Creative writing assignment. ‘House of cards’ 

House of cards

By: Jessica Kennedy

“Its been awhile since I spoke with you. I think I may have forgotten how.” She spoke in a whisper as she gazed up at the clear sky.  

Amelia hadn’t prayed in years. Growing up the oldest daughter to an evangelical pastor, prayer used to be common place for her. She was comfortable talking to god, having conversations and feeling connected. It had always given her a sense of peace.  But after she met Andrew; a boy neither of her parents approved of; she left that world behind her. She ran away and married him. She put her focus into her marriage and her charming and passionate husband. He longed for a life of luxury, spinning stories of extravagance and wealth. He brought her in and made her crave that life as well. Together they devoted their lives to their careers, Andrew as a Real Estate broker and Amelia as a Financial Service Advisor in a large firm. They let their extended families go, losing contact with them and choosing not to have a children. They had bigger dreams. 

Today she was desperate. She needed to find a sense of peace that she hadn’t felt in years. She needed to come back to her roots. 

 “God, I feel lost. Abandoned and confused. All this time, I have been coasting on a desire for more. Forgetting that I am not invincible. Destroying all in my path. It has caught up to me . Now look where I am.”

She had just come from the office where she was about to start her day like any other, but as she was walking through the sliding doors of the modern high rise, she was shoved back out by a co-worker, Lucy. 

“The feds are here. Upstairs.” She breathed in Amelia’s ear. “Turn around, get in you car and go home. Soon it will all come crashing down.” 

Lucy rushed away and left Amelia motionless and astounded. She was frozen on the sidewalk. Her body language staying composed but her insides screamed another story. She realized that it was all over, she would soon be discovered for the white collar criminal that she was. She and her co workers would be prosecuted. She would lose her job, her cars,her homes and all the luxuries she had worked for. Her worldly possession would be gone, and quite possibly her relationships too. She had created a persona of high roller. A woman of taste and esteem. Once that sparkle washed away and the grime of her criminal offence came to the surface, she was certain that all who were in her life now would disappear. 

This made her think of Andrew. She wondered about his loyalty. He knew nothing of her dealings in the firm, but enjoyed the benefits of being married to a highly successful woman. He was naive and uninvolved, but really never cared as long as he felt satisfied. Would he stick by her, or would he run too?  She needed to compose herself and create a plan.

That is when she decided to pray more. She needed something, and everything she knew now was lost. 

“God, our conversations have been lost lately. Non existent. I have distanced myself from your connection. Losing my way.  But now I need you. I need the peace that comes with our relationship.” 

She spoke quickly and quietly, but none the less the words got out. As she continued to pray, she began to feel a sense of calm. She could do this.  She had made mistakes and needed to figure out how to deal with the natural consequences, but she knew she could do it.

She needed  call Andrew. His phone would be off as he had a big meeting with a potential client today. She knew she could leave him a message.   

“You have reached the personal voice mail of Andrew Weber, please leave your message after the beep.”  He voice smooth and silky, travelling from the earpiece of her Iphone. 

she shakily started to speak  “Andrew, Its me. We need to talk. I love you, and need you today. I’ll be home in 10. call me when you can.” She was vulnerable and soft.  A role she rarely took in their marriage, but today it felt right. 

She left her message and shut her phone down. She needed to get home and figure a few things out. She had an odd sense that it would all be ok, she hadn’t felt this sure about anything in a long time. 

Chapter 2:

She drove down the familiar winding roads to her home. A home she loved. Her heart began to tear apart as she thought about how much longer she would have in it. The art that graced her hallways, her expensive and beautifully designed furniture, her lavish linens, and her closet.  Her eyes began to moisten. The pain was overtaking her.

A breath in and she shook it off, thought for a second and came to the realization that really, it would be ok. She had this sense of eerily calm. She kept repeating. “It will be ok. It will be ok.” Some how the peace she felt from her earlier prayers was strong enough to subside the sadness and panic of her situation. 

Her car pulled into the drive and recognized her husbands car in front of the garage. The black camaro glistening in the sun. Beside it was parked a red corvette, small and shiny. She assumed it was the car of his new client. Still it was odd, she thought. She was certain that Andrew had told her the meeting was being held at his office downtown. She brushed it off as a change of plans and walked into her home. 

The familiar feeling of being home washed over her as she quietly crept through the door.She was extra quiet taking in the smells and sights of her house while trying not to disturb the meeting. She was holding it together. She was ready to talk to Andrew. 

