tagRomanceIt's Just Life

It's Just Life

bywoodmanone©

There is no sex in this story, please look elsewhere for that type of reading. As usual comments from the readers are requested and welcome. Thanks for reading my story, Enjoy.

*

Sometimes patience is a virtue and sometimes it will make you lose what you want most in the world. That's what happened to me. I was patient, played it slow, and waited for the right time to make my move. I was patient and cool and all I got was shit on.

I should introduce myself before we go any farther. My name is Andrew Thomas Murphy. Everyone calls me Drew. I am 28, 6 feet two and about 215 pounds. My family consists of my parents and 5 children. I have three older brothers and a younger sister. My folks wanted a big family and they got it in spades.

Enough, let's continue with my story.

I went to and graduated from college to become a techno geek. Granted I don't look like the stereotypical geek, but that's what I am. If a computer gets sick, I can fix it. Not to be immodest but I am the best IT consultant in a three state area. It doesn't matter if the problem is software, hardware, or gremlins, I can fix it.

After college I went to work for a large company as one of their IT guys. I managed to stay with them for 3 years. The atmosphere was oppressive and regimented. The head of the IT department was an older lady. I firmly believe she didn't even know how to turn a computer on much less how to run an IT department. If you have ever known or been around techno geeks, you know we don't work like machines. We live in our own little world, at least at work.

As I said, I lasted 3 years and then I escaped. I had saved some money and decided to start my own IT consultant firm. Some firm, one salesman slash consultant and me. The salesman was Bobby Jensen, he worked on commission and I took care of the rest of the business. Bobby and I had grown up together and he was my best friend. I felt that if anyone had by back it was Bobby. Yeah well, we all make mistakes.

Our firm began to grow very quickly. After the first 8 months, I had to hire another consultant and a full time secretary office manager type. Her name was Kelly Ryan. She was maybe the perfect Irish lass 24 with long auburn hair, green eyes and a smile that could light up a city block. I was lost during the first week of working with her.

Bobby and I were having a working lunch plotting a course of action. A large company in the area was thinking about contracting for their IT needs. We wanted that contract as it would triple our firm's income. While talking, I mentioned Kelly several times. She had been with us for about six months and was doing a great job. She seemed to care about the firm almost as much as I did.

"You sound like you're interested in Kelly and I don't mean from a business point of view," Bobby said grinning at me. "When are you going to ask her out?"

"I have to be careful about that. If she doesn't feel the same way, it could be awkward. I'll just be patient until I see if she feels the same way about me." (There's that word again) We dropped the discussion about Kelly and got back to our battle plans.

Three weeks later, all our hard work paid off. We got the IT contract and the company was sitting in tall cotton. I invited everyone to a celebration at the nearby steak house. Dinner and drinks were on the firm. Now that we could afford it.

After a great dinner, we moved our celebration into the lounge. A band was playing so Kelly and I danced a little. Then Bobby and Kelly danced a little. We were almost giddy with joy at our success. Kelly had a little too much to drink and asked me to call her a cab. Before I could offer to drive her home, Bobby jumped in. He said he lived in the same general area as Kelly and it made more sense for him to take her home. It was logical because I lived on the other side of town. I left shortly after Bobby and Kelly.

After that night, Bobby and Kelly started to date on a steady basis. I was really pissed off because my best friend gave me the shaft. I know, I hadn't said anything to Kelly, but Bobby knew how I felt. It's a "man law"; you don't go after a girl that your best friend is interested in. I didn't know which hurt the most, losing Kelly or Bobby making a run at her.

My first reaction was to tear Bobby a new one. He knew how I felt about Kelly, but he made a run at her anyway. I decided to keep things to myself and be patient. (Damn word again) Things would mellow out. One of the effects of Bobby's betrayal was I lost my trust in him. If he could stab me in the back this way, what else would he do?

Bobby and Kelly had been dating for three months when they announced their engagement and Bobby asked me to be his best man. I tried to think of a way to say no, without letting Bobby know that I thought he was an ass. Then Kelly came to me and almost begged me to do it. She said she knew that I was Bobby's best friend and that she cares for me too. What could I do? I said yes.

