DANIEL'S NEW CLOTHES
by Jennifer Brown
Lisa dropped to the floor, marveling at just how easy it was to break into somebody's house. She recalled some television news show she'd seen on burglary a few months ago. At the time she had clucked her tongue in disgust that the show was giving away secrets to breaking and entering, but now she was glad she'd paid close attention.
The house was empty, she knew it because she had waited hunched down across the street in the front seat of her car for Daniel and Babette to leave. It hadn't taken very long. Lisa knew Daniel well enough to know that if she arrived at about 8:30, shortly after 9:00 he'd be off to grab a bite at the Country Club.
Lisa looked around the living room. Right away she picked out Daniel's belongings. The statue of Buddha he'd gotten at Cozumel; the tacky golf painting his father had given him in high school; the silver beer stein he'd picked up for a small fortune at Epcot. She sighed with disgust at how easily those belongings blended in with the décor of Babette's living room. They actually looked like they belonged there next to her crystal champagne flutes and brass fireplace ornaments.
"I ought to destroy the place," Lisa breathed, heading for the bedroom. "It would serve them right."
But her plan was better. Take the subtle road, she reminded herself. No need to invite a visit from the police.
The house had what seemed like an endless hallway filled with bedrooms, but it didn't take long for Lisa to figure out which one belonged to Daniel and Babette. She crept in and flipped on the light.
Right away she saw the red dress that Babette had been wearing the night she first met her. It was hanging over the closet door, just back from the cleaners. Lisa felt the silk, unable to help herself, and was transported back in time.
Daniel had been working late again and Lisa was feeling a down about it. Exasperated, actually. She spent the first part of the evening eating cold pizza and whining about being lonely to her sister on the telephone.
"I know! We'll go out," her sister had suggested, and Lisa went with a whim and agreed.
They chose an out of the way place that served crab legs to soft jazz and had barely begun eating their salads when Lisa spotted Daniel on the dance floor nuzzling some curvy blonde in a clingy red dress.
"Bastard," her sister had growled. "Wonder if that little floozy knows he's married?"
Lisa got up and confronted them right on the dance floor. The band stopped playing and the whole place seemed to watch them.
Daniel smiled at her. Smiled.
"Well, can you blame me, Lisa?" he laughed, "I mean, really, look at you. You've got on blue jeans, for Christ's sake. Babette is classy. You're just…not."
Lisa's cheeks burned with the memory of it. She had been so embarrassed, so humiliated. How dare he do that to her? Divorce her for that sleazy blonde thing! She'd show him.
She flung open the closet doors, thanking God she'd spent the past six months in a sewing class. She'd start with Daniel's pants first, ripping out the seams in the crotch, then loosen the spaghetti straps on all of Babette's dresses. Then she'd hit the underwear drawers. Break the elastic on half and stitch closed the leg holes on the other half.
"I may not be classy like your little Bimbette, Daniel," she declared, pulling out her needle and thread, "but I sure can sew!"
Jennifer Brown is a stay-at-home mother of three and writer from Liberty, Missouri. She enjoys writing fiction, non-fiction and poetry. Her poetry has appeared in The Storyteller and The Liberty Tribune. Her fiction and non-fiction have appeared in The Storyteller and Long Story Short.