Getting Married at 18 isn't easy, and not a lot of young couple makes it. Will Melissa and Luke be able to fix there marriage after 8 years? Or will the divorce papers be the new route to go? Will Luke really marry another woman just to prove a point?
It was a lonely cool Christmas Eve even for Alabama. Melissa, waiting for her plane, in the airport. She looked at her phone, nothing. Her parents home in Pennsylvania, and her not going to get to PA until later on tomorrow morning. She had nothing left. Her best friend, left to go with his girlfriend back home for the holidays, and the man who's haunted her since he left all those years ago, probably home with someone new. She couldn't bother either of them with a I miss you, come home text. It wasn't worth anything, it wouldn't change a damn thing. She'd still be alone at the end of the day.
As Melissa drowned her sorrows in a Sweet Home Alabama, as she made her way back home. Melissa a senior in high school found herself in love, and ready to get married. She was also ready to go to college, never once wanting to give up her dreams of being a Alabama softball player. When they graduated they got married in a matter of weeks, and then packed up and headed for Alabama, where Melissa was going to start her new life as a Crimson Tide Softball player, and as Luke's wife. Well being married was a lot harder than they thought it would be. After one short year Luke packed his things and headed back up north. That was eight years ago, and Melissa hasn't been to PA since.
* * *
Finally at 11:30 a.m. on Christmas morning Melissa's plane touched down in State College Airport. She wanted so badly to get off that plane, that she nearly ran off of it. She waited restlessly for her bags to come off the conveyer belt, and headed to the parking lot, to look for her daddy. She was surprised to find and old beat up pick up that she remember all too well. A familiar face climbed out when he saw her approach through his mirrors.
"Hey there cowgirl, nice tan."
"Where my daddy?" I asked
" Have you gotten more of a southern twang since I left, or is that just a southern act?"
"Mind if you don't talk to me the rest of the way home?"
"Your wish, is my desire."
I threw my suitcases in the back seat of the truck, and kicked the inches of snow that was left on my old boots. We made our way back to my parents house in complete silence. Let it to Luke to be a complete ass in the first moments of talking to him. Before I knew it that old blood hound of ours was back in my lap like old times licking my face.
"Buck! Would you stop it?" I laughed as I finally got him off my lap.
"It's not Buck, it's Bo. Buck died." Luke said looking over at me.
I looked at him shocked, why would he not tell me? "Why are you even picking me up anyway?"
"Mel, I'm doin your daddy a favor. Plus I would love to see my wife!"
What did he just say? Did he say wife?
"What did you just say?"
"You never signed the papers sweetheart, so I guess we're still hitched!"
I glared at him, hoping that he would've taken the hint. I was still waiting for him to come back. I wasn't ready to get a divorce. I said for better or worse, till death do us part, and I meant it.
"I have the papers at the house, you'll need to sign them since I'm getting hitched again in a week."
"Yup, remember Charity from down the road?"
"No, don't even speak to me."
"Well we're in love, and we're getting married January 3rd. So I'm gonna need those papers signed."
"Take me home. Now."
"Honey, your daddy just asked me to get you since his truck wasn't working. Trust me I don't want to be with you anymore than I have to be."
Not soon enough, we made it to my parents house, and Luke tried helping me out of the truck. I ripped my wrist free and slid out of the truck. I grabbed my suitcases, and stomped towards the house.
"What? Don't I even get a good bye? A thank you? A merry christmas?"
I dropped my bags and turned around, and stomped towards him holding back my tears.
"You know, I really loved you. For some god forsaken reason I still love you. And for a long time I couldn't even function because I lost my best friend, and husband. But now after all this, I'm glad you left. Merry Christmas." I spat before turning around to my bags.
"Mel? Dimples?" He called as i kept walking.
I stopped a final time, and turned to him. "You don't get to call me Dimples. My husband and close friends were the only ones to call me that, and he's long gone."
I got to my parents door and took a deep breathe before walking in. When I did I could smell the turkey cooking, and the nut roll that was freshly cut. It smelled like home. I walked into the kitchen, and my mom spotted me attacking me in hugs.