Two months passed and Bobby began to drink a little too much. He started to come into work late almost every day. I mean an hour or more late and there were also a few appointments that he missed. The third morning he was late in the same week, I called him into my office.

"What's going on Bobby? Being late and missing appointments isn't like you. You're drinking a lot more too. Talk to me."

"If I want to have a couple of drinks it's none of your business, Drew," Bobby said.

"When it affects your job and this company, you damn well better believe it's my business," I responded with anger. "You helped make this company and now you're helping to run it into the ground. This is your only warning.

Get your head out. No more missed appointments, no more coming in an hour later. The drinking is your choice, but if it affects this company you're gone. You understand? Now go home and sober up. You can come back fresh in the morning, or not. Your choice," I ordered as I ran down.

The next morning Bobby came to work on time. He was bright eyed, bushy tailed, and eager to work. Maybe my talk did some good. I found out later that his change was more a result of Kelly giving him a major ass chewing. Whatever, he was back on track.

Another two months passed and the problem with Bobby seemed to have been corrected. Now a new bump in the road arose. This time the problem was with Kelly. She became very moody around the office. Her work didn't suffer, but she was liable to start crying over seemingly nothing. When I approached her, I was told that she was fine and that nothing was wrong.

(For those of you not familiar with the ways of women; don't believe those answers of fine and there's nothing wrong. It only means that they will wait and zing you with the real problem when you least expect it.)

I was at home settling down with the first and only drink of the evening. It was a ritual to have a bourbon to relax from the stress of the day. A little aside here: I believe that drinking alone is the height of stupidity. A drink because you like bourbon or whatever is okay. More than one or two is just dumb. Alone you have no one to debate with or to impress. Okay, end of sermon, sorry.

My bourbon was at the half way point and the phone rang. I let it go to voice mail because I didn't want to get up unless it was something important. The caller was Kelly and I was able to pick up the phone before she finished with her message. She seemed to be very upset.

"Hi Kelly, it's me. What do you need?"

"Oh Drew, Bobby has fallen off the wagon. We had an argument and he stormed out of here. I don't know where he is and I'm worried. My car is in the shop and I can't go look for him. Can you track him down for me?"

The last thing I wanted to do was to babysit Bobby. I still hadn't forgotten him stabbing me in the back with Kelly. She was almost in tears and I couldn't stand it. Even though she and Bobby were engaged, it didn't stop the way I felt about her. I had to help, if only for her sake.

"Sure Kelly, don't worry. I'll find him and see what's up. I'll call you when I find him."

"Thanks Drew. Bobby told me that you warned him that if his production didn't pick up you would let him go and he got depressed. I'm afraid if he gets drunk, he won't be able to work tomorrow," Kelly told me.

"He told you what?" I couldn't believe his lies. "Kelly that's not what happened. He was coming in over an hour late two or three times a week and there were several appointments he missed due to drinking. I told him if he was that late again or if he missed anymore appointments that he was gone. Nothing was said about production."

"Bobby lied to me?" Kelly seemed shocked. "Why would he tell me that?"

"I don't know Kelly. Maybe he was trying to save face. You'll have to talk to him about that. I'll call if I find him. Good night." If I talked to her any more I would have told her that Bobby had turned into an ass. It would be easier on Kelly if I kept my opinion to myself.

So I started the great search for my "friend" Bobby. There were two or three watering holes that he liked. Those were the first ones I checked. I found him at the lounge at the Hyatt. He was sitting at the bar flirting with the bar maid. She was cute but she couldn't compete with Kelly, at least in my eyes.

I walked up behind Bobby and just stood there. He wasn't aware I was there and continued his line with the girl. I tapped him on the shoulder and the smile dropped off his face when he saw me.

"What the hell Bobby? What are you doing? You do remember our talk don't you?" I couldn't seem to slow down with the questions.

"Hi boss. I'm not drunk, just having a couple. What are you doing here?" He seemed puzzled to see me.

"Kelly called me, she told me about your fight and that you walked out. She's worried and asked me to find you," I answered him.

"She shouldn't have called you, it's wasn't that big of a deal. You know just a lover's spat," he said. I wasn't convinced.

