When Jane woke up she gratefully found Nathan had already left. She had no stomach for seeing his smug face today. Frankly she had no stomach for anything today. Her sides still hurt from the previous nights retching as did her throat, her eyes, and her head. She felt like someone had used her body as a stress ball; roughly squeezing her insides until they protruded disturbingly from between the gaps in some unseen giant’s fist. She slowly rotated her body and slumped one leg out of the bed, followed by the second. With each movement a new ache was discovered. If it wasn’t for the pulsating throb in her bladder, she would have remained exactly where she was. But her body betrayed her and with sudden haste she jumped to her feet and rushed to the ensuite bathroom to empty what was left of her bowels into the shiny porcelain receptacle.
“Fuck–me.” Jane croaked to herself. Her voice was charred and scratchy and she blinked heavily as she continued to relieve herself. The house was completely silent except for the noises she generated herself. The walls, windows, and doors were so well insulated that no sound from the outside world ever entered into the house. Ordinarily it had made Jane feel like she was living in a mausoleum at times, but today with this headache, she was grateful for the deathly silence.
She trudged into the shower and adjusted the water to a nearly scalding temperature before leaning up against the white marble wall. “Fucking lavender.” she muttered to herself again. This time it was the smell of her own soap that was annoying her. It’s flowery invitation to leap through gilded meadows of sweet smelling wilderness was one that Jane was in no mood to heed this morning. She would have to pick up a different set of soap products and she mentally logged it on a list of items to take care of today.
As she let the steamy water wash away the previous nights aggravations her mind wandered back to Jack’s instructions. “…go do something that a perfect wife wouldn’t do. Go flirt with a random man at a coffee shop. Wink at a stranger. I don’t care what, just take yourself out of this cocoon you’ve been subsisting in.”
“Cocoon.” Jane repeated aloud. “Cocoon.” she said again. She felt the rage once more that overcame her yesterday. “I’m no fucking butterfly.” she muttered. “Fuck that.” She rinsed of the remaining soap from her body and turned off the shower. She strutted through the bathroom and into the bedroom dripping, and naked. “I’m a fucking falcon that’s what I am.” she said to herself, turning through the corridor and continuing down the stairs to the kitchen. “A fucking falcon–death from abo–” she stopped mid-sentence, “–ve.” In the living room, the very same living room that not twelve hours ago contained Jack and herself, was Nathan and his–partner.
The two men looked up at Jane. One completely passive and irreverent to her nakedness, the other pulsating with anger. Jane caught her breath and stared silently for a moment, like a dear sensing the hunter’s eye is upon her. “…do something a perfect wife wouldn’t do…” she thought to herself again and somehow mustered up the courage to continue walking down the stairs. “Good morning Nathan.” she said ever so politely. “And I’m sorry I don’t know your friend’s name.”
Nathan stared at his wife incredulously. His were eyes spitting outrage at her, but Jane simply ignored him and stuck out her hand to shake the other man’s hand.
Like some bizarre retelling of the Emperor’s New Clothes, the two men proceeded to completely ignore her lack of attire and introductions were calmly made in order. “I’m Nathan’s assistant Devin.” the polite young man said with a crisp eloquent tongue that would have been more fitting on a Broadway stage than in Jane’s living room.
He was a slight man. Thin and wiry with dark brown eyes and fearsomely white teeth. His lips, cheekbones and chin looked like they had been borrowed from ancient greek statues and he had the smooth blemish free skin that matched.
The two shook hands. “I’m sorry I have arrived in such a state, but Nathan didn’t inform me we were having guests.” Jane explained casually as if this was some how normal behavior. All the while her heart was thumping rapidly in her chest with a deafening crescendo. “I hope you don’t mind Devin.” she winked at him flirtatiously.
Devin simply smiled back, “Oh no that’s quite alright. This is your home, you are free to dress or not dress as it were however you wish.”
Jane smiled at him. Clearly he was being cheeky but trying to play it off as flirtatious.
Jane turned to Nathan smirking, “Oh he’s a keeper isn’t he? What a polite young man.” she giggled to herself. She turned back to Devin and took his hand in hers once more. “Tell me Devin, your hands are so impeccably soft, what product do you use to keep them so–delicate?”
Devin beamed with pride and puffed out his chest, “Oh I use a very strict regimen my mother taught me years ago. It’s actually three different products that I–”
“Devin.” Nathan interrupted. “My wife is only being polite. Let’s get back to work.”
“Oh no I’m not,” Jane turned to Nathan, her presence strong and unmoving despite her nakedness. “I think his hands are quite lovely, and they smell delightful. What is that scent?” she turned to Devin already knowing the answer.
“Lavender.” he answered quickly. His eyes darting from the Mr. to the Mrs. and back again as there was an air of growing tension in the room.
“Lavender. That’s what I thought it was.” Jane nodded, turned, “Nice to meet you Devin.” she called back from over her shoulder and sauntered into the kitchen as if nothing had happened.
She could hear behind her Nathan speaking in a hushed tone, “I think we should move this to my office.” which was met with an affirmative, “Sure thing.” from Devin.
Jane took a quick gasp and laughed quietly to herself. Her heart was pounding furiously but the headache that felt like it was going to crush her soul was no longer a threat. She grabbed a glass and poured herself some fresh orange juice and downed it immediately. Leaving the glass on the counter she peered around the corner as her husband and Devin walked over to his home office across the hall from the living room. She bit her lip and smirked. “A mother fucking falcon.” she whispered to herself then walked back out and up the stairs to get dressed.
Jane emerged from upstairs now fully dressed in a pair of tight skinny jeans, white high heels and a white Calvin Klein undershirt. The shirt was thin and airy and Jane was well aware that her bra-less breasts would be quite easily visible through the fabric. She didn’t care. If anything she welcomed the attention. It was the new persona she had donned for the day.
She poked her head into Nathan’s office and simply stated, “I’m heading out.” not bothering to tell him where or when she’d be back.
Devin quickly responded, “Nice to meet you Mrs. Abbott.”
“You too Devin.” she said politely and closed the door behind her with a thud.
Jane found she was walking with long powerful strides as she made her way to the garage and to her car. But every long stride, and every footfall seemed only to drive the fires of the angry locomotive that was her rage. Were she so inclined, or if perhaps she was raised a little less city and a lot more country she would have grabbed the nearest shotgun and be done with the two so-called men in her house. “Assholes.” she muttered under her breath.
Upon reaching the garage she activated the doorway and stood staring at the to vehicles within. Without a second thought she grabbed the keys for Nathan’s luxury coupe and effortlessly swung herself into the driver’s seat. The throaty engine rumbled to life under her guidance and with an impatient thrust of her foot the vehicle tore off down the driveway.
Jane managed to slow down just enough to allow the gate to open before her. She squealed as the side mirror nearly hit the gate but missed by less than an inch. Jane stomped on the brake and the car skidded casually to a stop as traffic flowed angrily in front of her. Seeing a tiny gap between a large moving truck and a minivan she stomped on the accelerator once more effortlessly gaining the speed required to neatly pull in between both speeding vehicles. She smirked to herself. Jane hadn’t yet decided where she was going, but where ever it was, she was definitely going to get there fast.