I couldn't believe I got away with it. 'An accident,' they said. 'We're so sorry,' they said. 'We have no idea how such a thing could happen,' I was told. I just let them apologize and kept my mouth shut. Made sure that I shed the right amount of tears and I played the poor helpless victim in the whole situation.
I smiled at the memory. It was amazing what a few acting classes could do, but I was getting ahead of myself. Let me explain.
Geoff and I were dating for about three years, when he died. We were inseparable in the beginning, the usual 'honeymoon stage'. When we met I was about to start my last year of university. He was too but he was a music major and mine was business. Then things began to get in the way. I studied hard to stay on the deans list, and he was too busy trying to find his next gig.
We met at one of the places his band would play. I was with a bunch of my friends one night and I was blown away by the way he could play the guitar. He could make it sing like nothing I had ever heard before, even though he couldn't actually carry a tune. Luckily he didn't have to, they had a singer for that.
After the set was over, I made my move. With more than a little liquid courage, I got up from the table with my friends and went over to him at the bar.
“Buy you a drink?” I asked.
He looked over at me. Now I knew I wasn't the most beautiful woman at the bar, and he probably could have had his pick of the litter but he smiled nonetheless. His blue eyes were even more captivating up close then when he was surrounded by that horrible smelling smoke machine. He stood up and motioned to the stool beside him. He wasn't quite six feet, but I was just barely over 5, so he towered over me.
“I'm Geoff,” he said, as I sat down beside him.
“Wendy,” I said, smiling. I couldn't keep my eyes off him. I traced every part of his face, with my eyes. Now that I was sitting here I had no idea what to do.
“What are you drinking?” he asked, his voice deeper than I could have imagined.
“Beer?” I said. At that moment I forgot every type of alcohol there was.
Our night went from there. I wound up going home with him, something I would never have done any other time. We made love for hours, and I thought if I was going to die that night I'd die a happy woman.
After that night, I thought he would be one of those typical musicians. The love 'em and leave 'em type, you know? Anyway, I left my number, went back to my small apartment and returned to my classes. It was almost a week before I heard from him. The phone rang and at first I thought he had the wrong number, but we talked and it was wonderful. He was a lot smarter than I had thought, and I quietly chastised myself for being judgmental about it.
He wanted me to go to the gig he was playing at that weekend. It was Thursday when he called and he was playing a private party on Saturday. Without thinking I said yes. How could I not? We hung up and I practically bounced all over my small, one bedroom apartment. I even knocked over my coffee table which was in the middle of the room but I didn't care.
The rest of the week I spent going through my closet trying to find something to wear. The closet was full of clothes, but I had forgotten to ask what was appropriate for the party.
I had to break down and call him back, not that I minded. When he answered, it was as if my brain left my head and I was left sitting there like a high school girl with her first crush.
“I forgot to ask what I should wear this weekend,” I finally said, nervously.
“Something comfortable,” he said. “No matter what you wear, you're going to look amazing. I've got to run, the band has to meet up.”
“Okay, see you Saturday,” I said, hanging up the phone.
I ran my hands through my short brown hair and suddenly felt very self conscious.
After that weekend, Geoff and I were always together. When we weren't in class or when he was practicing, we would be found somewhere . Sometimes I'd go watch, but most of the time I'd let him have his space when it came to his music.
Little did I know then how my life was going to change, and not for the better. I was soon to find out though.
My entire world was Geoff. The sun rose and set by him. He had no faults, sheer perfection. Hell, he even put the toilet seat down. What more could I ask for?
We moved in together after almost two and a half years of dating. It was amazing, waking in the morning and seeing the man I wanted to spend my life with.
I couldn't have been happier.
One afternoon he was going to play with his buddies at some bar. I had a late class, I left before he did. I got there, but the professor had to cancel, so we all left. I went home to make myself dinner, and perhaps watch a movie.
When I walked in the apartment, I was not prepared to see him there. Let alone see him having sex with some tramp on my couch!
I stood there for a moment shocked. My first instinct was to go over, grab the bitch by the back of the head and rip her hair out. I couldn't do that. I had to stop, back off and think. I turned and walked out.
Once I was outside, I ran. Harder and faster than I thought I ever could, I ran. My feet pounded the sidewalk so hard that it vibrated my teeth with each step but I couldn't stop.
Finally, I collapsed near the school campus. I fell under a tree, clutching my chest and barely able to breathe. The trees and ground swirled around me as a dizzy spell overtook me when I tried to stand.
I lay there, staring at the clouds, wishing that I had never gone home. So many thoughts went through my head at that moment.
