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Memoirs of a Rodeo Fuck up number 10

Liked to have cried, but I didn't. Sucked it up. Got no one to blame but my own self. No sorrier words ever come out of my mouth than I don't know.

Knew I should of went after Ennis, but I didn't. Instead I picked the note he left me off the night table. No phone number. Was an address. 19443 B-2 Milton, Cee Vee.

Cee Vee? Damn. That address had to be The Osage Stables-- place was home to more Kentucky Derby winners than spots on an appaloosa's ass. Ennis didn't just get him a job, he got him a future. Wondered if he realized what having me in his life might do to his career. 

Just couldn't go there. Not now. Too many questions of my own I couldn't answer, adding one more for Ennis would get me nowhere.

Help for answers is what I needed. Got out my wallet. Card was there. Dialed out on the grimy-looking phone. Miss Calhoun answered, and Dr. Malone was in. Sat on hold, chewing my nails. Finally, the doc came on-- said he'd cancel an appointment and see me in a half hour. I got my things together. Turned before I left-- last thing I saw was Ennis' blood stains in the carpet next to the bed where we made love.


Didn't feel no better talking to Dr. Malone. That man was always so full of questions but never any answers.

Asked him, "Couldn't you just give me some advice for once?"

"I don't think you want advice, Jack. I think you want answers." 

He got that right. 

"Those are for you to figure out," he added. Expected me to supply the answers? Me? The man who says, "I don't know?" Damn

I tried another avenue. "So how 'bout no answer, just advice? How 'bout that?" I asked. I sat up on the couch, and Doctor Malone, he scratched his beard. I reckoned that was something Freud might do too. 

"Alright, Jack. This is my advice. Look inside yourself. You know the answer."

"That's not advice," I said, waving my arms above my head. "That's a riddle."

"Ah, but it's not so hard."

"Hard for me."

"Alright, Jack. We've talked a lot about your dreams. Let's try what comes before and what comes after. I want you to think about what I ask you before you blurt out anything. Understand?" I nodded. "Now answer this: What do you think about before you go to sleep at night?"

Used to be my day. Used to be work. Used to be Bobby. But now. Weren't hard to answer. I waited a few moments like he asked me to do, then answered, "Ennis." 

"What about Ennis? Think." 

"Some nights I'll think about sex."  I cleared my throat. Was going to say, 'sex with Ennis,' but left that part out. Think he knew anyhow by the way he raised one eyebrow. Decided to close my eyes so he wouldn't distract me. Doc told me once that it might help me open up more, and I sure as hell needed help right now. 

"Mostly I imagine things," I continued. "You know-- what it would be like ta have a life with him. Sometimes we're sittin at a kitchen table, end of the day. I imagine we're talkin to each other about our day, and he's tellin me about horses he's trained, and me, I'm tellin him about my rodeo days, but it really ain't so much what we're sayin-- it's how we're lookin at each other. Way he looks at me like I'm the most important person on this planet. Way he smiles, laughs at what I say."

He waited for me to say more. I didn't. But I thought more-- a whole lot more about those laugh lines around his eyes, and how his arms feel around me, holding me. How his lips felt kissing me. How his fingers moved inside me. How he pushed me into the mattress as he fucked me. And how he whispered "li'l darlin" in my ear after. All this I kept inside. 

He waited. Then asked one last question.

"What is the first thing you do when you wake?"

I wait, eyes closed and frown. "I turn over, open my eyes and see Lureen next to me, and there's this ache in my heart because for a second I thought--" I stopped. Just looked at him. Hard to admit to myself. 

"What, Jack?"

"I thought I'd roll over to see Ennis next ta me."


I got home all hang dog. Got plenty to think about and got some time to do it in. Lureen, she was at work. Note was on the table-- said "call me." Had a lot of explaining to do, never just took off all night before without calling. And today was one of them half days of school for Bobby. About time for him to come home. Note said he'd be taking the bus. Must be after last night Lureen didn't trust me to pick him up.

I got a beer then sat down in my recliner. Wasn't going to call her. If we were going to get into it, I didn't want it to be over the phone. 

TV was off. Turned it on for noise. Heard the familiar Jeopardy! music. Always liked watching that show even if I could never answer most of the questions. Figured I'd learn something from Art Fleming-- maybe I'd learn something that might help my son with his homework--

I'll take Ancient History for 80... 

...And the answer is... 

Ass ached. Cushion helped. Lureen hated the chair, but never getting rid of it: the old recliner and I formed an intimate bond after all these years. 

