80 what’s new pussy cat

On Sunday morning I began to struggle with my future.  I had absolutely no idea what I would do next, but I knew that I was tired of process serving.  I had made a little money and more than few good contacts doing it, but by that time it was a bore.  Whether Lucas stayed or not was questionable, but I was for sure leaving.  As I said earlier, I didn’t know what I wanted.  I just knew what I didn’t want.  I did not want to be tied to a schedule any longer.  There was a cloud hanging over me since the parking lot incident. I wasn’t sure what I was going to do, but it was going to be something different.

I had enough money, and enough income from my pension, to cover my very small living expenses.  Since that was the case, why would I want to do something which I no longer enjoyed.  I made up my mind that I would not go back to work for ‘At Your Service’ period.  So next I had to decide what to do with the business.  Since I had no idea what the value of the business was, or even if it had a value, I called Jen.

“Are you sure you want to do this?’ she asked.

“Yes, I’m sure.  So do you know anyone who can tell me what the business is worth?  I realize it might not have any value at all.” I said.

“Everything has some value.  How much is the question,” Jen said.  “I know a guy who can tell you, but he will have to see your books.”

“That’s not a problem.  My tax guy sends me a yearly summery and the one from last year is about nine months old but he is welcome to see the monthly statements from the bookkeeper as well.” I replied.

“I’ll set it up as soon as possible.  I can call him first thing in the morning.”

“Jen, how do you know this guy?”  I was curious more than questioning his ability.

“He does this kind of thing for the divorces I file.  You can trust him Max,” she said.

“I didn’t doubt it.  I just wanted to make sure you weren’t leaving town on me.”

“No such luck,” she said.  “Got to go. Bob wants to go to the lake and run around on the boat today.”

“Be careful out there.” I said.

“I will Miss Paranoia.”

“Is it paranoid, if they really do want to kill you?” I asked joking.

In spite of my best intension, I gave the cat another bowl of baby aspirin and milk.  I was putting him on the edge of an aspirin OD, so no more aspirin for him till tomorrow. It was a promise made to myself.  When I put the milk down, he came dragging up from the woods.

“You have got to stop staying out all night, or this relationship is doomed,” I said.  The prick still didn’t answer me.  The limp still looked the same, so I determined that aspirin was not a wonder drug after all.  Deep inside I knew that it was a long road back for Mr. Cat, if he ever did make it back.

I decided to have lunch in a sit down restaurant for a change.  Sunday had always been just another day to me.  Just as Thanksgiving had been last week, I thought.  Still I was in the mood to put on my best jeans and the new sweater.  The one I bought in a real store, not Goodwill, and then go out to lunch.  It was only 10AM, so I had time to find a lunch companion.

“Lucas, what are you and Gwen doing for lunch,” I asked.

“We don’t have any real solid plans, why?” he asked.

“I want to take both of you to lunch.” I said.

“Let me check with Gwen to be absolutely sure,” he said.  I waited a couple of minutes.  “Okay where do you want to eat?”

“How about Steve’s?” I asked.

“Wow, what’s the occasion?  You hate that kind of place.” Lucas asked.

“Oh nothing really, I just felt like celebrate being alive.” I admitted.

“Well that’s an excellent reason for a celebration.” he agreed.  “So what time?”

“You pick it, there are two of you.  I can be there anytime.” I informed him.

“Then, how about 1PM?”

“That’s just fine.  See you there.  I’ll meet you at the entrance at 1PM.” I wanted to be sure we both agreed on exactly what was ot happen.

I took a shower in my tiny little bathroom.  Then I got dressed for my big day out.  I really did feel good about myself.  Even with my hair at that unmanageable length, I felt good.  I hadn’t made a decision about what I would do with my hair at the time.  It had been growing six months and still was only two and a half inches long.  It was too long for that cute butch look, and too short to be at all sexy.  It was just a mess.

I considered a walk down to the river.  It was only about a hundred yards of new growth forest, so it was a manageable walk. When I was in good shape, that is.  I was afraid that I was still too weak and shaky to try it just yet.  I opted instead for the indoor track at the community college again.

My plan was to walk a mile and a half, then go to the marina to just kill the rest of the time before lunch.  When I got to the track, I found the building locked up tight, so I drove straight to the marina instead.

I sat on the terrace, in my hunting style coat.  It was the only warn coat I owned and the only one I wanted to own.  I felt like it suited my personality.  My dad had called the color of those coats mustard.  I suppose it was the color of an old dried up mustard stain.

I had hunted all over to find one in my size, and without the leather patch on the shoulder.  I didn’t need a gun rest.  I wasn’t planning on doing any skeet shooting.  I bought the coat because for the most part they were indestructible.  I mean I would have to work at it to wear the damn thing out.  The other reason was the red fleece lining.  It was just pain cool looking in my opinion.

It was chilly on the terrace, but I stayed through two full cups of coffee.  I left the marina at 12:30 without having seen Jen or her husband Bob.  I was just as happy about that.  Jen was my friend and I could stand her husband, but I would just as soon not see them on a Sunday morning.  It was always a reminder of our night together.  Yes, the three of us naked in Jen’s big bed was not a memory I cherished.

