Saturday, February 26, 2011
One More Chance
This is the fourth installment of "To Serve and Protect". Check out From Good to Gonzo, Making a Break for it, and Let's Straighten It Out, if you haven't already.
I returned home to Calvin. A few days passed before I called Jeremy. Calvin had forbid me to speak to my former lover again, but I had to get some closure. Jeremy had been there for me when I was too ashamed to turn to anyone else, and I felt obligated to give him some sort of explanation.
"Jeremy?" I said, when he answered the phone.
"Don't say you're sorry."
"But I am. I didn't mean for it to turn out this way."
"I thought you wanted to be in a normal relationship, not with some nut that pulls a gun on his own wife and makes her take a dump in her pants."
"I thought you wanted more. I thought you wanted someone to love and respect you."
"I understand that you're upset. I hate that I put you in the middle of our problems."
"Whatever," he mumbled, before I heard the click of the phone.
For the next few months, Calvin was on his best behavior. Whenever I asked him to do something for me, he did it. He said that he didn't want me to strain myself and jeopardize the baby's health.
"Sweetie, is the baby growing the way it's supposed to? You don't seem to have gained any weight," he asked one day.
I didn't answer him. I wasn't feeling too good about how things were going between us because no matter how many AA meetings and marriage counseling sessions we attended, he just didn't like an act. I just had the feeling that as soon as something else started to bother him, we would re-enact the previous events and I just couldn't live like that.
I often called and left messages on Jeremy's house and cell phones. For a while he just ignored them, but eventually Jeremy did calm down. There had been so many things running through my mind and I was so happy to have Jeremy to talk to again. I missed him too, so one day I came clean with Calvin.
"There is no baby."
"What are you talking about?"
"I lied. I'm not pregnant."
"What kind of crap is that? I knew you were dingy, but damn. Who in their right mind would play with somebody about being pregnant but a crazy broad like you?"
I said nothing. Calvin's true colors were showing. He was too busy ranting and raving to notice when I picked up my cell phone, dialed Jeremy's number, let it ring twice before I hung up. Calvin was still throwing insults when Jeremy knocked on the door.
"What do you want?" Calvin asked when he yanked the wooden door open. I went to the living room closet and grabbed a bag that I had packed days ago. I pushed pass Calvin.
"Where are you going? Oh, you planned this? You gonna make a fool out of me and run off with this so called public servant? Looks like he's been serving himself with my wife."
"Make a fool out of you? You've made a fool out of me for an entire year; probably throughout the seven years I've known you. So don't you dare talk to me about making a foul out of somebody," I said, as I walked out onto the front porch.
Calvin grabbed me and tried to pull me back into the house. But I wasn't having it. "Boy, you better let me go." I yanked my arm from his grasp.
Before either of us said another word, Jeremy had pushed me to the side and grabbed Calvin by the collar. He punched him in the face and let him fall to the floor. I screamed at Jeremy before he bent down to hit Calvin again.
"I see you have no problem hitting and intimidating women but when it comes to fighting men, you're nothing but a coward," Jeremy said. Calvin sat up and stared at the floor like a pouting child.
I told him that I would be back the next day to get the rest of my things. He rolled his eyes at me, got up off the floor, and slammed the door in my face.
I filed for divorce that next week. Jeremy wanted me to marry him as soon as it was final, but I told him that we should wait a little while. I moved in with him instead and he seemed to be happy with that.
"Girl, I think your boy, Calvin has totally lost his mind," Marie said, during one of her frequent visits, since I wasn't with Calvin.
"What did he do now?"
"He looks so bad every time I see him. It's like he's sprung on crack or something."
"He's probably just drinking a whole lot more," I said. I didn't want to believe that Calvin was in that bad a shape.
"I don't think he works for Chevrolet any more either. Jimmy says every time he drives by the house, Calvin is sitting out on the porch looking crazy. Girl, he won't even cut the grass."
"That's his problem. He's just reaping what he sowed. He shouldn't have been so low down to me."
"I know girl, but you need to go over there and check on him. I know y'all getting a divorce but he's still your husband right now."
I just looked at her. Marie hated Calvin, yet she had compassion for him. I decided that I would go see him, but Jeremy was going with me.
Jeremy had mixed feelings about visiting Calvin, "What do you think this is going to accomplish? You know all he's gonna say is that he misses you and wants you back."
"He may, but I don't want him back. Calvin hurt me but I don't have to hate him. I just want to see if he's all right."
"Do you need me to rough him up a bit?" Jeremy asked, looking as if he was ready to knock a brother out.
"No, I just need you there for moral support. If he becomes too much for me to handle, you can arrest him."
When we pulled up in front of the house, I couldn't believe what I saw. The house that had been my home looked as if it was falling down to the ground. He didn't say anything, just stepped aside to let us in. I almost didn't want to enter, but Jeremy gave me a slight nudge that reminded me that it had been my idea to come.
"What do you want?" Calvin slurred.
"Have you been drinking all day?" I asked him, my nose instinctively wrinkled from the stench.
"Since you left me."
"But why? You didn't really want me anymore, and I wouldn't have stayed if you did. You did me dirty and I had to get back at you."
"I'm dying, Shanell."