I got a beer from the girl and said to Bobby, "Let's grab a booth and talk buddy. C'mon Bobby we're friends, maybe I can help." I didn't know about the friends part, but I had to say something to get him to talk to me. We adjourned to a booth and then the flood gates opened. Bobby explained why he was in an uproar.

Bobby began his rant. "My apartment lease is up and Kelly wants me to move into her apartment. She doesn't like the life style at my place. Her car is in the shop and it's going to cost a lot to get it fixed and my car is going to need some work pretty soon too. I guess the biggest problem is Kelly wants to get married right away and I want a long engagement."

"Sound like life to me buddy. It's not a fantasy world. I know that's not what you wanted to hear but its reality. Most men would kill to be in your shoes. Why does she want to get married so quickly? That is a change from what you guys said in the office last month."

"Kelly's pregnant and she wants' to get married before she starts showing. I'm not ready to be a father. I don't even know if I'm ready to be a husband." He surprised me with that info. "Some of the women I have been running into make me wonder if I should be married," he admitted.

"Bobby the grass is always greener on the other side of the hill until you have to mow the lawn. Don't be a total ass. Kelly is a great person, much better than the bar pickings you used to run with. Why did you ask her to marry you if you wanted to be single?"

He said it seemed to be the thing to do at the time. I just sat and looked at him as my anger built. I had a hard time holding my temper. Finally I said, "Come on jerk face, let's get you home. You'll feel better in the morning." As we left the lounge, I called Kelly and told her he would be home soon. I followed him to Kelly's place. I wanted to make sure he made it safely and also wanted to make sure he didn't run off to another bar.

The next few days at the office everything seemed fairly normal. Bobby was on time and Kelly seemed more like her old self. We were in a slow period, but we usually were at this time of the year. Over the next three weeks, Bobby worked longer hours trying to drum up business. Things were going ok, and our business began to pick up. Then a bombshell landed right in the middle of our little family. Kelly lost the baby.

She was off work for several days and when she did come back she was a little down. That was understandable, what wasn't understandable was Bobby leaving her alone 3 to 4 nights a week. I didn't find out about that until Kelly again called to ask for my help in finding Bobby. It seems he hadn't been home for two days.

Once again I tracked him down. He was at a honky tonk just outside of town. This time he was sitting in a booth with two ladies. I use the term ladies advisedly. One was a little older and looked like she had been rode hard and put away wet. The other was our age but looked like she had lived a hard life.

I stood in front of the booth until the threesome noticed me and I could see Bobby sort of cringe when he saw me. At my suggestion the two women left Bobby and I alone. It cost me a couple of drinks to get them to leave. "Okay Bobby now what is the problem now?"

"Same thing Drew. I decided I don't want to be married. I was going to go ahead and marry Kelly because of the baby. She lost the baby so there is no need to get married now."

"What about Kelly? How does she feel about your decision? Or does she even know you're dumping her?"

Bobby answered, "I haven't told Kelly yet. I don't want to hurt her. I thought maybe that you would break the news to her. She likes you Drew and it would be easier coming from you. Will you help me, pal?"

I had to hold myself back from breaking his face at that point. A second round of drinks was ordered and I was able to gain my control waiting on them. The drinks were delivered just about the same time that I decided I couldn't allow Bobby to get away scot free.

"You are an arrogant, self centered, low life son of a bitch, Bobby. You really expect me to help you out with this bullshit. What a total crock. Bobby you made a run at Kelly, when you knew how I felt about her. Didn't make any difference, whatever Bobby wants he gets, right?"

I was just getting started. "After pulling a Judas act on me you won her heart. Then you decide you don't want to play that game anymore, so you are just walking away. You don't even have the cohones to tell her yourself and you want me to do your dirty work. Well I won't do it. Gonna have to suck it up and be a man this time Bobby. Man hell, you're just a piece of garbage."

"Now just a minute Drew, you have no reason to talk to me that way," Bobby said with anger.

"No reason? After what you are doing to Kelly, not to mention what you did to me, you're damned lucky I don't shoot you. I just don't think you're worth the cost of a bullet."

