Regardless by Susan Gibb

She fingered the spikes as if they were alien. Last week her hand slid over the ice rink of her skull. She wondered if she should just shave the new growth again. Her eyes looked huge in the mirror.

He told her he’d love her no matter what she had done. Had she wrecked the car?


Overdrawn the account?


Quit her job? Gotten pregnant? Gambled away all their savings?

No, no, and no.

Then why worry? He’d love her if she got fat as a rum ball. He’d love her if she were bald.

What he hadn’t asked was if she had had an affair. If it was, in fact, with his closest friend, Jake. For a month she festered in silence. Then she cut off her long dark brown hair. Used his electric shaver to smooth her head all over, glowing and fresh and clean.

He stood there not blinking, not breathing, so neither did she. Then his hands dropped down to his sides and his mouth guppied for words. She waited. He coughed and then he asked her why she had done it. She told him about the three weeks he had been away and how Jake had come over and they’d both had too much to drink. He said nothing but in the morning he left.

She couldn’t believe it. He said he would forgive anything. He would love her forever regardless of all. Even if she was bald.


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13 responses to “Regardless by Susan Gibb

  1. Never trust what a man says! ha! This is a terrific story about love and trust issues– I wonder what made him fly the coop– the bald head or the affair? Hmmm….

  2. Thank you, Susan. I think she’s wondering that too!

  3. Yeah, and I’m sure the *haircut* is the reason he left. She certainly needs more than a beautician. Nicely done.

  4. Pingback: . Spinning . » Blog Archive » WRITING & LITERATURE: I know, I know…

  5. Al McDermid

    Never admit to an affair, even if caught red-handed! Man? What man? LOL

    Really enjoyed how you did this, the list of possibilities, the one item left off, her (unappreciated) act of penance (if that’s what it was). And thinking back to the beginning how she’s considering leaving it . . . All very well played.

  6. Al McDermid

    And I forgot to mention ‘his mouth guppied for words’–what a perfect description.

  7. Len

    “Fat as a rum ball.” “…guppied for words.” love the word play and ending. Nice!

  8. When he “…guppied for words.” he was waiting for her to lie. Nicely done, thanks for the gift of prose!

  9. Susan, this was wonderful. ‘guppied for words’ such a perfect visual.

    Only one thing’s better than your words — the fantastic art. How did you do this? Brava! Peace…

  10. Len got to those images first… loved both. Great story.

  11. Susan, men since the beginning of time have whined about women’s haircuts, and applauded long locks — so of course it was the hair. If she’d only left the hair alone….you know that, and I know that…great story. I totally enjoyed it.

  12. Thank you all–I know you all understand that terrific feeling when a phrase pops into your head that you just know is perfect for the piece! And yes, Roberta, for me it was the hair that sent him packing!

  13. Pingback: Week #26 – bad haircut « 52|250 A Year of Flash

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