Third Place – Ghylene Palmer

By Ghylene Palmer

Josie woke up sweaty, sticky and the effects of the hangover hit her the moment she opened her eyes.  Her vision was slightly blurred as she gazed around the dark lit room.  She thought to herself:  “I must be at Harper’s again.  Why do we keep doing this?  Oh wait, this isn’t Harper’s place.”

The slightly confused and dazed Josie glanced to her right and noticed a skinny lanky man’s arm sticking out from under the covers. “Great, who was it this time?  Who did I fuck this time?”  She woozily got up from the bed and headed over to her jeans on the floor. As she slid them up her thighs she thought please please please let there be a condom! She walked over to the skinny man’s side of the bed and saw the used condom in the purple waste paper basket.  Oh Thank Christ!

Heaven knows Jamie Lee doesn’t need a brother or sister.

Oh Lord, where is my daughter? Josie hastily made her way across the room to her floral red blouse and as she started buttoning it up, a stream of memories from the night before began to flood her mind.

Once again she wanted to head out for a night on the town but Jamie

Lee’s daddy, Harper, decided he had better things to do than to look after his two year old daughter on a Saturday night.  Hell Josie wasn’t going to stay home and let Harper have all the fun so she took her baby girl with her as she had done many times.

As she was leaving her apartment to head to the Honka club wearing her favourite red heels and her little blonde haired wonder on her hip, the phone rang.

It was Stacey, her best friend. Stacey, the social butterfly, was having an impromptu party at her house!

Josie was relieved that she would be going to Stacey’s house especially since her studio friends were always great at playing with Jamie Lee, which meant she could relax and flirt. Suddenly filled with glee, she grabbed her handbag as well as her daughter and headed out to catch a cab. During the drive, she remembered that Harper would be there too and she quickly realized this would give her an opportunity to make him jealous.

As soon as she walked through the door, Josie spotted the tall-legged brunette in a mini, smoking a bong with Harper but she was not going to let him affect her tonight. She was going to make him jealous, make him want her. Jamie Lee ran straight to the other kids who were all playing under the table and sharing some brownies.  Stacey would not have put a large amount of marijuana in them; just enough to send the kids to sleep. Josie greeted her bestie who introduced her to a tall lanky bearded guy with smiling eyes. His name was Bill and he was just perfect for her plan.

They drank, they smoked, they talked, they laughed and they listened to the music rolling in the background all the while Josie made sure they were within Harper’s direct line of sight. She saw him make his way to the bathroom and took the opportunity, excused herself and followed him.  From the minute they faced each other in the corridor, the chemistry between them made Josie shiver.  She hated the fact that he had that power over her and she hated it even more that Harper knew this.  She tried to play it cool but as the words “Nice date!” came out of her mouth she knew she had blown all the good work she had done throughout the evening. Back to the drawing board she thought and then he placed his hand on her wrist, stopping her from walking away.

He said: “You look beautiful. I miss you.” Within seconds they were all over each other in the bathroom. They were kissing passionately when Harper pulled away with a smile.  It wasn’t a happy smile; it was that smirk he would get whenever he had full control of her.  It aggravated her so she slapped him and walked away. He knew how mad and frustrated she was and he was satisfied with himself.

Josie came back to tall, lanky guy, sat down on his lap and took a swig out of his bottle of vodka.  Bill unknowingly placed his hand on her thighs and smiled up at her.  Josie just wanted to drink her sadness and frustration away.  She took mouthful after mouthful of straight vodka sitting back on Bill smoking until she would forget about how much she wanted to be with Harper.  She wanted to forget how much she resented him for having gotten her pregnant and yet loved the connection it forced them to have. She also realized she would be miserable if they ever got back together. There and then she wanted to be free of him once and for all and tonight would be the night.

She looked at Harper and his brunette making out in the corner of the room, stood up, turned to Bill and said “Take me to your place.”

Bill, without hesitation, took her drunken shaky hand and followed her out of the room.  As they passed Harper, she clumsily whispered in his ear: “It’s your turn tonight Daddy. Jamie’s asleep under the table. I’m going home with Bill.”

Bill almost had to carry her to his grey VW combi. She was far too drunk to care.

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