Episode 15 ~ Epic Slap-Down…or Not.
Updated: Sep 1, 2020
"I’m so glad you wanted to talk. Care Bear, I messed up and I know you’re going to break up with me, and I know you’re mad…" David and Carrie were sitting at Wiches Brew, a favorite coffee and sandwich spot. He’d left her alone for two days telling himself that she needed space. In reality, he was just a chicken-shit. He was going to get an epic slap-down; not that he didn’t deserve it. So, he’d mustered up the courage and called and she’d surprised him by not only answering on the first ring but agreeing to see him. Now, they were sitting across from one another, looking very much like always had, having a calm and very adult conversation. So far, no slap-down.
“I’m not actually. I’m not really all that mad. You lost me an assistant,” she said unflustered. She was perfectly put together, in an off the shoulder ivory peasant blouse, torn skinny jeans, and an impossibly high pair of gold peep-toe sandals.
“Please just tell me,” Carrie gritted her teeth, “that no one, besides the slut formerly known as my assistant, knows about this.”
“No one, I swear, well, Legacy obviously but she won’t say anything. Can we really get passed this?”
Carrie sighed, “I’m bothered that I am not more bothered by this.” Her voice rising, she dropped her head into her hands, running her fingers through her hair and finally laying them on David’s outstretched palms. “But I don’t want to have a big ugly break up either’” she continued. David smiled and exhaled deeply feeling much better until she added, “P.R. is everything right now.”
“P.R., Carrie, this is about P.R.? Seriously?” Was she kidding? At the root of it all, she was worried about appearances. What he’d done was idiotic and he was relieved to know that he hadn’t destroyed her but this barely touched her at all.
“You do not get to take the high road here. I’m going to forgive you but you hurt me!” her voice reduced to a whisper.
“I know,” David said sadly. “Just tell me what you want me to do. I’ll do it.”
“Just tell me. Do you even like Lindsey?”
“Yeah, maybe. I don’t know, maybe. She’s not you. God, Care, You are the one I want. Stay with me. Let’s work this out. Find a way to quit holding out on me.” He was almost begging and David didn’t beg.
“I can’t,” she said softly, “You know I can’t.”
“Why the hell not?”
“I don’t have an answer, I just know I can’t. This should have really hurt. I should be so wrecked over this and I’m not. I want more than this, David, and you should too. We’ve settled for each other because it was safe. You did us a favor. You did it in my apartment,” she laughed in spite of herself, “but still.”
David gave in. He didn’t have another card to play. “Alright, we won’t say anything for now. Can we just…Can we take a few days to make sure it’s really what we want?”
“Yes, let’s keep it…whatever we do, as non-eventful as possible.”
Carrie let herself into her apartment, alone, near 8 o’clock that evening. She’d busied herself all day with mundane tasks. It was easy to find things to keep her occupied. Suddenly without an assistant, there was a long to-do list with no one but Carrie to do the dos. She’d took her favorite denim jumpsuit to have the zipper repaired. She took her sweet time at the farmer’s market at Union Square occupying 3 hours snapping pictures with her phone for Instagram. Legacy had called and tried to convince her to go out but she thought, with all that was going on, that a little self-care was in order. She got a massage, picked up dinner and a bottle of Justin Isosceles, and with no more excuses, she finally headed home.
She ate her Chicken Cobb with extra avocado, poured a second glass of wine and, scanned her empty apartment. Ending things with David was the smart thing to do. It was going to be strange for awhile. At some point, they were going to have to figure out where they stood, professionally speaking. Carrie was at a crossroads with her own relaunch after the lawsuit and she’d been counting on him. She wouldn’t have gotten as far as she had without him. It seemed funny that after everything, she was feeling grateful.
She wandered into the guest room. She hadn’t been in there since before catching slut and boy-slut in the throws. The bed was still unmade so she yanked the sheets off and put them in the washer. Then she went to work picking up pieces of tissue from Lindsay’s birthday package. Before she knew it, it was 1 in the morning and she’d cleaned the bedroom, whether it had needed it or not, from top to bottom. It had been oddly therapeutic. No thinking or regretting, just vacuuming and scrubbing. She passed out on her own bed near 2 AM.
David, meanwhile was only a few miles away, coping in his own way. He’d just knocked back his 6th or 7th Fireball. The skinny, drunk brunette who rubbed against him clutched his shoulders and wiggled her ass trying to loosen him up. She smelled like jasmine; his favorite. They’d dance, he’d buy her a drink, he’d be in her bed before the sun came up. The room started to spin. It was hot and he needed air. He untangled himself from Little Miss Random and practically ran for the door. Outside on the sidewalk, David took in gulps of cool air and dug into his pocket for his phone. He noticed that it was already 2 AM but by then he had already drunk-dialed Carrie’s number.
“Hello? ” she mumbled.