Scruples

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Non-Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic
Two men and two sisters have a party and play a game

Submitted: October 28, 2013

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Submitted: October 28, 2013

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“My turn, this question is for Randy. Your agent helped you get established when you were a struggling actor. Now a large agency wants to sign you. Do you dump your agent?” This question was asked by an attractive young woman with a voluptuous build and long honey gold hair.

“No I wouldn’t.” Randy confidently replied. He looked like he could have been a college football player. He has a muscular build with ruggedly handsome features and dark brown hair and eyes. He looked at Sandy and he knew she was going to challenge him no matter how he answered the question. She only had two cards left before she could play out. 

“Liar, I challenge!” Sandy quickly responded.

“Alright, let’s hear it. You go first Sandy.” This directive came from the other woman in the room, a beautiful dishwater blonde with flirtatious mannerisms.

“When you had the first job after your wreck, the one at the car dealership, you quit it when Borden wanted to hire you back. No one else offered you a job when they hired you and you immediately quit when Borden came calling. You dumped the only company that would give you a job.”

“Yeah, but Borden offered me a lot more money. Lyssa and I wanted to get married and she had a son so I needed more money.” Randy counters.

“You proved my point dummy. It doesn’t matter if there is a reason or not. I said you would quit, it doesn’t matter why.” Sandy looked smug.

“Okay everyone let’s vote.” Jack chimed in. He just wanted to get the game moving. “1-2-3 vote! And the winner is Sandy. Sandy, give Randy your answer card and let’s move on to Lyssa’s turn.”

Jack is a tall blond with steel blue eyes and he is gregarious as well as handsome. Randy and he both work for a large corporation that Jack’s uncle is the president of. They have been friends for six years, ever since they worked together one summer before Randy joined the army. They really hit it off when they first met and it was largely due to their intense love of sports of any kind whether it is to watch or to participate in. They are both very competitive which shows in the game of “Scruples” they are playing.

"You accidentally damage a car in a parking lot. Do you leave a note with your name and phone number?" Lyssa directed her question to Randy also. She is his wife and Sandy is her older sister.

“It depends.” He warily answers.

“Depends on what?” Lyssa queries.

"It depends on if there were any witnesses." Randy smiles arrogantly.

“Unfortunately I believe you. It’s only illegal if you get caught, right?” Lyssa gives Randy a dirty look.

“Pretty much, what did you think I would say?”

“I thought you’d say no. I realize I was wrong now that I hear your answer. I didn’t think about whether or not someone else might see the accident. I figured you wouldn’t say anything. I didn’t think about what would happen if someone else was around.  I guess I lose. It isn’t because you have any morals though.” She gives him a nasty look.

“What’s that supposed to mean?” Randy sounds pissed off.

“It means that you always think you’re better than everyone else.”

“Alright you two, cool it. If you are going to fight we should quit playing.” Jack intercedes.

“That’s fine with me.” Lyssa gets up and leaves the room.

“I told you this game is a good way to piss people off.” Sandy comments to Jack as Randy also gets up and leaves.

Lyssa and Sandy are three years apart in age and they share a lot of similarities in their facial features and mannerisms. Lyssa is wearing a short skirt with a revealing top and Sandy is dressed in jeans and a tight fitting tee shirt.

“Randy told me that he and Lyssa were having problems. I guess he wasn’t kidding.” Jack remarks.

“That they are fighting isn’t unusual and this isn’t a normal game. Most people get mad when they are accused of having shady morals or of being a closet cheat. Look at the box, it calls this ‘a moral dilemma game’ right on the cover. That’s kind of a red flag.”

“I suppose it is.” Jack says and then yells down the hall. “Never mind the game! Get back out here and let’s party!”  Jack looks at Sandy, “I am a little bummed though, I have the card that lets me make up my own question. I was looking forward to using it.”

“So you can make up your own question and piss someone off?” She gives him a curious smile.

“I hadn’t got that far yet but you do have a point. It’s probably better I didn’t get to use it.”

Randy walks back in the room with a mirror in his hand. It has lines of cocaine on it and he hands it to Sandy. “Here, have a line. Let’s get back to our party before I have to go to work.”

