In my last post, I introduced you to Jack, the “star” of the show. THE LEGEND OF JACKSON MURPHY will officially launch on July 20th, so for the next couple of weeks, I’ll be introducing his supporting cast. When you stop by the official Facebook launch party, these little introductions will be quite handy, because some freebies and fun will include this information. Katrina Monroe will also be live-tweeting with Jack trivia, offering prizes and fun for Twitter folks too. Follow me (@ReneeMJ) or Kat (@AuthorKatM) or use the hashtag “#WWJMD” to get in on that fun.
While Jack is possibly one of my personal favorites in terms of characters I’ve created, the other characters in this book had to be of equal calibre, or they’d fade behind his awesome assholery. So let’s continue meeting the characters and get to know Jenny Murphy, Jack’s wife.
Age: Early 40’s
Occupation: Mother and Wife
Background: I married Jack when I was young and stupid. What business does a 20-something have deciding that this person is who they want to spend the rest of their life with? Honestly. But Jack was charming and handsome…he hid his assholery very well. My family came from modest beginnings, and I wasn’t very worldly. Jack and I agreed we’d have the perfect family; 2 kids. Then Ally came along. I’d divorce him, but the bastard would make it a nightmare. He won’t part with a single penny, not even with a gun at his head. I’ve decided if it comes to that, then so be it. I stuck with that prick through everything, making do with nothing until he got his business up and running. I will not walk away without my half.
Mental Characteristics: I think I’m a pretty reasonable person. I have needs, of course, and I’ve become accustomed to seeing them met. If I don’t get what I want, I can be temperamental. Perhaps I’m a little spoiled, but I think I’ve earned that right. Jack says I let my emotions get out of control, but that’s because he’s a heartless motherfucker who wouldn’t know a feeling if he fell over one. I love my kids, mostly. I wish they’d grow up, though. How long does a woman have to give up her life for another person?
Spiritual Qualities: I believe in God. Jack doesn’t. We’ve agreed not to raise the kids in the Church, mostly because I’d have to take them. I don’t think that’s fair. I haven’t been to church in years, but that doesn’t mean I’m a bad person. Jack believes in Karma and Fate. If those things existed, my husband wouldn’t be breathing, now would he?
Emotional Characteristics: This is a really thorough interview. Let’s see, I think I already answered this question in the mental section. I can be moody, but who wouldn’t with the life I have to endure. I try not to cry, but sometimes I just can’t help myself. Jack doesn’t like criers. Fuck Jack.
I’m extremely unhappy, but there’s a light at the end of the tunnel. There’s only one way to be free of Jack while still keeping the life I’ve grown used to having. If I can get him to trust me again, just for a while, I might see that happen. Then my happiness will know no bounds.
Motivating Desire: Hmm…love and revenge.
External Characteristics: I don’t look my age, but that’s because I work hard to keep Father Time at bay. I go regularly to my stylist, so Jack doesn’t have to be embarrassed that his wife looks like a dowdy soccer mom. I used to go to the gym twice a week, but I’ve cut that back to set my plan for ending Jack in motion. I’m definitely out of Jack’s league. He’s lucky I settled.
What do you fear?
Loneliness. Time. Poverty. The same things any sane person would fear. Do I fear Jack? Should I?
Do you have secrets?
I have a few secrets that I can’t share with anyone. If Jack ever found out… let’s just say he will learn my secrets eventually. I’m hoping it’ll be too late for him to do anything about them.
Inspiration: Okay, I have to say this is getting kind of stupid. I don’t have an answer for this one.
After settling the kids in their rooms, Jenny went to bed. Good old Jenny always did excel at avoiding her problems. She knew he suspected something and tried the ignoring routine hoping he would forget. Jack wouldn’t let the lying bitch off that easily. He showered and joined her in their room after looking for boxers in his nearly empty drawer. Laundry, it’s a wife’s job in Jack’s world. Jenny, apparently, didn’t get the memo.