"I've missed you so much!"
"I missed you too Mama."
"Andy do you hear that southern twang she has?"
"That's my girl." Daddy said hugging me.
"I don't care. Didn't ya hear? He's fixing on marrying another woman." I replied as my mama poured me a glass of milk.
"He broke the news huh?" She asked sliding the nut roll my way.
"Of course. And at the same time that he told me that Buck died, how nice right?"
"Mel, he just don't know how to process his emotions."
"Mama he called me Dimples, you know how much that hurt?"
"Honey, I'm sorry. He just wants his best friend back."
"Well the asshole missed his flight."
I finished my glass of milk, and headed up to my room with my suitcases. Stepping into my room was like a bad dream. Pictures of Luke and I covered the walls still, our wedding picture plastered above the bed we used to sleep in. I ripped it down along with any overs in reach and threw them in my closet. I laid on my bed, and just cried. It was the only thing I could do. I had nothing, no one. I lost my husband to the high school tramp. What else did I have left? As I laid there I heard a knocking on my door, and then it opened. It was Luke.
"Dimp- I mean Mel, can we talk? I was an ass I know."
"You had your shot, not go away." I replied through my tears.
"You know, I've been really confused. I still don't understand why I left. That was eight years ago, and I don't get why I left at all."
"Then why didn't you come back?"
"Because I thought you never would've took me back."
"You made your bed, sleep in it." I replied before chucking a pillow at him.
He went to leave, but stopped when he saw our wedding picture on the floor, and the glass shattered everywhere. He picked it up, and took it with him, and then left me be. I hated him, loathed him. I was at the point that I wished he had never existed. Not a minute later someone else knocked on my door.
"Luke! Leave me the hell alone!" I yelled as a turned back over in my bed.
"It's just me honey." My mom said carefully opening up my door. "You know we're going to my party at Luke's parents we always do. So we can't not go."
"I'll be there." I replied sitting up in my bed.
"I brought you a dress." She said pulling a bright red dress sparkly dress from my closet, "Do you like it?"
It was gorgeous. "I love it Mama." I replied giving her a tight hug.
"Come open your presents so you can get all dolled up!"
I followed her down the steps and into the living room to the christmas tree. It was huge and fully decorated with many colors like it has been since I can remember. I sat down next to my daddy, and opened the gift my mama sat on my lap. They gave me was a new pair of boots, that I desperately needed. I handed them their gifts and they were of course tickled by them. I got my daddy a buck antler knife, and my mama a homemade spa kit.
"Thanks Mama, thanks Daddy." I said hugging them both before going upstair to get ready.
I was determined to look amazing tonight. I was going to show Luke what he was missing. And I really wanted to see how he was with his new fiancé. I was determined to inform her too that Luke and I were still hitched, I'm sure she won't be happy.
* * *
By 5 o'clock I was marching down the steps in my new red dress, and my old black heels. I had my legs freshly shaven, and hair and make-up looking perfect. He was really going to see what he was missing tonight. I grabbed my green sparkly clutch and headed out the door with my parents at my side. It was cold, but it was a Pennsylvania Christmas, what do you expect?
We soon made it to Luke's family farm, and I couldn't be more happy. I was going to have fun, whether he liked it or not, and he couldn't do a damn thing about it. Daddy parked the truck, and as a family we headed up to the barn. There was a good amount of people there, but that was normal. I had to find Luke, I had something for him that I have been meaning to give back to him for a long time.
"Melissa? Is that you?" A familiar voice said from behind.
"Gabbs?" I replied with a smile.
"Oh my god! I haven't seen you in years!" she said hugging me.
"It's been since Luke and I left."
"So what's with you two? I mean he's getting married in a week. Crazy right?"
"Well we're still married. I'm actually looking for my groom now, do you know where he is?"
"Um…He's over with Jake, Conor and Walker." She replied in shock.
