I opened the door, and there she was. I hadn’t seen her for years. What a surprise! Just the sight of her amazed me so much words would not be formed in my mouth. Finally, after a Few seconds, which seemed like an eternity, she finally took the imitative and said “Hi Stefan, It’s been a while, hasn’t it?” I was astonished, her voice had not changed a bit since the year, month, week, day she had left for L.A. “Yeah…Hey, come in it must be freezing out there”, I replied nervously, I was a nervous wreck, in my bath-robe and fuzzy bunny slippers she had bought me.
Well, let me give you the details of this story, so you understand what’s going on here; I’m Stefan A. Alexander, President of Baron Tech Inc©. My life in 2013 (pronounced twenty-thirteen) was bliss, I was head of a Fortune® 500™ company and my beautiful wife, Ashley, was a partner in Alexander, Smith & Anderson Law Firm. We were voted most likely to succeed in both our classes. She was 2 years younger than me, making her 24. Now back to reality, she had left me in 2020 for a job in Los Angeles. I had begged for her to stay but I knew it was the best thing for her and for me. “So, she said in her beautiful voice that was considered by many a great singing voice, but she had said that singing was just a job that only requires a God-given gift, which she considered cheating, “How’s life been treating you lately? I heard you bought out Toys R Us® last month. Quite an achievement if I may say so myself.” “Yeah I guess so” I replied still dumbstruck and I could only imagine how stupid I looked with my robe and fuzzy slippers. “Please, make yourself at home, I’ll go change clothes.” She smiled, her incredible smile that made ice melt and water steam. I stumbled into my walk-in closet and grabbed the first pair of jeans and tried putting them on two legs at a time, a feat only no one could accomplish. Of course, I fell over and hit my head on my shoe rack. The pain was probably very powerful but I didn’t really pay that much attention, seeing as the love of my life was in the living room waiting for me. As I walked into the living room I saw she was looking at the painting above my fireplace, a real Van Gogh painted in the year… I don’t know, it was a cool painting and I bought from an auction. “I really like this painting, when was it painted?” I had to smile, the irony was just to funny. “I do believe it was painted in Saint-Remy June 1889. It’s called Starry Night.”
Maybe I did remember after all. “Well it’s very nice. I love your house, Stef, it’s so gothic and mysterious. Kind of gives me chills down my spine.” It was a Roman-Gothic 1700 five bedroom, four-bathroom mansion on the top of a hill in Danbury, about a forty-five minute drive to the main office in New York. ”So, I said nervously, not trying to make it seem as she was imposing on my life, which she was definitely not, what brings you here to New York.” I was thinking twenty thoughts per second, was it me she was here for, business, or could it be that she was here to tell me that she was engaged to another man and wanted to tell me in person? That last one was a little bit cliché, but if it’s happened in so many movies, than why not my life? “The reason I’m here is that… well I don’t know why I’m here okay? I missed you, that’s all there is to it!” She ran over and gave me a hug while sobbing quietly. I took her over to the couch, put on some coffee in the kitchen and let her spill her guts; so to speak. “Everything was going fine in L.A., the firm was going great and for the first couple of weeks I missed you but didn’t think anything of it. I even went on a few dates but I could not stop thinking about you. So I drowned myself in work, I used all my spare time handling case after case after case, even Jim Anderson told me laughingly that I was making everyone else look bad. This continued for quite some” Wait a sec,” I told her, and as I jumped up to get the coffee and poured her a cup.” “I’m sorry, you were saying?” “Yes, um, oh yeah this continued for quite some time, almost seven months, but suddenly I snapped in the courtroom. I was handling the O.J. Simpson Jr. Trial when suddenly I realized that I could not do this forever and took the first plane to JFK. I stayed in a hotel for a few days to wear of the jet lag and now I’m here not knowing what to say or do. Oh I’m so embarrassed, I should have called ahead.” She just kept on mumbling, just like she often did. “Don’t worry, it’s okay,” I replied, just now realizing that she had just as little of a clue what to