Author: Judy

The Woman Who Stole the Bill

The Woman Who Stole the Bill

My daughter has epilepsy and there’s no reason to be silent about it. This is a matter of public interest.”

Heather said she didn’t care how long she was going to have to listen to the man. She’d be better off talking to him in the kitchen or in the yard than here in the parlor.

“In that case, just for the record, you’re trespassing,” he said, ignoring Heather’s protests. “This is private property and you’ve no business on it.”

“I’m sorry, but I’m standing on private property and I’m protecting my little girl, just like you told me she needed protection. What’s she going to do, stand out in the yard all day? What’s she going to do, cry all night?”

Cricket stood up straight, his hands up, fingers splayed. “I really don’t care.”

The three women just stood there, not knowing what to do.

Heather said, “Well, I guess I know what I’m going to do. I’m going to take my child home. I’m going to leave her here. I’ve learned my lesson. I’m going to leave.”

“I don’t think so.”

“I’m leaving.”

“I don’t want to hear much more about it,” Cricket said.

“Why not?”

“Don’t do that,” Heather said. “We’ve got to save this.”

“I have no idea where you are, but here’s a little something to add to the conversation,” he said in a low voice. He pulled a paper bag from his pocket and dropped it on the coffee table. Heather caught it. Cricket said, “That’s something. Don’t think.” He turned sharply. “The bill. For the day. Please.”

Heather reached out and picked up the bill. She took a deep breath and walked to the door. She opened it and looked around at the women: Heather, in her slacks, red sweater, bare feet, her hair down, the man standing with his back to the open door.

Cricket stood in the doorway watching the women leave.

Heather said, “I’m going now. Goodbye, everyone.” She opened the door and fled, leaving Cricket and the other man alone.

Heather left the parlor that night, but not before

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