"Thanks! We'll catch up later!" I replied heading over to the giant christmas tree.
I walked over to Luke, and his idiot friends from high school. Those four were inseparable. They had to be together at all times no matter what, they were like girls! But they grew on me, and I did miss them.
"Well looky there, is that Dimples?" Jake said looking at me shocked.
"In the flesh." I replied hugging him.
I hugged Conor and Walker too before even looking at Luke. I could tell that he was starring, I could feel his eyes on me. Mostly likely trying to undress me with those baby blues.
"So Mel, when are you going to divorce this man?"
"Soon enough, which reminds me. Here's your grandmama's ring back. I figure the new wife would like it." I spat dropping the ring in his hand.
"Why thank you sweetheart, it means a lot." Luke replied sarcastically.
"Beer Dimples?" Conor asked.
"Greatly needed, thank you." I greeted with a smile taking the beer out of his hand.
The guys and I drank beer, and caught up as Luke pounded shot after shot, and beer after beer. He was getting smashed quick. He always had to when something was wrong.
"So Luke tell me, where is your better half?"
"Well," the drunken slur had started, "she, is in Ohio gathering up her family. So I will be spending this lovely christmas with my lovely wife." He finally finished almost falling over from the advanced drunkenness he was in.
"You're drunk." I replied disgusted.
Soon the old memories came flooding in as the guys went back to high school, oh the crazy things we used to do. Like the time the four idiots got me drunk, and had me singing on the tailgate. The time the cops chased us a almost an hour before we lost them in the corn fields. Nothing was ever safe, ever. But's that what always made it fun, the not knowing. I had Luke, and that was the only thing that mattered to me at the time.
"What song did we even have you singing prom night?" Walker asked.
"That was it!" He replied as the memories clicked into place.
"I'm sure you can get me to do it again if you got me drunk enough." I replied laughing.
"You can take the girl out of the honky tonk, but you can't take the honky tonk out of the girl!" Jake said elbowing my ribs.
"Ain't that the truth." I said clinking my beer bottle with his.
After they were finished making fun of my drunken singing, they decided to bring up sports. This was alway the favorite subject between us all. Luke was on the only state runner up football team along with Jake, Conor, and Walker. Then the softball team that I pitched for had won the state championship my senior year.
"Do you guys remember that last batter that Dimples pitched to in the states game?" Conor asked. It was like he started a riot.
"Who doesn't? That last pitch was a beauty!" Jake yelled.
"Best curl ball I've ever seen." Walker added.
"You sure were good weren't you Dimples?" Luke stated.
"Were?" I asked
"You couldn't throw that same curve ball." Luke challenged.
"Luke are you nuts?" Walker asked.
"Dude, you saw her pitch for Bama, she's a beast. You don't forget those things." Jake defended.
"Guys it's fine, if that's what he wants to believe, let him." I replied. I turned back around to the guys when I felt him get closer to me.
"I knew you couldn't do it." He challenged again, this time in my face.
"Fine. Get my stuff." I replied pointing to the closet that I had always kept a ball and two gloves just for these instances.
"This is gonna be good!" Conor said running over to get another beer.
I slipped off my heels, and took a final swig of beer before handing them both to my parents. I walked over to the old mark on the floor where I had thrown so many of those "killer" curves. I played catch with Jake getting my arm warm.
"If I throw it, I'll sign those damn papers. If I can't you stay a married man." I spat at Luke as he approached to see it for himself.
I started my wind up, got my grip and threw the pitch just like old times. That old things never let me down, just like always went right down the middle until the end and broke right off the plate. The whole party yelled and cheered when I had proved the host wrong.
Luke came closer to protest. "That doesn't count!"
"And why the hell not?" I asked.
"How am I supposed to know it curved like it used to?" Luke protested.
"Catch it for yourself then." Jake said throwing the glove at him.
"I will." Luke replied setting down his beer, and putting the glove on his hand.
"Jake I don't think this is a good idea, he's smashes."
"If he hurts himself, he deserves it. Throw the pitch Dimples."
