Three years later, they conceived their first child, their first daughter, Jane, now aged six. Two years later, a little sister for Jane was born, Olivia who had turned four the week before her father died.
Had she wanted another child, a son, maybe, but she loved her two children and they were handful enough. At least they were now. Sighing she attempted to turn the key, but it would not turn. Frustrated she tried again; she removed the key, and looked at it. It was the right key, the key fob red, the same as the front door.
She tried again, she was tired, she was not sleeping very much and as she slid it in again, she attempted to twist the key again, but nothing.
“What the…” she muttered to herself.
She walked to the garage and put the key in and it opened, she pulled it open, with thoughts of getting into the house that way, but as the door opened, she found it full, full of her stuff. She frowned, and looked at it, what was happening, who was in her home? Had his brother locked her out, he had threatened it, he had always hated her, she never liked Tony, he had once made a pass at her, before the wedding, and she had declined, she had not fancied him, but he had made it known that he had liked her, and when she married Tom, he did not like it.
The day he died, he vowed he would get his revenge, and maybe this was it.
She walked back to the door and hammered on it, she waited, assuming Tony would come to the door to gloat that he had done what he promised, maybe tell her, that the only way she could get the house back, was with him as her partner. She would not ever allow that to happen. It made her skin crawl.
“Tony, come on, this is not funny.”
The door opened, a woman with dark hair, flecks of grey and dark brown eyes opened the door. She looked down at Amy and smirked.
“Who the hell are you? And what are you doing in my house?”
“Your house, I don’t think so, not anymore.”
“Where is Tony?”
“Why are you in my house?”
“As I said, this is not your house, when my husband died, the house automatically went to me. His wife.”
“Wife, is this meant to be funny, because I can tell you now, its not.”
“It isn’t meant to be funny, but I can tell you now, Miss…that Tom was my husband.”
“No, he was my husband.”
“Funny that, because he is still my husband, as we never got a divorce. So technically, you two were never married.”
“You heard, and now you know, this is my house, so you will find that all your stuff, is in the garage, I will finish removing all your crap and I want it gone from there by the end of the week.”
“You have to be kidding me, this is my house, I paid for half of it.”
“Of course you did, doesn’t matter, his will states his wife gets the house, so that means me, not you.”
Amy looked at the woman in her house, and then to the car where her children were sleeping.
“You are kicking me out of my own home, with two small children.”
“Yes, now I told ya, get what you need from the garage and get the rest by the end of the week, or you will find it dumped out on the road for the bin men.”
Amy shook her head; the woman was done talking, and closed the door. She removed her phone from her pocket and dialled the one brother she could count on, he had been good to her, and had said if she needed anything to call him. He answered after three rings. She had not meant to break down, but as soon as she started to tell him what happened, she was sobbing, and was not even sure he could make out what she had said.
Whatever he heard, he told her, to get the things she needed, and to come over, they were welcome to stay at his house, for the night.
Removing the clothes and overnights bits she could locate in the garage, Amy got back in the car and drove the twenty-five minutes to his house. The girls woke, asking questions, where they were going, what time it was, and then the whining, they were hungry, thirsty and Olivia wiggled in her seat, she needed the bathroom.
“I need a wee real bad, mummy.”
“You can have one at uncle Eric’s.”
“Why are we going there?” Jane asked.
“We had a leak at the house, and we are staying at his house for one night.” It was a lie, she had no idea what to tell him. Instead she plastered a smile on her face, her eyes were red, and puffy, but neither child mentioned it.
Eric was at the door the moment they parked in the driveway.
“Can we talk about this once the kids are settled; Olivia needs to the loo, and….”
“Of course, you know where it is, I have set up the spare room for you girls, I thought you might be hungry so ordered in some take out, I hope that was okay.”
“It is, thank you, I have a car full of shopping, I don’t know what to do with it, some of its food, I just don’t know what to do,” she began, the tears threatening to fall again. Eric ushered her in the house and settled her in a chair.
“It’s going to be okay,” he said, handing her a tissue.
“That woman, his first wife…”
“You knew about her?”
“Yes, of course, but I thought they were divorced, he said they had, were.”
“How is this happening?”
“I don’t know, my brother loved you, and in my eyes you are his wife, but we need to find out the truth, if she is still his wife, and…”
“…I am not.”
“Yes, sadly that is what we need to find out.”
“Will Sue mind me staying; I don’t want to inconvenience you two.”
“Well Sue won’t care, since we broke up a few months ago.”
“It’s fine, besides she was right, we were not getting on, and we wanted different things..”
“I wanted a family, she didn’t.”
“Yes, it was better to find out now, rather than later.”
“Yes, I guess so, I am so sorry, I wish I had known.”
“You had lost your husband, my brother, how did a split compare to a partner dying.”
“I guess, I….I am sorry, and we won’t be here long, just the night.”
“No, you stay here as long as it takes to sort this out; my home is your home.”
“You won’t be saying that in a day or two, the girls are demanding.”
“I mean it, once we sort this out, and have your home back; you can leave, but for now you are staying.”
“If you are sure, and if it gets too much…”
“Don’t worry, honestly…”
The doorbell rang.
“Food’s here,” he said, leaving the room to answer it, he returned moments later, with scent of burger and chips filled the room. Her stomach rumbled as the food was placed on the table. And the girls dug in as Eric placed a portion of chips and a small burger before them.
“Thank you, uncle Eric.”
“You’re welcome girls.”
The spare room was big enough for the girls, and his office had a small sofa, which he insisted he slept on while she took his bed, but Amy would not have any of it. He was tall, and his feet hung over the end. He was much like Tom in many ways, they all were. He was always nice to her, the sisters never liked her much either, thought she was just some tart who was after his money. He had money, but that was not what attracted her to him. He was kind, and they had so much in common, they liked a lot of the same things. To her, he was the love of her life, and now she had lost him, the aneurism unbeknown to them, took him from her. It was sudden, and with no warning.
The next morning, after a restless sleep, Amy could hear her daughters, they were already bickering. She rolled her eyes and sighed, she loved them, but this was getting more and more tiring, all she could do to not snap at them, was count to ten, and then deal with them. They were hurting as much as she was. They did not understand what was going on now, and she did not plan to tell them, after all, this would soon be over.