Gina had her back to her vanity and used the silver heirloom hand mirror to look over her shoulder. She quickly and deftly tucked each and every hair into an elegant, loose bun. “That bastard. That dirty, cheating, rat bastard,” she said aloud as she turned around on the quilted ottoman.
She placed the hand mirror face down (as superstition dictates) on the slick, cold marble of the vanity and stared hard at her reflection. It’s true. She wasn’t the spring chicken she was when she met Tommy. But she hardly thought she’d lost her looks. Back then, he had worked at the docks, and she had worked at The Dirty Apron Diner. It was love at first sight. Their love was the reason power ballads existed.
It wasn’t long after their wedding when the union went on strike. Tommy was down on his luck, and Gina begged him to run away. Tommy was far too proud. He took on odd jobs around town to make what money he could. With depression setting in from the strike, he started hanging out at the local gentlemen’s club called The Feather and Tassel. There he got involved with some stripper named Dezzaray. When Gina found out, she’d shed more tears than a leaky garden hose. Tommy swore he wouldn’t visit the club again.
One month later, Tommy was right back where he said he wouldn’t be, and Gina was making her own plans. Between the booze and the women, Tommy had become about as useful as a broken teakettle. It was time for Gina to end his cheating ways once and for all. Just like a big Black Widow spider, she needed to time her strike perfectly.
Tonight was that night.
As she put the finishing touches on her mascara, she heard the downstairs door slam. “Hey Baby….. dinner ready yet?” Tommy slurred as his voice trailed off toward the kitchen.
“Nearly done. I’ll be right down,” she called over her shoulder.
Gina picked up the tube of blood red lipstick she planned on wearing for the night. She smacked her lips together and focused on something left on the dresser. She had forgotten to put away the rat poison. No matter. Tommy slept on the couch most nights anyway.
Would there be something in the cole slaw that night? Or maybe a little extra surprise in the Pineapple Surprise? For once in her flaw-filled life, Gina was glad for her diner expertise. She smiled a wicked smile and blew a kiss at her reflection. “Let’s do this,” she encouraged herself.
And down the stairs she vanished.