Murphy's Law

10 Generations of real life problems.

This was supposed to be a legacy but it's turned into a story...

Anyway, this story is inspired by favorite books, movies, television shows and personal experiences.

Life is not a fairy tale but that doesn't mean it's not beautiful. After all, you love people in spite of their flaws, and sometimes their flaws make you love them even more.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Chapter 1.3 - Don't Call Me Peanut

The next day, I gave myself my greatest indulgence.  Books.  Noble Tomes Library, with shelves upon shelves of delicious books, beckoned to me.  You could pick up a book and like a long-lost friend, start back up from where you left off.  They didn't drop dead and leave you with millions of debt.  They didn't boink your best friend.  And they didn't talk on their cell phone on a date.  

No, if everything else in my world had gone to hell, there was one thing that was constant.  And unlike expensive mani-pedis, this form of escapism was absolutely free.  I sat there for a couple of hours, my mind ravenous for new information, anything to distract me from the circus that my life had become.  Anything to distract me from a certain guitar playing fisherman whose charm so reminded me of Puck from "A Midsummer's Night Dream".  What was I thinking?  Robin Goodfellow couldn't touch Nate's level of mischief or the sparkle in his eyes or the impish grin that was always playing on his lips, threatening to explode into unadulterated mirth.  Nate held the innocence of a life NOT weighed down by marriages of conveniences, White Parties, debutante balls and philanthropic fundraisers.

And if Gregory were alive, he'd be very happy to know that Holden Pomeroy's son, heir to the music mogul's fortune, wanted to marry his prissy cream puff of a daughter.  Even if he was a douchebag.   I could marry Carter.  We could have douchebag sons and cream puff daughters.  

I didn't put much thought into my wedding as a young girl.  I assumed it would be to someone rich who would treat me well and let me go shopping, who would probably cheat on me with the help and who would gift me with expensive items for certain bedroom acts.  That's how marriage in my world seemed to operate.  And I was okay with that.  But still, a small part of me had always wondered what it would be like to like, no scratch that, LOVE someone.  I wanted to know if you could look at someone and see their eyes, not dollar signs.  To play and cuddle with them and not be afraid to ruffle their Armani.  To have someone think I was as beautiful in sweats and no makeup as LaPerla bras and garters.  

Yes, Carter had everything the people in OUR world could want in a spouse and he'd probably treat me better than most.  Certainly better than Tad would have.  He was a newlywed and already stepping out on Babe.  No wonder she lived her days in a Xanax coma.  And honestly, Nate?  Mr. Puck/Robin Goodfellow? He didn't even know who Herve Leger was and probably thought foie gras was a type of plant.

When it came down to it, there was only one choice that made sense. 

*     *     *     *     *     *     *

Carter swam alone.  Tad and Babe were throwing a huge party and he was miserable.  He missed Marilyn.  However superficial she might appear, she was also the nicest of all the girls he knew.  No one else noticed that she was absent.  Popularity was nothing but a firework - you shot into the sky as a explosion of light, twinkled for a couple of seconds and then fizzled out.  Reputations were made and destroyed in the same day.  Fashions were obsolete before they even went mainstream.  

One of their own was living in absolute freaking squalor and yet they continued on their merry way, sipping G & T's and munching on truffle risotto without a care in the world.  

Although most of them were from old money families and only a few were truly new money sleaze, fortunes were made and lost overnight just as easily.  Marilyn wasn't the first socialite heiress to fall from grace.  It could have been any one of them.  And it will be one day.  Yet it STILL won't be any different.  Another casualty lost to the unpredictability of a rocky economy.  Another name to cross off the RSVP list and like a hydra's head, another name to pop up in its place.  

Carter sighed, abandoning the evening's festivities.  On his way out, he didn't even give the bikini clad vixens a second glance.  Well, maybe one.  Or two.  For a couple of seconds.  But then he was gone, a man on a mission.

*     *     *     *     *     *     *

"Hello?  Oh, hi!  Yes, I'm home.  Actually, I was just on my way out.  I'm headed to the Laundromat.  Oh, you're leaving Tad's party?  I guess I don't mind some company.  Meet ya there in fifteen?"

I drove my little beater car to the laundromat, nervous to see Carter.  When I got there, I quickly dropped a load into the washer.  My head was a jumble of thoughts, my nerves completely shot.

"Hey Mar."

"Oh God, Carter!"  I whirled around.  I had been too absorbed in my thoughts to notice that he had crept in behind me.

He grinned.  "That's what the ladies say."

I blushed furiously.  "So how was the party?"

"It sucked.  I missed you."

"Oh."  I wasn't sure what to say.

"Have you been thinking about me?  About us?"

I nodded as I busied myself with transferring my clothes to the dryer.  "Yes, I have.  A lot."

Carter dimple-smiled.  "So are you still going to take that job?"

I nodded again.  "Yes, I really think I am."

His smile disappeared.  "Marilyn, what the hell?  You can't be serious.  A movie composer?  You know, they don't make that much money.  Even a girl as beautiful as yourself will grow old some day.  And then you won't be able to afford the Botox and plastic.  Do you really want that for yourself?  We just make sense.  Why can't you see that?"

"I just need more time to think about it.  You're a great guy, Carter, and I've always felt lucky to have you as one of my friends."

'I don't WANT to be friends.  I want to marry you.  To have you by my side always and to live the life we both were born for.  Of all the girls I ever liked, you were the only one I could never get.  And I HAVE to have you."

"Or what?'  I whispered.

"Oh my God, Marilyn.  Seriously?  What's there to think about?  You're beautiful, I'm beautiful.  I can rescue you from the rat's nest of a shanty you're squatting in.  We look good together.  I'm a Pomeroy, you're an Astor.  You're the only woman I feel like can be my equal."

But he hesitated on the world "equal".  You see, in this world, men and women are never "equals".  We're mates, like Salt and Pepper shakers.  But for a socialite, the Salt is just part of a matching set.  It never trumps Pepper.  As much as we women love accessories, most of us love being one more.  And many would throw away a more equal union for the security of having a large house, genetically gifted offspring and a vacation home in the Hamptons.

"I should probably go."  The dryer had just buzzed, signaling my laundry was done.  Who knew it was so easy?  I was relieved.  Carter's inner douchebag was coming out.  Saved by the buzzer.

"When are you going to be done thinking?  I'd like to say I'd wait forever, but this isn't a freaking Nicholas Sparks movie.  We're grownups Marilyn.  It's not rocket science."

I buried my face in my hands.  "I'll call you, okay?"

When I got home, I sat in my shabby little chair for a very long time.  Carter was right.  So why couldn't I seal the deal?


  1. Carter needs to seriously go take a hike!! He should want to be with Marilyn because he loves her, not because she's a thing that he hasn't managed to add to his collection yet.

    I really hope Mar doesn't take Carter up on his offer... I think it would be the worst mistake of her life! :(

    ♥ and harp strings,

  2. I love Carter. He reminds me of certain people I have dated and we all need assholes in this world. Besides, in this story, no one is a villain OR a good guy... ;)

  3. I just discovered your story. I am LOVING it so far. Amazing <3