Revenge is a Dish Best Served Boneless

by D. Lynn Frazier


I awake, as usual, and attempt to roll out of bed. Nothing happens except a squelchy noise and the sheets twitch over me. I realize when I try to roll over once more that my bones have all disappeared. Odd, I think, but in that first-awake calm where I'm still half in a dream it seems merely surreal and not frightening. 

Funny, came my next thought. I'd thought about calling in sick today. Now I have an excuse, but I can't reach the phone.
 
I hear the front door open. That catches my attention; because no one has the key...except, it occurs to me, my ex.
 
Her appearance, I suspect, is not a coincidence.
 
Squeals and the patter of small feet holding up chubby legs, and then my toddler comes running into my bedroom. Behind him, the click-clack of the ex-wife's stilettos on the hardwood. She stares down at me, her mouth a blood-red smirk. She flips the covers back to reveal me laying naked and deflated in what used to be our marriage bed.
 
"Look Timmy, it's a Daddy balloon. Let's blow him up. Go get the air pump from the laundry room, okay?"
 
Timmy knows what an air pump is; we'd made a game of pumping stuff up before. My kid's fascinated by all things that blow air, from farts to ripping balloons that fly around the room. My ex is an evil, evil woman, using my boy against me like that.
 
I try to make words, but the lack of a jaw sort of inhibits that approach. Still, she gets the gist of it as she grabs the old valve stem then adjusts her grip to include the valve nuts. 
 
She squeezes. The sounds coming out of me rise in pitch. "Hi, honey. Ask me now how I like my men. Answer? Stiffer than you've ever been--except when you stiffed me on the child support." Her smile shows teeth. "How about we fix both problems? Don't worry. It'll be fun."
 
Okay, so ask me how I feel about this change in my life. I'll make no bones about it, pardon the pun: There are compensations. Less stress, for one. And I've been wanting to lose a few pounds. Besides, bobbing on the ceiling like this, I can watch the kid grow up.