An excerpt from my upcoming novel, Reconciliation to Hell
A jolting noise stirred Sandra out of her sleep. Unsure of where it came from she tried to pull herself out of the bed to find out, but failed. She couldn’t move her body. And the more she tried the more it hurt. From her head to the tips of her toes. The task of opening her eyes proved to be even more of an excruciating task. Damn, Sandra thought. What the hell did I get into last night? Had she pushed herself to her partying maximum last night? She’d been hanging out like wet clothes with her party girl sister-in-law, Yvette, for the last few months but at present she couldn’t recollect anything from the previous night. All she knew was that she had a splitting headache and an eerie feeling that something was terribly wrong. Still lying down Sandra was able to lift her hands to her head where she began massaging her temples, hoping a little clarity would find her. That’s when she realized that she was naked. Naked? What the…? An eerie realization broke into her head before she could finish the thought. Sandra was not in her own bed. She was not even in her house. Fear engulfed her instantly. Through immense pain, she sprang from the bed and forced a slither of an opening of her eyes. Darkness. She managed to swing her legs off of the bed toward the floor, but within one step she lost her footing on something slippery beneath her feet and fell down.
“Owww!” she cried out, the medal frame of the bed scraping the small of her back. Moments later the pain in her back would unequivocally be the least of her worries. On the floor was the culprit of her fall. Over two dozen photos scattered all across the floor. Photos of her in very compromising positions with men other than her husband. Her and Todd. Her and Devon. Her and Richard. Her and some random guys she couldn’t even name. Who took these? Sandra desperately wanted to know! More pointedly, Who the hell had been following her and why? She was afraid to even think the question that was really plaguing question her but the answer would find her soon enough.
Headache or not, Sandra needed to get out of there quick, fast, and in a hurry! Her clothes were sprawled crazily around the room: blouse squished between the pillows on the couch, left shoe in the kitchenette, right shoe in the bathroom, pants underneath the bed. Pure insanity! Still Sandra managed to dress quickly. As fast as she could, Sandra gathered up all the photos and mashed them deep into her large designer shoulder bag, wishing she could push them into nonexistence. No such luck.
Cautiously, she peered up and down the dingy hallway of the motel. Motel! This wasn’t even her type of place. She and the company she kept had entirely too much class to be laying up in somebody’s motel. More than ever she wanted to know how she’d gotten there. She couldn’t have been that drunk last night if she’d driven herself to the motel. Did she drive herself there? That answer became clear when closed the door to her Benz and couldn’t reach the pedals. Her mind was reeling now with that piece of this puzzle solved. But who had driven her? Who had she trusted enough? Or who had taken such advantage of her? Turning the ignition, seeing that it was nearly seven A.M., Sandra knew that her priority needed to be getting home! She was a wife, a mother, a respectable family woman—at least she had been until recently. Regardless of the day of the week it was—she wasn’t sure—her children needed her.
Sandra adjusted her mirrors, put the car in reverse, then headed out of the parking lot of only God knows where she was. Her phone began vibrating beneath the clutter of her purse but it was synced to her car so she didn’t need to fumble for it to answer. “Unknown” was displayed across dashboard. Afraid, she pushed the “phone” button conveniently located on the steering wheel to answer the call.
“Hello.” Sandra said.
“Hope you slept well dear.” A heavily disguised voice said.
“Who the hell is this?” Sandra snapped, unconsciously gripping the steering wheel taking a sharp left on the corner in the direction of the expressway that would take her home.
The mystery man or woman chuckled. “If I were you”, they sneered, “I’d be more concerned about those lovely pictures of you and your friends and what could happen if they fall into the wrong hands.” More sinister laughing followed.
Ohmigod, Sandra thought. She inhaled deeply, at a momentary total loss of words. “What do you want?” she finally said, dreading the answer before the question was fully out of her mouth. She was the wife of a political candidate, a member of a wealthy and influential family. Whoever this was on the other end of the phone could demand just about anything from her and she’d have to do it in order to not bring total embarrassment and shame to herself and her family.
“That’s a good question, Mrs.- Lester - Anderson. I know you’re on your way home to play the role of dutiful wife and mother. Keep your phone close and I’ll be in touch.” Click.
Sandra could hardly see straight she was so dazed by the life threatening phone call. When she finally noticed where she was, the exit towards her home was two miles behind her. As she exited the freeway to go in the opposite direction, she fought back the tears blurring her eyes as she wondered how in God’s name she’d become the threat to the life, the marriage she couldn’t imagine being without.