Monday, June 24, 2013

2. "Beach House"

Success is what matters. At least, I was pretty sure of that yesterday. I had everything any woman would want. An important position managing a hedge fund. The private jet, you have no idea how freeing it is to know you can go almost anywhere in a few hours. Plenty of houses, such as this one. It’s a fantastic summer home really. I had it made to exact specifications, following the most modern designs with elegant straight lines. Gigantic glass windows facing the ocean to take in the entire panoramic view from almost anywhere in the building. Some might say it was empty and austere. No this is elegance and functionality. Also …

I am … so sore...

Oh, I almost forgot to mention, my husband. We first met when he applied to work for me. It was far more than a business relationship. We seemed perfect for eachother. Though, thats what everyone says, but it seemed true. Then yesterday he left. No ... thats not right. I should restart.


“I think that’s a rather silly thing to say, Alex.” He should know not to bring up new topics like that. “Don’t mar our first vacation with talk of children.”

After starting confident, he was now quite flustered, “What’s so silly about it? This is as good a time as any.”

“No! today we should be relaxing, children are work and vacations are about taking a break from work.” Ha, he most certainly could not have a comeback to that!

Indeed, the conversation ended there. I suppose that I was somewhat disappointed. In reality, I do want to have kids, but I couldn’t let him bring up the topic. Those sorts of things are a woman's purview after all, I should be the one to initiate such a conversation. Yes, that would take quite some planning to make sure it came out just right. Oh, I’m getting distracted again.

We started the day in the the kitchen. Containing all the modern amenities, the room was an excellent place to have any meal. One could prepare a banquet if that was their fancy. Or, if I actually could cook. Maybe I should have asked Alex his capabilities in that area, but that doesn’t matter anymore.

Though the kitchen was situated on the front of the house, given the open floor plan, one could still have a great view of the ocean. After Alex had looked out across that curved horizon for a time, “It seems we will have to deviate from our planned schedule, Rachel.” He said this in an annoyingly offhand way, he had seemed so gung ho previously. “Those waves would make any shore based activities treacherous.”

“You are just easily frightened.” I didn’t like how he was acting, more so I was upset that we were not going to be following my plan. “I’ve seen far worse surf in the past.”

He said with a coy smile, “You may have seen worse, but I dare say you have never swam in worse.” So we spent most of the day simply laying on the beach. I tried to enjoy the sun. Next time I would not let him win so easily.

Near the end of the day an old associate of mine, I usually called him Jeff, came to our house in a hurry. “Well, I’m shocked to see you two still here, or maybe not.” He did not seem to be in his usual joking manner.

Alex tried playing along, “Despite rumors, we do know how to relax.” He glanced over to me. “And Rachel is not the workaholic she’s made out to be.”

“I see, spending a little too much time in the bedroom to watch the news?” Ah, there’s the humor. “So, at the minimum, did you notice that the tide has not gone out?”

I interjected before my husband could respond, “Why yes, because of that this wimp did not want to go swimming.”

“Well, he had the right idea,” Oh dear, Jeff’s being serious again. “It just so happens that a hurricane is going to be coming near. None of the charts are predicting it will pass through here, but personally, I’m not taking any chances.” After pausing for a moment, “though I know how you don’t like your plans to be disrupted, so I thought I’d stop by and say that I was heading out.”

Exuding with the confidence I always have, “Well you are right about that, see you later.” but I noticed that my husband did not look as if he was in agreement.

After we left Jeff at the door, Alex led me into the living room and sat close to me on the couch. He spoke quietly. “I have a really bad feeling, we need to leave as well.”

I could see he was trying to charm me, but I would have none of it. “Again, I expected nothing less. Well, I am staying.” I almost got emotional. He can’t refuse that, he would have to leave me here.

He responded somewhat resigned, “Then I guess ... I will have to leave you.” He got up and started to head for the door. “Don’t worry, I’ll leave the car in case you change your mind. I’ll call a taxi.”

What!? He can’t leave me. Is this supposed to be some sort of trick? Is he trying to … do what I always do to him? I sat there stunned, waiting for him to come back. I heard the front door close quietly. Still not believing. After a half hour I realized he wasn’t coming back.

Ha, when he comes back after the storm, he will be the fool. I will be seen as the brave woman that I truly am...


What’s that strange feeling in my chest? Then she woke up. With a sore body, she tried to struggle again, but it was no use. She opened her eyes and realized that she had not been dreaming last night. The storm had unfortunately shifted east. Her house of glass was shown to be the foolish tower of transparent cards it always was.

She wasn’t sure exactly what had happened, but something smashed into the house during that terrifying night. I wish my ears would stop ringing. Now she was pinned in between two bent steel beams, her head set upon some sand. Occasionally she could feel the tickle of some water on her cheek. She wondered how she could be so close to the water, but then realized that the beach must have washed out from under the house. Never in her life had she been so out of control.

As she lay there, she began to reflect on that. Various events, all exactly according to plan, played through her head. People she hurt, suffering for no other reason except that things had to go her way. She had tricked her own father to sell his company so that she could start hers. Finally, the man she married. It wasn’t really love, that was just what accomplished women did. She could see it now, her life was no different than this house, transparent, empty, and broken. She had only ever worked for herself.

As the quiet waves began to wash further inland, she began to cry. Unlike times she had wept before, this was not about her predicament. She wept for the people she hurt and for her husband whom she was going to hurt because of her last willful act.


If her ears were working, she might have heard the sound of a car pulling up, then shouts. Who could they be calling?

Maybe he really doesn’t like me. Then my end would be a gift. He would finally be rid of me, free to find someone else who would actually love him...

A man was jumping about in a pile of debris terrified with what he might find, she was suppose to have followed. He lifted up a particular beam to look under it...

As water covered her face, she thought, I am ... so sorry.

She repeated it over and over again, even as she began to blackout with the feeling of hands pulling her head up.

Well, that first person section was a bit dodgy. The purpose was to set up another flawed character and it does do that. But frankly, after I wrote the first paragraph, I just didn’t like the story and that probably shows. Though, that is the point of this methodology. Keep these short so that I don’t get stuck in a bad idea and lose motivation.

Also I didn’t post this on time. It was finished, but I forgot to tell my editor that it was ready to be read. So I assure you, that will not happen again.


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