THRICE Fiction Apr. 2014 - Page 10

I could go to Heathrow. We could have a time-out in the gents. I’d never done it in a public toilet, so that would be new. And then I could go home and… oh God I’d meet my husband and I’d feel so guilty I’d go red as beetroot and fumble my words and he would guess what happened and be unhappy, and I’d hate to make him unhappy. Would he do the same to me? Of course he would, but that didn’t make it any easier for me. It wasn’t my morals stopping me, but I was not a good liar. The train slowed to a halt. My baby maker was throbbing like ET’s magic finger. —My stop, I flustered. The doors opened. My heart closed, opened, closed. I said, —Bye. And got off the train. I glanced back and caught him looking at me. Could anyone be as stupid as me? Why hadn’t I said Heathrow? I funnelled along with all the other zombies to the exit, but I couldn’t leave, I had to see him again. I turned back, then stopped, what was I doing? I caught the next train to Heathrow. I hated the tube. All these people just sitting there like Mexican beans being bounced around. What the hell would I do when I got to Heathrow? There were four terminals. Which one was for Chicago? I didn’t know what time his flight was. I looked around the carriage for a map or plan. Just the stations, not where the flights went. I couldn’t stay for long. I had to take Daisy to dance class. I didn’t really have to take her, but it was nice for her. All the other mums took their budding Pavlovas, so I shouldn’t expect mine to go on her own. I’d missed a couple of times and she’d said it didn’t matter but I could tell from her eyes that she’d been disappointed. This train was going to terminals 1, 2 and 3. Wouldn’t it be just my luck if Chicago was terminal 4. What if all the terminals had flights to Chicago? I didn’t even know if he was flying direct. Maybe he’d go to New York first. I thought about getting off the train, and going back. I arrived at Heathrow, looked at departures: everywhere — except Chicago. I went to a desk. —Excuse me can you tell me which flight goes to Chicago? —Depends on the carrier. —I think it’s the next flight out. I’m meeting someone to say goodbye. —American Airlines, 14.45, terminal three. I went to terminal three and looked along the queue waiting for American Airlines flight something-or-other: no gorgeous man with a stiffy. Although I doubted that he’d still have a stiffy after 40 minutes. I hoped he wouldn’t — for his sake. I wandered around feeling stupid. What would I say if I met him, Oh, hello, fancy meeting you here? Are you catching a plane? Um, no no, I’m meeting someone. • I went back to Hammersmith. When I got to Daisy’s school, she’d already left. I rushed to her dance class. It had started. I waited. At least I could take her home. I stood in the corridor looking at the notice board, and I could feel him pushing against my ass. It made me feel warm and stupid. SAMANTHA MEMI is a housewife who cleans, dusts and cooks. Her windows are sparkling bright. There are no cobwebs lurking in corners, and her bathroom is germ free. Her basement is a bit smelly but, as the only person who goes down there is her husband, she doesn’t mind. Her tips on household maintenance can be found at Astoria Saudade K atelyn left Mike one day before the refrigerator broke. They never thought much about the refrigerator during their 3-year relationship. When all that need to be cold turned room temperature Mike decided to throw out the refrigerator. Mike wrapped his body around it and attempted to move it. Katelyn never considered its age or how it got into their five story Astoria walk-up. The refrigerator clung to the sticky residue that haloed its base. Mike pressed his entire weight down to move the monolith. A crackling sound erupted as the refrigerator was ripped from its crusted comfort zone. Mike shimmied it towards himself and saw a thick residue spot where the refrigerator once stood. Inside the layer was old food, Q-Tips, dead roaches and dust bunnies; all those things that build up over the years. Mike called in sick; he could not imagine eight hours of sitting in his cubicle. Katelyn went to her East Side legal services office. Her first night alone she fed squirrels thrice. fiction. 8 André M. Zucker THRICE FICTION™ • April 2014 Issue No. 10 in Astoria Park while he lay in what used to be their bed. Mike worked at a nonprofit company which he found meaningful but underwhelming. Katelyn was visibly disheveled when she walked in but her colleagues were too polite to comment. Mike continued to push the refrigerator out of the apartment. Neither of them had been willing to clean while they dismantled their life. Mike barely noticed how much junk accumulated until he started to move the refrigerator. Katelyn booked a hotel just before her lunch break and immediately dreaded an evening alone. Mike cleaned up with each of the refrigerator’s movements. Katelyn would have liked to come home to an orderly living space. Not knowing where to go Katelyn crossed the 59th Street Bridge. She wandered Astoria until she arrived a falafel restaurant. They both loved Astoria’s gritty boulevards and quaint side streets. They frequented the neighborhood’s Greek and Turkish eateries and shopped at the local supermarkets. Katelyn moved into his apartment on 37th 9