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Anger Issues

“You need to slow down.”

Michael has this terrible habit of driving too fast. It drives me crazy. We have two kids in the car and he is still pushing twenty over the speed limit. And the way he grips the steering wheel – it looks like he’s trying to strangle it.

“Well then why don’t you tell me how fast to go,” he shoots back at me.

I love Michael. He is my everything. But he has the tendency to be a bit aggressive, even with me. He has never been that way with the kids, thank god. He dotes on those two. Isabella is four and Clark is barely two months. He looks at them like they can do no wrong. I can’t really blame him, especially about Clark. Clark is the perfect baby. He hardly ever cries and has the most angelic face. Looks just like his dad.

We’re driving down the highway on our way to my mother’s place.

We left a little later than planned (just a little kitchen accident) so it’s dark out. Michael is driving (of course, he’d never let me drive). Isabella is crying in the backseat (as usual). You’d think she’d tire herself out, crying for that long. But Isabella has always been a difficult child. I’m in the passenger seat with Clark in my arms. I know you’re not supposed to hold babies in the car, and we have a perfectly good car seat in the back, but I just can’t resist. I want to be as close to Clark as possible. He’s sleeping peacefully, even with his sister making a ruckus in the back.

“Honey,” I say slowly, hoping not to make him angry, “We need to slow down. We don’t want to get pulled over.” He glares at me, but finally let’s loose a bit on the gas pedal. We slow to a normal 60 mph. The roads are calm, just a few occasional passersby.
“I love Vermont in the evening,” I say happily, trying to fill the silence. “All the trees are just a bit gray, but the colors of fall still light up the leaves. It’s like a little paradise.”

Michael grunts and pounds the steering wheel. He never listens to me.

“Honey,” I say a little more forcefully, “It’s going to be a dreadful ride if you’re irritated all night.” Clark looks like a little angel in his sleep. “And we don’t want to wake the baby.”

Michael frowns a little. “Fine. What do you want me to say?”

He hasn’t always been like this. When we first met he was sweet and funny. He lit up every room he walked into. But he’s been getting a little bit angrier each passing day. First it was problems with the house, then his father died. Just a series of hardships. But I can still see that beautiful man I fell in love with all that time ago.

I clear my throat. “How about we talk about how we met. Isabella, dearest, don’t you want to hear about how I met Daddy?” I turn around to get Isabella’s attention, but she’s still wailing. “Isabella, are you listening to me?” Her face is red and streaked with tears.
“Belly, please calm down,” Michael says softly. His voice is so kind sometimes. “Please don’t make things harder for me.”

Isabella sniffs and shakes her head. “I want-“

“Belly, hush.” Michael is a bit sterner now. “Listen.”

“Thank you, Honey.” I smile. Michael is trying his best to control his anger. He tries, he really does. “Anyway, what was I saying? Oh yes, how we met.”

Those first days were magical. Of course, we met in the hospital where I was working. I was just a secretary, nothing important or anything. But Michael saw potential in me. He greeted me with the kindest, most beautiful smile. His eyes were blue and shining. He looked like someone out of a Disney movie. We chatted a bit as normal folks do. I checked him in, and he went away to his appointment. I thought nothing of it until a while later when I saw him out at a coffee shop. I couldn’t believe it! That’s how we reconnected, and we’ve been in love ever since.

I laugh. “Who would have thought I’d meet the man of my dreams while checking him in for athlete’s foot!”

Michael doesn’t laugh. He hardly ever laughs anymore.

I turn to Isabella again. “I used to write your daddy the sweetest letters. It was our little way of saying we loved each other.”

The car shakes a bit and I look back to Michael. He has started speeding again and the car is swerving into the next lane. “Be careful!” I hold Clark a little closer. “Do you want to kill your children?!”

“No,” he says quickly. “No, not my children.”

“That’s not nice to say,” I spit back at him. “Especially not in front of the kids.”

“What do you want me to say, then? That I love you? That things are perfect?”

