Emptied Purse

I was bleary-eyed after work, half six, New Year’s morning. Marlene had been out late with the girls from the Army camp, where she worked part-time. Most were married to soldiers posted to Afghanistan. I was working twelve hour nights, so didn’t mind, at least I'd had Christmas Day off, when the twins were home.

I was low on petrol, having left my wallet in the bedroom. Marlene’d thrown her coat and handbag across the breakfast bar. The bag gaped open, revealing her purse. I never open her purse, I mean never, on pain of death, ever. We have joint accounts, sharing household and living expenses, we had for twenty years, but cash is ... personal. 

The reason the tank was empty was her post-Christmas sales. She’d done them all, particularly treasuring those leather boots she nervously said were a bargain. Yeah, I knew what we saved, not the cost. She owed me big time.

Fifty would fill the car, twenty, a necessary top up. I lifted the fat purse from the bag, possibly full of clod I could use for car-parking meters. What do girls keep in purses, anyway? 

I was on virgin territory here.

Yup, change aplenty, plus a key ring with two keys, Yale and Chubb. Like the standard keys for Squ...

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Tony Spencer
Jun 23 2020

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