Wings of Love – Chapter Three
Fueled by alcohol and the murky waters of the Niangua River, things had heated up between Bobby and I. I had taken a good seven months to recover from my relationship with Sean. Bobby and I spent those seven months flirting shamelessly, sharing dinner and movies but never quite taking it past dating and kissing like teenagers. The float trip changed that. It was getting too serious now.
Trish and I spent the days floating and drinking, trying to make sense of what was happening. She was smitten with Bobby’s best friend, Jared. Something had to change… and fast. My relationship with Bobby was out of control and we both knew it. Trish could see it in me… she knew I was about to snap and run away forever.
On the morning of September 11th Bobby, Jared, Trish, our friend Hope and I piled into a Suburban and began the long drive back to Kansas City. Of course, we all know what would become of that fateful day. My heart changed forever. My carefree days of childhood were over.
As the days following September 11th moved on, I distanced myself from Bobby more and more. Confusion, fear and empathy were the only feelings I had. There was nothing left for a relationship, nothing left of me to give.
The country was rallying together, pulling ourselves up from our bootstraps and facing the world with our heads held high.
Meanwhile, Trish and I had things to do. We worked together at an amusement park that was about to close for the winter. Jay’s mother still worked for me and Trish. She and Trish (not knowing the history with Jay… which is another story for another day) became friends.
Jay’s mother told Trish that her son was coming home from Korea on mid-tour leave for 30 days. Jay didn’t have any non pot-smoking friends in Kansas City, would Trish mind hanging out with him? Go on a few dates with him? What mother wouldn’t love Trish to take their son on a date though?
Standing on the sidelines as Trish and Jay began emailing each other, getting to know one another gave me snippets of what had become of Jay and Jen’s impending marriage. I got the gory details from Trish and Jay’s mother. Jay left for Tech School shortly after the barbeque I attended the previous summer at his parents house.
Time slipped away from me, more than a year had passed since the barbeque. While I was breaking things off with Sean and starting anew with Bobby, Jen was planning her wedding. A phone call one night ended everything for her. Jay called and said he couldn’t go through with the wedding. Jen asked if there was another woman… “Yes…” he replied… “my wife.”
It seems Jay had met a girl at Tech School, fell in love with her and changed his orders to follow her to South Korea. When he arrived in South Korea a few weeks after his new bride, he walked into their married quarters only to find his bride otherwise engaged. Before he even dropped his sea bag, he turned around and requested new quarters. His new roommate… was The Husband.
Six months later, with mid-tour leave fast approaching, Jay asked The Husband where he was going for mid-tour. “I’m not going. I’m just going to hang out in Korea… take a little tour or something.” he replied. “You can’t stay here man! Come to Kansas City with me… I’ll hook you up with some girls… show you around.” As fate would have it, The Husband agreed.
Now the trouble was for Jay to find a woman for his roommate…