“Well they would have been perfect if you could control your anger!” I clutch Clark a little tighter.

“My anger?!” he starts to shout.

All of a sudden police lights fill the highway with red light. We can hear sirens. “Shit,” Michael whispers.

“Language,” I reply.

“Should I pull over?” Michael’s face is white. He’s afraid of what will happen if we stop. Which makes sense, considering what he did back at the house. He never listens to me.

“You can’t pull over, Honey. You know what will happen.” I try to keep smiling. I know Clark is only a few months, but I don’t want him to hear us fight. He’s such a precious angel boy.

Michael is gripping the steering wheel even harder now. His words are calculated. “I’ll just pull over, and act like nothing’s wrong. It’ll be fine. I’ll just get a speeding ticket. No one will say anything.”

“Say anything! Say anything!” Isabella starts screaming again.
I’ve always been partial to little boys versus little girls. I don’t know when it started. I never had any brothers or sisters. Mother just had me. She always bought me boy dolls. Maybe that’s why.
“Isabella, please quiet down. Your daddy and I are speaking.”
But Isabella won’t stop screaming. “Mommy, my mommy!” Her voice is so grating. The sirens keep howling. They’re going to wake the baby.

“Please, let me pull over. I promise it’ll be fine. I’ll be good.” Michael’s eyes are begging me.

“Now honey, you know-“

“Mommy! Mommy!” Isabella won’t shut up. She is louder than the sirens. The lights are flashing. Michael won’t stop looking at me.

“Please, please.” Michael is looking at Clark now. Always about the kids. Except when it isn’t.

“Fine.” I relax my shoulders. I realize I have been holding onto Clark just a bit too tightly, and he has little white marks from my fingers. “Pull over.”

Michael pulls the car over to the side. Isabella is still screaming. Clark is snuggled neatly in my arms. I hear the car door open from the police car behind us. Michael is sweating. Big drops of sweat roll off that perfect Disney prince nose. His eyes are darting from Clark to Isabella. He knows. He knows.

I can see the policeman in the side mirror. He’s average looking. Boring. He taps twice on the glass.

Michael rolls the window down. He can’t stop his hands from shaking. Michael is so unpredictable, I don’t know what he’ll do next.

“Good evening, folks,” the policeman says in a friendly, almost cliché tone. “You were going about-“

The gun shot was louder than Isabella screaming. That shut her right up. The policeman wavered a bit before falling to the ground. The shot was straight between the eyes.

Michael stares at me, not the policeman. “Wha…….what are you….”

I smile sweetly back at him, lowering the gun a bit to rest nicely on my lap. “You are the one who wanted to pull over.” My tone is even. Sweet. Dripping with honey. I fix my bangs. “You never listen to me. That’s your one fault, you know. You aren’t a good listener.” I raise the gun and fire another shot. I hit my target again. Straight between the eyes. I’ve always been a good shot.
Michael opens his mouth to scream but I talk first. “No, you listen to me. I told you. I told you to do exactly as I say, or else your little brats will end up like your stupid whore wife. Isn’t that what I said?”

Michael is staring at the backseat. Isabella is quiet now. A bullet will do that.

“If you had just listened to me from the beginning. We are meant to be together. I told you that. I wrote to you again and again and you ignored me. You rejected me. You kept sleeping with that bitch.” I stroke the side of Clark’s face with a finger. “But I guess it all worked out for the best, huh? I can’t have kids of my own, but this little angel….he’s mine.” I look back at Michael, smiling. “And you’re mine.”

Michael is pale. He has no words, finally.

“Now shut up and drive, or else I’ll have to put a bullet into you too.”

There is a pause. Then Michael turns the key in the ignition. He’s crying, oh my sweet honey. He’s so sensitive, especially about the baby. We are on the road again. I hum a little and move Clark’s arms up and down like he’s dancing.

“Sweet angel,” I sing softly, “Want to hear the story of how your parents met?”

---by reddit user EZmisery via:    


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