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by Kelly Abell
Description: An innocent trip to an online store to buy her three year old son a Christmas gift turns into a living nightmare for Cheryl Rubio. Mark, her poker obsessed husband has just cleaned out their entire savings account for a high stakes poker tournament three weeks before Christmas. On top of that he's decided to leave her and the son he never wanted because Cheryl "doesn't get him". Devastated, scared and confused Cheryl must find a way to keep her struggling law practice alive and provide some kind of Christmas for Robbie.
eBook Publisher: Solstice Publishing/solsticepublishing,
eBookwise Release Date: August 2010
Available eBook Formats: OEBFF Format (IMP) [62 KB]
Reading time: 36-51 min.
She opened the door, let Kevin in and immediately he could see that something was wrong. Cheryl had been acting strange for the past week, and Kevin had that queasy feeling in his stomach. Something was up and he was not going to like the outcome.
"You want to sit down?" Cheryl asked leading him into the living room of her apartment. Many nights he'd sat blissfully beside her on the couch nuzzling while some chick flick movie played on the television. Many more nights were spent in equally blissful happiness making love in her small bedroom about 10 feet away. For some reason he had a feeling that this night wouldn't end so blissfully.
"What's going on Cheryl? You've been acting weird for over a week now. You don't want to go out, you don't want me to come over and then all of a sudden you call me and say you want to see me. I don't get it. What's the matter with you?"
Kevin had seen the change since her sister came for a visit last month. Very soon after Meg left, Cheryl began to act very odd. He waited patiently for her response.
Cheryl curled her feet under her on the couch and sighed. "This isn't going to be easy for me Kevin, but I want you to know I've given this a lot of thought."
Uh oh, Kevin did not like the sound of this at all. This was the beginning of a break up speech. His heart was being squeezed in a vice-like grip. "Are you breaking up with me?"
The look of relief in Cheryl's eyes was the only answer Kevin needed. It was true. Oh God, what was he going to do? "Why, Cheryl? I thought we loved each other. I know I love you. I've told you a thousand times. I even went ring shopping the other day to see what I thought you might like. What have I done wrong?" He didn't like the fact that his voice sounded just a little desperate, but damnit he loved this woman.
"Rings? Oh, Kevin, what are you thinking? I can't marry you. I've got three more years of law school to finish at Harvard. You are planning to leave town for that month long photography trip to Kenya. There is so much working against us."
"What are you talking about? It's only three to four weeks. We've been apart longer than that. Besides there's email and phones. I'm not going to the Outback for God's sake, Cheryl. I know you have three years of law school left. I know that. I'm not asking you not to go to law school and get married instead. I'm proud of you."
Cheryl hung her head and sighed again. "Kevin, it's just not going to work out. You're leaving school; you haven't even finished your degree. You've got other obligations and so do I. I can't be at Harvard worrying about when was the last time I called or emailed. I'm going to be very busy. It just isn't a good fit any more."
Kevin stared at Cheryl as the underlying meaning of her words struck him full force. It was the same as being hit in the chest with a snow plow. He wasn't good enough for her anymore. Other obligations meant Tony. "I see. Is this about my son, Tony?"
"Kevin, you know I've never cared that you had a son. I think the circumstances are very sad, but it has nothing to do with this conversation."
He wasn't sure he believed her. He told her about the girl he got pregnant in high school and how they'd decided to go their separate ways. Gloria wanted the baby, but she didn't want to have anything to do with Kevin. He tried to be a part of Tony's life when he could, but Gloria made that very difficult for him.
This conversation made no sense, and he would not give her the satisfaction of seeing him cry, but it was a battle to prevent the tears. "Are you sure about this Cheryl?"
Tears formed in Cheryl's eyes. They slowly leaked down her cheeks. "Yes," she nodded. "I'm sure, Kevin."
"I'm going now. Good luck at Harvard. I leave for Kenya in two days. If you change your mind call me, but if I don't hear from you in two days I'll write this off."
Kevin stood, walked to the door and opened it. "Cheryl, I will always love you." He could hear her crying softly as he closed the door. When he reached the street he could no longer hold back his own tears. Blindly, he made his way home.
Two days later he left for Kenya without hearing from Cheryl.