(If you’re new to the Saga, follow it from the beginning.)
Gina’s tear-soaked slumber didn’t last very long. After only a few weeks in her new place she was pretty much used to the middle of the night wake up calls, courtesy of thin walls and those newly weds in Apartment 3C. “That damned Darla and Tom,” Gina mumbled to herself. Those two always chose the midnight-ish hour for either a session of passionate jack-hammering or arguing (or sometimes both at the same time). Not that Gina knew them personally. She was “introduced” to this couple via information they unintentionally shared through those thin walls, of course.
She’d been in and out of sleep for more than 4-hours now. There would have been plenty of time to toss and turn, wallow some more, fall asleep, and wake up to wallow again, but Darla and Tom made that impossible for Gina right now. Tonight, Apartment 3C served up the high decibel sounds of a heated argument with a side of “I’m gonna call the f-cking cops, you bastard!” screamed Darla.
Gina rolled her eyes and squashed an extra pillow on top of her head. Surely it would amplify her bed head in the morning.
Darla was high again. After last year’s boot camp back injury (led by a half-assed uncertified instructor for waaay cheaper than those other boot camps), she was compelled to keep poppin’ the Oxycodone after her prescriptions and physical therapy benefits ran dry. Now Darla had a new source; a source named Jerome who accepted cash only and was happy to make midnight deliveries.
“Oh really? You’re gonna call the cops on ME? How stupid is that, Darla?” Tom barked back with sarcasm. “Baby, I love you. You gotta get off this shit.” His sarcasm quickly melted into a heartfelt plea.
“Leave me the hell alone! I need to call Jerome.” Darla slurred her words and took a strong swing into the air that made her lose her balance and knock over the glass lamp that shattered to the floor. It was a wedding gift (well actually, they’d bought the lamp with a Target gift card they got as a wedding gift).
“F-ck!” Tom grabbed his leg and then slowly lifted his hand to uncover the stinging part. It revealed a shard of lamp glass nestled in his calve.
Thud-thud-thud. There was a rude sequence of bangs at the door. Tom did a split second mental survey of who it might be. That can’t be Jerome.
“Well that’s just great. It’s prob’ly the cops. I can’t believe this shit,” said Tom, shaking his head as he scanned the room for something to wipe his bloody leg. Darla offered no help and didn’t give a damn who was at the door. She was across the room, crouched down on her hands and knees in search of “maybe one last pill” that might have accidentally dropped on the floor. But nope. She only scored one lonely Cheerio and a toenail clipping that somehow eluded the vacuum earlier in the day.
The glass shard was bigger than Tom first thought. Thud-thud-thud. He pulled the shard out fast with an annoying scrunched-looked on his face and clinch of the teeth, then he took off his Fruit Of The Loom tee to wrap it around his leg before doing a limp-hop to the thudding door. The blood was already soaking through the tee.
Yep. It’s the cops. Two of ’em.
Gina was awake again, but this time out of bed and in nosy-neighbor stance with the front door cracked ever so slightly to peek at the commotion. She assumed Tom was the shirtless one in the hallway. Helloooo, Tom. Gina didn’t expect to see him shirtless and, just like Darla, she didn’t seem to notice Tom’s blood-gushing leg.
The officer radioed in, “We need a medic here.”
Gina shut the door, opened up a fresh pint of Ben & Jerry’s Late Night Snack, and hopped online to play Facebook Scrabble – anything to take her mind off of Tom’s bulging chest muscles. Gina knew married-man chest muscles were off limits (and so was Late Night Snack, but it somehow made it into her freezer anyway). She giggled at the thought of her ex-husband, Michael, with “Married Man Chest Muscles” branded on his chest. Maybe it would have sent any respectable skank lusting after a different, non-married man. Too bad her former best friend, Andrea, didn’t play by Respectable Skank Rule #99: thou shalt not f-ck around with another woman’s husband. This was an ancient Respectable Skank Rule that could be traced back to those biblical Ten Commandments.
Gina giggled again, this time at the tastiness of Late Night Snack, and without the knowledge that at that very same moment, back in New York, Andrea and Michael lay snuggled up together watching True Blood and sipping wine. Those bastards.