say or do in this awkward situation as I did. That relaxed me as I tried to just get both of us cool, calm and collected. We both just sat there on my couch, and the only noise came from my wind chimes outside, registering the breeze that never seemed to stop. I had so much to say and yet I didn’t know where to start, so I decided to just blurt something out and hope it wasn’t pathetic. “You look kind of cold, can I get you a blanket or a pillow or something?” “Thanks, that would be nice.” I went over to the couch and retrieved the blanket I had bought during my trip to the artic. We started talking and before we knew it we were re-living the times we had together, ending each story with a sigh and maybe hopes that these stories would bring us more together. After what seemed like only a few moments I looked at my watch and noticed that it was already eleven-thirty. She also checked here watch, a silver Rolex I had given to her as a congratulations present on her being a partner, and told me in a sad voice that she better check into a motel. I, of course, denied her that and said that she could stay in my guest room. “Oh no I wouldn’t want to cause you any un-needed trouble, and besides, you have work tomorrow. “Tomorrows Saturday” So she agreed to stay and the very next morning we went to the carnival in New York. We had a great time and just as the Ferris-wheel stopped I asked her ”What ever happened to us? I mean, we were doing great and then suddenly we just left each other and went on with our lives.” “Well, she replied, I guess…” Just as she was about to finish that sentence I heard a blood curling scream from one of the other carriages on the Ferris wheel. I looked behind me and saw two girls, one about ten and the other maybe fourteen hanging on for dear life. The cord had ripped and they were holding on to the metal bar screaming at the top of their lungs.
There was a large crowd of people gathering and I, completely spontaneously, leapt up on to the metal spokes of the wheel and climbed over to the little girls pink carriage. I heard a large gasp as the fourteen year old lost the grip of her left hand and was just dangling in the air. I was not sure what happened after that as the adrenalin rush took over and gave me just the extra strength I needed to save the girls. All I remember is that thousands of people crowded around to pat me on the back. I heard from one of the paramedics that I had grabbed both of the girls left arms and pulled them over into another carriage which lifted them down to the ground. I was in the news that day, and I did at least ten interviews before I could go home. As we were driving home in my ’67 Corvette 427 Roadster, Ashley asked me where I had learned how to do what I did back at the carnival. It was one of the few things I had never told her about myself. I don’t know why I never told her but now that it had come up I had to tell her. I stopped the car, looked into at her beautiful blue eyes and told her. When she heard, she could hardly believe her ears, but she smiled and said that it was okay. My secret; I was a Navy Marine, well ex-Navy Marine, but I had still had it in me. It had built up over the years, a strong urge to just prove my strength to the world. I had only told my closest friends and family about my past; not even my aunt and uncle knew about it. It was a great feeling, having finally told her, but it seemed to disturb her, which troubled me. I tried discussing it on the ride home but she acted like it really wasn’t that big of a deal. When we got home I decided that I would have to be firm and demand she tell me why she was mad. “It’s just that when you jumped out onto the spokes it scared me to think what could happen to you. I mean, what if you fell, you surely would have died.” “I was willing to risk my life for the safety of the girls!
I’m obligated to do that as Marine!” That shut me up as I just now realized what she meant. “Look, I…” “Forget, Stefan, just forget it, it doesn’t matter that you have to be out saving the world in an Armani suit. You are a multi-billionaire who’s out to save the world from devastation. I know it’s selfish but I’d rather have you here on my own than having to put up with your episodes. I’m going upstairs so don’t bother seeing me!” That went awfully well I thought sarcastically while turning on my TV. Of course, there was nothing on, even though I received over four hundred channels. I sat moaning on my couch trying to figure out what I was going to do about the anti-superhero lady upstairs.
