The Missing Hours – A Short Story

By Terri L. Powers

Part 1 – The Good News

Her eyes are closed, lashes fluttering against her cheeks; a beatific expression on her face as she sways to the music in her head. Slowly she twirls around the foyer of her Brentwood home near the Verner Panton designed glass-topped table where a small pile of mail spills across the top; bills, fan mail, and her latest issue of Photoplay Annual. The dimmer for the overhead light is turned low so the hall is bathed in a warm glow. Giggling, she stops and opens her eyes to find she is standing in front of the hallway mirror. She smiles at the blonde who is smiling back at her from the reflection.

“I love him,” she tells the mirror image. Tilting her head to one side she begins humming to the tune of Sealed With A Kiss by Brian Hyland, a new song that had been playing on the car radio just moments ago.

“He loves me,” she continues as she wraps her arms around herself, “Isn’t love grand?”

She receives no response. Besides the company of the lovely image in the full-length mirror, she is alone in the house for the next few hours while her housekeeper runs errands.

“I want to shout it from the highest mountain,” she crows to the emptiness.

Then her mirrored twin frowns at the same time she does. “I can’t be doing that now can I? Not while he’s still married to her.” Leaning toward her reflection and shaking her forefinger to make a point. “It would ruin his most powerful man in the country image and we can’t have that now, can we?”

She giggles again and continues her dance, turning slowing around in front of the mirror, admiring her figure.

“But soon, soon we will be together …” Distracted, she falls silent. Pursing the famous lips and moving her hands to her abdomen, she slowly massages the non-existent bump. It was too early to show. The figure on the woman in the reflection still measures the famous 37-23-36 curves. She runs her hands from her waist to the tops of her thighs, smoothing her dress down over her shapely hips. The nagging doubt returns as she replays her last words through her head, trying them on for size. Her pulse stutters when she thinks of the conversation she plans to have with him.

She brightens, “Won’t I be simply darling in those cute maternity tops from Paris? I hope they are still available when I get back there.”

She continues to talk to the empty house. Since returning from Dr. Silverman’s office this morning with the great news, she had done nothing other than dream about baby booties, cloth diapers, and Johnson’s baby power with its sweet and innocent scent.

She knew she shouldn’t put off calling him to tell him the happy news. She wanted to catch him while he was still in the office and not during a family moment. She would call him soon, but for now the news was her little secret and she would cherish this moment a little while longer.

She would give herself another hour to live in the fantasy that everyone will be happy and her life will be magical.

Part 2 – The Conversation – coming October 8th

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