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Contemporary Fiction Romance

The coolness of the water revived her tired body. Four days of hundred plus temperatures had pushed Marianne over the edge. Dinner had been a disaster! Roger had turned his nose up at the fish, Becca had proclaimed she was a vegetarian, and her husband, Bob had eaten a late lunch and said he wasn't very hungry.

"You expect me to cook dinner in a kitchen that's as hot as an oven, and then you complain about it?" Marianne had screamed.

She stormed from the table went to the guest room, slammed the door and locked it. Her family was stunned by her uncharacteristic behavior. Bob had knocked on the door, but she ignored him; all she wanted was to be alone. The kids had said good night and she didn't answer.

Later, when everyone had gone to bed, she made the rounds to make sure everything was locked up. Surprisingly the dishes were done and the kitchen cleaned up. She glanced out the the patio door and saw the pool. The moonlight reflecting off the water lured her. She never swam alone; but tonight it seemed like the right thing to do.

She peeled off her sweaty clothes and eased into the cool water, totally naked. Another first. She was embarrassed when she thought about it, but the responsibilities and frustrations of the day seemed to be stripped away with her clothing. The water seemed cold, but all she felt was relief.

Relief washed over her as she pushed off from the side of the pool. She swam away into a peaceful place where her only responsibility was herself. Guilt slid into her responsible brain before being easily erased by the cool water. Nothing was her fault.

She and Bob hadn't been close lately.; the demands of schedules, kids and work left them with little to no time together. She missed him. The kids had their own activities and were gone almost all the time. She was left to do and be the responsible one and mostly with no expressed gratitude. For the first time in her life she was truly lonely.

The coolness of the water permeated her bones. she hated to get out but she was beginning to feel chilled. As Marianne swam towards the ladder she felt a stitch in her side. A few more strokes and the pain changed drastically! Now, it was a stabbing pain under her left breast which radiated down her left arm and up into her

shoulder. She could no longer swim, or even stand in the water. She half floated and paddled to the ladder. Her breath came in shallow gasps. She gripped the ladder with her right hand knowing she was in serious trouble. She couldn't stop shivering but at the same time was sweating profusely.

Bob and the children were asleep. She envied them. They could all fall asleep instantly; she was the one who worried deep into the night. Perhaps she could climb the ladder and she tried to pull herself up. The pain was excruciating and her strength nonexistent.

Was this how it would end? NAKED MOTHER OF TWO FOUND DEAD IN HER BACKYARD POOL. Who would find her? And when? Please God, not my children. She laid against the side of the pool and tried to hang on.

Marianne gazed up at the sky and prayed her last prayer. "God, let my children know I love them, and Bob too. Please make them understand. My impatience was about me not them. Please let Bob meet someone that will be a good mother to my children." And the the sobbing began. Slowly Marianne lost her grip on the ladder and slowly sank below the surface of the water.

The bright lights make it impossible for Marianne to open her eyes. There were lots of people talking but they seemed off in the distance. She thought she heard Bob's voice but that couldn't be he was asleep in the house. Someone was calling her name. She forced her eyes open a slit and saw that she was surrounded. Hopefully she was in heaven.

"She's coming around."

"Marianne, can you hear me? You're in the hospital, you've had a heart attack. You're going to be fine." Funny, she didn't feel fine.

The next time she opened her eyes she was in a different room. there were beeping sounds and bright lights and Bob was sitting next to the bed. He looked terrible.

"Hi," she croaked. Tears were streaming down Bob's face, as he laid his head on her.

"I thought we'd lost you! What were you doing in the pool? I wok up and you weren't in bed. The spare room was empty. Luckily I saw the patio door open, and found you floating in the pool. I pulled you out called 911. But the time the paramedics got there you were breathing again. You always said CPR would come in handy someday." Bob lifted her hand to his lips. as tears slid down his face.

"You had a second heart attack in the ambulance and had open-heart surgery late last night."

"I'm so sorry," Whispered Marianne.

"Shhh, you have nothing to be sorry about. The fear in Bob's eyes allowed Marianne to see how much she was loved.

"Things are going to be different from now on. The kids and I decided in the waiting room early this morning that we've been taking advantage of your good nature. We're going to start doing things for ourselves. The kids were both frantic all night. I have to go tell them you're awake. Just rest I'll be back in a few minutes. Did I say, I love you?" Bob hustled out of the room.

Staying awake was impossible and everything looked blurry through her tears of joy.

"Thank you , God for more time with my family. I will always be grateful. And by the way, how did you ever wake Bob up? A smile spread across Mariannes lips as she lapsed once again into a drug-induced state.

August 19, 2021 19:05

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