Until Max Came Along

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''Hey Sweetie,'' Bett beamed, ''meet Max, my former boy friend. I've told you much about him. Max, this is Danny, my husband.''

''Your what?''

''Her husband and you heard her well. And may I sir, advise you to stay away from her. I also want you to know that I didn't like the kiss.''

''What are you going to do about it, Mr What-ever-you-call-yourself? Betty was mine - we have a history. It's that kind of history that will repeat itself. Won't it, Betty?''

''What are you trying to insinuate?''

''You are matured enough to understand what I am trying to say.''

I'd never met Max before. Bett had told me about him. My animosity for him far back to the time I first met Bett, when she was still mad about what he did to her.

I'd wanted to punch him a long time ago. And as I stood there, I couldn't resist a desire to direct that punch at him. I punched hard - so hard that blood immediately started oozing from his nostrils. I had never felt so cool as I did after the punch.

Max was not the kind of man who would get the police involved. As he tried to stop the blood ozing from his nostrils, I decided to quit.

''Come on, Bett, let's go home.'' Bett didn't answer and didn't feel pleased at all. I returned to Arvid and Olle. Arvid made a sign to tell me he was pleased.

Bett didn't say a word until we arrived home.

''You didn't have to intervene the way you did, Mr! You didn't have to punch him. You didn't have to punch him that hard. For God's sake, what were you thinking about? You surely broke his jaw bone!'' Bett's tone was harsh.

''It served him right.'' I told her.

''You are kidding! We were lovers long before you came along.''

''What do you mean, Bett?''

''For God's sake, I haven't met him for five long years.''

''What do you mean, Bett?''

''Max is Arvid's dad, don't ever forget that.''

''What do you mean?''

''stop it. Just stop it. Will you?''

''He came along before I did. You haven't met him for five long years. He is Arvid's dad. All these gave you the audacity to kiss him in public?''

''It didn't mean anything...''

''It meant everything to me, Bett. Suppose you saw me kissing my former girl friend in such an intimate way. Let me advice you Bett. When you are married, you don't do any such thing like kiss a former boyfriend the way you did. I don't care how long you both have been separated. And Max isn't Arvid's Dad. He told you to abort him. He abandonned you. He forfeited his right of fatherhood. I am officially Arvid's Dad. Don't you forget that.''

''You know what? I am not going to sit here and hear you barbling. I will not hear anymore of your stupidity!''

''Stupidity? Well, call it whatever you want. I will advice you again: Don't let Max come between us. We are happy Bett. We have a wonderful marriage. We have been very happy.''

''Not anymore. You are despicable! You just broke a man's jaw bone and are not even remorseful. The last time you did this, I warned you. I warned you if you do it again it will be over between us!''


''Don't Betty me! Arvid, come on. We have to go.''

''Where are you going?''

''To meet Max. To tell him he has a son. That's what I was going to tell him when you interupted and broke his jaw bone.''

''What about Olle?''

''What about him? He is a hundred percent yours! You both will just be fine.''

''You don't mean it Bettina.''

''Oh, watch me!''

I was speechless. For a moment, I thought she was joking. When she banged the door downstairs, I walked to the balcony and watched her as she nearly dragged Arvid towards her car.

''Hey Bett, the only reason I am letting you go is because I love you. There is a saying that if you love someone, let her go. If she comes back, she was meant to be yours. I know you love me. I know you will return.'' I shouted.

''You are entitled to your opinion.'' She shouted back, pulled behind the steering and drove off as fast as she could.

That was six months ago. Six lonely months. Six months of looking after Olle. Six months of trying to get her back.

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