I got to her house around seven. I’d come straight from work and was still in my slacks and loafers. Not those nice heavy loafers you get in the military. But the thin, soft leather loafers that feel so good on your feet. She’d called me at five or so, I guess it was, saying he was there. He had come to get his stuff. After a week’s delay he’d finally arrived to collect. I said so what. “Aren’t you glad he’s there?” She’d broken up with him the Friday before, and told him to come get his shit out. He got back from Houston today and seemingly made it top priority. So all should have been well. She said no though. She wasn’t happy he was there. Oh, he’d gotten his stuff all right. But he’d left her some things too. Some bruises.
So now I was on my way. Five o’clock I got the call, five-fifteen I ended the call, and five-seventeen I was tearing up Central Expressway like a burning chariot. There’d be no patient idling this time. She’d dumped him before and I’d stood there on her patio smoking a cigarette, watching them through the sliding door as I leaned against the rail. I’d worn my shades so he couldn’t see the true thoughts in my eyes. She had told me to stand by and make sure he didn’t hit her. I had wondered why this was even a logical threat. But I’d been there for her. And every second it took him to collect his things and throw them in the long red duffel was a second I grew less patient. I could feel anger burning my veins as it pumped through them in place of my already boiled blood.