I sat hunched over the keyboard, typing furiously. I paused only long enough to tip the whiskey down my throat and refill my glass. Then, placing my hands back in the “home position” I hit it again, fast and furious.
I didn’t even hear the garage door. I didn’t hear Amy come in. I had no idea what time it was and never suspected it could be that late. Late enough for her to come home from work.
“How did you beat me home?” Amy sang when she came into the house. Then she spotted the half empty bottle. “Shit,” she said, “drinking again. What happened at work today?”
“I didn’t like that job anyway; it was a waste of time.”
“No, Richard. What you’re doing now is a waste of time. Are you trying to write the ‘Great American Novel”? Are you trying to keep the distilleries in business? Are you trying to drive me away?”
I stopped what I was doing and turned to look at her, God she was beautiful. “I’m not writing a novel Amy, I’m writing songs. I’ve done this before; I’ve already got one hit song under my belt. I can do it again and I promise I won’t piss the money away this time.”
“You don’t even like that song.”
“I was drunk when I wrote that song and, you’re right I don’t like it now but I liked it when I wrote it. More importantly, the world liked it and they bought it. The money was good.”
“You should go back to the paper and beg for your job back. Song writers don’t make any money these days – the internet killed all that. Did you burn all your bridges with Mr. Sullivan? You’re a wreck. You can’t hold onto your money and you fritter away your life. I’m leaving. You’ve wasted enough of my time.” She picked up her keys and headed back towards the garage. I stared at her back.
“Don’t leave Amy. Who’ll feed the cat?”
She didn’t answer. The door slammed and I felt the rumble of the opener as it pulled up the double garage door. I heard her start her car and back down the driveway. I looked out the window and saw her pull away and accelerate up the street. I sat and listened to the silence for a long time then, picked up the whiskey and downed it. The warmth spread from my belly out.
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