Summertime by Liz Rigbey

By Liz Rigbey

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Dark hair, dark eyes, actually green but not in this strange snapshot, prominent bones. I never understood before now how people could say I resembled my father. 'Most beautiful women,' Jay Kent told me, 'have uninteresting faces. ' He was making a statement. His tone was dispassionate. The coffee the diner serves is so strong and bitter that it makes my mouth curl just the way Kent's mouth curled that cold morning in Michigan. Day two of the Mittex trip to Thinking Toys in Michigan and it was still snowing.

He is half proud, half awkward now in his own home, reminded by my presence that all day he has been someone big in investment banking but here he is only Daddy, caught up in a whirlwind of demands, small children and domestic details which he relies on June to control. He stands, submissive, Chaplinesque, with his feet turned out and his shoulders bowed as children crawl up his legs. June keeps her arms around me and continues her incantations. 'Oh darling Lucy, I wish you came here more often,' she says.

And I let him put another one in a napkin for me. I mean, for Chrissake, to keep me from losing too much heat, for Chrissake. But I stand and watch while he does it. Then I pay him, then I take it. ' 'Don't let me eat anything more today. Nothing. Okay? ' Jim looks at me twinkly-eyed. ' 'He isn't my client, Jim. ' 'Precisely. ' Jay Kent, not tall but with the slimness and quickness of some metallic weapon. 'He wants you, Lucy,' says Jim and his words make me start a little because they're just the words Jay Kent used, sitting straight-backed in the Michigan restaurant.

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