Savannah cracked her eye opened. Stretching, she looked at the clock on her wall. Ten pm. Where in the world were here children? She stood, trying to find her cell phone when she heard it vibrating against her hardwood floors. Glancing down at the caller id, she recognized Mike's number.
"Hey, I'm gonna keep the boys until the early part of the morning. It's getting late and we're just leaving from the restaurant."
"I have to work in the morning. What time can you have them here?"
"I can get there by 8 o' clock." He began to sound impatient.
"I have to be out of the house by eight. Just take them to my sister's. I'll call her and tell her you're bringing them in the morning." Savannah walked across the room to the kitchen. She glanced on the refrigerator hoping that her sister was back from vacation. She was, according to the date circled on the calendar.
"I don't have time to take them all the way to your sister's house. I have things to do." He sighed into the phone and mumbled something to someone in the background. Savannah was sure he was talking to Tracey.
Savannah had known about Tracey for awhile. Tracey was the woman that Mike had cheated on her with. Of course, Mike denied their relationship, insisting that she was just a friend. But Savannah knew the scent of affairs. She was, after all, a woman.
"Look, you're the one who was late. And now you're telling me to wait for you while you get here in the morning? I can't do it Mike." Savannah, feeling a little exasperated, sank back into the couch. She held her head in her hands and sighed. Just as she was about to give in, she heard him say something. "What did you say?"
"I said, I can take them to your sister's. It'll probably be more like seven then." His toned seemed more relaxed and she could hear traffic in the background.
"Where are you now?"
"I'm on Martin Luther King Boulevard, where the stadium is." Where Tracey lives. He'd apparently dropped her off.
"Okay. So I'll call Kim and tell her that you're going to drop them off in the morning. Kiss them for me."
There was a long hesitation before he said okay. Savannah didn't think anything of it. She was done with assuming anything about anyone.
She made her way to her bedroom. She was glad she had saved up to have the house redone. One of her favorite places in the house was her bedroom. She had had a canopy bed installed and was able to hang different fabrics from it. She's painted it a warm golden brown, opting to have chocolate accesories to add warmth and the feeling of peace. She knew how relaxing it was when her boys could barely keep their eyes open while they were in there.
"There better be some emergency for you to be calling here so late," Savannah listened as her sister grumbled into the phone.
"Better than that. It's your sister."
"Savvy girl, you were about to get the lashing of your life. How can I help you?" She yawned into the phone.
"Is it okay if Mike drops the boys off to you in the morning? He's not bringing them home and by the time he gets here, I will be on my way to work." Savannah hated when she sounded needy. But thankfully her sister understood her drama.
"Sure girl. You still letting that man get to you, huh?"
Savannah sighed. It was true. Even though she had long since moved passed hating him, she found herself still affected by what he said and the things he did. Not intentionally, but it was hard to completely let go of the years and years they were together.
"I'm trying not to. But you gotta admit, I'm getting better."
"You are. I mean, that was a lot of stuff going on at once. Then you got the boys, girl, you done tore yourself up. But tell him bring them rock head boys of yours over hear. It's been a while since I seen my nephews anyway, you stingy heifer." She cackled into the phone and Savannah cringed. Kim loved calling people heifers.
Savannah hung up the phone and locked up before heading to her bedroom. She tucked her biggest fluffiest pillows between her legs, a testament to too many nights alone, and thought about Dwight. There was nothing spectacular about him. He was a nice height, which was one thing she wanted in a man. Nice teeth, nice build. It was even better that he had a kid. He could understand why one night stands didn't exist in her world.
He could understand the stigma behind being a single parent, the looks, the stares. Or maybe it was different for women. Maybe single fathers were regarded as heroes while single mothers were looked at as sleeping around. Or maybe she was just paranoid.
Rolling over to her other side, she felt vibration in her bed and looked through the sheets until she found her cell phone. 'Who in the world could that be?' she wondered. "Hello?" she asked tentatively.
"I'm sorry, is this too late?" A male voice responded.
"Who is this?"
"I'm sorry. This is Dwight."
Savannah sat up quickly and pulled the pillow from between her legs. She leaned back against the headboard and cleared her throat. "What's wrong? Is everything okay?"
"Yea. And no. I have tickets to the Alicia Keys concert on Saturday night. My sister backed out on me to go away with her boyfriend. No one wants to buy the other one." He paused. "Would you like to go to the concert with me?"
'Is he kidding me?' she asked herself. 'Virtual stranger and he wants me to go somewhere with him?'
"I'm sorry to ask you. But I figure it could be a way of getting to know you. It's in a public place with a million other people around. And I haven't been out in ages." Dwight chuckled aloud. "My treat."
"Hold on for a second." Savannah clicked over and dialed her sister's number.
"Go to bed, Savvy."
"I will. But this guy is on the phone and I just met him today. He wants to take me to the Alicia Keys concert."
"Why are you calling me?"
"You think I should go?" She flicked her fingernail on her teeth.
"Yes, why are you second guessing. I'll watch Jake and Nicky. I got them. Now go to bed and if you call me back, I'll kill you." Kim hung up and I clicked back over.
"I'm sorry about that. I had another call."
"That's okay. I thought maybe you hung up and I just hadn't heard the dial tone." He laughed. Was that a hint of nervousness?
"I'll go to the concert with you. I think it would be fun."
"I'm relieved. I thought you might say no, considering that I just met you earlier today. But I'm glad you didn't." He paused. "I don't want to keep you if you have to go."
Usually she was in bed and on her third dream by the time midnight hit. But she was curious about this Dwight guy and more curious to know why she was smiling in a dim bedroom, all by herself? "Actually I'm okay. If you wanted to get some of the preliminary stuff out the way?"
"Where are you from, Ms Savannah?"
"Right here, Baltimore. You?"
"Same. Can't manage to leave, you know? Both of my sisters got out as soon as they were old enough. But I like it here. Most people hate it, saying it's boring and dirty. But I love it." He gushed.
"I do too, but I would love to travel. I've always wanted to go to Italy and take a ride on the gondolas. They look so pretty on tv and the internet."
"So you're the romantic type, huh?"
She paused. "How you figure that?"
"It's not everyday that you hear someone want to go to Italy, which is a romantic place, and then to say they want to ride the gondolas. That's cute."
Savannah laughed with him for the next hour. As she asked and answered questions, she wondered if it was worth pursuing. Of course she knew there was always a chance that things would work out. She had never pressured a man into marriage. Never felt she had to. Even now as she listened to him talk about his daughter and their relationship and all the things he wanted to accomplish, she tried to suppress her desire to imagine their relationship being more than it was- sizing him up to see if he was marriage material.
"Are you okay?"
"You just got really quiet. Wanted to make sure that I didn't say anything to offend you."
"Oh no. I guess I went off to La La Land. Sorry." Savannah paused to yawn. "But I am going to have to call it a night. I gotta get up early."
"That's fine. I think Isabella just woke up anyway. But I'll call you soon, okay?"
Savannah hung up her cell phone and placed it on the nightstand. And for the first time, in a long time, she didn't need the pillow.