~The Binding~

Chapter 4

He waited in the dark.  He knew she was there.  The six boxes of what he called, ‘junk cereal’, a huge can of coffee, and a five pound bag of sugar were all sitting on the counter.  The refrigerator had bottled water, some beer that had been left over from the last time he was down here, and a gallon of milk.  Checking out the freezer, he slammed the door shut when he saw the bags of frozen breast milk, she must be still pumping, he thought. A single bowl and one spoon sat in the sink with a coffee cup.

“Eating shit again,” he muttered, as he emptied the first two boxes of cereal in the trash.  He stopped when he realized how stupid the act was.

Grabbing a beer from the refrigerator, he went to his chair.  The chair now looked like it belonged in the living room.  Ripping the throw off it, he settled into his ‘ugly recliner.”  Kevin picked at the duct tape on the chair.  Bron had fussed and then finally gave up on any attempt to get rid of the offensive object the last time they were together in this house.  He didn’t need to venture any further to know that indeed he had found his missing wife.

Kevin remembered the day of the chair fight.  Bron tugged on the arm of the chair while Kevin held onto the back and laughed.  “My chair, it stays,” he giggled as his pregnant wife fumed at him.

“No, it’s ugly, it’s leaving,” Bron would tug some more.

“My house, my chair, my memories.  It keeps me humble.  This chair belonged to Jerald, then to Tim, and now it’s mine.”  Kevin defended his chair and his sentimental feelings for the inanimate object.

“NOT!”  Bron mustered up her strength just as Kevin jumped in front of her and sat down in it.  “I like my chair and I’m keeping it.  It’s kind of like the pit for this place.”

Bron’s eyebrows arched, okay she did not want to know what her husband had done in this chair.  Thinking for a moment, she smiled, “It’s covered in plastic.”  Watching Kevin push the stuffing back into the chair was unnerving her. 

Kevin’s head tilted to the side and his eyes twinkled, “No it’s Pleather….  Plastic leather.  My mom bought it for my dad in the seventies.”  Kevin tipped back in his recliner and waited for the bottom to catch up with the rest of the chair.  Sighing he laced his fingers together, closed his eyes, and was wearing a smile.  “I love this chair.”

“Fine, but I’m covering it.  I’m not looking at that sorry piece of trash.”

Opening one eye and still grinning at her.  “Okay, you can do that.”

The lights from a car shining into the house snapped him back to the present.  Kevin was sweating bullets by now from the heat of the house.  The air conditioning wasn’t on and the air was stifling.  

He sat in the darkened room as she came in.  His eyes traveled from the spike black heels, up her bare legs, to the short skirt she was wearing.  A white top tucked into the waistband, along with an apron tied at her waist.

Bron yanked the apron off and pulled the tails of the blouse from the waistband of her pants.  “Damn the A/C is broken again.  I should’ve fixed it when I was down here last time.”  Bron spoke to herself; it had become a habit over the last few days.  In her heart, she knew that what she was doing was best for everyone involved.

Reaching into the fridge, she grabbed a bottle of water.  Now she was kicking herself for not buying a new refrigerator with an icemaker when she redecorated this house.  Uncapping the bottle, she took a sip.  Still standing in front of the appliance she stared at the photograph that was hanging from a magnet.  With the tips of her fingers, she traced the figures in the snapshot of Kevin and the kids playing.  “I miss you guys.  I hope you are okay.” 

Kevin’s stomach churned with anger as he watched her.  Bron walked over to the thermostat and banged on it with her fist.  “Damn it’s hot in here.”

A hand came around the wall, “Try this darlin’.”  Kevin’s finger poked the override button.

Kevin heard the distinct sharp intake of air.  The bottle that she was holding fell from her hand.  Both of them stared at the floor as the water blooped out of the bottle and onto the kitchen floor.

Kevin stepped from behind the wall.

Bron backed up putting some space between them.

“I should let you sweat your ass off, you fucking bitch.”  Kevin had never told her that the a/c had a season setting.  Florida had been unusually hot for December.  In order to turn it on, you had to reset the thermostat manually.

