Out of the Pit (Short Story — Day 5)

     After dinner, they played a game of Parcheesi in an attempt to relax a little.  Brad could tell that Lexie was very tired, so when he took his last piece into home and won the game, he suggested that he and Patty go home.  They both hugged Lexie, and Brad told her to get some rest.

     Lexie and Bruce moved to the living room.  They sat at opposite ends of the sofa and Bo lay on the floor between them.  

     “So eight years ago, you were a rookie on the police force.  Now you’re a detective.  Detectives don’t usually pull the babysitting jobs, do they?”

     Bruce grinned and said, “No, but I made the request and reminded the captain that the original case involving Kevin was the first big case I was involved in, and the captain is unaware of my feelings for you, so he granted the request.”

     Lexie’s cheeks grew pink and she shifted in her seat.

     “Don’t you mean past feelings?”

     “No, Lexie.  In eight years, I’ve never gotten over you.  I never met another woman who captured and held my attention like you do.  I’ve thought about you often and wanted to look you up, but . . .”  Bruce’s voice was husky and it grew softer and faded out on the last sentence.

     “But we don’t even know each other.  You just met me on that last night — the night Kevin’s secret came out and everything exploded.  You saw me fall into a place that I couldn’t get out of without the help of medicines and an institution.  You never knew the real me then, and you don’t know me now.”

     “I want to.  I know you feel something when our eyes meet and the electricity that happens when I merely touch your hand.  I’ve seen you react to both.”

     “I’ll admit that there is a physical attraction between us, but I haven’t allowed myself to dwell or act on feelings of physical attraction since . . . since Kevin.”

     “Living like that must be lonely and sad.  Don’t you think it’s time to take a chance again?”

     “I don’t know.  Maybe this is the only life I deserve after my past sins.”

     “You do know that your sins have been forgiven, don’t you?  But, you have to be able to forgive yourself, and if Christ loved you enough to die for your sins, who are you to continue punishing yourself for them?”

     “Are you a Christian?  Do you read the Bible and go to church?”

     “Yes, Lexie, I am a Christian.  I try to read my Bible daily, and I go to church most every Sunday, except for the ones I have to miss for my job.”

     “Brad and Patty do too.  As a matter of fact, Brad tried to set me up with the associate pastor of their church just a couple of weeks ago.  That’s probably why Brad wasn’t happy about you making a move.  I think Brad considers Pastor David what I need.”

     Before Bruce could respond, the telephone rang.  Lexie jumped and looked fearfully at Bruce.

     Bruce said, “It’s okay, Lexie.  I’ll turn on the tracer and then you answer the phone.  If it’s him, try to keep him talking for at least three minutes.”

     “I don’t know if I can do that.”

     “Yes, you can, Lexie.  You’re stronger than you think you are.”

     They arose from the sofa and Bruce went to the tracer equipment while Lexie moved to the kitchen phone with Bo right on her heels.  Bruce put on the headphones and flipped a switch, and Lexie picked up the phone.

     “Hello?”

     “Hi Kitten.  Did you like the flowers?  Were you surprised that I remembered?”

     Lexie’s hands were shaking, and when she spoke she could hear the quiver in her voice.  “The flowers certainly were a surprise.”

     “I miss you, Kitten.  Will you bring flowers and make dinner for us next Friday night?”

     “Where?”

     “You know the place.  You used to come every Friday eight years ago.  I can’t wait to hold you and kiss you again Kitten.  The yearning is growing unbearable.”

     “Please, tell me who you are and why you are doing this.”

     “Kitten, it’s me, Kevin.  Don’t say you’ve forgotten me, and remember, you are to be the queen at my table of ladies because you are my favorite and the most beautiful.”

     Lexie hung up the phone.  She was trembling all over and she began to cry.

     Bruce went and put his arm around her shoulders and led her back to the sofa.  When her crying reduced to sniffling, she asked, “Was that long enough?  Did you get it?”

     Bruce shook his head regretfully.  “But he asked you to meet him at the same apartment.  Could this guy really be stupid enough to use the same location?”

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