Rhonda Reschedules

Submitted into Contest #170 in response to: Write about a plan that goes wrong, for the better.... view prompt

17 comments

Funny Happy Romance

Rhonda rescheduled when she lost her alpaca.

“I have no idea where she is,” Rhonda explained over the phone, her voice catching with panic after every third word, “Louisa never DOES this. She NEVER runs away. WHAT could she have been thinking?”

Marty assured her that they could reschedule. He had nothing on his calendar for the next few months. His cousin was getting married in April, but that was it. The wedding was going to be underwater on one of those new matrimonial submarines that were becoming all the rage with brides. He would have to take some type of medication for his claustrophobia, but other than that, he was looking forward to it. A dolphin would be the ring-bearer. The whole thing sounded absolutely adorable.

“We can get together next Thursday,” Rhonda decided, “I’ll have found Louis by then. If not, I’ll just go get another alpaca. She’s not the only game in town. I’m sick of her not appreciating me. I am JUST so sorry. REALLY I am.”

On Thursday, she was forced to reschedule again. All her teeth had fallen out and she was going to an emergency dentist appointment to have them put back in. Obviously, she couldn’t call Marty to tell him what happened as talking would be next-to-impossible, but she sent him a detailed email all about what occurred that ended with--

...Which is why the medical community refuses to take this condition seriously. Mass organic involuntary tooth extraction happens to one in every two million people a year and NOBODY is talking about it. I should be good for next Wednesday if you’re free then? You can be the first person to check out what I hope will be a lovely new smile. Best, Rhonda.

With no plans for the evening, Marty went to the restaurant he’d secured reservations at by himself. The maître d gave him a pitying look when Marty informed him it would be a solo kind of evening. Once he was seated at his table, he contemplated ordering whatever he thought Rhonda might order as a show of solidarity during this difficult time for her. The trouble was he had never met her in person. His mother had set them up after speaking with Rhonda’s mother at a flea market. Both mothers agreed that their children were fundamentally unfit to live in society and thought they might get along. Numbers were exchanged. Rhonda texted Marty. A plan was made. Then the alpaca ran away. Now the teeth.

“Yes,” said Marty as the waitress took out her pad, “I’ll have the jello. I think Rhonda would have liked that.”

On Wednesday, Rhonda rescheduled when it was discovered that her apartment building had been infiltrated by Portuguese spies.

“You should see it, Marty,” she yelled over the sound of CIA agents screaming for everyone to line up near their vans, “It’s pandemonium. Louisa is scared to death. She’ll probably run away again. I don’t know if I’d have the strength to find her a second time. She was hiding out at an abandoned Burger King. Do you believe that? Animals are so strange. I DON’T CARE IF YOU’RE CIA! DO NOT TOUCH MY REBA DOLLS! THAT FANCY FIGURINE IS WORTH A FORTUNE!  The U.S. government has no sensitivity when it comes to a collector’s item. Do I sound all right? I’m still getting used to these new teeth. They made them a bit too big and now I feel like a New Yorker cartoon. Anyhoo, how does next Friday look to you? I’ll need some time to recover from all this.”

That night, Marty had nothing planned, because he was going to suggest to Rhonda that they fly by the seat of their pants. He would need to do the flying on his own, apparently. He bought a ticket to the symphony. They were going to play the entire score from Transformers. There were rumors that Mark Walhberg might even make an appearance. When he took his seat, he noticed a very beautiful woman sitting next to him.

“Are you here by yourself as well,” she asked.

It turned out that the two of them had both had dates rescheduled. Hers had been with a man named Ben who had his apartment building raided by the FBI after it was discovered that the entire building was infested with Swedish drug dealers. She wanted to make the most of her evening and so here she was.

“My name is Natalie,” she said, and Marty felt instantly charmed.

Over the next few weeks, Rhonda kept rescheduling for a variety of perfectly understandable reasons. Flash floods, overdue library books, and an emergency trip to the Bermuda Triangle to look for her Great-Uncle’s lost sailboat.

Every time she rescheduled, Marty would schedule a date with Natalie instead. Soon, they were seeing each other nearly every night. On one moonlit occasion involving a stroll around town with ice cream cones in hand, Natalie posited that perhaps they were in a relationship now?

Marty felt that was probably true, but he wanted to give Rhonda a chance before he made any final decisions. After all, they’d yet to have their first date. Natalie found that to be an entirely reasonable way of looking at things since she was still attempting to reschedule with Ben after he went into witness protection.

