‘I’m considering an affair.’ Sandra cocked her head to see Mannie’s reaction.

‘You’re what?’ He straightened. A knowing smile. Here we go again.

‘An affair.’ Sitting cross-legged on the rug she had the look of a sculpture—her weight slightly to one side, just enough twist and asymmetry to be utterly alluring.

‘A younger man, I suppose?’ The infidelity game. For as long as they’d been together she’d been teasing him with promises of lovers. As they played around with spectral noblemen, cattle barrens or rock stars their desire for each other would grow as bright and restless as a flame. ‘Or a sugar daddy?’

‘Just someone from work.’

Mannie hadn’t expected the deviation. ‘From work?’

‘We’re going to the Newington conference. It would be a chance. Don’t you think?’

‘You’re not…you aren’t…’

‘Serious. Yes Mannie. I’m serious.’

Mannie tried to get the game back. ‘Ravishingly handsome I suppose.’

‘Well yes. But that’s not the point.’

‘What is the point then?’

‘I want to take a lover. We’ve talked about it enough.’


Sandra started laughing. ‘You should see the look on your face.’

‘You mean?’

‘I’m just winding you up, Mannie.’

‘You are?’ Mannie felt something deep within him unravelling.

Sandra scooped her thick hair and twisted it into a loose bun as she watched him.


2011—Richard Holt / small stories about love (smallstoriesaboutlove.wordpress.com)