“What!” Kaycee shrieked. Standing still, she faced Brenda on the pier of the oceanfront restaurant not caring if anyone heard her or not.
“What the fuck are you talking about Brenda?”
“Please Kaycee, calm down,” she begged, “Let’s go back to my house so we can talk about this rationally.”
“Calm down,” Kaycee sneered, “You expect me to fucking calm down!”
“Please Kaycee…here is not the place.”
Brenda could see that the few remaining patrons occupying tables were starting to turn their heads in the direction of the commotion. She couldn’t help but wonder when security would arrive and escort them out.
But, by the way Kaycee was ranting and raving she figured they would probably just call the police instead and then both of them would both be escorted to jail for causing a public disturbance.
“Please…” she reached out to Kaycee only to have her arm knocked away with force.
“You don’t understand.”
“What don’t I understand Brenda?” She said sarcastically. “Let me guess, it burned down while I was gone. Or no…better yet, it was blown to smithereens in an explosion. Is that it Brenda? Come on dammit, help me understand!”
“It was nothing like that.” Brenda whispered.
“Is something wrong?” Startled, Brenda twirled around only to face the burly security guard standing in front of her.
“I’m sorry…” she tried to explain, “My friend has been gone for awhile. She just returned today and found out that her house was gone.”
“Take it somewhere else.” He demanded. “You’re disrupting business.”
“What business?” She wanted to say, but didn’t.
She looked around, and besides herself and Kaycee, there were only three other tables that were currently occupied. Two were watching the disruption totally enthralled, while the other was pretending to mind their own business, drinking cocktails. She wanted to reach up and smack the inconsiderate bastard right across the face.
“We were just leaving.” She said.
She turned back to Kaycee and could clearly see she was starting to fall apart. Her eyes were bloodshot, and a steady stream of tears dripped off her face to the wooden floor below. Her hands were noticeably shaking and her chest was beginning to shudder.
Dear God, let me get her out of here. She silently prayed.
“Come on Kaycee, we need to go.”
“So what was it like?” Kaycee asked dryly, ignoring Brenda’s urgency and the hulking security guard.
“I’m sorry Kaycee.”
“Sorry about what?”
“I had to sell your house.” She had said it so quietly she wondered if Kaycee had even heard her.
“Excuse me,” Kaycee shuddered, “You…you what?”
“I said I had to sell your house.” Brenda repeated.
“I heard what you said; I just can’t believe you said it.”
It had seemed like time had stopped before Kaycee finally managed to say, “Go to hell Brenda!” She shoved passed her, nearly knocking her over and walked away from the Crab Shack.
“Kaycee wait!” Brenda hurried past the incredible hulk and ran after her best friend.
“Kaycee…please, stop and let me explain!”
“Leave me alone!”
Brenda stopped at her car knowing there was no use chasing after her.
“Fine then,” she yelled after her, “where in the hell do you think you’re going to go Kaycee? Other than my house, you have no place.”
Knowing it was true, the vicious words brought Kaycee to a screeching halt. Silent and out of breath, tears uncontrollable, she unhurriedly walked backed to Brenda’s car. She opened the passenger side door and without uttering a single word, climbed in and slammed the door shut.
The two hour drive back to Brenda’s house had been driven in silence. She had known that Kaycee would react this way. Then again, who could blame her? Not only had she lost her business and entire family, she thought, but I sold her house out from under her. She knew she would want an explanation, and soon. She only hoped she could come up with one that was believable.
After Brenda parked her car under the carport she turned to Kaycee.
“Come on, let’s go inside. I’ll put on a pot of coffee.”
Without saying a word, Kaycee opened the car door and stepped out into the warmth. Brenda followed.
Once they were both inside the house, Brenda put on a pot of coffee as promised, keeping her back to Kaycee.
“Vodka on the rocks.”
“Excuse me?” Stunned, Brenda turned around.
“I said I want vodka on the rocks. You do have vodka don’t you? I mean that is your drink of choice isn’t it?”
“Sure.” She said, almost in a whisper.
She removed a goblet from the cabinet, filled it with ice then added vodka. She set it on the table in front of Kaycee, and then helped herself to a one even though it was still too early in the day. Other than the rattling of the air conditioner and ticking of a nearby clock, the house was quiet. She took a seat at the kitchen table across from Kaycee, took a generous drink and finally broke the silence.
“Kaycee, you need to let me explain.” Ignoring her, Kaycee removed a small container from her purse, twisted the lid off and shook two of the small yellow pills into her palm and deposited them into her mouth. She took a drink of vodka and swallowed.
Unable to speak, Brenda watched in sorrow.
“You gave me the legal rights to your house when you admitted yourself to Whispering Pines,” Brenda took another drink and continued, “you told me to do what I felt was necessary. Jimmy and I talked about it for months before deciding on anything and after a while we decided it was in your best interest to sell. Kaycee, you’re my best friend and I didn’t think you would be able to handle living there alone. I was afraid for you. I didn’t want to see you destroyed by the memories. So much has happened there Kaycee, so much sadness. Dammit I love you and I’m sorry I didn’t tell you sooner, but I just couldn’t bear it if something happened to you too. So, I sold it.”
“Call me a cab please.”
“What?” Brenda slammed her fist on the table. “Didn’t you listen to a word I said?”
“I listened and now I’m leaving.” The pills were starting to take effect blurring her vision. Ignoring the sudden impact she drank the rest of her vodka and then set the glass back on the table.
“Where are you going to go?”
“I’ll stay in a hotel for tonight.” She slurred.
“And then what?”
“Just call me a cab please.” Knowing it was useless to try to convince her to stay; Brenda reached for the phone and dialed.