It's the only Latin novel to survive in its entirety.

I think about the answers I gave Dr. Malone. I think about how although my ass still aches, that it ain't so bad since it reminds me of Ennis.  

...What is the Golden Ass.

I stare at the TV. Art Fleming. Shit. Is he my shrink now too? He has answers. Maybe I should listen to him instead. He already knew I'm a golden ass.

I'll take Fairy Tales for 20...

Perfect. Fairy Tales. What am I gonna tell Lureen? How am I gonna tell her? Should have called her last night. Or this morning. She knows I ain't happy even after going to this Dr. Malone. And she sure ain't happy. Putting it off is only prolonging the pain-- I just didn't know the best way to tell her. Truth was hard.

...And the answer is...

But that'd be easy compared to telling Bobby his mommy and daddy were splitting up. 

He gave the miller's daughter three days to guess his name or else he took her first-born child...

'Course he didn't have to know the details-- didn't even know if I should tell Lureen the details. 

...Who is Rumpelstiltskin?

No, not him. Ennis. 

I put my hands over my face. Bobby, what have I done to you? How can I tell you? All that mattered was his mom and dad wouldn't be together no more. That's a sad state of affairs for any kid. Broken home. All because dad likes men. Well, a man. One in particular. 

Door slammed. Thump went the books on the kitchen table. A muffled, "Dad? You home?" came from behind an open refrigerator door.

I stood up. "I'm here, bud."

He walked in, feet scuffing the floor and a worried face. I hugged my boy. Kids know more than you think. Way he was sizing me up, I knew wheels were turning on wheels in his head. I sat down at the kitchen table with him and helped him with some history homework, both of us pretending like nothing was wrong. Later, he went to play with his friend Tom. I think he was making excuses. I was still sitting at the table when I heard Lureen's Buick pull into the drive. My chest tightened as I heard the doorknob turn. 

My biggest fear was that after all I had to say to Lureen, I might not be able to see my son. 

She dropped her purse and keys with a hollow thunk. I could feel her eyes boring a hole in my back. 

"So, Jack, where were you?"


Wrong answer. I turned around. She stood, back pressed against the counter and her eyes narrowed. I was fucked.

She snorted and crossed her legs at the knees. 

"You go to your psychiatric appointment." Her red nails tapped on the Formica counter. "Four o'clock comes and goes. And when I call the office, they tell me you left at the usual time. I sit here all night, worrying. I call hospitals, all your friends. Nobody's seen ya. I go to bed, tossin and turnin all night expecting you to come through that door. When I get up, and you're still not home. Bobby asked me, 'Where's daddy?' What was I supposed to say, Jack?"

"Ah, shit, Lureen. I'm sorry. I know I should have called."

"Where were you?"

"Don't know where to start."

"I think you'd better start. Explain. Now. This isn't just about your pa dyin, or your mama bein alone--"

"Sit down, Lureen."

"That bad?"  

I nodded. She sighed and plopped down in the chair next to mine. She sat straight up, then turned her chin up. "Spill, Jack."

"I'll always care about you, I will, and Bobby. I can't think about a life without him--"

"But you can think about a life without me? Is that it, Jack?"

"I'm sorry, so sorry, Lureen, but I'm in love with someone else."

I looked at Lureen. Face all washed out. Seemed almost a relief to her. She lifted her chin a bit higher and looked at me.

"Guess I knew, but it wasn't like you had much time fer someone else, all them hours you  work-- just never thought."

"Wasn't lookin for it. Just happened."

"Isn't that what most people say, Jack? 'Just happened, or just one of those things?' I thought you were better than that-- what's the matter, fast-talkin Jack Twist has no excuses?" She spat out the words like they was poison. "Christ, don't know why I'm cryin, not like we been any kind of couple for a long time."

I bent in instinctively to wipe her tears, but she pulled away. 

"Shit, Lureen. Excuses ain't gonna take this away."

"So this is it?" she asked wiping her nose with the back of her hand.

I nodded. How was I gonna tell her the rest? Had to tell her it all. Now was as good a time as any since I was confessing. 

"There's more," I said, weakly.

"More? What? Is she pregnant?" She started tapping her nails again, this time on the table.

"No." I choked out a bitter laugh.

"I know her name," she looked at me like she'd caught my hand in a cookie jar. "That's why I suspected. Her name's Edith. You say her name in your sleep some nights. It's that Edith who works for Norton's Feed, isn't it? Seen the way she looks at you like you're the whipped cream on top of a chocolate pie."