How was I going to make him pay? How was she going to pay? How could I have been so foolish to believe he deserved me? How was I going to deal with this betrayal? I wondered.
I thought about leaving him, but that was just giving him his out.
“If he wants it to be over, he damn well better grow a set, and tell me himself!” I said, looking up at the huge maple tree beside me. “No one makes a fool out of me and gets away with it. Not a chance in hell.”
“Not a chance in hell of what?” I was asked.
I turned my head, shielding my eyes from the sun, and there was Billy, one of Geoff's best friends.
“Nothing,” I said sharply.
“Well, pardon me,” he said sarcastically.
“I'm sorry,” I said sighing. “It's just been one hell of a bad day.”
“What's up?” he asked, sitting on the grass beside me.
“I'm not sure what to do,” I said.
“About?” he asked.
I shook my head, the emotions getting the better of me. The tears ran down my face, and my voice kept getting caught in my throat whenever I tried to tell him.
“I better get going,” I said suddenly, cutting the tears off. “Class was canceled, and I just want to curl up and relax with a good book.”
“You sure you're okay?” he asked, concern visible on his face.
“Of course,” I said, putting on my best fake smile. “Can't keep me down for long, right?”
“Right,” he said, returning my smile. “Listen, if you need to talk though...”
“Hey, I appreciate it. Who knows maybe I'll take you up on it sometime,” I said, getting to my feet. I brushed some loose grass from my pants and waited while Billy got up.
“Thanks for checking up on me. I mean it, I appreciate it, really,” I said. I wasn't sure if I was trying to convince him or me. “I'll talk to you later, okay?”
I left Billy standing there and headed back to the apartment. My head was already swimming with ideas for revenge. I knew it would take time to figure out but I was patient. I could wait.
It took months to plan it out. To make sure it would be perfect... The ultimate revenge for betraying me.
He had no idea that I knew. I never said a word to him. I guessed Billy didn't mention seeing me either, which worked well. I let him believe I was, as always, the ignorant girlfriend. The one who had no idea of his infidelity.
As time went on, I noticed more and more signs of his faithlessness. I pretended to ignore it, even when it was blatantly in front of me.
Our anniversary was coming up. I had the whole night planned. I found out they didn't have a gig that evening, which meant getting him to agree was going to be easy.
I told him the plans I had made, and he was thrilled. Although, he was a little worried I would change my mind. I reassured him that I wouldn't.
Over the course of the next month our relationship changed. It was more like it was in the beginning. He was attentive, loving... everything I wanted from him. The problem was he was a cheating bastard.
What he didn't know wouldn't hurt him... or rather it would, he just wouldn't see it coming. The thoughts of what I had planned made me smile.
The night of our anniversary finally arrived. I couldn't wait, it was almost like waiting for Christmas morning when you were a kid, going to open all the presents. I felt anxious, excited. It was as if every nerve in my body was on high alert. The slightest touch would send waves of goosebumps up my arms.
I spent extra time that night getting ready, I wanted everything perfect. I tied my hair back into a simple ponytail, wore my best shorts and t-shirt. I kept my make-up to a minimum but still made sure that I looked good.
When I walked out, he put his arms around my waist and hugged me tight.
“You look amazing! Tonight is going to be a kickass night,” he said, kissing my cheek.
“Yes it is,” I said, smiling at him. “It will be a night that will never be forgotten.”
I eased myself from his arms, grabbing my backpack and headed for the door.
“Are you ready? We don't want to be late,” I said, holding my keys out.
“You bet!” he said, sounding like a kid in a candy store. “Let's go!”
He grabbed my hand as he walked out into the hallway, smiling back at me as I locked the door. I didn't think about how heightened everything would feel. Only there was no going back. I wasn't going to be made a fool of. There was nothing going to stop me.
“You're right, let's go,” I laughed with him. “Happy anniversary, Geoff.”
“Happy anniversary to you too babe,” he said, kissing me on the elevator.
This will be a night to remember, I thought slyly. Only, I'll be the only one remembering it.
We left the building, and I let him drive, giving him directions as we went. There was no way I was going to mess this up but I knew he wouldn't let me drive his precious jeep either.
I got detailed instructions from the coach when I first made the arrangements. I told him exactly what I wanted, and it was all set into motion. I looked at the bag behind the drivers seat and smiled. Everything was going perfectly.
We got to the old train trussle almost 45 minutes later. Climbing out of the jeep, I had to steady myself or I would have fallen into a thicket. I wasn't sure what it was, but it looked painful.
We walked along side of the tracks, the sun was hitting the clouds in such a way that they glowed orange. It seemed to set the mood completely.
