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Relief After Humiliation

February 23, 2016 Leave a comment

She burns inside with the acute blaze of embarrassment. Some events were humiliating, and she was able to somehow swallow the bitterness and keep it locked within her psyche.

Perhaps if there had been just the one humiliation – the one when James left her at the altar. Literally at the altar, she was standing there in her expensive virginal white wedding gown. On one side of her stood her mother and on the other side of her stood her father. They had long since been estranged from each other, and had managed to stand each other long enough for her wedding. She later learned that James had run off with Mrs. Etta Goldstone, to her casa in Puerto Rico.

Mrs. Goldstone was a widow of sixty-eight, with several million dollars in assets left to her by her late husband, Herbert. James later sent a note to his jilted bride:
“Dear Sweetness,
Please don’t think I don’t love you. I do love you and have been eager to get into our life together. Etta offers me a five year contract to be her husband at ten thousand dollars a month, tax free. I just couldn’t see settling for life in a tacky flat while we struggle to make ends meet with a deal like that on the table. I’m paid one hundred and twenty thousand dollars a year to live in a mansion with servants.
I’m sorry, dear Sweetness. I’m sure you understand the logic of it. I wish for you a happy life, good health and much prosperity. Forget me.
James”

The constant gnawing in her guts because of the humiliation of her wedding day was overwhelming her common sense.

Without actually thinking it through carefully, she went to her brother’s condo and let herself in with her own key. He was in Chicago, playing with a band in the Drake Hotel bar. She went to his bedside drawer and took out the Colt .45 revolver handgun. She spun the barrel and saw a brass cartridge in each of eight spaces.

It was no problem to find out where Etta Goldstone lived. She went to the Goldstone address and found a walled estate with a high gate of ornate wrought iron. She sat on a bench at a bus stop across the road from the Goldstone Estate. She could see up the driveway through the gate until the driveway curved to the right and out of sight.

She sat on the bench beyond sunset and into the darkness of the upper class neighbourhood. Classic design street lights spread visibility throughout. A flash of headlights beyond the gate caught her attention. A white BMW SUV pulled up behind the closed gate and waited while the gate automatically swung open to either side.

The BMW slowly turned left out of the gate, exposing the driver’s side to her. She stood up and strode onto the road, raised her arm and pointed the gun at James. He saw her, and his face contorted into a desperate “NO” that was silenced by the closed window. She pulled the trigger over and over until there was only a click of the hammer each time.

The driverless BMW idled forward, diagonally across the road until it came to rest with its front bumper leaning gently on a huge oak tree. She walked to it and pulled the driver’s door open. James fell out, half onto the road. She saw the Etta Goldstone had been blown away in the volley also.

At last the gnawing humiliation was sated. The severe stress that had been torturing her since the wedding failure, lifted. She was filled with feelings of relief and satisfaction. She went back to the bench and sat down to wait for whatever was to happen next. She didn’t care, because she felt good for the first time in months.

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