Betrayed Husbands Anonymous

“He is a cheater, he’ll cheat, again. It would be nice if someone approached him, seduced him, and gave him a couple of particularly nasty diseases It would be great if that caused them public embarrassment and that cost them their jobs — they are in the public eye. Then, I could just up and leave. My profession will allow me to find work. I want my hometown in the rear-view mirror and a fresh start.

“Thanks for listening.”

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I sat down. Ralph looked at me and smiled. “Believe it or not, as wishes go, I’ve heard more ambitious ones.”

“So, what’s next? Do I try to find some slut to help me with my idea?”

“No, let me be clear, you expressed a wish here this afternoon, I never want you to think of it, again. Never happened, your trip here is a figment of your imagination. If anything happens to your wife and her new lover, it will be a total coincidence. You will be able to look anyone in the eye and tell them you have absolutely no idea how any of it came about.”

“I can do that.”

“Now, let me tell you about membership in this organization. Fees vary. Sometimes people have violent or unseemly wishes, they end up having to participate in some violence. We have no free lunches. In your case, we are going to ask $2,500 for your one-time dues payment.”

He handed me a shoe box. “The next meeting you attend, you will have exactly two thousand five hundred dollars in this box. No one will count it. