help pay the bills. Will, on the other hand, had his heart set on being a teacher and his prospective salary did not please Terri, who'd always dreamed of the finer things in life.
But they'd gotten through that- or at least, Will thought they had- and he became a teacher and she got a part-time job to tie up some loose ends and pay for her addiction to Pottery Barn merchandise. She'd wanted a baby. So had he. She'd insisted that he become an accountant- they needed even more money if they wanted to provide for a third life, after all- he almost went through with it but was stopped when a colleague told him that he should follow his heart and do what he loved. She'd been so angry that night that he told her he was going to remain a teacher, and the director of the Glee Club (which was an almost thankless job).
"Why would you stay there?" She'd asked, voice tight as she rested a hand on her still-flat abdomen. "Don't you want our child to have the best life possible?"
"Of course I do." Of course he did. He'd been from a lower middle-class family himself growing up, he knew what it was like to covet things that he could not afford.
"Then why didn't you send in your application?!" Her nostrils were flared, the hand that was not on her stomach found her hip, which was jutted out in an attitudinal way.
"I was going to, Ter, it's just that Emma-"
And that was the beginning of the end. When he'd mentioned Emma Pillsbury, one of the guidance counsellors at his high school, Terri had gone off the deep end.
"Emma? Who the fuck is she?"
"A guidance counsellor, she-"
"Are you cheating on me?!"
"What? No, I-" the very idea itself- of cheating on her, of dishonouring their marriage vows- had never crossed his mind, and quite honestly, it made him sick to the core.
"That's what it is!" Terri was pacing around the room, a cold fire in her eyes. "You've been so distant lately, and it's because of her! Because, because, because-" she hiccoughed, tears interrupting her. "You're cheating on me." She whimpered finally.
"Terri, I love you. I would never do that to you, you know…" Will knew that his wife was hypersensitive about unfaithfulness in marriage. Her father had cheated on her mother with a whole slew of woman, and Terri had been absolutely broken when she learned of her dad's 'indiscretions'. Will knew how paranoid his cherished wife could be. He wrapped his arms around her, pulled her trembling form close.
"You know I would never even think of cheating on you." He whispered, kissing her hair.
"You promise?" She tucked her head into the crook of his neck.
"I promise." And they stood there for what seemed like hours, holding each other just like that. Will would keep his promise and have eyes only for the mother of his child- but it was too bad that she wouldn't.
She went to the doctor a few weeks later and came back with the news that there was no baby. He'd been confused at first.
"What do you mean there's no baby?"
"I'm not pregnant." Terri shrugged and went to the fridge to heat up some leftovers.
"Are you okay?" Will asked.
"No." She said flatly.
"Do you wanna talk about it?"
And he'd respected her wishes. They never mentioned it again.
Emma was the only one he'd trusted with the news that his wife was expecting. When he told her that he was not to be a father, she'd been extremely sympathetic.
"I'm so sorry, Will." She'd placed a hand on his arm, a platonic gesture of solace. "Do you want me to buy you a coffee?"
"No thanks." He shook his head. "Can you take over glee practice today? I think I'll get home early and surprise Terri."
Oh, how he wished he'd accepted the offer of coffee and stayed to supervise his glee kids. The kids were the only constants in his life, the only ones who would not abandon him. He'd kept his promise and told Terri that he would not cheat on her- but as he was about to learn, she had no intention of returning the favour.
It was a horrible cliché (his whole life was, actually) but he'd walked into his apartment, found a pair of dirty sneakers that were not his, and walked into the bedroom to find a nameless man on top of his wife.
He'd stood there, frozen in shock.
"Will!" Terri had cried.
"I can explain!"
"I don't want to know." He turned around and walked out, spent at least five hours wandering the streets, feeling sorry for himself. And when he'd returned home, Terri was waiting with him with his suitcase in hand.
"Here." She forfeited the suitcase. "Call me when you decide what you want."
He'd been tossed out of his own apartment by his cheating wife.
When he arrived at his childhood home, tear-stained and completely empty inside, his mother had said not a word.
"Do you wanna talk about it?" He couldn't even find the words, so he just shook his head, shedding his jacket. "I'll make you some tea." She bustled off to the kitchen before Will could argue. He shuffled straight to his old bedroom- the one he'd been forced to share with two brothers- and set his suitcase down on the bed. It was heavy enough, Will suspected that Terri had at least packed him some clothes.
Worn out hands fumbled with the clasps before finally wrenching the luggage open. On top of his neatly folded shirts and pants, there were papers. Divorce papers.
He lost it then. He sat on the floor, sobs racking his body. What had he ever done to deserve this? Their marriage had been tense for the past few months- what with glee, their false pregnancy, and her paranoia- but he'd never thought it would come to this.
It was two days later when he finally decided what he wanted. Two days later when he asked Emma to borrow her special Happy Feet pen. Two days later when he'd signed the divorce papers with shaking hands.
And maybe I'm not up for being a victim of love
When all my resistance will never be distance enough
Driving away from the wreck of the day
And it's finally quiet in my head
Driving alone, finally on my way home to the comfort of my bed
And if this is giving up, then I'm giving up
If this is giving up, then I'm giving up, giving up
On love, On love
I heartily apologize for the epic fail that this oneshot is. I'm going through some stuff right now and the only thing I really feel like doing is writing. Anyway, honest feedback is appreciated =) as stated in the summary, this will be a series of oneshots based on songs from the Anna Nalick album Wreck of the Day.