‘Bye hon’ she said over her shoulder to her husband Ronald. Lifting his head from his newspaper he smiled a goodbye.
‘Send Aunty P my love’ he said. That was the excuse she used. She had been visiting “Aunty P” every week for the last 7 years. He spent Tuesday evening with the boys playing virtual games, she couldn’t think of a worse way to spend an evening, she had her own plans.
Kim slipped her key into the lock, feeling the familiar butterflies in her stomach and tightening of her loins. Tuesday’s were her night off. She spent every single one in bed with Kevin, her boyfriend. She wouldn’t leave Ronald simply because she loved him, but her Tuesdays with Kevin were the highlight of her week.
Her small overnight bag only had her clothes for the morning. Toothbrush, lingerie and toiletries were laid out on her shelf in Kevin’s bathroom and bedroom.
He made her favourite pork belly with cranberry sauce and crispy potatoes, followed by a tart lemon pudding swimming in cream.
‘If you keep feeding me like this I won’t have any energy for later’ Kim said. Kevin reached over and licked a dribble of cream from the side of her mouth. She would have the energy! She kissed him back, dizzy with anticipation. Kevin was a stud in the bedroom, the one area Ronald lacked any imagination and Kim loved it. She shed all her inhibitions with Kev and always left feeling completely satisfied.
Kevin reached into his pocket and pulled out a silver box, he put it next to her plate. It was beautifully wrapped with a mother of pearl organza ribbon. Kim looked at him in surprise.
‘What’s this? It’s too early for Christmas.’ Kevin smiled. ‘I’m going to be traveling over Christmas time and don’t want to miss seeing your face when you open this.’ Kim giggled. They always exchanged gifts at Christmas and birthdays, usually buying something that Ronald wouldn’t notice like lingerie which Kim left at his place. Or a good wine.
The ribbon made a ‘whoosh’ sound as she pulled at it, excited to get it open. Shocked Kim stared at the gift. It was a beautiful pair of diamond earrings. The large stones twinkled in the candlelight sending sparkling dots across her hands. Her brain turned in 100 different directions. She couldn’t take these home, Ronald would notice! She couldn’t refuse the gift – she loved them. Kim leaned over and gave Kevin a long kiss. Soon they were entwined in each other in his bedroom, but Kim knew she had a problem.
‘How am I going to get these past Ronald?’ She racked her brain. There was no way she wasn’t going to wear these, she loved them. Kim hardly slept that night agonising over her earrings. By morning she had a solution. She would tell Ronald she had won a competition! Kim would send the earrings to herself via the mail, ask him to collect them and then ‘ooh’ and ‘aahhh’ when she got the package! It was simple and brilliant!
‘I’ve taken to entering competitions online.’ Kim casually mentioned to Ronald as they ate their fish and chips and sipped wine. Ronald laughed ‘whatever for? No-one wins those things, I’m sure they make the names up.’ Kim laughed and reached for his hand. ‘No darling, I’m going to win!’ she smiled to herself.
Two weeks later and the time was right. Kim practiced her excitement before Ronald got home and knew her performance was perfect. As he opened the door she gushed.
‘I won! I won!’ he looked shocked. ‘What?’
‘I won!’ she shouted. ‘A pair of diamond earrings!’ Ronald smiled and hugged her.
‘I guess those things aren’t rubbish’ he smiled watching her bounce around the lounge.
The next day Kim drove to a post office in the next town. She completed the slip from “Online Winnings” and made up an address. The silver box was marked fragile and wrapped in bubble wrap. ‘One more day and your mine!’ she kissed the envelope, paid and was on her way home.
Kim gave the slip to collect the earrings to Ronald. It was closer to his work and she wanted him to do it so that he wouldn’t be suspicious. He collected the parcel for her at lunch time, phoning her to confirm.
‘I’m so excited!’ she said to him, the anticipation was killing her and she met him at the door with a huge grin.
‘Oh hon I’m sorry, I forgot the package in my drawer at work, I got distracted.’ Her face fell. Kim couldn’t do anything about it and they ate supper as usual. ‘One more day’ she thought to herself, dreaming of the beautiful earrings she would be wearing to dinner the following evening.
The next morning Ronald phoned ‘I’m going to be late tonight, I have to finish off the proj…”
‘No I need my earrings’ Kim demanded.
‘I’ll bring them, just late…’
‘Not a chance! I’m coming to fetch them’ Kim declared.
‘You sure? Its busy here at the office and I’ll…’
‘I’ll see you at lunch time.’ Kim got dressed up for the office, no need to embarrass Ronald in a house dress AND the earrings wouldn’t match them anyway. Her heart was racing. Just for a moment she felt guilty about deceiving Ronald. He had been a good and faithful husband for 16 years but the guilt didn’t last long.
Kim swanned through his office, greeting everyone. His secretary Claudia wasn’t at her desk, “typical” she thought to herself. Anticipation made her forget everything else and she rushed into Ronald’s office, quickly pecked his cheek and demanded her package. He pulled it out of his drawer, still beautifully wrapped and her heart soared.
Again the “whoosh” as she opened it and stopped dead. A pair of tiny silver diamante earrings were in the box. These weren’t the same earrings! Confused she looked at Ronald who was smiling at her. “And? Nice?’ he asked.
‘Well… no.’ He looked confused.
‘What’s wrong?’ She couldn’t tell him without admitting she had lied.
‘I…I thought they would be bigger’ she stammered. He looked at the earrings then back at Kim.
‘There’s nothing wrong with these, they are pretty. Look…’ he took them out and clipped them onto Kim’s ears. She was mortified. What had happened? Did someone at the post office steal them? Tears filled her eyes.
‘Oh sorry darling.’ Ronald said hugging her. ‘Don’t be disappointed, these are lovely.’ He tucked her hair behind her ear and pecked her cheek. ‘How about we go for lunch?’ Kim managed to nod, not knowing what else to do. WHERE THE HELL WERE HER EARRINGS?
Ronald stuck his head out of the door, ‘Claudia? I’m taking Kim to lunch.’ Ronald gestured for her to come, Kim walked stiffly to the door still utterly confused.
Claudia looked up and smiled as they left. And that was when Kim noticed her beautiful earrings dangling from Claudia’s ears.
Seems that Ronald wasn’t having boys’ nights on a Tuesday after all.