Lean On Me
by lauren finchum
Not For Sale
Author requests article critique
Not For Sale
Author requests article critique
After the horrific day at work, it would be raining. And I broke my umbrella yesterday when I crushed it under my car seat, so here I go, running through puddles with my purse over my head.
The cold rain is belting the bag like tiny bombs, and I wonder if the people at Lucky Brand would appreciate that I’ve soaked real leather with rain.
I get in my car and put my now drenched bag in the passenger seat. I start my car and put on my seatbelt.
I need something positive for this day, so I turn Third Day’s album “Conspiracy No. 5” on full blast.
I rock my way to my townhouse and muse that at least the trees are still pretty—wet, but pretty. All the colors of red, orange, and yellow meld together and I find a smile on my face as I park.
I get out of my SUV and head straight for the front door. As I enter the foyer, my high heels slip from the rain and I end up on my butt.
What can I say; I knew I should of put a through rug there.
I kick off my heels, “I need a bubble bath.” I say.
I get a sandwich and tea, then start up the bubbles. I finish eating while the tub fills, then I settle back and soak away the bad day.
Feeling a lot better, I get dressed in a lounge set, then smear face mask on my face, and put whitening strips on my teeth. I sit back with a book to let my garb do its work. In the middle on a chapter, my doorbell rings.
I open the door. It’s Lane.
“Hey, Lane!” I smile.
It’s then I realize—in utter horror—that my face is layered with green paste and my teeth covered with Saran Wrap-like plastic.
Lane is smile his cute little head off—and choking back a laugh, I think.
“Oh, my gosh!” I rush back to my room.
I scrub the green mask off my face like I’m trying to remove my skin and peel the whiting strips from my teeth. I rinse my mouth with mouthwash, then put on some power and blush so I won’t scared Lane to death.
I come back into the living room. Lane is sitting on my sofa—pressing his lips together so he won’t laugh. “Here she comes, Miss Mud Mask Queen.” He says, and I slap him as he finally laughs.
“Har, har.” I say.
“No, I’m kidding, you look pretty no matter what.”
He kisses me, “Mmm, minty.”
I laugh, “Why did you come here?”
“What, I can’t see my girlfriend?” he shrugs with a grin, “Don’t you remember, you wanted me to come by on Tuesday nights . . .we were going to study the book of Psalms together.”
“Oh, yeah, it’s Tuesday.” I slap my head.
I’m such a dork.
“Well, get my Bible for my, and I’ll get some tea for us.” I say.
“Will do.” my hunk heads to my bookshelf.
I go to my kitchen and get glasses. As I fix the tea, I think to myself how much Lane has done for me. He’s showed me that my step-dad isn’t the only man on this earth that loves me for who I am.
Lane’s been there for me when I’ve acted like a total screwball. He loves me no matter how much my hand-eye coordination sucks.
Sometimes, though I feel like this relationship is one sided. He does all the giving, and I do all the taking.
I really wish I could do for Lane what he’s done for me.
I hear Lane’s cell ring as I pour the tea, “Hey, Kara.” I hear him greet his sister.
As I come out of the kitchen, an eerie quite has fallen. I look at Lane, and he looks like a cat in car headlights.
He hangs up his phone and looks like he’s in a trance.
“Sweetie, what’s wrong?” I ask, having a gut feeling it’s a doozy.
“My grandmother died fifteen minutes ago.” Lane is trying to talk normal, but is failing big time.
I feel like I’ve been punched in the stomach as I put my fingers to my mouth, “Oh, Lane, I’m so sorry.” I say.
I rub his shoulder.
All the sudden, he cups his face in his hands and starts weeping mercilessly.
I feel pain shoot through my body as he cries.
“I—I don’t know what . . .” Lane looks up at me and his gorgeous blue eyes are darkened with grief and dancing with tears.
I hug him and he breaths deeply.
The look he had in his eyes made my bad day look like paradise.
I kiss his head as I rub his back, “She’s in heaven now.” I whisper, trying to ease his pain.
When I said I wanted to be there for Lane, his grandmother dying suddenly is NOT what I had in mind.
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