Troubles and Treats
Author:Tara Sivec

“Yes! It was the coolest thing I’ve ever seen. It was like these straps that almost look like seat belts and they hung down from the ceiling and I could sit right in it and hold Billy. There were these weird hole things made out of the straps that you were supposed to stick your legs in I guess, but I didn’t get what the point of those were for so I didn’t use them. And it didn’t really have a back on it so I just leaned against the wall when I wasn’t rocking. You should have seen how quickly I got Billy to fall back to sleep. It was awesome,” I explain as I take the signed invoices and start scanning them into the computer.

“Good morning, hookers!” Liz states as she breezes through the connecting door of Seduction and Snacks and takes a seat on the small couch in the office. “Did you get a chance to print out the order that’s coming in next week? I need to make sure I got enough strawberry gag reflex gel. I swear to God, I think Mrs. Molnar drinks that shit like water. Either that or she just needs buckets of numbing gel to get Big Balled Bob’s one huge nut down her throat.”

We all shudder at the though of Mr. Molnar and his penis. He had come into Liz’s store a few weeks ago to tell us about his open heart surgery and somehow ended up showing us not only the scar that ran down the middle of his chest but the effect the anesthesia had on his junk. One of his balls swelled to four times its normal size. It had looked like a grapefruit hugging a toothpick with a sad, lonely prune stuck to the side.

“Can we please not talk about Big Balled Bob this early in the morning? I had a good night last night and want to baste in the glory of it,” I tell them.

“Bask. It’s BASK in the glory,” Liz corrects me.

“Oh whatever. You know what I meant.”

People are always teasing me because I get words wrong. I’m really not a dumb person. I know what I want to say in my brain, but by the time it travels to my mouth it usually gets mixed up.

“So what happened last night after your lame-ass left us at the bar?” Liz questions. “Wait!! Oh my gosh! I totally know what happened, you little slut! Drew finally gave you his present, didn’t he?”

I look at Liz in confusion.

“How did you know about the present Drew got me?” I ask.

“Duh! He bought it from me,” Liz says as she gets up from the couch to pick up a piece of paper from the printer and look it over.

“Wait, that was yours? Did you use it with all three girls? I don’t remember you mentioning it,” I ask as I power down the computer.

“What the fuck are you talking about? What girls?”

“Uh, your daughters? What other girls would I be talking about?”

And Liz thinks I’M the dumb one.

Liz sets the paper down on the desk and puts her hands on her hips.

“Why in the hell would I ever use something like that with my daughters? That’s gross,” she states.

Gross? Why the hell would it be gross?

“Oh my Jesus,” Claire mutters, covering her mouth with her hand and staring at me with wide eyes.

And then she starts laughing uncontrollably. She bends over at the waist and wraps her arms around her stomach.

“Oh God! I can’t! Oh Jesus, it hurts!” she says through her snorts and giggles.

“What the hell is so funny?” I demand.

“Yes, enlighten us, Claire,” Liz states seriously. “A swing like the one Drew gave Jenny is no laughing matter. That thing is top of the line. He shelled out a lot of cash for that thing.”

“Holy hell! This is the best day EVER!” Claire laughs as she finally stands backup and wipes the tears from her eyes.

“Why did you say it was gross? What is gross about a baby rocker? Did someone puke on it or something?” I ask Liz. “You didn’t feed the girls naked on it or anything, did you?”

This just throws Claire into more fits of laughter and causes Liz to stare at me with a horrified look on her face.

“Oh dear God. Please tell me you didn’t. No…just...no,” she says.

What the hell is everyone’s problem? This was the sweetest thing Drew did for me in a long time and they’re laughing at it.

“I don’t even want to tell you now. You’re just going to make fun of Drew for being so thoughtful,” I complain.

“Oh, no. You have to tell Liz just how thoughtful Drew was. Please. Please tell Liz how super your evening was after you left us. Say it slowly and don’t leave anything out,” Claire begs with a huge smile on her face.

I roll my eyes at how ridiculous the two of them are acting about a baby rocker.

“Fine. But not a word out of either of you.”

They both pretend to zip their lips and throw the key away.

“You guys know how tired I was when I left the bar last night. Billy still isn’t sleeping through the night and it takes me forever to get him back to sleep. So, when I got home, Drew told me he had a surprise for me upstairs. I thought it would be another one of his lame excuses to try and have sex.”

Claire snorts and then plays it off like she’s choking when I shoot her a dirty look.

“I get upstairs and of course Billy chose that moment to wake up crying. I got him out of his crib and walked over to our room and saw that Drew lit a bunch of candles. I’ve been complaining about how the nightlight we have is too dark to see by when I feed Billy in the middle of the night and the candles were just perfect. I walked over to the corner of the room where I have the glider so I could rock him and in its place was a baby rocking swing that hung from the ceiling,” I finish, giving both of them a smug look.

Let’s see them make fun of Drew now. My husband is a giant man-child, but sometimes he does sweet, unexpected things. It’s been awhile since he’s done them but this makes up for it.

I stare at Liz expectantly, waiting for her to apologize for being rude.

“Hold on a second. I need a minute,” Liz says as she grabs Claire’s elbow and turns so that they both face away from me.

I roll my eyes at their backs.

“It’s not working. I can see your shoulders shaking. I know you guys are laughing.”

The girls compose themselves and turn back around, trying to keep straight faces.

“So, you guys didn’t have sex last night?” Liz questions in confusion.

“No! I told you, I was tired and then Billy woke up when I got home. But oh my God, that rocker was THE BEST! He went right back to sleep, and I actually fell asleep in it too. Now I know why you never told me about it when the girls were babies. You were afraid I’d try and steal it from you. No wonder they were such good little sleepers.”