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She is Trying

4: What Started it All

By E. J. StrangePublished 2 years ago 6 min read

Dear readers, this is the 4th installment of this series. If you are curious or confused, please read the pervious 3.

Faith Penny took a hard gulp of Antique Weller from a square glass so full it could not accommodate ice. She winced at its harsh bite before settling into its smooth embrace. She had nowhere to be the next day. She had no tasks to fill her idleness. She was at peace, and that peace rankled at her.

Faith Penny was a woman of chaos. If everything was handled, she would go out of her way to find an issue or a problem she could solve. Some people were addicted to video games or their careers. Faith Penny was addicted to solving everyone's problems. As far as she was concerned, Peace was an illusion, and she could not stop till all the world's problems had been solved to her satisfaction. Maybe this was why she loved being a mother. It was her job to step in, and children always had problems she could be the hero in saving.

Faith Penny took another gulp this one larger. She swallowed it in hopes it would fill the void her children had left. They no longer came to her with their problems, big or small, and that chaffed at her soul. She turned on the tv to drowned out her negative thoughts only to have the sitcoms remind her of what she was missing.

Waylen Penny walked into the living room with another bottle from the kitchen, “I couldn’t find any more Weller; we must be drinking it faster than normal.” He looked at his empty glass on the side table next to his lazy boy and blinked, “Lord, Faith, where did the rest of my drink go?”

Faith laughed into her cup, already feeling giddy from the drink. She knew it had been their last bottle of the good stuff and had sent her husband out so she could steal the rest from him. She had poured it into her glass as soon as he had disappeared around the wall separating the kitchen from their living room space. It had almost over flowed when she had combined their drinks, to the point she had to slurp the bubble of amber liquid off the top. She took a greedy draw in case he took the glass away and said, “You drank yours remember.”

“I did not!” He said, amused and appalled by his wife.

“Yea, as soon as you got up, it became mine! So, you drank all yours.” she said, knowing her husband was easy to bully. There was nothing he would not let her have.

He went over to give her a kiss on the forehead, “You could have just asked, my sweet.”

Faith tilted her head up and gave her husband a better kiss, “That wouldn’t have been as much fun.”

“Fine you can have it,” He meandered back to his chair and opened the still-good though lesser bottle of Angel’s Envy Burbon. He knew his wife was suffering from empty nest syndrome and decided she deserved more of the best.

They sat silently under the glow of the tv screen letting what needed to be said fester in emotion. They sipped at their drinks and laughed and pretended. Then, Waylen got up, “Honey it’s late, and I got a lot to do at work tomorrow. You ready to come to bed?”

Faith looked at her glass. She had just filled it again and used it as an excuse, “No, I think I am going to catch up on some shows while I finish this.”

Waylen hated to go to bed on his own, but respected his wife’s wishes, “Just turn it down a little, will ya?” He shuffled off to their room upstairs.

Faith stayed up well past midnight, drinking and crying at the comedies that played out before her. She was used to being up late, doing this or that in preparation for something or another. She was not used to not being needed. Finally, Faith’s torment reached its peak, and she had to find resolve. She reached for her phone and called her oldest.

The phone rang and rang before a click. Faith thought that was her daughter picking up, so she slurred into the receiver, “Ellie, Ellie you remember...” She was cut off by a voicemail beep. Faith squinted at her phone; mad her daughter hadn’t picked up. “This is your mother!!!!!!!! Pick up! I could be dying not that you would know, since you never call.” She hung up, unsatisfied by the lack of exchange.

She dialed her youngest, Marie, next. It was well past midnight, and she did not pick up either. When the voicemail message ended, Faith started, “I guess you girls don’t love me! This is your mother call and check in every once and a while.” She hung up with a hard press that felt anti climatic on a smart phone.

Faith saw the time and blanched. No wonder her kids weren't answering! She spent the next few minutes trying to figure out how to delete messages she had sent, only to realize there was no erasing that mistake. She thought to send an apology text but decided mothers shouldn’t apologized to their children in such a tacky manner. Keyed up by that point, Faith Penny knew she would not be able to sleep.

She poured another glass, switching to the Angel’s Envy, as she scrolled through her children's Facebook feeds. They shared videos often among each other. A lot of them were “life hack” videos. “More like time wasters!” Faith thought cynically. If only they had asked her how to do such things! She would have shown them the faster, easier, bestest way to do it! She became angrier and more jealous the further she scrolled. The internet was leading her beautiful babies down a sad road with a dirty home! “Because let's face it,” she thought and then said out loud to the video she was watching, “Who has time to do things that way?”

“I'll show them the right way!” She thought, and then wondered when she would be able to do that next. It dawned on her then, “I could do something like this!” A vague plan began to take shape as she pulled up her trusty laptop that she kept on the side table, next to the couch. The old thing with its matte red casing had treated her well in the past. She had used it for years, and although it was getting slower and slower, it still met her needs. She used it to save pictures and write out recipes and little, short stories that popped into her head.

Faith Penny spent the remainder of the night, and part of the wee hours of the morning, watching all her children's shared videos, writing down what she thought she should cover first. Then, she watched YouTube videos on how to upload videos. Eventually, she slipped down a rabbit hole of nonsensical videos that lulled her into an uneasy sleep.

And so, began Faith Penny's misadventures!

Stay tuned next time to find out what trouble Faith Penny gets herself into!


About the Creator

E. J. Strange

I am new to the writing community but hope to publish a novel one day. I am simple minded and sucker for romance.

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