Greetings From Sugartown

By: Carmen Jenner

For the Sugar Junkies

You girls rock my face off with your love!

“WILL THAT be all today, Sir?” the salesgirl asks, with the sugary grin of a woman who’s about to get a hefty commission.

I breathe a sigh of both relief and terror. “Yeah, thanks.”

I bury my head in my hands as she saunters off to polish the glorified rock. I can’t believe I’m doing this. If you’d asked me about the marriage thing two years ago I would have tapped out of that conversation quicker than you could say man-whore, and run for the fucking hills. And I gotta be honest, right now, that’s not sounding like too bad of an idea. But here’s the deal: I love Ana more than I’ve loved anyone my entire life. She makes getting up in the morning worthwhile, you know?

Holy mother of cunt-cakes, this is a huge fucking step for us … for me, and I just want to make sure I’m not doing the right thing for the wrong reasons.

Snap out of it, dickhead, she’s the best thing to happen to you. I give myself a tap on the cheek while the salesgirl has her back turned to me. If I thought I could get away with punching myself in the face without looking like a member of Fight Club I’d probably do it just to escape the freak-out going on inside my head. I’m sure about what I’m doing here. But it doesn’t make it any bloody easier. I still worry I’m not the best thing for her, and I wonder all the time what might have happened if I’d never rode into town. I gotta say, though, bipolar episode in overpriced jewellery stores aside, I’ve never been happier. And that’s the reason I’m here right now.

The woman comes back and presents me with a very shiny vintage bauble before snapping the lid closed on the tiny box. The sound rings in my ears, so loud it’s deafening. My breath comes a little faster, my palms sweat, and my hands shake. Shit. I may or may not be about to pass out right now. I’m blowing four years’ worth of savings on a diamond. A diamond I’m not even sure she’ll want to wear for the rest of her life.

“Are you okay, Sir?”

“Yeah, I’m good.”

“You’re vibrating.”

“I might be a little bit shaken, darlin’. That’s a huge wad of cash to blow on a fucking rock, but I’m not gonna hulk out or anything.”

“No, I mean your phone is vibrating.”

“Oh.” I glance down at my jeans pocket and discover she’s right. And not only that, in my freak-out, I failed to notice that my phone was shaking the man meat. I’m sporting a fucking semi. What the actual fuck? I’ve said it before, and it’s as true now as it’s ever been: somewhere in all that muscle, engorged tissue, and nerve endings, my cock has a tiny brain, and that tiny brain is scheming and plotting against me right now. Again. Fucker. If I didn’t love him so much, I’d strangle him with my bare hands. Maybe I’ll have Ana do it when I get home. God damn it, not helping.

I hold up my finger to indicate that I need a minute, and step away from the salesgirl before taking my phone from my pocket, readjusting things while I’m down there.

I smile at Ana’s face as it flashes up on the screen before I bring it to my ear. “Hey baby.”

“Hey, where are you?”

Shit. I was so fucking nervous about this whole thing that I’d forgotten to tell her I was leaving work early. I’d only been at the shop for twenty minutes before I told Bob I felt like I was coming down with something. I couldn’t exactly tell him I was driving to an antique jewellery store up the coast to buy his daughter a ring. He might have something to say about that, and I wasn’t sure I’d be happy to hear that something. “Um, I went out for a ride.”

“While you’re sick?”

“Yeah, you know how the bike clears my head.”

“Well, where are you? I got Holly and Kristine to hold down the diner, so I’ll come meet you and we’ll spend the day together.”

“Er … nah, it’s okay, babe. I’m almost done here and I’ll head on home.”

“Sir, did you want me to wrap that for you?” the sale assistant asks, and if I wasn’t trying to redeem all the bad decisions of my past I might have considered strangling her. I know it’s not her fault, but strange female voices heard over phone lines lead to what’s no doubt about to come next.

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