Authors: Julie Butterfield
Tags: #betrayal, #second chances, #lottery win, #new start, #failing marriage, #lifestyle changes, #escape unhappy marriage, #millionaire lifestyle
Did I Mention I
Won the Lottery?
© 2013 Julie Butterfield
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For my bemused
and my amused
Rebecca looked down at the ticket in
her hand. She knew the numbers by heart but she read them to
herself again before pushing the ticket back into her pocket and
walking over to the kiosk.
‘Sorry - could
you tell me - are those the winning numbers from this week?’
The large woman
behind the counter nodded, pointing to the notice board behind the
are my darling, why, do you think you’ve won? Here, give me your
ticket and I’ll put it through the machine. That’ll soon tell
She laughed as
she spoke, holding her hand out for Rebecca’s ticket.
‘Oh no, I
can’t… I mean, I haven’t got it with me. I just wondered if those
were the numbers. This week’s numbers I mean, then I could check
them when I get home.’
tightened around the ticket still in her pocket, her cheeks
flushing a little.
‘Well those are
the numbers. Look, why don’t I write them down for you. Who knows,
you might have won the jackpot,’ and she laughed again, a deep
belly laugh that shook her ample frame as she reached for a
Thank you,’ and Rebecca took the scrap of paper, smiled politely
and turned towards the door.
across the car park hunching slightly against the bitter wind that
blew in her face and swirled around her legs until she reached her
car and sat, slightly breathless with her hands against the
She would check
when she got home. She didn’t need to check now because it wasn’t
really true. She hadn’t actually won the lottery. She had looked at
the wrong week when she checked online yesterday. She had gotten
confused when she read the numbers in the local paper the day
before. She hadn’t won. Of course she hadn’t won because that was
something that happened to other people. Not to her. She put her
hand into her pocket again and felt for the ticket. It had been
joined by the scrap of paper containing the winning numbers and she
could feel them sitting side by side, touching. Of course she
hadn’t won, it was silly to even imagine that she had. She took her
hand out of her pocket and turned the key, listening for a moment
to the engine.
should just check them quickly, then she would know that she hadn’t
won and she could stop thinking about it. Stop imagining what it
would mean if the winning numbers were actually her numbers.
She pulled the
ticket from her pocket and smoothed it out. It was creased and
stained. She had barely let go of it since Sunday morning when with
a coffee in her hand and a smile on her face, she had switched on
the computer to see if she had won £10.00 on the Saturday night
lottery. She stared at the ticket, slowly reading the numbers out
loud. Once she checked and admitted that she hadn’t won, the
daydream was over. She would have to stop imagining what it would
mean to her life. Stop those delicious little fantasies where she
woke up in the morning able to do whatever she chose, able to go
where ever she wanted. The warm feeling that was surrounding her,
that wonderful warm feeling of relief would go and she wouldn’t be
able to sit with her feet curled under her, not listening to the TV
as she planned her first trip away, what she would do, where she
She stared at
the ticket for a moment longer then carefully folded it into a
small square and pushed it back into her pocket. She would check
‘Bec! Where are
bother answering. She was where she always was at this time of the
day. In the kitchen getting the evening meal started.
‘God what a
past her on his way to the fridge. The hiss of a beer being opened
was followed by silence as he took a long drink.
‘You have no
idea what a complete waste today has been. That bloody git Peter
tried to get us to do team building! Team building. How’s that
supposed to help for crying out loud? We’re a sales team, we don’t
need to build anything apart from bloody sales!’
He snorted and
took another deep drink of his beer. ‘What’s for tea?’
Pie,’ Rebecca answered ignoring his screwed up nose as she spread
grated cheese over mashed potato and opened the oven door.
‘Right - I’ll
go get changed then,’ and he finished his beer, dropping the can on
the surface as he left the kitchen.
off her oven glove and stared at the beer can for a moment then
picked it up and put it in the recycling bin. She could leave it on
the surface for Daniel to get rid of but he would ignore it and if
she asked him to move it, he would throw it in with the kitchen
rubbish. Then he would lecture her on what a waste of time it was
trying to recycle because when the rubbish was collected it would
all be piled up in the same place anyway regardless of what colour
box she’d put it in.
That was one of
his favourite theories of the moment. Given any opportunity he
would describe how the population of Britain were all being taken
advantage off, how the landfills were full of all the rubbish that
people threw away, regardless of how carefully it had been sorted
out before being collected by the weekly refuse men.
detected the glaze of boredom in their neighbours’ eyes on Saturday
night. Rebecca had laughed at Daniel’s story and tried to take the
edge away by poking fun at herself for all the hours she spent
sorting her tins and her plastics, her paper and her kitchen
as Daniel reappeared in the kitchen doorway and smiled at him,
let’s serve up.’
