Carnival Glass

It’s First Line Friday over at the MindLoveMisery’s Menagerie blog. This week our first line is: Jaime spent the whole day browsing the antique store and left with just one thing.


Jaime spent the whole day browsing the antique store and left with just one thing.

And it was the perfect addition to Carmen’s collection: a Fenton Ambergina carnival glass swing vase. It had cost nearly half of her paycheck, but as far as Jaime was concerned, Carmen was worth every dime. Plus, she wanted their fifth anniversary to be extra  special.

On her way home, Jaime stopped at the Periwinkle Pub for a quick beer. It had been her favorite hang-out for years and she had some time to kill before Carmen got home from work.

“Hey, Jaime!” the bartender, Billy, greeted her, inserting an accent on the second syllable of her name. “What’ll it be?”

Jame shrugged off her coat with a smile. “The usual, I guess. Blue Moon Belgian.”

KT Tunstall’s Black Horse and the Cherry Tree was playing on the jukebox. Jaime always liked the song but never could figure out what it was about.

Billy brought her beer and Jaime tried to give him her credit card.

“Nah, I got it,” Billy smiled, but wouldn’t meet her gaze.

“Really?” Jaime sipped her beer. “Thanks, Billy, but what’s the occasion?”

“You didn’t deserve what she done. Someone like you, that should never happen to.”

“She who? What are you talking about?” Jaime’s throat felt tight and dry.

“Carmen and that…” Billy’s voice trailed off and he turned pale.

“C’mon, Billy,” Jaime’s voice trembled. “Carmen and who? What’s going on?”

“Uh, I thought you knew, I mean, everybody ‘y’know, everyb—”

“Everybody what?

Billy sighed. “I’m really sorry Jaime.  From now on, I’m keepin’ my trap shut!”

“Open it one last time an’ tell me. Please!”

“Okay, okay,” Billy sighed. “Carmen and that Emily, or Emma, whatever her name is. They’re an item now.” Billy rolled his eyes. “In fact they just left here about a half hour ago.”

Jaime sank back in her seat. “What? How?” She mumbled as the flood of tears Billy look like he was under water.

“I’m sorry, Jaime. Really sorry…”

Jaime nodded.

“You want another one?” He motioned toward her empty glass.

Yeah, sure” Jaime sniffled and put her coat back on. “I gotta run out to my car for a minute. Be right back.”

A few minutes later Jaime returned with box containing the carnival glass vase.

“Here,” she gently placed the box on the bar and scooted it toward Billy. “Give this to your girlfriend, or mom, or someone. I was gonna smash it but she’s not worth it; she’s not even worth a dime.”

 

Author: The Abject Muse

Susan Marie Shuman is an author and freelance writer/editor who currently resides in the wilds of Birmingham, AL. She shares her life with four spoiled cats, several friends (not all of them imaginary) one husband and one step-son. When she's not working, Susan enjoys horseback riding, reading, taking her cats for a spin in their pet stroller, and taking naps. An ex-bartender, recovering crash test dummy and all-around late bloomer, Susan graduated from the University of South Alabama in 2004 with a BA in English. She minored in Russian. Long-range goals include visiting Israel, the Czech Republic and Liechtenstein. Susan is also planning to launch a micronation which would be called either Suzannistan or Eastern Suzanorovia.

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