"No," I hesitated. I reckoned this would almost be funny if it weren't so damn sad. That Edith made so many passes at me and never once gave it a thought to sleep with her. Didn't even consider it. But Ennis Del Mar, I see him one time and I can't leave him alone. Lureen's got to know the truth. If I don't tell her now, she'll find out some other way, and I care about her too much for her to hear about it through gossip. Here it comes. "It ain't her, Lureen. Name I was sayin was Ennis."

"Ennis? Where'd you meet her?"

"Ennis ain't a her-- Ennis is a he."

Her nails stopped. Her mouth pulled into a thin line. Eyes grew wide. Stunned is what she was. Looked like the wind was knocked out of her.

"What are you sayin, Jack? Are you sayin you're, you're--"

"Queer? Yeah, that's what I'm sayin."

She laughed into her hand. Wasn't the reaction I'd expected, that's fer danged sure.

"Psychiatrist says I'm bisexual."

"Psychiatrist?" she choked, eyes flitting around the room, thinking. "You sure? I mean, he can cure you, can't he? That's it, isn't it-- why you decided ta go ta him."

I sighed. "No, Lureen, it ain't. I thought at first maybe I was sick, but that ain't it. Always been this way, just pretended I was someone I wasn't. Can't do that no more. Ain't no cure for this. It's what I am." Didn't get into it all with Lureen, how part of going to the psychiatrist all these weeks was coming to terms with these feelings I had for Ennis and other feelings I had for men but tried pushing away.

"Guess I could have found out some other way. Come home and found y'all in a compromising position--"

"Come on, I'd never do that to you. No way I'd bring him home here and have you find me with my pants down. Ain't respectable."

"You think any of this is respectable?"

"No, but I won't do that. Not to you or Bobby."

"Glad you told me. Guess it's better than catchin you with your tongue down his throat." Color was starting to come back into her face. "You sure there ain't no cure?"

"I'm sure."

"Guess I've always known."

"Wish you would have filled me in."

"Guess this means the D word."

I nodded.

"We can talk about this some other time. If you don't mind, Jack, I think I need to go out and have a drink."

"Sure that's a good idea? You're all upset." She gave me an evil look. "Fine, go, but be careful." Who was I to tell her different?

Least she didn't say nothing about her daddy. 



( 38 comments — Leave a comment )
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(Deleted comment)
Dec. 2nd, 2007 06:28 pm (UTC)
Thanks for commenting. Jack has come to his senses and is thinking in terms of Ennis. Glad you liked Jack and Lureen's talk. I never liked making her out to be a bad person-- although there's been a few fics where I've bought into the idea. I feel the OC Lureen loved Jack in her own way.

Thanks, Kathy for reading!
Dec. 2nd, 2007 04:48 pm (UTC)
Memoirs 10

Well, glad to see that Dr. Malone made Jack find his own answer, and it was Ennis. Also realistic how torn up Jack is about telling Bobby. Lureen took it as well as can be expected; just hope while she's having a drink she doesn't have one too many and wrap her car around a telephone pole on the way home. Bobby will need the support from both parents in days to come. She may not have said 'nothing' about her daddy, but when LD finds out about the divorce he'll sure have something to say about it. Hope she doesn't mention the real reason for the divorce, though LD will figure it out once Jack goes to live with Ennis.

Great story, and glad to read that a sequel is in the works.

Thanks again.
Dec. 2nd, 2007 06:33 pm (UTC)
Re: Memoirs 10
Afternoon, cowboy.

Dr. Malone did what any good psychiatrist would do, make the patient get their own answers. Malone gave Jack a friendly nudge because he knew what Jack wanted inside.

I had misgivings abut sending Lureen out to the bar, but hell, I thought that's what I would have done under those circumstances-- and during that time, drinking and driving wasn't admonished like it is now (and I happy people woke up and realized drinking and driving isn't cool).

A lot of the questions won't get answered in the next chapter, but I felt it came together well. I've got it pretty well finished except for some polishing...

Thanks for reading.

Dec. 2nd, 2007 05:27 pm (UTC)
This is so good. I'm glad that Jack finally voiced his real feelings, that was a major step for him. And I liked the scene with Jack and Lureen, it was very realistic -- especially when Lureen seemed to be holding out hope for a "cure" for Jack to be "not gay" anymore. My only worry is that she will get in an accident when she goes out for that drink. And poor Bobby. He knows something is wrong, probably has known for quite awhile now, so I hope that Jack will have a private talk with him soon. I am looking forward to the next update, thank you so much for sharing this.
Dec. 2nd, 2007 06:43 pm (UTC)
I recall a friend of mine whose husband came out. She still thinks to this day if he would have gone to the psychiatrist he could have been cured. I tried to help her with that but she feels being gay is against God's will (that's more an Alma sentiment, but too common even now).