Bobby just sat there and took what I was saying. I'm glad he did because if he had argued with me or tried leave I would have beaten him so bad he wouldn't have been able to walk. We stared at each other, not talking for about sixty seconds.

I made my decision on what to do. "Bobby you're history. Don't come back to the office, I'll have your stuff sent to you. If I ever see you around my company again, I will break both your legs to start with."

"You can't do that," Bobby sputtered. "I will have.......

"Shut up you piece of crap. I can and I will. You are going to go home to Kelly and be nice to her tonight. Tonight is Friday so tomorrow you will tell her how you feel and what you are going to do."

"The hell I will. You fired me so you can't make me do that. I'll pick up my stuff when she is at work and be gone like a shot." Bobby was getting belligerent.

"If you expect to get your midyear bonus and a good recommendation from me, you will do what I tell you. In addition, if you don't do what I tell you I will kick your ass into the middle of next week. It's going to be tough on Kelly, but she deserves to have a chance to kick your ass in person."

"You can't keep my bonus, I earned that money," he whined.

"Maybe so, but it's a bonus. It's not like a 401K or profit sharing or pension and I don't have to give it to you. It's at my discretion. What do you say, Bobby? You've got until I finish my beer to make up your mind."

I could see the wheels turning in Bobby's mind. He would have a tough time keeping his life style without that money and without a chance at a job. Bobby decided he would accept my "kind" offer.

My weekend wasn't the best. Especially when Kelly called me Saturday afternoon and told me that she and Bobby were through. He had moved out and was going to leave town. Kelly also gave me a message from Bobby telling me he was quitting. I didn't dispute the fact. It was easier on Kelly if she didn't know I had forced Bobby to face her.

The next two weeks at the office were very somber. Kelly didn't miss any work but she was depressed most of the time. Finally, about three weeks after Bobby left, she began to come out of it. Kelly began to smile and even laughed a couple of times and she began to heal. She had suffered a lot recently, first losing the baby and then her husband to be. I admired her strength to keep on keeping on.

My firm was growing and I hired two more consultants and an assistant for Kelly. She decided to take some classes and she hoped to become an IT consultant too. In the mean time I was able to give her some on the job training. Two months later and the company had our midyear dinner. We now had six employees at dinner, including me. It was at the same steak house and after dinner we again went into the lounge.

"I'll buy the first round and then you're on your own folks." These people were almost like family to me. "If you have more than two, leave you keys with me and I'll pay for the taxi to take you home."

I was sitting at a table alone when Kelly took the chair next to me. She looked at me for a second and then asked me, "Why didn't you ever ask me out, Drew? I thought you were going to ask me, but then you seemed to back off."

How much should I tell her? What would be easier for her? I decided that I had never lied to her and I wasn't going to start now.

"Kelly I wanted to ask you for a date, but I was afraid that if you said no I might jeopardize our friendship and our working relationship. By the time I decided I should ask you anyway, Bobby and you were an item. Shortly afterwards you were engaged."

"Bobby was such a snake and I didn't see it until it was too late. You know, I was going to break our engagement but then I got pregnant. I thought that the baby would need a home with two parents so I didn't say anything to Bobby."

"Wow, that's a revelation, I didn't know that. I never told you this, but I am sorry about Bobby. He had me fooled too. At least until he started drinking too much."

"You don't know it, but the only reason I started dating Bobby was because it didn't look like you were interested," Kelly confessed. "I sort of fell in love with falling in love and let things go much too far."

"I wished I had asked you. Maybe all the garbage wouldn't have happened to you."

Kelly had a funny little grin on her face and said, "There is no Bobby, no engagement, and I'm still waiting for you to ask me out. Are you going to?"

I guess I'm not as smart as I thought. The idea of Kelly and I dating hadn't crossed my mind yet. I can be pretty dense sometimes. "Kelly would you like to go a movie with me tomorrow night?"

She giggled and said, "Finally. Yes I would like that."

Kelly and I have been dating for six months now. We didn't rush ourselves and spent a lot of time getting to know each other. She had been through enough and I wanted her to be sure. I was sure months ago. I know some of you will say I was Kelly's second choice. I don't see it that way.

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