Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Prosperity (05/11/06)
TITLE: What about Jack?
By Leslie Lamb
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“I need you to pick up Jack from school today. I have an appointment at the salon and a meeting at the country club so I won’t be available today.” She picked up her tennis racket along with her freshly prepared protein drink and headed out the door.
“Wait!” he hollered after her grabbing his lap top along with his over-stuffed briefcase.
“Laura, you always spring these things on me at the last minute! I have a meeting at five with Mr. Stunley, reports to proof, details to go over, and a conference call with our parent company in New York! I don’t have time for this!”
Sliding into the posh leather seat of her recently purchased convertible, she answered, “Well, you should have thought of that when you hassled me to have him!”
He walked over while she lowered the top and pointed his finger in her face, “You will not lay this on me again!”
She put the car in reverse, “Sorry, honey, it’s your problem now. Figure it out.”
He cursed and kicked his truck tire as he watched her speed off leaving him to try to fix this. He quickly grabbed his blackberry looking for whatever standby was available for after-school care. Why was he always stuck with this?
Angrily, he dialed Laura’s number instead, “You’re the one that fired the Nanny because she allowed Jack to wear red cowboy boots with his school uniform! For God’s sake, Laura, he’s three! It’s pre-school; let him wear the boots! You ought to be the one searching for a replacement, not me! Take a break from yourself and be a mother!”
She would not be manipulated, “I got up an hour earlier than I like to because he had to be at school at seven thirty! So don’t talk to me about being a mother! Be a father; be as responsible for your child as you are your investments!”
Colton was fuming, “Funny! I never heard you complain about my concentration on investments when you went out and got that car you’re driving, or the cruise you purchased for you and your friends, or the closet you had made for the designer shoes that you insist on buying!”
She hung up.
He cursed again and threw down the phone!
“Something has got to give!” he yelled to his empty truck. “This ‘American dream’ is turning into a nightmare!”
And, then he remembered Andy harassing him about Jesus and God and something about storing up treasures in heaven! “It’s like he can’t see that I have plenty of time for that; I have to make money now! Leave a legacy. Have something set aside for Jack’s future.”
Thinking of Jack reminded him of the task at hand: his urgent need to find a nanny. He started scrolling through his data base of names again. Concentrating on the numbers, he didn’t see the car ahead or that he was in the wrong lane. All he could think of was the money he stood to lose with the hassle of his son.
Laura Chilton-Douglas didn’t like to be disturbed for any reason so she was in a huff when she got to the phone.
“I’m sorry, ma’am." The officer struggled to know what to say under the circumstances. "Your husband was pronounced dead on arrival; both he and the young man that he hit. Would you like to come and ID him?”
“What I want to know, Officer, is how this will affect Jack?” She managed to say through the shock.
“Jack?” the officer asked not fully comprehending.
“Our boy; he’s three.” She answered with a little more emotion.
“Oh ma’am, I’m sorry. It won’t be easy, telling him his father’s dead.” He didn’t envy her that task.
“It won’t be easy to find someone to pick him up, either!” She selfishly blurted out, oblivious to the fact that she sounded spoiled and immature, not to mention cold and heartless. She didn’t care. This was just like Colton to leave her to sort out his mess! And in that moment, she began to wonder if she had ever truly loved him at all, or had her love for him been based on the only thing he had really given her, the one thing she hoped she still had - Prosperity.
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