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This is a story that shows what you hear is not always what you thought you knew.  I hope you enjoy the story.

What Are The Chances?

Richard sat down and stared at the man on the other side of the Plexiglas.  Who was he? Richard wondered.  Why did he ask to see him?  Richard hesitantly picked up the phone from off the wall and put it to his ear.  The man picked up the phone from the wall and put it to his ear.  For a moment the two stared at each other without talking.  Then the man cleared his throat and spoke into the phone.

“This is no place for you,” the man said.  Richard squinted.  “You’re a good man.  Misguided, like many of us can be, but you’re a good soul.”

Richard could hear it.  That voice.  That slow calm tone was familiar.  He knew that voice.  It had been six months since he heard it.  But he could never forget it.

“Don’t be so hard on yourself,” the man said.  “Anyone can make a mistake.  You were not going to kill her.  You just wanted her to wake up to reality.  You love her.  She loves you.  Until she doesn’t.  She would’ve broken your heart.  You know that, don’t you?  I’ll talk to her for you.”

Richard began breathing heavy.  He pushed his chair back from the Plexiglas.  “Guard!” Richard yelled.  “Guard!  Guard!”

A prison guard rushed up to Richard.  “You keep yelling and you’ll be confined to your cell,” the guard said.

“That man!” Richard yelled and pointed to where the man was sitting.  But the chair was empty.  “You have to stop that man.”  Richard jumped out of the chair onto his feet and accidentally bumped the guard.  The guard stumbled backwards.  Richard grabbed the guard by the shirt.  “You have to stop that man!  He’s going to kill her!  He’s going to kill my wife!”

Several guards ran over and grabbed hold of Richard and restrained him.  Four guards pushed Richard from the visiting room and took him back to his cell.  Richard struggled and yelled, “You don’t understand!  He’s going to kill her!”

The guards threw Richard in the cell and locked the door.

“Please!” Richard yelled at the guards who were walking away.  “Please!”  He reached his arms through the locked bars.  “You can’t do this.  Just let me make a call.  Please!  Just one call!”

The doors to the cell block slammed shut.  A buzzer went off to say the electronic lock was secure.

“Please!!!!!!  Please!!!!  Please!!!!” Richard screamed over and over.

“Shut the hell up!” Other inmates yelled at Richard.

Knowing that no one in authority was going to listen to him Richard slumped down to the floor in the corner of his cell and cried.  He knew the man.  He had never seen him before.  But he knew him.  Why hadn’t he recognized his voice before?

The man was the one who called Richard and introduced himself as Dr. Herm.  He told Richard he was his wife’s therapist.  Richard did not believe him at first.  But, this Dr. Herm knew a lot about his wife.  He told Richard, in complete confidentiality, that his wife wanted to explore more with their sex life.  How was he to know that the man was not his wife’s therapist?  He knew so much about her.  Only her therapist would know that much.  How she thought.  What she said.  Her demeanor.  Who else would know these things except her therapist?

Richard punched the wall.  He should have visited the man at his office instead of doing everything by the phone.  He should have looked the man in the face.  But the man was so convincing.  Who else would have known that he and his wife were having intimacy problems?

Why wouldn’t he follow her therapist’s advice about not letting her know they talked?  And his wife had mentioned to him years ago that she wanted him to be more aggressive with her.  It was exactly what the therapist said.

Then his wife called the police and had him arrested on assault charges.  How could he have known it was all a lie?  Why didn’t his wife believe him?  Now he was in jail awaiting trial.  She refused to come see him so he could explain.

Now, knowing who the man was that claimed to be her therapist, it was too late.  He was sure it was his wife’s ex-husband.  He set him up.  There was no therapist.  He was the therapist.  Now he was going to kill her.

Her ex never got over her leaving him.  Sure, he knew everything she liked.  They had strange sexual appetites when they were married.  But that was over.  Wasn’t it?

He squinted.  Parcels of land were in his wife’s name.  The cabin by the lake was in her name.  Was money missing from their accounts?  Accounting errors?

“No,” he whispered.  She would not do that.  She would not set him up to go to prison for attempted murder.  He choked her because she wanted him to.  But, how did the police get there so fast?  Why did they break down the door?  Why did she pretend that he had taken her by surprise?  “No.  She wouldn’t do that.”

Her ex stalked her to the new city where they moved.  Right?

What were the chances of them running into each other in New York City when he was still supposedly living in San Francisco?


I hope you liked the story.  If you did, follow me on my blog.