Every young man needs advice. This is a common sentiment among parents of arranged marriages. Dean was no exception. At first he was coolly indifferent to his new bride and her impressive dowry of unerring navigation, sultry voice and macabre sense of humor. Her called her “Lovey” and his parents let him know that she was a sophisticated lady who’d been educated in the ways of the world. She definitely knew how to get her point across with a commanding voice and confidence that he hoped would rub off on him.
Dean allowed her to rule their wheeled roost with graceful efficiency. She offered up exotic cuisine when he was hungry and seemed to know which bars, strip clubs and massage parlors would fulfill his needs. It was the way she ordered him around, however, that made him fall for her. She could sense his moods—she commanded him when h efelt directionless on his path and was supportive when he was in the dumps with jokes about u-turns and crashing on dead-end streets relationship had lasted three years and had ended abruptly in a car crash that she blamed herself for to this very day.
After that confession, the end was inevitable, he supposed. She started pulling back from him, going through long periods of silence and sending him into seedy sections of town. He wasn’t certain what to make of it all until the day he came back from karaoke with his window smashed in. After all they’d been through, Lovey had run off with another man. In romance, he was used to losing out to bad boys and could not get her voice out of his head. He got depressed whenever he got lost in the city and even his parents were upset that their arrangement had not worked out.
After a time he stopped looking to see if he recognized her riding shotgun next to other drivers. But her voice stayed with him always. He heard her in the loudspeakers at department stores, in the commands of his boss on speakerphone, in the tinny murmur of dolls, clutched to chests. No one gets over a love such as this. In the klaxons of amber alerts and nuclear winter, she would be there to guide him into the darkness, the affairs of the earth.
About the Author:
A former U.S Army interrogator, Martin Ott currently lives in Los Angeles and still finds himself asking lot of questions. His fiction and poetry have appeared in more than 100 publications, including HARVARD REVIEW, NEW LETTERS, PRAIRIE SCHOONER and ZYZZYVA. He has been nominated for two Pushcart prizes and his short story manuscript “Perishables” has been a finalist for the New American Fiction Prize and the Sol Book Prose series. He has also optioned 3 screenplays, and he is currently represented by Ken Atchity at AEI Entertainment to develop a project “Twain” about two brothers rafting down the Mississippi. His book of poetry “Captive” won the 2011 De Novo Prize and will be published on C&R Press in 2012. “Poets’ Guide to America” – a collaboration with John F. Buckley – will be published by Brooklyn Arts Press in 2012. Visit his blog about writing: http://writeliving.wordpress.com/