When did I bury myself so deep?
“Rory, Logan.” Mitchum Huntzberger greeted his weekly guests with false enthusiasm. Logan’s arms silently slipped around Rory’s waist and she tightened. At nearly thirty Rory had forgotten what real interaction felt like.
“Dad. And how are we this fine evening?” Logan never could resist a good sarcastic quip. His parents numb to his hidden insult smiled in response.
“Fine, Just fine. And Rory how are you’re grandparents?” Rory silently wondered why Logan’s family only ever asked about her grandparents. No mention was ever made about her mother. Not even a congratulation was in order when news about her mother’s marriage had surfaced at one not so recent Huntzberger dinner.
“Oh their fine. Thank you.” Rory forced a smile as she excepted her drink. She hated thinking about her mother. She hadn’t seen her in at least a year and they only talked briefly on the phone ever other week. Her mother was still gorgeous at forty-six and Luke was never more aged then normal. She remembered the fateful day her mother had confessed to Luke what had happened with Christopher. Nine years had past and the agony the two had faced the first year after the confession was over. Rory hated seeing her mother the way she was back then. Maybe it was better they saw so little of each other now. Maybe. Over all Rory had been glad Luke and her mother had finally worked things out, they belonged together. She was worried she couldn’t say the same thing with such confidence about her own marriage.
“And Catherine?” Rory smiled at mention of her six-year-old daughter. It was the only relatively good part of her seven-year marriage to Logan Huntzberger. For years she dreamt of naming her first born daughter after her mother and herself. However she began to rethink that once her marriage began to go downhill after just a year. She had done what her mother had done when things in relationships became rocky she turned to her support. The only sure thing. For some time she thought that her sure thing had been Dean; her first love. On second examination her ideals changed. Dean had not been there for her in the ways that she so desperately needed him to be, he did not understand her. So therefor her fall back had been and possibly always had been Jess. She did not contact him though. She had thought about it after almost every newly wed fight her and Logan had had, but that would be giving up. So instead she decided to read A Farewell to Armsin order to feel closer to a lost love. She was surprised at how much she enjoyed it and began to read a few more of Hemingway’s novels. Catherine a name that surfaced recurrently throughout Hemingway’s works struck her. It was simple and sweet and not particularly popular, so she picked it. Logan hadn’t understood, but she hadn’t meant for him too. Then again he never did.
“She’s fine she’s home, with Mara.” Mara was her maid. The words stuck to the back of her throat like stubborn vomit. She hated this life, the only loves; her books and her daughter. She never thought herself a person for a maid but Emily had insisted. She couldn’t forget the images burned into her mind of her mother and grandmother crying at her wedding but for some reason she silently knew each of the women were crying for a different reason.
“She’s in what grade now?” The aging blonde in front of her asked. Rory knew she knew. They had dinner every week and every week the same questions, the same monotonous conversations. Rory bit her tongue and looked over at Logan who just shrugged.
“First.” Rory said bitterly. She knew she wasn’t doing anyone favors by hiding her displeasure so why do it?
“That’s right. She’s an exceptional student I hear.” Mitchum chimed in smiling over at his wife. They both looked like poster models for ‘the Donald.’ ‘At least he has the decency to divorce his wives.’ Rory thought painfully. Logan’s mother was tanned and wrinkled, make-up caked above her eyes and lipstick smudged on. The women could have cancer and have looked better. She probably did have cancer and just wasn’t telling anyone, she smokes enough. Rory tried to push these harsh thoughts out of her head but soon realized by doing that new ones resurfaced. Smoking had brought up memories of Jess. ‘You gonna smoke that or mind melt with it?’ Rory sighed audibly at the distant memory, which brought attention back to her.
“Something wrong?” Logan asked through gritted teeth. Logan hated confrontation with his parents, probably the only people he didn’t like to confront with. She narrowed her eyes. What reason did he have to be annoyed with her? She wasn’t the one who couldn’t remember their granddaughter’s age week after week.
“No. Just fine.” Rory forced another grin. She was out of her waters. And out numbered. She decided to shut up and try to enjoy the rest of the night. She was glad when the night had finally ended she always was. She thought this was what her mother probably had felt like at the Gilmore’s Friday night dinners. She apologized in her head for not understanding her mother’s displeasure towards her grandparents. She had never liked the Huntzberger’s and she had not liked Logan when they had first met. She suddenly found herself wondering what had ever made her fall for him. Logan turned the heat up in his Porsche same name new car. Logan had always been partial to Porsches it was his hobby? She wasn’t sure if that was what she would call his collection of trendy foreign cars but she thought that was how she’d put it.
“What was your problem?” Logan turned to her as he turned the ignition. Rory sighed and slowly turned her head. She was too tired for this and she just wanted to get home to see her daughter.
“I should ask you the same.” She said coldly before turning again to face the dashboard.
“What’s that suppose to mean?” Logan asked cocking his head. Rory knew he had had too much to drink. She wondered why his parents would allow him so much knowing he had to drive home. She knew though. She knew they could care less about him and the only ounce of caring was for their money, which she supposed Logan had.
“Lets not do this now okay.” She said breathlessly. She was done with this. She wanted the week over. Logan grunted and turned back to the road. Rory hated wearing stilettos she wondered why she ever bought them. But she knew the answer to that one too. She had money, so she used it-simple. Her heals dug into the gravel of the walkway to their home. Large and fashionable it made it easy for anyone to get lost in the many hallways, it made it easy for anyone to lose themselves also. Rory wandered ahead of her husband and up the winding staircase in the foyer. She entered into the doorway on her right. The body of a child lay motionless in a ruffled pink bedspread.
“Catty, Hon wake up.” Rory hadn’t really meant to wake her but Logan’s recent behavior justified her to remind herself why she had stayed in their relationship so long.
“Mommy?” Rory smiled. Her daughter mirrored the image of a Gilmore girl. Dark hair soft blue eyes. Logan’s presence was hardly represented. Rory thought how true that rang in both senses, Logan was never around.
“How was your night babe?” Rory asked softening her tone.
“Boring.” The young girl shook her head in displeasure. Rory nodded, there really was nothing to do in her large house, and she would never call it a home. In fact Rory often found herself slipping into boredom.
“Okay its late…go back to sleep.” Rory kissed her daughter’s head softly and hummed a short tune. She sat idly on the edge of the mattress until her daughters breaths became slow and rhythmic before standing up and leaving the room. She shut the door quietly behind her and began once again to walk over to the staircase. She closed her eyes and tried to hold her composure when she met Logan at the bottom.
“I’m leaving.” Logan’s voice was tight and unsteady, drunk.
“Where?” Rory asked slowly moving out of his way and off to the side.
“Out. I’ll be back later.” He stuttered and slurred his last few words. Rory tightened her gaze and began to sway with the dizziness of worry.
“It’s late, stay home tonight.” Rory tried to keep her tone light as she glanced at the clock, eleven thirty. Bars were closing in an hour and a half, what was his need for going out so late? But in her head she knew. She wondered how she could know so much but use so little of her hidden knowledge.
“Screw that! I’m going out.” He said this louder than she knew he had meant too but she prayed for Catty not to wake.
“Okay…night.” Rory took her shoes off one by one and let her sore feet somber on the cold tiles.
“Yeah what-ever.” He said slamming the door behind him. Rory winced and dragged herself to the room they shared. He would come home close to dawn and he would smell of cheap perfume and random women.
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