Kevin sniffed the air dramatically, “You smell like smoke.”  Sniffing again, he looked at her.

Bron backed away some more.  She could tell by the look on his face, Kevin was using every ounce of control he ever had to keep it together.  Nodding to him as her eyes dilated from watching his reaction.  “I needed money, I didn’t touch one single… I got a job tending bar.”

“I KNOW YOU DIDN’T TOUCH ANYTHING DAMMIT!”  Kevin yelled as he stepped forward into the kitchen.  Dropping his head back, he lifted the Corona that he was holding and drained it.  “Ah,” he smiled.

Bron swallowed the saliva that was building up in her mouth. 

“Let’s get down to business, shall we?”  Reaching on top of the refrigerator Kevin grabbed the documents he had been served with and tossed them on the table.  Pulling a chair out, he sat down and waited. 

Kevin watched her every move.  Bron was frightened out of her mind right now but masking it as best she could.  She should know better than to try to hide that from me, he thought.

Shifting in the chair, he leveled a look at her.  “I’ll sign them but we’re going to get a few things straight.”  Opening the document, his fingers worked absurdly up and down the folds.

Kevin’s head instantly came up and his emotions were full throttle as they locked eyes.  Bron’s body movements were saying one thing but her eyes indicated an entirely different set of feelings.

“Tell me why?”  Kevin spoke in a voice laced with anger, venom, and hurt. 

Bron shuffled further back, away from him and closer to the door.  Casting a sideways glance, she saw the keys to the car resting on the divider.

Kevin followed her gaze to the keys that sat on the plain piece of wood.  “Typical of Bron to want to run,” he screamed in his head.

Transferring her eyes from the keys back to him, she wanted to make sure he hadn’t seen where she was looking.  He hadn’t, he was staring at the divorce papers in front of him.

Shifting closer to the keys, she softly picked them up, making no noise what so ever.  Bron could read Kevin’s emotions after this much time.  His demeanor was far worse than the one he wore the night he had thought she had slept with Stevie.  She would never forget that ugly night.

Never picking his head up, he spoke, “I want to know why Bron.  As Nick said, 'We were on.'”

Slowly, Bron moved her body nearer to the door.  Kevin wasn’t even looking at her.  She needed to leave, she was afraid of him, afraid for him right now.  Her plan was carefully constructed so that she wouldn’t have a confrontation with him.  She was going to take on whoever was threatening her family by herself.  She had drawn the conclusion from the letters long ago that this was a family member pretending to be Lenny or someone in her family had been feeding him the information that he needed to terrorize her.  It had taken the news of her court case hitting the papers, tabloids, and such to solidify her plan.  She had no choice, whoever it was had now threatened to kill her entire family.  Bron took it as fact.

Wetting her lips, she looked at the floor.  “Just sign them Kevin, it’s over.”

The table bounced from the floor since it had received a pounding from Kevin’s fists.  “That’s not a reason!” he hollered.

Startled, her fingers wrapped around the car keys in her hand.  Little by little she turned.  “I’ll leave Kevin.  I can find a place to stay.”  Bron could hear the thud of her heart in her chest. 

She stepped back to open the door only to find her hand being crushed into the keys; the sharp metal edges and points were cutting into her palm.

“Drop’em,” he growled as he overpowered her and jammed her against the door, face first, with his body. 

A hand came to her neck and she froze.

“You will tell my why you would do this to me and the kids, to us…”

“Because,” she choked out.  The tears burned her cheeks as they streamed down her face.  She didn’t want to tell him the truth; he would go insane if he knew.  Lying to him would be for the best.  “I don’t love you anymore.”  There she had said it.  Bron felt her heart rumble in her chest and thought that it had literally split in half.  “Damn that hurt,” she cried to herself, she still loved Kevin, she would always love him.

The pressure on her hand increased to the point that she began to struggle to open her hand in order to stop the pain.  Kevin’s grip loosened and he grabbed the keys from her.

Bron saw his arm come up and she drew her arm back to cover her head.  She heard the whoosh of the keys as they were sent sailing in the direction of the living room.

“Liar,” he hissed in her ear.






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