I arrived at Steve’s about ten minutes early.  I managed to convince the hostess to find me a cup of coffee.  She didn’t much like it, but she was willing, even though I looked like I just walked off the farm.  It was just my pure charm that convinced her.

When the kids, as I thought of them, arrived we went in to lunch.  Steve’s was the kind of place with real white table clothes.  The tables were set with three forks, two spoons and two knives.  I totally ignored that and just ate like I would at the Pizza and Pasta Pit.

The menu was on a kind of paper that felt like cloth.  I refused to look at the prices when I ordered.  I ordered a small rib eye steak with no bread or potato.  The only other thing I ordered was a small salad.  I was still taking it easy on my damaged stomach.  The salad might not have been a good idea, but I wanted it so screw the gas.  I probably made everyone feel sorry for me when I waited until the steak came to eat my salad.  It was supposed to have been eaten alone, but since I paid for the damn thing.  I decided that I would eat it any way I wanted.

“So Gwen, how did the show turn out?” I asked.

“We finished the first two episodes and they are already on line.  Do you want the address, I can email it to you.”

“No thanks, I was there.”  I said it smiling as warmly as I could.

“The hit count has been very good so far.  It will grow every time they post a new segment.” Lucas informed me/

“Well if that’s a good thing, then I’m glad.  That show cost Marty a lot of money.”

“Not so much and he called Mike to say how happy he was with the results so far.  We haven’t really gotten into the good parts yet.” Gwen said.

“Oh you mean the part where I almost died?” I asked it in passing.

“She didn’t mean it like that,” Lucas said.

“Sure she did, and I don’t blame her.  She is just doing what she does Lucas.”  I turned my attention to Gwen.  “Tell me Gwen, did you know from the start that Mosby was a plant.”

“Maybe we should go,” Gwen said.

“Don’t go, I didn’t invite you here to get into that.  I invited you here to give Lucas a choice.  To do that, it seems that you need to be part of it.”

“What kind of choice Boss.  Is it going to be the job or Gwen?”  You already know my answer to that.”

“No Lucas it isn’t drop Gwen or you are fired.  That was a tempting idea, but I decided not to do it.  The reason I invited you to lunch is that I’m leaving ‘At Your Service’.  I’m having an appraiser take a look at the company to see if there is anything to sell.  I thought I would let you know, so that you and Gwen can decide whether to buy it or not.”

“Damn that’s a shock,” Lucas said then he seemed lost in thought a few minutes.  Then he added, “I don’t have any money.”

“I am aware of that.  If you want it and agree to my terms, you can pay me from the profits.”

“What are your terms?” he asked.

“You do not run bail skips.  Just serve the papers. You can still do the computer checks for the insurance company in your spare time.   If you are the only one to support, there is enough money in the business for that.”

“Why not the skips?” he asked.

“They are dangerous and you really don’t have that kind of training or the personality for it.  I know that sounds harsh, but I’m sure Gwen would feel better if you weren’t chasing after dangerous and usually violent felons.”

“Yes I would,” Gwen agreed. “Tell me why you are doing this?”

“Well the deal is between me and Lucas, not you.  But to be honest, I am bored with the business.  It was fun starting it.  It was fun making it work, but now I’m bored more than I’m not bored.  It’s time for me to move on.”

“What will you do?” Lucas asked.

“I have no idea, but I have been having this feeling of impending change for a while now.  Something is coming my way I’m sure.  There is just a vibe in the air.  I know that sounds silly, but it’s how I feel.”

We had been talking and eating.  A conversation summary is always much shorter than the real conversation.

I watched the two of them trading glances for most of the meal.  After I put my debit card into the little folder and handed it back to the waiter, Lucas said. “We will need to talk.”

“Yeah and you need to know what the appraiser says.  I don’t plan on keeping anything from you.  You need to make an informed decision.”

“Thank you for this Boss.  I had no idea this was coming.” Lucas said.

“I just decided last night, so I had no idea either.”  We pretty much left it like that and went our separate ways.

On the way home I decided that it was time to get the cat to come closer.  I bought a can of whole Icelandic sardines packet in spring water.  I didn’t think the cat could resist.  If he did, I planned to eat them and think of my dad.

About cindypress

sorry it is a mystery.
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4 Responses to 80 what’s new pussy cat

  1. jack says:

    Life’s changes and challenges sometimes come as a shock. Max selling At your service came as a shock in the story but I’m sure it will lead to more exciting chapters and intrigue . Thanks

  2. cindypress says:

    Oh yes the game’s afoot my dear Watson. That’s why it’s a soap opera. One thing does not necessarily lead directly to another.

  3. mal says:

    Sardines also made me think of my father. two generations removed from chasing raindeet across the frozen tundra.

  4. cindypress says:

    frankly I was the only girl ever to eat sardines with the guys while bird hunting in the south. I was fifteen and my dad gave me the can with hot sauce. Burned me so bad I felt it when I crapped for two days.

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