The next day surprised me, although the last couple of days had not been some of the most calm days I had experienced. Before, times like those would result in me calling my best friend since I was twelve, Raymond, but he was incarcerated in the Harris County correctional facility for breaking in to the president’s private e-mail and causing several scandals by giving them to Rod Smith, New York Times reporter. He, of course, pleaded his innocence quoting “It was only the truth”. The president’s reply was simply that he had no right being in his personal e-mail anyway. I’ve always frowned on that situation but that’s only my opinion anyway. Now I’d have to handle this situation on my own, like a man, tough and brave! Ah, what the hell, I’d just handle the whole situation “spur of the moment” and hope for the best. The result, actually, went rather well. Or at least better than I would have expected. I never would have thought that the next couple of hours would change my life in a way so powerful that it would take me two days to fully understand it’s meaning, let alone react on it. I decided to let her “chill” for a while, so I decided to watch The Late Show, and then go upstairs and talk to Ashley. I remember going up the stairs, the creepy stairs with pictures of warlords on both the walls. I had never really cared for those pictures, expect for the picture of Hitler. I used that for dart practice. As I entered the room I realized she was in the shower, hearing water splash quite loudly due to my shower massage thing. I decided to wait on the couch for her, and it took only but a few moments before she had come into the room wearing only a towel. She did not notice me as she walked into her walk-in closet. She came out in a jogging suit that, surprisingly, made her look not the least bit less attractive. She smiled as she was coming out, and simply replied that the argument was stupid and that she still had jet lag from her trip over so she had been grumpy. I had completely fallen for that, even though I now know that I never should have. So we just went on with our day, opened a bottle of cheap wine that we had gotten so used to before we could afford anything else. We had a great evening, laughing and re-living old times, and didn’t get to sleep until 3 o’clock.
Two days later, on the 25th of November, I realized that on the first day Ashley had told me that she had worn off the jet lag in a hotel. I called the airport and asked them if there had been a passenger named Ashley Ellenberger in lately. A few moments later the lady I spoke to told me that she had looked at the picture and remembered that a lady that looked liked that might have ordered a ticket to New York on the 30th. “Of last month” I asked. “No” she chuckled, “of October actually.” I talked to the lady for a few more minutes. I found out that she had called herself Susan Brosnan, which told me that I had to confront Ashley. Mrs. Brosnan was one of the teachers at my school in Houston. I had told Ashley about that since she was such a good teacher, and that she inspired me to work harder in everyday life. She also taught me to tell the truth. “Irony at it’s best, aye?” I looked for Ashley all around the house, actually finding new rooms that I had never seen before! But Ashley was nowhere to be found. Just as I had decided that I might as well just sit down and wait for her, she walked in to the bedroom and asked me why I was sweating so much. I didn’t really feel like answering so I simply changed the subject. “Where have you been?” I asked in a nervous, mad, worried voice that might arouse suspicion in some people, but not her. “Oh, I’ve just gotten back from the store, I picked up some donuts for you,” she replied with a smile on her face. I sat there gathering enough courage to confront her and tell her what I knew. I sat her down on the bed, stood up and looked her straight in the face; in the eyes. I took a deep breath, sighed and told everything. It took maybe five minutes but the look on my face told me that there was something wrong, she just looked so…mean, I guess. I sighed and waited for her to respond. I waited, and waited, and waited and she just sat there blindly doing nothing but grinning. I felt kind of foolish, considering that everything might have just been a mistake and that I had just made a fool of my self to the fullest. But then the shocking truth hit me. How could I have been so blind??? She was, of course, not really there but only a mirage like so many times before. I quickly turned around to see her slowly fade away into nothingness. “God I miss her!!!” I yelled in a blind rage and hit myself in the head for believing that she would ever come back! I had had these dreams before, but none as realistic as this one. I changed into my robe and slippers and sat down on the couch in the living room. I had decided to just sit down and relax when someone rang the doorbell. I dragged myself up and to the door hoping it was someone other than an insurance salesman. I opened the door, and there she was. I hadn’t seen her for years.