Nighties, sweatpants, and mismatched socks fly from the dresser in a polyester storm. She runs to the closet, shoves aside dusty his and hers towels, pulls down winter coats as though she’s urgent to get warm. For the third time in an hour, she opens the plastic tub of Christmas decorations; another ornament shatters, the garland is by now a tight knot of synthetic green. Damn it.
A sudden thought intrudes. Yes, that’s it, and skins her knee on the nightstand as she turns. A spatter of blood follows her to the bed. Her arms grope madly beneath the big four-poster, but she encounters nothing more than Bill’s abandoned paperbacks and a lazy heap of photographs, shoved there after the divorce. Where the hell was it?
It was only last week that she’d stood before the display case, the eyes of the store owner running from her ass to her tits and down again. “I want that one,” she said at last.
“A .45 cal? Are you…”
Her best Dirty Harry voice cut him off. “Make my day,” she said, laughing nervously.
He shrugged. “Whatever you want lady,” and took her credit card and ID. Ten minutes later, he handed her a heavy paper bag.
“I want to try it. Where can I go?”
After the range, she stopped at Home Depot for a fireproof safe. She wrestled it into the garage and bolted it to the wall beneath Bill’s workbench. Finished, she stacked her purchases inside, setting the combination with numbers Bill would never guess…