And Bobby. Yes, kids know more than we think. Jack knows this.

Thanks for reading!
Dec. 2nd, 2007 06:50 pm (UTC)
Hey, el! Thanks for the quick update! Jack watching "Jeopardy" was really well done. I've done that myself sometimes, you're mindlessly watching TV or listening to music, and everything you hear relates to what's on your mind somehow. And, of course, he wanted answers from Dr. Malone! lol! But, we always have to look within ourselves and be honest - a hard thing to do. Lureen always came across as a no-nonsense, sensible person so I thought her reaction here was very believable, and, yeah, kind of hard to believe but it wasn't that long ago that psychiatrists were trying to "cure" people of being gay. Sigh. I'll be sorry to see this story end, but I'm heartened to see there will more "memoirs" from Jack after it does. Thanks!
Dec. 3rd, 2007 09:43 am (UTC)
Yes, the next update will come fast too. Thanks, Marie.

I know there have been many times where what's going on in tv or on the radio parallels what's happening to me. I liked playing with that idea-- another part of Jack's self-discovery along with Dr. Malone's help.

Yes, I think it took Dear Abby coming forward and saying that people don't choose to be homosexual before people started waking up to it in the general population. She took her lead from a leader in the psychiatric community.


Dec. 2nd, 2007 07:52 pm (UTC)
Poor Jack. He's coming from a fragile place in his mind, but he's finally taking the steps he needs to find a better life with Ennis. I'm glad he screwed up the courage to tell Lureen, and I find it touching that he still hopes to be a father to Bobby as much as he can. It's lovely being able to hear your troubled Jack's thoughts - after his initial fright from Ennis' proposal last chapter, I can't wait to see how the two of them finally come together.
Dec. 3rd, 2007 09:47 am (UTC)
Jack is a strong guy-- just concerned where Bobby is. He's thinking about what will happen to their relationship. In OC, Jack had resigned that fact in his head long ago that he'd leave. I've always felt that Jack would keep Bobby in his life and Lureen wouldn't have stepped in his way (LD-- now that's a different story).

Thanks for reading. el
Dec. 2nd, 2007 10:04 pm (UTC)
Wow, this chapter was really good. Again Jack’s voice came through loud and clear here, his confusion and conflicts. This hit just the right note I think. Confronting issues is messy, on some level it is refreshing to get it out in the open, but on the other hand you’re left with the fall out.
//He waited. Then asked one last question.
"What is the first thing you do when you wake?"
I wait, eyes closed and frown. "I turn over, open my eyes and see Lureen next to me, and there's this ache in my heart because for a second I thought--" I stopped. Just looked at him. Hard to admit to myself.
"What, Jack?"
"I thought I'd roll over to see Ennis next ta me." //
I think this was it for him, a bitter sweet moment when it is finally clear what he wants, and it’s not what he expected or thought it’d be. But that Ennis does have a powerful pull to him!

Thank you, I look forward to the next chapter!
Dec. 3rd, 2007 09:53 am (UTC)
Glad you liked that part and that it hit the right note for you. Confrontation is hard. Some people avoid it at all costs. Others, like Jack, suck it up and do it when it's necessary.

The section you chose is my favorite in this chapter of mine too. It sums up Jack's feelings for Ennis and the void that Jack never knew existed until Ennis came into his life. You're right that this is the turning point for Jack.

Thanks, Tara for reading.
Dec. 2nd, 2007 10:15 pm (UTC)
I loved this chapter. I'm just so glad that Jack has finally realised that he does want a life with Ennis. I loved Lureen thinking he was calling Edith in his sleep, just more confirmation this is the right thing for him, and his subconscious has known for a while.

I was also really pleased that he told Lureen the truth. Really pleased. I can't wait for the next chapter!

Thank you!
Dec. 3rd, 2007 09:57 am (UTC)
Actually in that part Judy helped me. In the draft I sent her, Jack said directly after, it's not Edith, it's Ennis. Then Lureen jumped into the "you're queer." Judy pointed out that Ennis wasn't that common of a name and she might not know that Ennis is a man so I added the next lines. The point remained the same. This was subconscious Jack wanting and calling out for who he loved. Another little psychological addition to the story.

Thank you, in return for reading, Rosie!