She made her way up the winding staircase to her home office. It was situated beside her bedroom. They had placed her office upstairs while Andrew’s home office was downstairs, off of the main room. She figured she would go upstairs until he was done with his client. 

As she passed her bedroom door and she heard unfamiliar noises. She though it may be the cats, locked in her room.  It didn’t quite sound like the cats but her mind was preoccupied, maybe she morphed the sounds a little. She placed her hand on the door knob, about to open the door to free her kitties from the jail cell of her bedroom, when she heard a voice. 

“Oh, ANDREW! oh my god. You are amazing!” The breathless voice was feminine and she was obviously excited by whatever her husband was doing. 

Amelia tore open the bedroom door. She was pulsing with a rage she had never experience. She was skilled in the art of holding on tight to emotion, but this rage was too much for her. It bubbled over the surface and exploded out, like vinegar and baking soda. 

She saw her husband naked, in between the curved and graceful legs of a woman she did not recognize. She couldn’t even describe the womans face.  She just kept picturing the legs of another woman draped over the shoulders of her husband. It fuelled Amelia’s anger and sent her into a fit. Her whole focus was on her rage. 

“GET THE FUCK OUT! NOW! NOW! NOW! Andrew, get her the fuck out of my bed.”  Amelia screamed in a voice she did not recognize. 

She torn off the sheets while the embarrassed two shuffled and ran out of the room. She screamed, the cursed, and she destroyed the tainted room. As she spun around the room in a tailspin of disgust, anger and betrayal; Andrew got his mistress out before anything worse could happen. 

Exhausted, Amelia collapsed into a heap on the floor in her walk in closet. Tears streaming down her face. Her heart was tearing open. Raw and painful. 

 He was her everything. She created this life for his dreams. She committed a crime to keep their lifestyle up to his standards. She left her family for him. She lost her connection with herself and god, to please him. Everything was for him.

“Melia, honey, where are you?” His sheepish voice travelled from the bedroom. He had returned from dismissing her unwanted house guest.

“Baby, it was mistake, I am so sorry. It will never happen again. I promise.” he said as he walked into the closet. He had found her, vulnerable and raw. 

He stood over top of her and pleaded. “It is just that you have been busy and distracted for so long. I was feeling neglected. You know how sexual I am. You know how much I need it. I got caught up in the flirting. I am sorry. I never meant to hurt you. I love you. Can you forgive me, Baby?!” 

He was begging. Amelia was disgusted. She was broken and hurt. She had come home to tell him about her dilemm,  confide in him and connect with the love of her life. She had come home praying he could see that everything would be ok and that their commitment to one another would make it all work out. 

This discovery shattered any of her previous thoughts about how this would play out. 

“Fuck you Andrew, I can’t even look at you. You broke my heart when I needed you the most. I lost everything today. My job, our house, my freedom. Our firm had been laundering money from clients for years and today the feds were in our office. It won’t be long before everything I have is shattered. This life we know is gone. Today I needed you the most. But you were here, with whoever that was. Giving all you have to her.” She was shaking as she spoke. The rage was gone but the exhaustion made her quiet and soft. 

“I loved you. I changed my whole being to please you. To create a life you dreamed of. You wove me into the dream, but now I see, I was interchangeable, as long as you got what you wanted. I see how little I meant to you. It was more what I could give you that mattered. I see that now” The truth lifting her up a little bit. “Goodbye Andrew, good luck, we will both need it.” She stood up and walked past him. 

His face was frozen. In an expression of disbelief. “Wait, you mean…the money is gone?…” His sense of loyalty disappeared and was replaced with superficial panic of his material life. 

Amelia didn’t even answer. No words could describe what she wanted to say to him.  She just kept walking out of the house towards her car.  

Her house of cards came shattering down. She prayed that someday she could look back at this as a turning point to her new life.  A faint smile spread across her lips as she drove back to her office to face what was waiting for her. She had never felt lighter. 


Creative writing assignments: Latest prompt :)

Here is my latest assignment completed.  The prompt was to write a short story with an airport, a couple (one person not wanting to be there) and a red suitcase.

The Carry on

By: Jessica Kennedy

The parking garage was dark and musty smelling. We were walking fast, making up for lost time. I was having a hard time keeping up. He was in such a rush, even though he had no desire to go on this trip. He was making that perfectly clear with his body language. I planned this whole trip. I forced him to take time away from his work. I booked the tickets and packed the bags. I knew that we needed to take this trip, more out of necessity than desire. I knew we had too. My mother instincts told me it was a matter of life or death. We had to save her.

