Change of Plans

Mayo Hotel Building


This is ridiculous, I thought to myself for what must have been the hundredth time.  I was trapped in an uncomfortable chair, in the corner of my lavish room at the Mayo Hotel. My father, who was currently mumbling obscenities, was pacing in front of me. And he was turning redder and redder by the second.

Long ago we’d past the humorous red faced phase and had entered in to the phase where I was sure he was going to pass out at any moment.  Mother was sitting on the edge of the bed, and I could tell just by watching her that she was flitting between different emotions faster than my father could pace.  This was going to be a long night.

The pacing had begun once I had announced that I would not be returning home with them in a few days time, but that I would be staying in Tulsa with Henry.  I could tell immediately that my father knew who Henry was, hell even I had recognized him. And I knew that he thought I was being stupid and getting myself into something that I couldn’t handle, and would probably regret.

The time where I would have to tell my father that I knew exactly what I was walking into – and welcomed it really – was getting closer.

I knew of Henry’s involvement with Pretty Boy, and possibly Ma Barker, and I most definitely knew marrying into what was basically the mob, was very risky business.  But momma and her dreams of me being a lavished housewife were far off from the reality that I wanted for myself.  This girl wanted control and to make a difference, no matter the kind. And I knew that I’d found that with Henry.  Daddy’s elegant and cherished Lilly was a vixen in disguise and after 18 years of playing by the rules…she wanted out.

While I’m sure they both thought I was moving exceptionally fast with Henry, I just knew he was the one. I couldn’t explain how I knew, I just did.  Just like I knew he was in the hall right now, back against my door, waiting patiently for me to come back to him.  I didn’t want to keep him waiting any longer.

“Daddy, I know what I’m doing and I know who Henry really is,” I sat up straight and tried to make eye contact with my father.

“No Lillian, you don’t,” daddy stopped pacing and pinched the bridge of his nose, “you have no idea what this boy has done.”  I rolled my eyes and moved to stand in front of him. Reaching up to smooth his shirt, I met his eyes and smiled.

“Yes I do daddy and I still want him.”

Well there, that was simple and sweet enough.  Stepping around my father I reached for my purse off the dresser and bent down to give my mother a kiss on the head. “I’ll miss you mama.”

With my goodbyes said, I made my way to the door and opened it to find Henry waiting for me. Just like I knew he would be.


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