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Starting Over
Chapter 5
New Beginnings

by Eleanor Tylbor

Looking around Estelle's apartment it was obvious to Sheila that her sudden arrival had interrupted special plans for the evening. The surface of the floor was covered in various clothes including a maid's uniform replete with black garter belt and black hose.

"You or - him?" Sheila asked, a definite amused quality in the tone of her voice.

"You'll never know," Estelle said, rushing to pick up the clothes. "Then again - maybe you will. So you finally left the idiot! It's about time, that's all I can say. Just think about all the fun ahead."

Somehow, her friend's comments made her feel defensive. Perhaps it was also because it was a reflection on her low self-esteem that she had stayed with someone that obviously everyone saw as a jerk, except her.

"I'm here, aren't I? Doesn't that tell you something?" Sheila responded, feeling that she was being attacked.

"Take it easy, girl! I'm just happy that you finally made a move! Just lemme finish cleaning all this stuff..."

She grabbed the three empty bottles of champagne and a can of whipped cream, shaking it.

"Empty. You know - whipped cream is so...versatile," Estelle laughed shaking the can, "but then you're not ready to hear about those kind of things - yet. But you will!"

"The only thing I want to think about now is peace and quiet and I never want to see or hear another hockey game - ever!"

Sheila realized that she was yelling at the mere mention of the word 'hockey.'

"Sorry - don't know why I reacted like that."

"I do. Years of having to listen and cater to Hal the loser. I'm sure he and his big screen TV will be happy. Wanna bet he probably still hasn't realized that you left him?"

Estelle was probably right. A flash of Hal sitting in his arm chair, the remnants of their special gourmet meal she had prepared dripping down his face and his only reaction was to bemoan how his team had lost the game.

"So...like...what d'ya wanna do? We could grab a latte down at the coffee shop..."

"Would you mind if we stayed in?" Sheila responded, feeling suddenly mentally and physically exhausted. "I'm getting a migraine and I'm absolutely no good when that happens."

"What's the matter with me? Of course you're exhausted after everything you've gone through! I've got a fan-tas-tic idea! I'm gonna make you a welcome cocktail party and introduce you to everyone! Nobody makes a par-tee like me! Gotta plan it right... Make a list of the right people you should meet..."

"Estelle - gimme a break! I mean - that sounds like a fun idea but all I want right now is a bed and sleep if that's okay with you?"

"Oh you mean that beds can be used for sleeping too?" Estelle laughed. "Sorry - force of habit. I meant a party this weekend of course. There's somebody you just hav'ta meet. Consider it your "lookout world - Sheila is here!" statement. Plenty of time to talk - and plan - tomorrow."

Estelle brought in a comforter and pillows.

"Hope you don't mind sleeping on the couch. We've...I've tried it and it's very comfortable. Nighty-night. Don't let anyone bite. Actually... Never mind."

As she laid down on the couch, she felt something sticking in her back and sliding her hand under her hips, she retrieved a plastic object.

"What in the world is this... Oh-my-oh-my," she said to herself. "You sure lead a busy life, Estelle!"

Exhaustion overtook her and her dreams were filled with hockey play-by-plays.

To be continued...
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Previous Chapters: Chapter 1 | Chapter 2 | Chapter 3 | Chapter 4
For more, visit "Starting Over" - a continuing chapter-fiction story focusing on the trials and tribulations of Sheila, once married to a loser, who attempts to re-start her life.

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