The trouble was Rhonda and Ben kept rescheduling as Marty and Natalie kept developing even stronger feelings for each other. While they tried to do the right thing, they were also allowing their connection to take its natural course. After a year or so, Marty was enjoying a picnic with Natalie when he felt an urge to do something he hadn’t considered up to that point. He stood up only to kneel down.

“Natalie,” he said, “Will you marry me?”

As tears formed in Natalie’s eyes, Marty’s cell phone pinged. It was an email from Rhonda apologizing for needing to reschedule again. Her long lost twin sister had showed up and now they were going to have to solve the mystery of who murdered their grandfather--assuming he was even dead. She was expecting a lot of twists and turns and could Marty maybe be available the following Sunday for brunch?

Marty was so excited when Natalie accepted his proposal that he forgot to reply to the email. It sat in his inbox for years gathering whatever digital dust accumulates on that kind of correspondence. He and Natalie got married, had children, and lived a very happy life.

Rhonda and her twin sister managed to solve their murder and then opened a detective agency. Shortly thereafter, Rhonda’s sister disappeared again. Rhonda chose to keep the business going regardless. She needed a hobby now that rescheduling with Marty was no longer her primary activity. On the day she officially opened for business, her first call was from a man named Harry (whose real name was Ben) calling from an undisclosed location somewhere in the American Midwest. He wanted to track down a woman named Natalie who had stopped returning his emails years ago.

“I could come in on Monday and tell you all about it,” he said.

Rhonda looked down at her calendar.

“Sure,” she said, “I’ll see you then.”

October 28, 2022 18:50

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17 comments

Keri Dyck
17:34 Nov 15, 2022

Hi! I was assigned your story to critique, but nothing’s popping out at me :P Impeccable story, hilarious all the way through.

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Story Time
18:05 Nov 15, 2022

Thank you so much, Keri.

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Victoria Lucas
17:49 Nov 11, 2022

I really enjoyed this story. I absolutely love your humorous writing style. I always look forward to your new submissions and this one did not disappoint. This story deserves recognition.

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Story Time
00:42 Nov 12, 2022

Thank you so much, Charlie.

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AnneMarie Miles
13:32 Nov 02, 2022

This was a funny one, Kevin! I don't know if I'd have Rhonda's courage to reschedule that many times and for those ridiculous reasons, but props to her! Glad it worked out for everyone in the end....though maybe a part 2 is necessary to see what happens with Ben and Natalie... Thanks for a good laugh!

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Story Time
22:56 Nov 02, 2022

Thank you so much, Anne!

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Rama Shaar
13:13 Nov 01, 2022

This was funny! I found those excuses (?) hilarious! It was an enjoyable read that flowed seamlessly.

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Story Time
16:23 Nov 01, 2022

Thank you so much, Rama.

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Lily Finch
17:01 Oct 31, 2022

Pretty good story, Kevin. One life is so interesting, while the other is pretty run-of-the-mill. I liked reading this one. LF6

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Story Time
19:44 Oct 31, 2022

Thank you so much, Lily.

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Marty B
04:33 Oct 29, 2022

It all worked out! For Rhonda and Harry (Ben) anyway. I am sure they will live a life of detective mysteries, CIA and FBI connections, international travel, exotic animals and other intrigues. I do feel sorry for those other two, stuck in a boring life following an orderly schedule.

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Story Time
22:50 Oct 29, 2022

To each his own! ;)

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Rebecca Miles
14:32 Nov 09, 2022

"It sat in his inbox for years gathering whatever digital dust accumulates on that kind of correspondence." Alliteration that serves the humour has got to be a most wonderful thing. The opening to this story is comedic gold. Louis the Lama needs to reappear; the next time you give your funny bone a workout, please let him sneak in, even if for just a scene!

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Story Time
17:00 Nov 09, 2022

Thank you so much, Rebecca!

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Eileen Turner
23:12 Nov 06, 2022

'children fundamentally unfit to live in society' -- Yeah, I was a high-school teacher, and they really do exist! LOL

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Rabab Zaidi
13:37 Nov 05, 2022

Loved it !!

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Jack Bell
02:11 Nov 02, 2022

For the last two months I've been unable to buy frozen broccoli at the supermarket. It has knocked a hole in my diet, is starting to prey on my mind, and is the reason I immediately clicked on your name. Now it all makes sense. Great story. Some excellent laugh lines. Flawless prose with sweetly balanced and perfectly dead-panned surreality. I now fully expect to see the supermarket's frozen florets flourish once more.

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