“Where’s my sister?” Sandy asks Randy after she does her line.

“She’s in the bedroom but she said she is coming back out here.”

Sandy hands the mirror to Jack. “Here, take this. I’ll go get her.” She goes to the bedroom and leaves Randy and Jack at the kitchen table doing lines.

Lyssa was sitting on the bed crying.

“Are you alright?”

“Yes, but Randy always thinks he’s right about everything”

“That’s why we call him Mr. Perfect.” Sandy references the nickname her and her sister call him behind his back. He really does think he is always right.

“I’m tired of his selling coke to his friends and then leaving me to entertain them when he goes to work. He gets mad and says I flirt too much, but that’s what his friends want me to do. I don’t understand. I don’t know why he likes to play this game, it seems like it always starts a fight.” She starts to cry.

Sandy thinks Lyssa does flirt too much. She blames Randy for leaving Lyssa at the house after drinking and doing drugs all night and expecting nothing will happen. Randy seems be setting Lyssa up to fail. She has always been insecure and needs to be reassured that she is cute because she thinks that is all she has going for her. Randy’s friends are more than willing to do this for her. Especially when Randy leaves them alone with booze and the cocaine that he has become addicted to after the horrible car wreck he was in.

Three years before this Randy had just gotten out of the army after being stationed in Germany for two years. He saved lots of money during that time and he was single and excited to get back to life as a civilian again. When he got back to the states his friend Jack’s uncle rehired him to work for one of the largest corporations in the country as a chemical engineer. Everything was going his way.

One evening Randy was on his way home from an afternoon of skiing and boating at a popular hot spot. He was driving his brand new Alfa Romeo with his beautiful fiancé next to him. A man in a pickup truck suddenly crossed over the center line and in an instant Randy’s fiancé was dead. One of Randy’s legs was wrapped around his body and smashed and broken. The driver of the pickup truck was drunk, had no insurance and barely even got a scratch from the wreck.

One year later Sandy drove up to Fall Creek Reservoir with Lyssa and her two year old son on a hot afternoon to go swimming with some friends. They ran into a lot of people they hadn’t seen for a long time. One of them was a man Sandy had met four years earlier when he was home on leave from the army. A mutual friend of theirs brought him to a party she had thrown for Halloween. He hit on her but she was already dating another man but he politely took no for an answer. She remembered what a gentleman he had been and if it had been another time and place something different might have happened.

While driving home in the car that afternoon Lyssa told Sandy about the “hot” guy she met at the lake. He was in a full body cast after having been in a bad car wreck the year before and they were rebuilding his leg with pins and metal plates. She told Sandy that he had just gotten out of the army when he got in the wreck.

Thus began the soon to be tumultuous relationship of Lyssa and Randy. Within a year they were married and had a son of their own to add to the family.

Back at the party Lyssa and Sandy are still talking in the bedroom.

“Sometimes you do get a little carried away with your flirting but usually Randy doesn’t mind. Come back out and party with Jack and I. Randy will be going to work in half an hour and you won’t have to see him again until tomorrow.”

“You’re right. Let’s go party.”

Lyssa and Sandy join Randy and Jack at the kitchen table. Sandy notices the guys have put the game away. Good. Randy offers the mirror to Lyssa and she takes it and sits down at the table.

“I have to get ready to go to work. Sandy, you and Jack should stick around awhile and party with Lyssa.”

“No problem, thanks man!” Jack remarks.

Sandy knew there was never any doubt that Jack would stay there and party. Even though she is ready to go home she isn’t going to leave Lyssa there alone with Jack. Not after the fight she just had with Randy, too much temptation. She stays until Jack leaves. Sandy leaves her sister’s house with the board game hidden in the trunk of her car. She threw it in the dumpster when she got home.

Sandy has a bad feeling about the direction her sister and her husband’s relationship is going but she is tired of Randy using her sister to support his bad habits. She thinks the relationship may be headed down a path it can’t recover from. She is tired of playing a fake game about Scruples that too closely mirrors the real problems that are occurring too often.

Games and real life can come too close for comfort sometimes.


© Copyright 2017 Michele Rae DeJean. All rights reserved.

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