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Seller's Remorse

Jackson leans forward as he shakes his body to KC and The Sunshine Band. "Thank God it's Friday!" he says, half yelling over the music. "I can't wait to get you home."

I step back, wincing at his breath smelling like rotten oranges from the three Budweisers he guzzled while waiting for the DJ to set up. The bass thuds so deep and loud I can feel my heart vibrate against my ribcage.

"What's the plan?" I ask, dreaming of the mind-numbing bliss of a warm bath with soapy bubbles, a chilled glass of Riesling and my worn copy of The Thorn Birds.

His lips set in a straight line. "That's for me to know and you to find out," he says. I open my mouth and close it again, in no hurry to learn that he's made another trip to the Adults Only Triple XXX section at the back of the video store.

The disco beat fades, transitioning smoothly into a mellow horn instrumental, the opening notes of "Let's Stay Together." Our wedding song.

"How does it feel to be a six-month bride?" Jackson asks, taking me in his arms.

I don't answer. Jackson, looking over my shoulder as he steers us around another couple, doesn't seem to notice. But as we slow dance to Al Green, all I can think is that this is what happens when you take the first offer.

Story by:

Rhonda Parkinson

7 February 2015