Double Down

Double Down

When Judd stood and clinked his glass of chardonnay with a fork, the party attending his mother and her long-time lover's wedding, quickly hushed.  As his toast progressed everyone's jaws dropped as it slowly dawned on them that it was the identical speech he had given at his father's funeral only a few months prior. 

‘We need to move on from this tragic event. This day we dedicate to my father, a man who was loyal, faithful, and trusting. Imposters always try and find a place in our lives but we will always, always know what true love is and on a day like this we must be vigilant to never allow that to be forgotten. People pass, move on, change and God throws the dice. But we need to protest if what we see is unjust. This event is unjust because I see smiles when in fact we should all be in tears.’ 

The wedding party was stunned but tried to remain calm, sipping their drinks, scraping the remnants of their chocolate fondants from their plates. 

The groom stood as Judd took his seat. Judd's mother pulled on her new husband's sleeve but he shook himself free and unravelled a piece of paper. 

‘I wasn't allowed to read this at the funeral so I'm going to do so now. Some say I shouldn't be here, that I don't belong but I have loved this woman for many years and treated her right. I have never hurt nor even laid so much of a finger on her. The same cannot be said of others. But she's safe now. I have lived in the shadows, stealing precious moments to be together with the one I love because I have never possessed the wealth or power to set us free. My lover has been too scared to move on but now we have finally gained our liberation and we can be together. I don't want to stomp on anyone's grave but for me and many others this is a momentous time.’ 

Judd swigged back his drink, reached for another glass nearby and polished that one off too. He bent over to his mother's new husband and whispered in his ear, ‘Touché.’

Tim Frank

Tim Frank’s short stories have been published in journals many times including Bourbon Penn, Bartleby Snopes, Thrice Fiction, Foliate Oak and Able Muse.

Tim Frank is an upcoming writer specialising in the comic and the surreal. I have written a semi-autobiographical novel, Devil in my Veins, and am currently writing a sci-fi thriller novel.

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