The Phone Bill
 

 

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   The Phone Bill  by Simon Dean

 

‘Hello…Dean, is that you?  Sorry the line’s not so good, I can’t hear you very well…       

  ‘What?…

  ‘Oh, you’re on your cell-phone.  Well it’s a bad line, you’ll have to speak up so I can hear… 

  ‘What’s that?…

   ‘Well of course you can trust me, we’re friends aren’t we?  What’s the matter, are you in some kind of trouble?…

  ‘Samantha?  Well no, she seemed fine at work today when I saw her….

  ‘Yeah, has done all week…. 

  ‘No I wouldn’t say that.  What’s this about - is something wrong with Samantha?  Dean if there’s…

  ‘Well what is it then?…

 

  ‘No, I’m here…. I just….are you serious?… 

  ‘Dean, have you been drinking?…

  ‘Ok I’m sorry I didn’t mean it like that, it’s just kind of hard to take seriously that’s all.  I mean you and Sam have been married for what, eight years now?  I can’t believe she’d ever…

  ‘No of course I’m not calling you crazy but I just can’t believe she’s do something like that…

  ‘Dean, calm down – start from the beginning.  Why would you think…

  ‘Her piano teacher?  Oh for Christ’s sake, I’ve met the guy myself -  he’s not a day under fifty…

  ‘Oh I know that’s what I said but I was only kidding, the man’s old enough to be her father.  Why on Earth would you think him and Sam were carrying on behind your back? What proof have you got?…

  ‘Well there’s a million reasons why she might…

  ‘So she came home late Monday night, big deal…

  ‘Well I’m sure that can be explained…

  ‘Have you asked her about it?…

  ‘Dean have you actually asked her?…

  ‘There you go then, there’s probably some perfectly innocent…

  ‘Well I don’t know do I, women tell lies to their husbands all the time.  Lucy tells me she’s gone out to the gym and I know damn well she’s gone off shopping with my credit card - I get the damn statement for crying out loud…

  ‘What?…

  ‘No of course I’m not saying that she’s going shopping at that time of night, I’m just giving you an example…

  ‘Yeah…aha…. 

  ‘Well maybe she doesn’t want you to know she’s on the phone – maybe she’s talking to one of her girlfriends or something.  Listen Dean I’ve known you two since you got hitched and if Sam’s cheating on you…well I don’t know what.  I work with the woman for Christ’s sake – I’d know if something weird was going on. She just isn’t the type…

  ‘What’s that?…

  ‘Well Yeah, of course I’d tell you if I thought there was something wrong…

  ‘Because I’m your friend, that’s why.  Listen Dean, you’re starting to scare me…

  ‘Why…because you’re working yourself up over nothing that’s why.  So you’ve been having a few arguments recently - so what?  Since we lost the baby me and Lucy have been arguing like Hell - but it doesn’t automatically mean she’s sleeping with the postman.  You remember what I told you before?…about seeing a doctor for your stress?…

  ‘Well yeah, I do think you should go an see him…

  ‘Cos it sounds to me like your getting paranoid that’s why…

  ‘I’m not having a go at you Dean, I’m just saying that you work too hard – way too hard.  It’s only a matter of time before it starts to affect your home life.  Listen, why don’t you come round - I’ve got a bottle of scotch here in the office and Lucy isn’t expecting me home until after nine…

 ‘Yeah tonight.  We’ll have a few drinks and see if we can’t set your mind at rest - a problem shared and all that…

  ‘Trust me Deano it’s nothing to worry about.  You’ve got the strongest marriage of anyone I know - now listen.  The guy on the desk’s gone home already but the catch is broken so you should be able to let yourself in.  Where are you now?…

  ‘OK Dean. OK, I’ll see you in an hour…

 

  ‘Sam? It’s Alex.  Yeah listen, I don’t know what the Hell you’re playing at but I just got a call from Dean  - says he knows you’re seeing somebody…

  ‘No he thinks it’s your bloody piano teacher doesn’t he…

  ‘How the Hell should I know - from what he said you haven’t exactly been discrete…

‘No, not anymore, I think I managed to talk him out of it, but he’s still suspicious.  I think it’s best if we cool things off for a while…

   ‘No, of course I still want us to be together but we’ve talked about this before…

  ‘I’m not going to have this discussion again – certainly not now…

  ‘No I’m not mad with you, it’s just that we’ve got to be careful.  Especially until this blows over.  Now listen to me.  He’s on his way around here right now…

  ‘Because I invited him that’s why…

  ‘So I can throw him off the scent.  Now listen.  Until I tell you otherwise, don’t try to contact me, OK?  Alright, I’ll see you tomorrow…

  ‘Yeah, I love you too.  And don’t worry, everything’s going to be fine, just…

  ‘Hang on…who’s on the line?…who’s on this line!…

  ‘I’m not being paranoid I could see the red light come on…

  ‘No it’s alright, he’s gone now - that bloody security guard.  I had to report one of them last month for listening in on people’s calls…

  ‘Now don’t worry.  If he did hear anything I’ll make sure he keeps his trap shut…

  ‘Oh I’ll make sure alright - it’ll be his job.  Now you remember what I said - don’t call me and I’ll see you at work.  Love you too.’

 

‘You there! Yeah you - how would you like it if I listened in on your private con…Dean….How long have you been here….Oh God…Oh God Dean please no, I can explain…I can - Oh Jesus - DEAN!’