Dec. 2nd, 2007 10:25 pm (UTC)
I'm sorry that Jack actually let Ennis go, but I'm glad that he finally told Lureen about him and Ennis's relationship. I hope he can get his head completely together and go to Ennis now.
Love this story. Thank you for this update. I'm looking forward to your next chapter. : )
Dec. 3rd, 2007 10:00 am (UTC)
Thanks, Debra. Part of the whole building angst is that letting go that so common apart in stories like these. Poor Jack and Ennis suffer for it (sniff, sniff). I don't know if his head will be completely together, but look for Jack to start cleaning out what's important to him in the next and final chapter for this part.

Dec. 2nd, 2007 10:44 pm (UTC)
oh good.Jack is in the right direction.i worry about Ennis though.he was crushed. :/

**"What is the first thing you do when you wake?"
I wait, eyes closed and frown. "I turn over, open my eyes and see Lureen next to me, and there's this ache in my heart because for a second I thought--" I stopped. Just looked at him. Hard to admit to myself.
"What, Jack?"
"I thought I'd roll over to see Ennis next ta me." **
omg that was so sad.but things will change.right?

i think Lureen's reaction was very well written.i didn't think she would be hysterical.i wouldn't have liked that.i think she was even a bit relieved that it was not a woman.nothing to compare :)
"Edith" was hilarious.XD
i tend to don't like Malone but here he's been fine so far.
thank you
Dec. 7th, 2007 09:44 am (UTC)
Thanks so much. I never think of Lureen as the hysterical type either. She has it together. I know there are a lot of people who either don't like Malone, or don't trust him. The one in this fic is pretty benign.

Thanks for reading.

Dec. 3rd, 2007 01:03 am (UTC)
Oh, that must have been hard for both of them, I have always liked Lureen, I do think she loves her husband and she had a suspicion about him even in the movie, but hoping like most women in love it will somehow go away.Glad that in some way the doctor was able to make Jack realize to go forward with life and for Jack that meant Ennis. Hope Lureen will come back safe and together they can tell Bobby about the divorce. Great writing as always. Thank you.
Dec. 7th, 2007 09:46 am (UTC)
Hey. I always felt that Lureen knew-- or at least had an inkling that something was up. She was too smart not to figure it out. I go with your theory too, that she hoped he'd "get better" or change.

Thanks for reading, Torry.

Dec. 3rd, 2007 04:17 am (UTC)
Oooooooooo, I just can't wait to find out how things go with Ennis. It's nice that Jack told Lureen and that there wasn't any major scene or drama (aside from her unpleasant comments about being "cured"). But, I'm still just on the edge of my seat about how Jack will make things right with Ennis... I'm curious now as to why Jack was so hesitant about Ennis's proposal at the hotel. It seems like Ennis was giving him exactly what he wanted. I hope it's not too late for them to work things out.
Dec. 3rd, 2007 08:53 am (UTC)
Enjoyed this, thank you. I liked the dialog between Jack and Lureen.
Dec. 7th, 2007 09:47 am (UTC)
You're very welcome.

thanks for reading,

Dec. 3rd, 2007 11:51 am (UTC)
Having come to this story really late, I have to say didn't really know what I was missing. I absolutley love the quality of the writing, the story is has a very original quality about it, which really adds to it's appeal. This chapter was great the exchange between Jack and Lureen was quite poignient, looks like Jack is making some decisions about his future.

excellent story I'm hooked. L
Dec. 7th, 2007 09:48 am (UTC)
Thanks so much for giving the story a chance and reading it. I love writing first person and the premise was so much fun I couldn't pass it up.

Thanks, update will be this weekend.

Dec. 4th, 2007 05:53 am (UTC)
I'm so glad Jack wants to move on and not live a lie. Had to chuckle at Laureen thinking Jack was saying "Edith" in his sleep. I wish Jack had a way to call Ennis. I hope Jack won't have too much trouble getting things taken care of so he can leave. Poor Bobby.
Dec. 7th, 2007 09:51 am (UTC)
I tried think of a name that was similar to Ennis and Edith was all I could come up with-- it reminds me of Edith Bunker. Ha. Imagine Jack having an affair with her.

I know I should spend more time on Bobby's end of the story. I'm hoping in the second part I'll address their relationship more.
Dec. 4th, 2007 06:06 am (UTC)
i'm glad lureen and jack were able to come to an understanding, as hard as it still is for them. I just love this story.
Dec. 7th, 2007 09:52 am (UTC)
Why thanks so much for loving this. I appreciate your comments and most of all reading.

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