General Fiction posted February 11, 2024 Chapters:  ...24 25 -26- 27 

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Miranda can't lie.

A chapter in the book Miranda's Trouble In Paradise

Truth Teller


Miranda Jessup Buckley is back to find out what happened to Dougie Wilcox.
So far, Miranda has found out that Dougie is alive, but claims to be in danger. Aaron has professed his love to her. Now, she has to decide if Waylon should know his father is alive.


I wait until Aaron turns off his porch light before I go in. I have no idea when to expect Waylon home. If I know my mother, she has taken him out to dinner, the movies, and now, despite popcorn overload, they are stopping for ice cream.

I need a good long shower. I need to wash the day and night off of me. I remember those old commercials, you know, the woman in the tub, laying back, eyes closed. She sighs and says, "Calgon, take me away."

Why'd they stop making that? There's a market for that. I guess people opted for Xanax instead.

I pull my t-shirt over my head, tossing it into the laundry basket, as I head into the bathroom.

I catch a glimpse of her. The mouthy broad in the mirror. Don't make eye contact, Miranda. If you don't pay attention to her, she can't start anything.

"I know you see me," she says. "Heard the preacher hand you his precious little heart. That must have come as a surprise ... not."

"Are you insinuating I've been stringing him along?"

Reflection bitch shakes her head. "How many times have you noticed him looking at you?"

"A lot of people look at me. That must come as a surprise ... not." I smile , feeling like I've one upped her.

"Ever feel like you've got a colossal ice cream cone with a triple scoop of drama?"

"Yep, and there's no cherry on top."

Reflection sighs. "Sounds like Waylon's home. You better start licking that ice cream, otherwise you're gonna be a sticky mess."

"You are a riot. What the hell should I do?"

"Miranda, you already know what you should do. What does a momma bear do for her cubs?"

"Protects them at all costs."

"Yes, ma'am. But, don't expect a thank you. That boy is gonna be pissed at the world if he finds out you kept it from him. Are you prepared to be the villain in this little fairytale?"

"Just tell me what to do, dammit."

"Put Waylon's safety first. Is Dougie telling the truth? Is he hiding from people who want to hurt him, or is he just afraid to get caught?"

I look at my reflection, weighing her cryptic advice. I, knowing now what I know about Dougie, am not sure if I can trust him. I'm pretty sure Dougie knows I'm involved with Mitch. Could he be afraid I'm going to turn him over to the cops? It doesn't sound like something he'd do, but then, I don't know Dougie. Guess I never really did.

I draw in a deep breath before pulling my night shirt over my bra and leaving the think tank, aka, the bathroom.

"How was the movie?" I say, smiling like I've won the lottery.

"Not what I thought it was," Momma says, one eyebrow cocked and her lips pursed.

"I liked it," Waylon says, a mischievous smile plastered on his face.

"Bad language? Violence? What got Momma so upset?"

He steals a glance at her. "Boobs. It was awesome." He laughs.

"That was all the movie was. I've never seen so many nipples in all of my life."

I look from my momma to Waylon. He couldn't be happier.

He puts his arm around her shoulder and I notice he's taller than her. "It was awesome," he mouths.

"Go get ready for bed." I nod towards his room.

I walk Momma out to her car. She's going on and on about how the movie was basically porn and every woman had fake boobs.

"He seemed to have enjoyed it."

"I tried to cover his eyes the first fifteen minutes of the movie, then I just gave up and started covering my own eyes. I'm sure he was in heaven watching it. Teenage boys are like that."

"It isn't just teenage boys. If it has a penis and a pulse, they like that kind of thing."

She opens her car door and slips into the seat. "Maybe next time, you and Mitch can join us."

I nod, then glance towards Aaron's trailer. "I got hit with a bombshell, right before y'all got home."

"You're not pregnant, are you?" Momma's eyes go wide.

"No. You've raised a very careful daughter."

Oddly, she doesn't look as relieved as I thought she would. "So, what about this bombshell?"

"Aaron," I say, nodding towards his trailer, "told me he's in love with me."

"Which one is Aaron?"

"The one who went off to Seminary."

"The goof who put his stupid knife in Waylon's book bag, almost got him kicked out of school? That guy?"

I already know how she feels about him. In my momma's eyes, there are two kinds of people in the world. Guys like Mitch, and the rest. Aaron is not in the Mitch category.

"I hope you told him to take a hike."

"I told him I wasn't the right girl for him."

"Then you told him to take a hike?"

I press my lips together before answering. "No. We are friends, Momma. He understands its not going anywhere. There is no need to tell him to take a hike."

"Don't be so nice that you screw things up with Mitch. You've got a good thing with him."

I gently close her car door and wave. I mouth thank you to her and start back stepping as she drives away.

The good news is I've shared the scoop of Aaron's proclamation ice cream. The bad news, I still have a giant scoop of Dougie, and it's starting to melt.

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