Chapter 4 “The Discovery”
Unfortunately, Amy didn’t anticipate how quickly the bond between Lisa and Jeremy would grow. After just a couple of weeks, she found herself enduring stories about the funny things that happened when he was with her. Conversations between Jeremy and Lisa overflowed with inside jokes and innuendo that Amy could not understand. Countless awkward moments awaited Amy anytime the three of them were in a room together. She grew tired of being excluded and sometimes felt isolated from her own boyfriend’s life. Jeremy’s rekindled friendship with Lisa was starting to get under her skin more with each passing day.
Amy started to feel badly about neglecting Jeremy and guilty for her ill feelings towards Lisa. After all, Amy had suggested they spend more time together. However, she never told them to spend every waking hour together either. In an attempt to spend more time with him, despite her schedule, Amy had asked Jeremy to move in with her and he happily accepted.
The quality of their time improved for about a week, until Lisa began to show up every day looking for her best friend. Only a week away from her final exam, Amy felt comfort that things would be getting back to normal soon enough. Her short-lived comfort ended on a cool October night, when she received some disturbing news from her best friend Whitney.
“Listen Amy, I don’t know the best way to tell you this, so I’m just gonna say it,” Whitney began. “I was downtown running errands, and I saw Jeremy and Lisa walking out of the Marquee Hotel together.”
“What are you talking about? He wouldn’t do that Whitney; that’s not true!” Amy shouted while pulling the car over to complete the conversation. Her heart began racing and she felt faint. Her best friend’s words were like venom coursing through her veins, both painful and deadly. Amy paused for a moment taking a deep breath, praying that her ears had deceived her.
“Amy, I wouldn’t lie to you! You know that. I saw that bastard come out of the Marquee with her! They were laughing and giggling and I don’t even know what,” furiously responded Whitney. Heartbroken over the suggestion that she would dare lie, Whitney realized Amy’s reaction was a typical case of denial. Her motives, created out of protection and love for a best friend, were of pure and good intentions. Understanding that deceitful acts such as these always find a way of surfacing eventually, she wanted Amy to hear it from her first. She would not allow Jeremy any more time to figure out the error in his ways, and wanted him to suffer for this treachery.
Images of graphic and repulsive sexual acts between Jeremy and Lisa circled Amy’s mind while her heart rejected the incoming thoughts swiftly. A battle on two fronts, doubt and belief, were waging war through her fragile psyche, and belief won effortlessly. In deep meditation, she feverishly twirled a strand of hair around her index finger, trying to create an explanation that made sense. Minutes of silence passed as she formed her doubts into questions. Whitney waited for what seemed like years until Amy finally spoke again. “Whitney,” she said sharply, “I was so busy studying. I know that they hang out. I mean, could it be that you just saw them near the hotel and not coming out of the hotel?”
“Amy, it was him and her: Lisa and Jeremy. Shit! I could almost swear he saw me, but he put his head down. Disgusting! Made me sick. I’m sorry girl. I had to tell you,” confidently replied Whitney. She paused and took a deep breath, filling her lungs with air and her heart with sympathy as she continued, “I love you Amy. I’m so sorry I have to be the one to tell you this. Are you okay?”
“I don’t know,” responded Amy, “I just don’t know.”
Parked off to the side of the road, in an abandoned church parking lot, Amy began sobbing uncontrollably. Hunched over in the front seat of her car, she gasped for air every few seconds as the rain cloud in her eyes emptied relentlessly into her lap. Tears ran down the sides of her hands, dripping off her fingers and she rubbed her face in disbelief. She slowly reached into the center console in search of some tissues. Finding an old napkin underneath a heap of candy wrappers and empty cigarette packs, she thought of Jeremy immediately. He always used the center console as his personal garbage dump, and she hated that about him. She quickly scooped up the garbage with both hands and threw all of it out the window, hoping that she would feel better, but she felt worse.
Whitney remained holding the line, her temper burning hotter than the sun, as she listened to Amy shriek in agony. Whitney was never fond of Jeremy, his cocky attitude towards her husband, and her dislike intensified into hatred. Whitney heard the sound of heavy breathing into the earpiece. She whispered, “It's okay Honey. Let it all out. Just let it all out.”
While rubbing a coarse, crumbled napkin against her swollen eyes, Amy spoke in a somber tone, “We were supposed to go to dinner tonight at seven o’clock. I told him I had to make a quick stop at the library, and he said that was fine, we’d just do it at eight. He was with Lisa. I could hear her giggling in the background. I can’t believe he would do this to me, it doesn’t make any sense.”
“Did you tell him what time you’d be home?” quizzed Whitney.
“Yeah, I said around seven thirty or so, why? What does that matter?” Amy asked innocently.
“Get your ass home RIGHT now. He’s probably - you know…I don’t want to say it.”
“Come on…you really think he would? In our house?”
“I don’t know…this is just horrible, you know?” responded Whitney.
“This can’t be happening Whit. It just can’t be! I mean, I can’t believe this. I don’t know what else to say. I feel like I’m suffocating!”
“Oh girl, I’m so sorry. Shit! You want me to come get you and bring you home? I’ll smack that bitch across her face.”
“No, I have to do this on my own. What am I gonna do? He’ll know I’m home the minute I drive up!” Retorted Amy.
“Okay look,” Whitney said conspiratorially, “You’ve got to park up the street and go in from the garage. He won’t be expecting that. Catch that bastard, tell him you are finished with his lies, then get your stuff and come over here.”
“Barry won’t mind if I stay with you?” she asked politely, giving a thought to Whitney’s offer.
“He doesn’t have a choice. I’ll go on strike. He’ll have dirty clothes, no dinner, and I’ll start making him change some diapers. That gets him every time. Ha!” Whitney joked, trying to cheer up her friend.
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