He held my hand and helped me walk along, enjoying the scenery. The coach wasn't there yet, but he would be momentarily.
“This is priceless, I can't believe you thought about doing this for our anniversary. Especially with how you feel about heights,” he said, giving my hand a gentle squeeze.
“I wanted to give you something you would remember for the rest of your life,” I said, smiling extra sweetly at him. And boy will that be short.
I had to hold back the laughter, otherwise he may have gotten suspicious.
“I will,” he vowed, then he turned to me looking serious. “Look babe, I know things have been rough lately between us. I just want you to know that I love you. I'm going to do everything I can to make things right.”
“Oh Geoff!” I gushed, throwing myself into his arms. You pathetic fool, as if you thought I would fall for that bullshit?
The coach showed up as Geoff and I were hugging.
“Sorry to break it up but are we ready to go?” a deep voice asked from behind us.
“Billy! My man! How's it goin'?” Geoff asked, clapping his friend on the back. “You're the coach?”
“Yeah, I am and it's going well. I'm looking forward to this,” he said, looking from Geoff to me. “How about you guys?”
“Well...” I said, trying to look worried. “I'm a little...”
“She's fine,” Geoff said interrupting me. “Let's get this show on the road. What do we have to do?”
“Head up to the center of the tracks. It's the highest point,” Billy said, grabbing some gear from his truck.
The three of us headed out, me in the center of the two guys. When we reached the middle, Billy put his equipment down and set to work arranging everything as it was supposed to be. He had become a bungy instructor and had been giving private lessons for some time now.
“Okay who's first?” he asked, looking up at the two of us.
“I'll go,” I volunteered. I figured if I went first, then I'd be showing that I wasn't just standing back letting it all happen.
“Okay, there's two cords here, but we'll go one at a time, just to be safe,” Billy said.
“Are you sure?” Geoff said, taking my hands. He looked concerned.
“Of course,” I said. “I'm no pushover.”
“I know but I know how you feel about heights,” he said.
“Got to get over it sometime, right?” I asked, then turned to Billy. “Okay, hook me up.”
The harness went around me and I was ready to go. It wasn't as uncomfortable as I was expecting it to be. The material chafed a little, but it was tolerable. I walked to the side of the tracks looking over the edge.
My eyes widened in fear, it was at least a hundred feet from here to the bottom. Plus there was no water, it was nothing but jagged rocks and boulders.
What if... my thoughts trailed off. I couldn't think that way. I wouldn't. If I did, I could chicken out and he'd get away with it. I stood on the edge, crossing my arms in front of my chest. I looked from Geoff to Billy and smiled broadly.
“I've got to be crazy!” I screamed as I let myself fall.
As my body dropped through the air, I felt the breeze rip around me. It was probably the scariest and most exciting moment of my entire life. I couldn't stop screaming. At first it was from fear, then it was from the adrenaline.
When they pulled me back up, my hair was completely out of the ponytail and it looked wild... unkempt. My heart was pounding from the excitement and my cheeks felt flushed.
Next, it was Geoff's turn. Billy attached the harness, just as he had mine. When he was secure, Geoff walked to the edge and looked over.
“It's quite a ways down, eh?” he asked.
“It's well worth it,” I said, snuggling up to him. He had to go! He just had to.
“If you did it, I can do it,” he said.
Silently, I rolled my eyes and waited as he prepared himself to fall.
When he was standing facing me with his hands crossed in front of him about to let go, I knew it was time. I took a step forward and clasped his hands in mine.
“Geoff,” I said, looking straight in his eyes.
“Yeah babe?” he said.
“I know...” I said, gritting my teeth.
“Know?” he asked, looking confused for a moment. Then recognition dawned on his face. “Babe, I can explain.”
I held him back and wouldn't let him approach me.
“I walked in on you and that... that slut! You were on the couch. Our couch!” I spit at him.
He took a look behind and was suddenly afraid.
“I have known for months! You're through Geoff. We're through!” I was so angry that I pushed him. Since there was nothing behind him he couldn't stop himself from falling.
Now I'll have my revenge! I swore silently. I watched as he sped toward the ground then just before he'd hit, he bounced back up. This happened once... twice... and on the third time, the rope snapped on the way back up.
Geoff appeared to float in mid air momentarily. There was regret in his eyes, a cold steel in mine. Our eyes locked, and in that split second he understood.
“Revenge is a dish best served cold,” I said walking away. I took hold of Billy's hand and smiled. When we heard him crash against the rocks with one last ear splitting scream, we went to find a phone.