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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Click (04/18/13)

TITLE: The Routine


Susan and Mort had a routine.

“Honey, I’m going to go ahead and take a bath.” Susan would tell Mort as she walked out the bedroom.

Mort would just look at her and smile, “Ok babe.”

In the bathroom Susan would start the water and add a cup of bath salts. She would then undress and look at herself in the mirror. Her body wasn’t as lean as it used to be, one breast hung a little lower than the other, and her hips looked like a road map from all the stretch marks. Once the water reached the top, she turned it off. It was always too hot so she would wait for it to cool by brushing her teeth and cleaning her ears.

One room over Mort was beginning his routine too. He flipped through the channels killing time until he heard the water turn off. Then he would sit there in bed for a minute debating his next move. Finally he would get up and walk the few steps down the hall to the baby’s room. His first inclination was to look in the crib at his sleeping boy. Silently he would tell his son that he hopes he turns out to be more of a man than himself.

Susan had already heard Mort coming down the hall and the squeak of the office chair. The nursery doubled as a home office and was directly across the hall from the bathroom. A deep breathe escaped her as she took the three steps to the bathroom door. She pressed her ear to the door, first the left then the right.

Click. Scroll. Scroll.

Click. Scroll. Scroll.

Each night Susan stayed in the bathroom to take her bath for about an hour. Forty five minutes of it was standing at the door listening to the clicking sounds of the mouse as Mort scrolled his way through page after page of porn.

Eventually she would sink into the almost cold water and cry softly into a washcloth. She would add a little water to muffle the sounds of her sobs. A former confident woman who always wore a smile on her face, Susan had become deflated. Mort hadn’t touched her in over a year.

“Is that all you think about, Susan? Geez, I’m a grown man. Stop mothering me and watching over my shoulder constantly. No wonder I’m not attracted to you anymore, you’re pathetic.” Mort would tell her this anytime she brought up the subject.

Once Mort heard the water start to drain, he would erase the browser history and retreat to the bedroom. By the time Susan had dried off and gotten into her pajamas, Mort would be on his knees next the bed saying his prayers. His guilt would often be followed by anger so Susan would just duck her head in the door to say goodnight before falling asleep on the couch to another episode of some food show.

Unfortunately, Susan and Mort’s routine is not uncommon.

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This article has been read 274 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Patsy Hallum04/25/13
I pray this is not from personnel experience. Good Job in writing about it. Keep Writing!
Judith Gayle Smith04/28/13
A heartbreaking tragedy . . .

FaithWriters.com-Christian Writers Forum • View topic - Throw a Brick for CLICK

lynn gipson 04/28/13
Wow...this is sad. I really feel for Susan, but I would have to confront Mort. I understand why some women stay in abusive situations, and this is abuse, but he would have to get help. Very well written on a sensitive subject. You do have a way of telling it real and evoking emotion.

God Bless....
Christina Banks 04/28/13
What a sad, heartbreaking routine. You're right, too many people have the same routine. All the more reason to pray for the men in our lives.
Cinda Carter04/29/13
I feel for anyone who would have to go through that night after night. A very sensitive subject to talk about but I thought it was very well done. That's all one can do is pray.
Cheryl Harrison04/29/13
Sad, but true. You developed your characters well. Kept me reading all the way through. Good job. Keep writing for the Lord.
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 04/29/13
Oh wow! This really grabbed at my heart. I could feel the pain of the MC ooze off the page. You did a splendid job dealing with a sensitive topic. Your message is clear, yet not at all preachy. This is an intense bit of writing.
Alicia Renkema04/29/13
I pray this entry is not a true story with all my heart. But it rings with the truth and hollow pain of someone who has experienced the loneliness of sexual addiction. Our family - life was expressed by a different "routine" but I have walked in the shoe's of the MC. The real tragedy besides the individuals and marriages this sin destroys is the fact that the church closes its eyes, not helping family's to deal with this very real issue. Thank you for being brave enough to enter this. It will help many just because you had the courage to write it.
Loren T. Lowery05/01/13
This is a sad commentary; but you've boldly told it. It helps to explain a lot of the unrest and lack of peace in what should be graced relationships. This was a hard topic to tackle, I'm sure. But you handled it well.
Bea Edwards 05/01/13
You wrote a poignant piece on this tough subject. Well done.