A Woman Scorned
"I don't disagree with you, but you have to admit, this puts me in a delicate position." Charlene Faulkner didn’t like where this conversation was headed. She had faced up to the fact, long ago, that if her husband found out about her five-year-long affair, that he would walk out on her and take her kids – her kids, damn it – and leave her with nothing. She was used to having everything (two of everything if you included the open tab she had on her lover’s credit card) and to lose it all would be devastating – not so much the loss of her family; she was young, she could always start again – but the loss of privilege and standing she had in her small community of friends and associates.
“You see, I have always been the ‘go to’ girl; having trouble with your husband...go and see Charlie. A bit short of funds this month...Charlie will help you out. I like that and I will miss it if this comes out. I agree that we can’t continue to sneak around; meeting discreetly in motel rooms and deserted park benches. I know I need to leave my husband, but it is something I am just not ready to do. Surely, you can understand that?”
Charlie looked into the eyes of the man who had held her last night, and the previous five nights. As far as her husband was aware, she was in Adelaide for a business trip, when in actual fact, she and Brady (what a sexy name, just like the main characters in those awful books her sister loved to read) were in a motel in downtown Sydney, just a few kilometres from her husband and home.
“I understand, Char, but something has to give. I have lived up to my end of the deal – the divorce paperwork is going through now. Not that Belinda really cares. She hated the long hours and the not knowing where I was – or with whom.” He kissed her softly on the forehead and gently slid a stray hair out of her eyes. “I want us to be together, and I want it soon. Do you understand?”
Charlie nodded once and started weeping as she watched Brady walk out the front door.
Charlie hurled the telephone against the wall. “Bastard,” she screamed at the top of her lungs. “Just wait ‘til I see you again, Mr. I-Want-Us-To-Be-Together.” A deep breath. “Bastard.”
She had received a phone call from her friend – a desk jockey down at the local police headquarters – informing her that the man she was seeing, the man of her dreams, was actually a private detective, hired by her husband to keep an eye on her, especially on her extended ‘work trips’. Her friend had told her that she had been tipped off by one of the other rich socialites who had discovered that her husband had done the same. Charlie’s friend put two and two together and knew she had to ring Charlie – as much as she knew it was going to hurt her.
“You bastard...I will teach you to try and have your cake and eat it, too.” Charlie picked up the telephone – the parts of it that were still attached to the cord – and threw it back down onto the floor in disgust. Cheap Japanese crap, she thought to herself as she fished her mobile phone out of the pocket of her Hermes handbag. She studied the phone for a moment, trying to remember his number. She wasn’t even completely sure she had it. The more she thought about it, the more she realised that he had always been the one to contact her, he was always the one that made the dates and times, that she was just a passenger on his train of deception.
Damien Faulkner was ecstatic. His wife, Charlie, had rung him and told him she had to stay away for another three nights – the convention was going longer than she had previously thought – and that she would be home on Sunday. Did he mind? Hell, he didn’t mind at all. Two phone calls later – one to the private eye he had following his wife, and the other to the sexy, if not slightly docile, secretary from the office he had been seeing for months – and he jumped in the car for a quick drive down to the local cellars. Kelly (or was it Kerry?) was always willing to ‘put out’ over a bottle of Dom. Long Live the Dom.
Brady sat alone in the near-empty restaurant awaiting the arrival of Charlie. She had sounded needy – desperate to see him. He knew in advance that she was going to call – Damien had told him about the conversation with Charlie – and he was excited to see her again. He knew that playing both sides was tricky – dangerous even – but she was such a good sort, he just couldn’t resist.
He saw her enter the foyer, dismissed the maitre’d with an annoyed flick of her delicate wrist (she was lucky she wasn’t really angry – the wrist would have snapped right off) and searched him out across the room. Their eyes met and Brady could sense something different about her; her hair was not perfect, she had left off the make-up and she was dressed like she had just come from the gym.
Brady watched her approach with growing apprehension; she looked mighty pissed off about something and he had already made the assumption that he was going to be the target of her fury.
“Bastard,” she screamed at him, “you complete and utter bastard.”
Brady knew – just knew – that this was not going to end well. He was even more sure when he saw he remove the snub-nosed pistol from her coat pocket (both coat and pistol he had paid for – bitch was going to shoot him with his own money) and point it in his direction.
“You picked the wrong field to play in, mister,” Charlie screamed as she fired twice, taking most of Brady’s head off in the process.