I write for baby boomers, and I like to challenge myself with short stories about the experience—really short stories. Most are only two pages and encompass moments in time about aging and still being young. Wisdom meets Peter Pan Syndrome. Some stories are humorous; others are poignant with a touch of heart. My goal is to write 100 of these stories to publish in a collection. As a summer treat, I’m pleased to share one of my favorites. I hope you enjoy it.
THE LITTLE BLUE PILL
Drudgy tasks get divvied up in a thirty-six-year marriage. On Sunday nights, one of mine is to dish out the vitamins for the week. Supplements hold the promise of whistle-clean arteries, lubed joints, soft skin, and shiny coats. Omegas are added to the array of acids, enzymes, and fiber, and topped with a chaser of prescriptions―a tiny cholesterol pill for me; a blue prostate pill that ends in “ide” for my husband. The blue pill identified whose is whose. But one particular week stood out from the rest.
“Want me to wash your back?” he asked. He started kissing my neck. Now, there were three of us lathered up in the shower stall. Even his voice sounded smooth and slippery in the aroma of hibiscus flower body wash. Did I send out a rush of hibernating pheromones when I buttered the toast?
“We’ll be late,” I cooed. The dark lashes around his dreamy brown eyes dripped with water. My hands followed the cascade of soap over his lean torso.
He whispered in my wet ear, “Who cares? This is a good way to start the day.”
I breezed into work twenty minutes late, not sure if my internal glow radiated the words pole dancer on my forehead. I agreed with everything my staff asked of me for the entire day, reveling in the fact I still had it all goin’ on after so many years. Hot flashes could stay in hell; my man was a stud.
A repeat of our morning frolic unfolded on Tuesday, and again on Wednesday. With the bed left unmade and our sweats strewn on the floor, we rushed out the door laughing about being late. By Thursday, coming off my fourth glow-round, curiosity niggled under the hickey on my neck. This was so out of the blue.
I checked the cabinet over the coffee pot after my husband left the house. I sucked in a breath. The bottle of “ide” pills sat right next to the Viagra, both the same shape and color: oblong and robin’s-egg blue. I put on my cheater glasses and inspected the contents for Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.
“Holy Shamoly!” I said aloud. I had, indeed, doled out Viagra in my husband’s vitamins. Should I switch them out? Confess? An innocent mistake, but this was fun. Anticipation of scooting the sheets eclipsed my guilt. Fix it on Sunday.
The deception nagged at me all day at work. Tomorrow’s romp wouldn’t be as enjoyable if instigated by a pill and not my irresistible charm. I might as well have been a blow-up doll. What started as an accident had become something underhanded. I needed to come clean. Honesty over honey thighs. This was akin to date rape. I’d worked myself into the wrong kind of lather.
The rumble of the garage door sent me into a busy frenzy with an extra wash of my hands. Would he be upset? Think the gaffe funny? A gamble, for sure, but I threw the dice. I poured two glasses of red wine.
My stud muffin came through the door and loosened his tie. He set his briefcase on the kitchen island and greeted me with a deep kiss. I handed him a goblet and gazed into his puppy-dogs. My fingers raked through his soft salt-and-pepper hair. Truly irresistible.
“I have a confession.”
“What?” He took a swallow of wine. “Did you buy something crazy?”
“No. I did something crazy. I accidentally put Viagra in your vitamins last Sunday instead of that “ide” pill. They’re both blue.”
He grinned. “I know. I switched them out on Monday night.”
Courtney Pierce is a fiction writer living in Oregon with her husband of thirty-six years and bossy cat. She enjoys writing for baby boomers. Her novels are filled with heart, humor, and mystery. Courtney has studied craft and storytelling at the Attic Institute and has completed the Hawthorne Fellows Program for writing and publishing. She is also a board member of the Northwest Independent Writers Association.
Colorful characters come alive in Courtney's latest novel, The Executrix. When three middle-aged sisters come together after the death of their mother, the manuscript for a murder mystery they find in the safe will change their lives. Is it truth? Or fiction? Sibling blood must be thicker than baggage while Mom becomes larger in death than she was in life.