Note: This was written for yesterday’s #MarquessaChallenge .
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From the strong masculine knock at the door, I already knew who it was. I considered pretending that I wasn’t back from the salon but I couldn’t do it – not to Jake.
Never to Jake.
What will he think when he sees me?
When Debbie had offered to transform me into a redhead by installing a long weave before my hair started to fall out, I had reluctantly agreed, going against my original plan of getting a pixie cut as a way to transition to shorter hair before having no hair at all. But since she had graciously offered to do it on the salon’s dime, I couldn’t refuse her kindness.
I steeled myself for Jake’s reaction as I flung open the door. His eyes twinkled as he assessed my new look.
“Whoa! You went long instead of short? Either way, you look hot Kris!”
Jake had known about my plan to go short and had even offered to go with me but I had refused. He was a total sweetheart that had his heart on his sleeve. The woman who ended up with him would be one lucky girl. But if she wasn’t good to him, I would find a way to haunt her from my grave.
“Really? You like it?” I ran my hand gently through the lush locks, a little afraid that a small tug might make it all disengage.
“It’s sexy. Is it a wig?”
“No,” I shook the hair out to show him its flow. “It’s a weave.”
“Well, being a redhead suits you. But you better have that weave strapped on tight because I’m taking you for a ride.”
“Yeah, a ride. Look…”
Jake stepped out of the way and pointed at a shiny motorcycle sitting in my driveway. It was the kind of dream bike that he’d talked about buying if he beat his cancer. And now that he had been cleared, I was ecstatic to see that he had actually followed through. Jake and I had quickly gone from being waiting room acquaintances at the hospital to good friends supporting each other in our respective fights against the big “C”.
“Oh my God! You bought it! Congrats Jake! That’s an awesome way to celebrate your victory!”
“Yes it is and I’m going to ride this bike everywhere. And I’m going to take you around with me. As soon as you’re feeling better and in remission, we’ll take a ride down to that Ben & Jerry’s Flavor Graveyard in Vermont that you always wanted to go to. But for now, grab your hat and coat so that I can take you for a quick spin.”
I grabbed my coat, pulled on my winter hat and quietly shut the front door. I headed down the stairs to join him, smiling at how optimistic Jake was for my future.
But I knew better.
From the truth coursing through my fragile veins with a vengeance, I knew that his plans for us would never see the light of day.
The only graveyard we would ever visit together would have nothing to do with Vermont.
And I would not be standing next to him.
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