Annie & Jack After Forty

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Chapter 33


I knock on the door. I’m meeting Jerry at my old apartment. He said he needs to ask me a question about a high, outrageous utility bill.

Jerry opens the door holding his shirt. He’s in jeans, and his chest is bare. I’m taken off guard by what I see. His whole torso is entirely, one hundred percent, covered in tattoos. From his collar bone down to under his jeans, up on his shoulders and down to his upper biceps. How he can completely hide, all of this, all this artwork, which I assume is of his life, under a tee shirt and jeans every day is unbelievable. You’d never know he even had one, let alone all these. I think it is pretty boggling.

“Hey, come in.” I step inside, just barely through the door. I don’t know why, but I feel a little off-balance. He pulls his shirt on over his head. I look around; the place is a mess. There are toys, clothes, and food containers everywhere.

“Come in and sit down. Sorry about the mess, I’m getting ready to pick it up. I took Tucker home and just now changing out of my school uniform,” he smiles a cocky smile.

I roll my eyes playfully, “School uniform?”

He chuckles. “Yeah, restraining as a uniform. I think of my school shirts and ties as a mandatory work uniform. Just like all the black shit I have to wear at The Stardust.”

I don’t sit down, really there’s no place to, but I do walk farther into the apartment. Jerry leans against the built-in bookcase and stares at me.

“Let me see the utility bill, do you have it handy?” I look at an end table overflowing with papers.

“No need now, that’s taken care of, I called maintenance. He found and fixed a pipe under the kitchen sink cabinet. It was leaking under the floorboard. I didn’t have to pay for anything. I could see the shock on your face when you got a look at all my tattoos.”

I shrug. “I was surprised, but mostly because you don’t have any that are visible, I guess I never thought about it. I’m relieved you called, reached, and got ahold of the super. Is there anything else, any questions about anything while I’m here?” I want to go home and get off my feet.

He gives me his bad-boy smile, the one that makes him a lot of money as a bartender. “I think I’m good on everything. I’m going to get on the bike, take a ride, clear my head and pick up dinner before I deal with all this mess.” He waves his hand towards the filthy room. He walks towards me and stands close and smirk down at me. “I know you’re off tonight, let’s go out and enjoy the weather.”

I give him a playful shove out of my space. I laugh, “I wish I could blow off the day, but I have things to get done on my night off. I’ll see you tomorrow night flirt, save it for tipping customers. I’m off to the bakery. Bye.” I walk to the door and out before he comes back with one of his smart-ass comments.

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