Chapter Two Part Two
Upon entering his bedroom in the basement, Jesse turned his stereo to the
song “That’s My Job,” by Conway Twitty. This song always stirred up feelings within Jesse that made him long for the companionship of his father and forced him to reminisce.
“Daddy, can you put the worm on the hook for me?” a young Jesse asked of his father.
“Now son, you’re seven years old, you’re perfectly capable of baiting your own hook,” Jesse’s father said with a smile and a chuckle.
“But, every time I try, the worm falls off the hook,” Jesse said with a pout.
Jesse’s father knelt down next to Jesse. “Son, just because you fail the first few times, doesn’t mean you can’t do it. Failure teaches us to do better the next time and helps us learn from our mistakes,” Jesse’s father put his hand behind Jesse’s neck and bent his son’s head down so he could show Jesse how to properly bait a hook. “You see son, baiting a hook is like tying your shoe, you need to properly lace the worm for it to stay on tight,” Jesse’s father explained as he slowly demonstrated his technique to Jesse. “Try casting your line.” Jesse nodded and casted his pole far out into the lake.
“I did it Daddy, look at how far it went!” Jesse said with a bright smile.
Jesse’s father smiled proudly, “and the worm didn’t fall off the hook, did it?” he asked. “Watch your bobber son, look at how much its moving,” he said to his young son. Jesse began to jerk around his pole excitedly. “Calm down Jess. you’re going to scare away the fish,” Jesse’s father said hushing his son and holding down his shoulders. “Now, reel it in slowly,” he said. Jesse obeyed and slowly reeled in his line. “Pull up on your pole to hook him,” Jesse’s dad instructed. Jesse did so and began to feel his line drag. “Reel it in son! Reel faster!” Jesse’s dad shouted excitedly.
“I’m doing it Daddy! I’m doing it!” Jesse said. As Jesse pulled in the line closer and closer to the shore, he got a slight glimpse of the fish.
“Look at the size of that thing!” Jesse’s father said. Jesse pulled up on the pole and swung a ten-inch Bluegill over to his father.
“I did it Daddy! I did it!” Jesse said with a huge, childish smile.
“Good job, son. I’m proud of you,” Jesse’s father said with a smile.
“Smile for the camera boys,” Jesse heard the voice of his Aunt Debbie say.
Jesse heard a knock at his bedroom door. Jesse propped the picture back up on his bedside table and opened the door.
“Jesse, we need to talk,” his mother said with a sigh.
“I have nothing to say to you,” Jesse said as he swept up his keys that he had thrown on his bed and headed to his truck.
“Jesse Sterling! You come back here right now!” Jesse’s mother yelled from the front door.
“No!” Jesse yelled back as he peeled out of the driveway. Jesse sped down those back, country roads in a fit of rage blaring his radio. Upon reaching the highway, he began to slow down and process his thoughts.
“I should just pack my bags and head to Ohio tonight,” Jesse said aloud. “Maybe then, she’ll realize what she lost,” he continued. The phone began to ring, Jesse pulled his phone out of his pocket, along with a mysterious slip of paper. He put the paper on his dashboard and looked down at his phone. “I’m not answering the phone for her,” he said as he hit ignore and threw his cell phone onto the passenger seat.
Jesse pulled into the mall parking lot and put his truck into park. He looked up to his dashboard and took the small slip of paper he had pulled from his pocket. He opened the small slip of paper only to find a phone number written in pink ink, with a pink heart around the digits. “Could this be?” Jesse asked himself. Still feeling agitated with his mother, he decided to wait to call the enigmatic number until he had cooled down.
Jesse made his way through the mall until he reached a store called “Totally Tuxes” He chuckled a little at the peculiar name and walked in. “Good afternoon sir, welcome to Totally Tuxes. My name is Travis, how can I help you?” the salesman introduced.
“I’m just here to pick up the tux I requested,” Jesse said.
“Alright sir, right this way,” Jesse followed Travis to the counter. “Can I get your name?”
Travis turned around and looked through all the tux orders. “Sterling, St-St-Sterling,” Travis muttered to himself aloud as he searched, “Stelling, Stepford, Stephens.” Travis continued, “Ah, here we go, Sterling. Jesse Sterling. Would you like to make sure it fits before you checkout?” Travis asked.
“Why not?” Jesse said, shrugging his shoulders.
“Wonderful, right this way.”
Travis handed him the tuxedo and showed him to a changing room. “Come find me when you’re finished sir,” Travis said.
Jesse unzipped the plastic bag the tux was in and began to get dressed. When he was done, he walked out of the changing room to look at himself in the mirror. “Wow,” He said impressed. The tux was all black with a sleek red vest and a red bow tie.
“Everything fitting alright?” Travis asked upon walking back into the room.
“Yes, sir. But I feel as though it’s missing something…” Jesse said. He looked around him and there hanging in the retail area, was a black fedora with a white sash. Jesse walked over to the mirror again. “Perfect,” he said.
“Perfect, sir, I’ll get your ticket ready,” Travis said as he walked back to the counter.
“That’ll be $200.00 sir,” Travis said upon Jesse reaching the counter. Jesse pulled out his debit card and handed it to Travis.
“Thank you, sir, and have a good night,” Travis said as Jesse left the store.