Alexandra had a short list of close friends. It would be wonderful if Norma brought Danny to see her but it wasn’t likely they would travel all the way from New York. That left Casper, her boyfriend who she seldom saw. As manager of a men’s apparel store, he worked long hours with only Sunday’s off. The likelihood that he could get away was slim to none. Whoever was there to greet her, she hoped they were hungry because she was famished.
She pushes open the dressing room door and sees Casper sitting on the sofa. She smiles. “What a surprise? When did you get in?”
Casper looks sullen. Stays seated. “Hello, Alexandra.”
“What’s the matter? Are you OK?”
He stares at her for a moment. Looks to the floor. Avoids eye contact. “I’m seeing someone else.”
Alexandra pulls out a chair from beneath the dressing table and sits down. “Wow. You came all the way from New York just to tell me that. That’s big of you.”
“Since I proposed at Christmas, you’ve been distant.”
“Well, yeah. Of course, I’ve been distant. I’ve been on the road.”
“Not the entire time. Admit it. You aren’t into me. All you care about is your career.”
She bites her lip. Pulls tissues from a box and wipes tears from her cheeks. “You could have at least had the decency to breakup with me before you started dating somebody else. How long have you and this other person been together?”
“About three months.”
Alexandra raises her voice. “Three months. Are you kidding me? You need to leave. Now.” She rushes to the door. Holds it open. “Goodbye, Casper.”
He remains seated. Fidgets with his ring. His voice cracks when he speaks. “There’s more.”
“Oh, great. What other good news do you have for me?”
“Might want to close the door for this?”
She follows his instruction and returns to her chair. “I’m listening.”
“It was Norma’s idea that I come here. She would have come, too, but she couldn’t get off work.” He pauses to choose the right words but Alexandra continues for him.
“Oh, my God. You are dating my best friend. Now you really need to leave.”
“We should have told you sooner but we didn’t want to upset you on your tour. But the more involved we got, we feared that you would find out before we had a chance to tell you.”
Alexandra says nothing more. Tears stream down her face as she walks back to the door and opens it. As Casper passes by, he stops briefly and looks at her one last time before leaving. Starts to say something then stops. Turns. Departs down the dimly lit hallway.
At first, she was angry. Wished she had slapped him. Yet in her heart of hearts, she knew that he was right. She really wasn’t into him. Liked Casper a lot. Great guy. Had all the makings of a perfect husband. But she didn’t love him. Back when he asked her to marry him, she thought that eventually she would fall in love. It still hurt to hear that he had been seeing someone else for three months. Even worse, Norma, her best friend.
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