They ate the
meal on their knees while Daniel watched yet another episode about
yet another car being rescued from the scrap yard. Rebecca loaded
up the dishwasher because Daniel suddenly remembered he needed to
check his emails. Then she made the cup of tea that he said he
would make but first he needed to check something online. Finally,
she ended up in her favourite corner of the settee, not listening
to the TV as she slipped back into the warm welcoming daydream that
had begun on Sunday morning when she had turned on her computer to
see if she had won anything on the lottery.
The next two
days were frantically busy. Susie had called in sick at work and
Rebecca had been covering both their shifts. Daniel had invited two
prospective clients around for dinner in an effort to win their
business, leaving Rebecca a note with a suggestion of what she
could make as an evening meal. She had spent the evening smiling
until she felt that her face would split in two, laughing
obediently as Daniel launched into his theory about recycling,
nodding appropriately as Daniel discussed the packaging industry
then clearing away in a blur of exhaustion when finally, full on
wine, brandy and cigars the guests said a protracted goodbye and
Rebecca started filling the dishwasher.
lounged in the kitchen doorway looking smug as he watched Rebecca
very interested,’ he said, rubbing his hands together. ‘I wouldn’t
be surprised if they phone back tomorrow and say they want to put
their business with White’s.’
at him. She would be amazed if Daniel ever heard from them again.
They seemed perfectly happy with the idea of drinking as much wine
as they possible could and eating a free meal. She had seen the
lack of interest in their faces as Daniel pontificated about
White’s packaging business and his own personal success. Only
several more brandies had kept them in their seats.
Tonight he was
wining and dining another business client at a local restaurant and
finally Rebecca was home alone. And instead of more cars being
dragged out of garages to be given the once over she had turned the
TV off and taken from her coat pocket the ticket and the piece of
paper she’d collected from the kiosk. She laid both on the coffee
table in front of her, smoothing out the wrinkles in the paper.
It was time to
check the numbers. The daydream still kept her warm at night. It
still filled her thoughts during the day but it had started to
become limited. It was all very well spending a few days thinking
what you would do it you won the lottery. But that only took you so
far. The dreams soon started to fade and eventually you had to let
it go - unless it turned into reality.
She took the
piece of paper from the kiosk first and following the numbers with
her finger she read them out loud, saying each number clearly and
letting it hang in the air for a moment before she read the next.
She paused and then read them again, trailing her finger along each
number as she read.
Then she picked
up the lottery ticket and smoothed it out. She didn’t really need
to check the numbers on her ticket. She knew those numbers like old
friends. They ordered themselves in her mind as she drifted off to
sleep. They welcomed her as she opened her eyes in the morning. She
knew each and every one of them.
Rebecca didn’t really need to check the lottery ticket at all. She
hadn’t needed to check it for the last two days. She had watched
the kiosk lady write down each number and she knew. She knew that
every number on the scrap of paper matched a number on her ticket.
She had known immediately that they were the same. But this was
making it real. This meant that it was actually happening.
She placed the
ticket next to the scrap paper and this time as she read the
numbers from the paper she followed the ticket with her finger.
Every number matched.
She got a pen
from the kitchen drawer and returned to the coffee table. She
didn’t want to mark her ticket so this time she read each number on
the ticket and then ticked the matching number on the scrap paper.
Every number matched.
She wrote down
the numbers from her ticket. She wrote down the numbers from the
scrap paper. Every number matched.
She stared at
the pieces of paper sitting side by side on the coffee table and
then closed her eyes. She said out loud each number that was on her
ticket. She opened her eyes and read each number that was on the
scrap paper. Every number matched.
up her ticket and stared at it. The dream was over. Reality had
arrived. Rebecca Miles had won the lottery.
It was Sunday
morning and Rebecca had slipped downstairs to make a cup of tea and
have 5 minutes peace before Daniel woke. She went into the
conservatory where the laptop rested on a small computer desk in
the corner and sat with a mug of coffee in her hand as she flicked
from screen to screen. This week she didn’t have any new numbers to
check. She hadn’t bought a lottery ticket on her way home on Friday
as she usually did. On Saturday as they watched TV together, Daniel
had flicked through the channels, resting briefly on the big ball
draw of the lottery.
‘Do you need to
check your numbers?’ he had sneered. ‘Are we millions better
answered. She had taken another sip of her wine and made no reply
as he sniggered and carried on channel hopping.