“Pull over.” She veered slowly to the shoulder of the dirt road, the wheels of her brand new mint green ’57 Nash Metropolitan bumping slightly as we moved from the dirt road to the lush grass bordering it. She turned her porcelain face to mine, waiting for me to continue with what it was that I had to say.
“I never stood a chance, did I?” I could see my forlorn expression reflecting off the darkly tinted lenses of her white sunglasses, my miserable visage interrupted by a single blonde curl hanging in front of the cat-eye spectacles. She shrugged her narrow shoulders, her rouged lower lip beginning to stick out into a pout for the briefest of moments.
“Well,” she sniffed. It only took a slight raise of my eyebrow before she continued without hesitation, “You did actually, at one point.”
Refusing to betray any emotions, she adjusted the the white scarf keeping her curls in place, refocusing her attention from one aspect of her bright ensemble to the next. Dusting invisible pieces of lint off of her floral dress skirt, twisting her pearl necklace, as white as her ivory skin, into the correct place. For a split second, the sheer whiteness of her distracted me from what she was actually saying. All I saw was a blur of white sunglasses, white gloves, white pearls, a white scarf, and skin so pale it was nearly translucent.
But she had said it.
I stood a chance, at one point. What had changed?
I finally brought my gaze up in an attempt to meet hers, once again introduced to the gloomy reflection of my own face, lenses disguising the emotion of the cool green eyes shaded behind them. She made a show of fanning herself with her gloved hand, cooling herself against the heat of the sun pouring through the windshield. She pulled off her white tea gloves one finger at a time and laid them delicately in her lap.
She finally looked at me, sliding her glasses down to the tip of her nose so that her peridot eyes finally met mine. “Oh darling, girls like me don’t get married. You know that as well as I do. I don’t want to stretch my body with babies, spend my days as a housewife indoors cleaning and cooking and waiting for some man to come home from his job at the office, telling me what to do. The hell with that,” she added crudely, for affect. “I belong to me, and me only.”
She put the car back into drive, her hand resting on the gear stick briefly. “Look darling, I did love you. I do. I can’t help that, but I can help needlessly throwing my life away to be at the beck and call of a man. Even if that man is you.” The car pulled back onto the road and rolled forward. “Now, let me drive you home.”