So again, I started my wind up, found my grip and threw the pitch. Just like the time before it came right down the middle and then broke at the end to ended up on the outside corner. When Luke caught it, it knocked him down causing the whole party to laugh.
Luke stood up and started to protest, but by then no one cared anymore, I had proved my point. He went on a drunken rant, so bad that Jake and Conor had to take him outside. I had had enough of his drunkenness for one night. I grabbed my heels from my mama, said bye to both of them and headed outside. Luke was arguing with Jake, this had to end.
"Guys, I got this from here." I replied taking Luke's arm.
"You're a life saver. Merry Christmas Mel." Jake said giving me a hug and a kiss on the cheek before heading back into the barn.
"Merry Christmas Dimples." Conor said also hugging and kissing my cheek.
"Tell his Mama I'm taking him home."
"Got ya dimples!" Jake yelled back before walking back into the party.
I drug Luke's drunken ass down to his truck, and it wasn't easy. He had to argue with me about everything, like always. There was never a dull moment with us two, he always had to have something to say.
"I'm driving." He slurred trying to get in his
"The hell you are! You're not killing yourself on my watch." I replied ripping his keys out of his hand.
I got his protesting, drunken, yelling ass in the truck after about 15 minutes. I got in the drivers side, and headed to his house. It was only a couple of miles down the road, but it felt like an eternity. He was still yelling at me, saying that I don't know how to drive because I am a women, that I was going to kill him, all of the above. When we finally got to his house, I helped him out of the truck and into the house. I found his bedroom and threw him on the bed, where he finally passed out. I could finally have some piece and quiet. I knew I had to stay because I wasn't trusting him, especially this drunk.
I walked into their living room, and looked at the broken wedding picture sitting on the coffee table. It looked like he was trying to put it back together. I just starred at the old picture. We were so happy, nothing could have brought us down, but here we are. He's drunk, I'm alone, and yet I'm still married to the asshole. I shut off all the lights, and tried to get some sleep on the couch, even though it was almost impossible with our wedding picture engraved into my mind.
* * *
I woke up at 6, and saw that Luke was still long gone. I grabbed a pitcher, and filled it with ice cold water. I walked into his room, and poured the freezing water onto his face. He woke up quickly and fell off the bed with a thud. He was surprised to see me, when he was finally brought back into the real world.
"Melissa! What the hell!"
"Just making sure you're still alive….dammit." I replied taking the pitcher and heading back into the kitchen.
He came in soon enough after changing out of his soaking wet clothes. He looked really upset, and confused, but it was still pissed, and that wasn't changing anything.
"I don't want to here it Luke. Give me the damn papers and take me home."
Luke nodded and dropped his head and headed over to his desk. He grabbed a manilla folder and a pen, and sat it down in front of me. I signed and initialed everywhere possible and double checked that I did so. My marriage was officially over, and it had just sunk in as I slipped the signed papers back into the folder. I grabbed my coat, and slipped on my heels, and we headed out to his truck. It was a silent ride from his house to my parents. Just the way I wanted it to be. When he put the truck in park I went to leave but his rough hands on my forearm stopped me.
"Luke, I told you I don't want to hear it. I signed the damn papers. Be happy."
"No listen. I screwed up, and last night I really realized it when I saw our wedding picture shattered. That's why I had you throw two pitches, I didn't want you to sign the papers, but I can't blame you. I just wanted to let you know that I am sorry for screwing up this whole marriage."
"I made it impossible to stay. I'm sorry too." I replied holding back the tears filling up my eyes.
"You really didn't Mel, but thanks for last night. I appreciate it."
"You didn't screw it all up, don't be sorry. I bet this next one will work out just fine, I'm sure of it." I replied through my tears. "Bye Luke." I finished. I kissed him and the cheek and he wiped the tears from my eyes before I went for the truck door handle.
I slid out of the truck, and headed into the house. It was all truly sinking in, my marriage was over, and I had to move on. Luke was getting married to another girl in less than a week. I am officially divorced.