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Contemporary Drama Friendship

"WHORE! Tramp! Traitor!" Screamed Tina hysterically. The words echoed down the quiet street. Neighbors stared in paralyzed disbelief. The next sound was the slap that Tina fired at Judy's face. Judy gasped as the intensity of the slap knocked her off balance. Tina and Judy who had been best friends since third grade were at war. Well, at least Tina was at war.

"Roger and I are going steady and everyone knows it, especially you." Raged Tina.

"Please, let me explain, Begged Judy, holding her hand over her reddened cheek. You don't know the whole story."

"You mean the gory details? No thanks. You slept with my boyfriend that's all I need to know. Consider our friendship over." Tina spun around, stomped across the street, into her house, and slammed the door.

Judy stood on the sidewalk and sobbed.

Tina leaned back on the airplane headrest and closed her eyes. She had so much to do. Her mother's stroke then death had taken everyone by surprise. As the only child it was her responsibility to clean out the house and get it ready for sale. This was the last time she would have to come to the house. Her relief at having some time alone was crowded out by her memories of her mom. Since Matthew's mom had volunteered to take her boys, Tina decided that she could use some alone time to say goodbye to her mom.

Judy's mother still lived across the street so she would have to play the "everything across the street is invisible game." The same game she played on every visit. She would just stay inside, she definitely had enough to keep her busy.

Tina's rental car was filled with groceries for a few days, packing boxes, and all the other things on her list. She had so much to do. She pulled the car into the familiar driveway and began to unload the car. A note was taped to the front door. "The key is with the lady across the street."

How could this happen? The realtor had promised to leave the key under the mat. She had planned everything so carefully to not have contact with Judy's mother. But her groceries were melting in the heat so she'd better get this over with. Standing up to her full height she marched across the street and rang the bell.

A very handsome teenager answered. There was something so familiar about him.

"Who is it?" Asked a voice from inside; Judy's voice.

"I don't know," replied the teenager.

"I'm here to pick up the key to the house across the street. I'm Tina Martin used to be Westin.

"Tina? Come in. Randy, show her into the living room."

" I don't want to come in. I just need the key," Tina hissed through her clenched teeth.

"Randy, the key is hanging above the light switch in the kitchen."

Armed with the key and her anger, Tina unloaded the car. How DARE Judy be there and suggest I come in. She had stolen Roger, the love of her life. Judy married him a month after Tina went away to college. The same college where she and Judy were supposed to be roommates. When Tina had received their wedding invitation she burned it. She told her mother she never wanted her to mention Judy again, and her mother had honored that. Time heals all wounds did not pertain to this situation.

Tina carefully closed all the blinds on the front side of the house. Out of sight out of mind. Well, she hoped it would work.

Tina sat down with some iced tea after working at a furious pace for several hours.

There were so many memories in this house. The marks on the kitchen door measuring her height for 18 years, the trundle bed bought for sleepovers with Judy. The mural on her bedroom wall that she and Judy had done the summer they were twelve.The trampoline still stood in the backyard where the girls had perfected their gymnastic tricks.

Tina had things in three piles, things to send to her house, things to donate, and things for the trash. She kept moving things from one pile to the next. The choices were so difficult. There were many things she didn't need but couldn't throw away. The big brown mixing bowl her mother used when baking, and her hundreds of cookie cutters. The afghan that she was always wrapped in while she watched TV, and her jewelry box full of costume jewelry, most of which had been gifts from Tina when she was a little girl.

Finally, she had a load for Goodwill. She treated herself to lunch out and looked around town a little. Things hadn't changed much.As she pulled into the driveway there was another note.

"Oh darn, I missed the realtor." She opened the envelope and began to read.

THE GORY DETAILS

The weekend you were away with your folks, there was a party.

Roger was flirting with every girl at the party. I told him to

knock it off that he was going steady with you. He got very

angry and unbeknownst to me, slipped something in my

drink. I woke up half dressed and I had been raped. If you have

any doubt as to who did it, look at Randy he looks just like

his father. Our parents made us get married when I turned up pregnant. They were humiliated. Our marriage was a joke. Roger

had very little to do with us except a place to drink beer, watch TV,

and sometimes he even slept at home. Then ten years ago he got

caught stealing from his boss and was put in jail. I am currently working two jobs to keep food on the table, and we live with my

mom because we can't afford rent. So thank your lucky stars you

didn't end up with your Prince Charming.

Judy

Tina dropped the letter as she bolted across the street. She knocked on the door and pushed past Randy and flew into Judy's arms. Both women were sobbing and laughing at the same time just like they used to.

October 12, 2021 20:02

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