She moved to LA when she was nineteen. She couldn’t wait to start her life out there. Coming from small town Vermont, she dreamed of warm weather, movie stars and living the high life. She dreamt of working in the movie industry. She was such a confident girl and was blossoming into a vivacious woman. I just knew she would do great things. She reminded me of myself in so many ways. Maybe it was wrong of me to let her go so willingly, but her dreams were contagious. I wanted her to achieve everything she ever wanted. I wanted her to do more with her life then I did. I wanted her life to be full of beautiful adventures. I willingly let me baby girl go.

I figured we would stay close, we always had. We were as close as mother and daughter could be. She told me everything and I as well. We were inseparable. I figured she would come home for holidays and I would go to visit her. It would be a great excuse to travel the country. I selfishly wanted her to go so I could get away from my life in Vermont. I had big dreams when I was her age. Dreams that never came to fruition, they were stifled by love and security.

I fell in love with a country boy. Born and raised. He was the kind of man that took care of his family the only way he knew how. I loved that about him. I came from poor beginnings. My parents were selfish. They lived their lives for themselves only, never really caring what happened to me or my four sisters. I was looking for a man who could take care of me and my family. He was good me, loved me and supported me. And when I had our girl, he loved her deeply. His love for her was obvious but he made it perfectly clear that her upbringing was my responsibility. He pictured his life and saw us in it, almost as extras in a play. He who had no desire to travel. His home was in Vermont.

He was raised to be a farmer and had no desire to change. He built his empire from the ground up and now owns the largest dairy farm within the Northeast Organic Farming Association of Vermont. His business is a success and had provided us with many luxuries I never thought possible, but yet I longed for more.

Her dreams brought me hope. I was a catalyst to her ambitions. I fuelled her fire. I helped her every step of the way. Maybe now in hindsight, I realize that I lived my life vicariously through her, but I truly only wanted the best for my beautiful daughter. The first few months were great, she called weekly, emailed me regularly and we mapped out spectacular plans for me to come down and help her decorate her new bachelor apartment. It seemed to be going peachy. After about four months, the calls became more infrequent. She stopped emailing me all together and when we did talk she was very secretive. I knew she was having a hard time finding work. I told her on many occasions that we could help her out, but she really wanted to pave her own way. I think her pride was holding her back from my assistance. A quality she got from her father.

She eventually convinced me to cancel my trip down, as she said she had gotten some work and was so incredibly busy that it would be pointless. She told me not to worry, Christmas was around the corner and she was coming home. That Christmas the northeast was hit with some incredible snowstorms. All flights were grounded and her trip home got cancelled. I got a sense that she was pleased for the cancelled trip.

Into the New Year, the distance between us widened. I was losing my baby girl. I tried to talk to her about it, but she pushed me farther away. She was keeping me at a distance for a reason. I just knew it. I did what I thought was right and hired a private investigator to find out more about my beautiful girl and what life she was living in LA.

It didn’t take long for him to find out what was going on. She was working at an exotic dance club as a dancer and she was partying quite often. She had fell into the wrong crowd. He reported drug use and excessive alcohol consumption. He told me that she appeared strung out most of the time. He showed me pictures of my girl and my heart broke. She had lost weight, her skin was pale and eyes were sunken. She had lost the life in her. She was a shell of her former self. I knew then and there that we needed to get to her and force her into rehab.

I booked the flight down and packed our bags and forced my husband to come. I needed him. He may be a stubborn man but he had skills that I did not possess. He got the job done. He did not take to the sudden trip well. When I told him that we were leaving the next day, he was furious. He told me that this was my responsibility and that she have never gone so far from home. He blamed me, telling me that I should have kept a better eye on her. His outburst made me nervous. What if he decided not come? What was I to do then? There was no way I could handle this on my own. I was failing alongside my daughter, a sinking ship. I needed his strong hand.

In the end, his love for her did win out. He choose to come but not happily. We had arrived at the airport with lots of time to spare. Always his way, he hated being rushed. We easily found our way to our check in. The hallways bustled with activity, it was all very overwhelming. We approached the tellers at the check in area. They took our suitcase. They tagged it and shipped it away. They told us that we could each have one carry on. He frowned and said no, as if it angered him that they even thought he would want one. I clutched her small red ‘Minnie Mouse’ suitcase to my chest. It was filled with beautiful memories of my daughter’s life. Newspaper clipping, photos, stories. Her life in mementos. It was to act like as a reminder of how bright of a future she is destined to have. A reminder that it is never too late to follow her dreams again. There was no way I was letting go of this. It was my life force, my carry on. It held the keys to opening my daughter’s heart and leading her away from a life of destruction.