Tearing the note from the fridge, I scanned it. A shopping list. Bread, milk, nappies, cheese. Ridiculous. Crumpling it into a ball I tossed it into the bin. I missed. It was pathetic; she was pathetic. Was she so stupid that she couldn’t even remember such small, mundane things without a list? Thank god she was only a housewife and not a brain-surgeon or something.
Opening the fridge, I grabbed a cold beer, opening it on the side of the cupboard, allowing the top to fall to the floor.
What had I ever seen in her?
You know that old joke; marriage isn’t a word, it’s a sentence – well, it’s not really funny after seven years of living it. Seven years of living hell, with someone whose every move grates on you.
The lists. Shopping lists, to-do lists, lists to remind her to make her stupid, pointless little lists. I tensed my fists, anger building up inside me. Draining my bottle, I threw it against the wall. The stupid woman. See what she’s turning me into? This isn’t me, you see. I never used to be so angry, she did it to me.
This is what she’s good at.
I fetch another beer, grabbing a takeaway menu from the noticeboard as I pass. There’s something in the oven. Some disgusting casserole, probably. Her cooking isn’t a patch on my mum’s. Useless bitch. How hard can a casserole be? Again, not brain-surgery, is it?
I order my food – Indian – and crack open another beer. There are only four left in the fridge; where are the others? Where is she, come to think of it. If she’s visiting her mum, she’s usually back for tea. Downing my drink, I open another. I don’t even know where the box is to put more in the fridge. Why does she have to make everything so damn difficult? Stupid woman.
I eat in front of the football. It’s 8pm and she’s still not back. She’s got the Izzy with her. She should know better than to keep her out this late, she goes to bed before this. See, I never thought of that when I married her, how terrible a mum she’d be. She’ll be too busy gallivanting and gossiping with that stupid mother of hers to notice the time and know she should be back.
I get the last beer from the fridge. I must find the rest of the box, assuming she remembered to buy them. I bet she forgot to buy more. I tell you, if I have to walk down to the off-licence, there’ll be hell to pay. What happened to honour and obey, huh?
I try to phone her, she doesn’t answer. That’s it. Wait ’til she gets home. Is that burning? The casserole. I turn off the oven, she’ll have to starve – she can do without the odd meal anyway. God knows her arse can.
I try again. Still no answer. I punch the wall. I swear I’m going to kill her when she gets home. I phone again.
It’s then that I see the note. Leaning against the fruit bowl, written in her neat, rounded handwriting.
I’ve gone. Don’t try to find me. It’s over.
I stand frozen to the spot. She’s gone? Where? How? Why? I fall to my knees, cursing when I land on a discarded bottle top. What am I going to do?