Hearing and Listening- The Man Who Declared Himself Emperor


Becky arrived at home from work at quarter after seven.

“You’re late,” complained Clement.

“I needed to clear my head. Sorry.”

“Trouble at work?”

Becky sat at the kitchen table. Clement brought a plate of supper he kept warming for her.

“Thanks,” she said.

Clement sat down and waited. After eating a few bites she said, “I talked with Emperor Don.” Her face was downcast.

Clement immediately stood up, knocking over a glass.

“What’s wrong?” she asked.

“I don’t like seeing you upset.”

“It’s not that. He made me think. I’ve never met anyone like him,” said Becky.

“I’m sorry I did,” mumbled Clement.

Becky looked confused. “Why would you say that?”

“He’s not who I thought he was. He’s dangerous.”

“How can you say that? He may be the wisest person I’ve even met.”

“Don’t be fooled. He’s very clever. He twists your words and leads you down a path that’ll ruin your life. I’ve seen it for myself,” warned Clement.

Becky looked at the anger in Clement’s eyes. “He hasn’t led me anywhere. If anything he’s helped me see things from a fresh perspective.”

“That’s just how he operates,” fumed Clement.

“Listen to me. I think we made a mistake. I wanted to come to the city, make our fortune and move back to the country- move back where we came from. Maybe we shoulda stayed there in the first place.”

Clement’s eyes widened. “We agreed on this. You wanted to show everyone back home we were something. If we go back now you’d be admitting we were wrong.”

“That’s what I’m saying. I don’t want to live our lives trying to prove anything to anyone. I just want to build a life with you,” said Becky.

Clement slammed utensils into the dishwasher. “We are building a life, and proving to people back home we can make it. It’s possible to do both, you know.”

“I guess, but why? Can’t we do more, like be content?”

Clement’s face flushed. “I am content!” he shouted. “You’re the one who wants to screw this up!”

Becky sat very still. “I’m on your side,” she stated calmly.

Clement stormed out of the kitchen and into the living room. He grabbed his phone and made a call.

“What are you doing?” asked Becky.

“Saving my marriage,” growled Clement.


About vanyieck

There is nothing about me that is more interesting than you. I am a man. I have a wife and family. I have a career. I have two dogs. I
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