He stepped into shorts that he hadn’t worn since the eighties; the elastic had stretched and the blue cotton faded to a dull grey. Fuck. He’d have to get a maid. Or a new wife.
Jenny lay on her side, her back to him while she feigned sleep.
He wasn’t buying it. “No Late Show tonight?”
She heaved a loud sigh and rolled over, a pained expression on her face. “I’m too tired to watch TV. If you’re going to, can you watch it somewhere else? I can’t sleep with the noise.”
“I’m not watching anything. I wanted to talk.”
She opened her eyes and stared as he pulled back the covers.
“Jack, can’t it wait until morning?” she groaned when he climbed into bed and turned the lamp back on. “Really, I’m too tired for this right now.”
“That’s too bad Jenny, because I really want to discuss this and get it resolved.”
“Get what resolved? Are we having a fight?”
“We sure aren’t getting along. I just need to clear a few things up, start fresh.”
“Say whatever it is you need to say so I can go to sleep.” She sat up with another loud sigh, and then arranged the covers with exaggerated care.
Jack waited for her to finish with her annoying little performance.
“Well?” she asked.
He was overwhelmed by the urge to knock the sarcasm right out of her. Jenny acted as if she would bestow a favor by allowing him to discuss anything. Well let’s see how cocky she was when he finished. “Do you want out?”
“Out of what?”
“Don’t play dumb with me. You know what I’m asking.”
“Why would I want out? You’ve given me everything I want. You’re a perfect husband and father. You tell me so every fucking day, so how could I possibly want out?”
“I tell you because you don’t seem to appreciate what I do for you guys. It’s always about what I don’t do and what I should do. A little gratitude goes a long way, you know?”
“Gratitude? Seriously? I should be thankful that you leave me alone with three kids every day? I should be happy that you never come home at a decent time like other husbands, so I have to make shit up so the kids don’t think you hate them?”
“You don’t tell them anything good about me. Allie told me the other day that you said I never come home because they irritate me. You told her I never wanted any of them. Maybe I should give her the number of the doctor who was going to suck her out of your fucking belly. He’d be able to straighten out who wanted her and who didn’t.”
“We only planned on two children. Remember? We should be saving for a trip around the world right now, or something else that doesn’t involve soccer and dance class. But no, instead I’m raising another child. The other two are nearly out of the house and Allie will be here for years yet. When do I get a
“That’s my fault? I don’t think so Jen. This one is all you. You didn’t take your pills; you didn’t like the extra weight they made you gain. What did you think would happen when you stopped taking them?”
“You should have used protection. I think you wanted to tie me down to you.”
Jack glared, unable to believe her words. What a piece of work. Did she actually believe he wanted to keep her? He’d happily let her go as long as she just left. He was not about to pay her off. “Anytime you want to go, just say the word and I’ll pack your shit.”
“And the kids? Who has to take the kids?” She raised an eyebrow, arms crossed over her chest.
“Don’t you want them?”
“Because I’m their mother? Why can’t you take them?”
“This is exactly why I can’t stand you. You’re the most selfish bitch I’ve ever met. How can you not want your children?”
“I’ve been raising them on my own for fourteen years. It’s someone else’s turn now.”
“You won’t get a dime, you know. Leave if you want, but I’m not giving you a cent of my money.”
Her face reddened and she scrambled to sit straighter. She tried to speak, but no words came out. Then her eyes narrowed and she made the snorting sound that betrayed her temper hung by a thread. “I am entitled to half, and I will have it. You won’t get rid of me that easily, you miserable fuck. I have earned every last cent for being married to an asshole like you.”
“Really? So because you spread your legs whenever I begged and managed to have a few kids, I should pay you? I wasn’t aware you were a whore, but it seems appropriate.”
The slap echoed in the room.
Jack barely flinched, smiling as she gathered up the blankets and stumbled out of bed.
“We’re through Jack, and you will pay for everything,” her voice trembled. “But let’s be clear on one thing; I will not take the kids, but I will take everything else from you. Just watch me, asshole.”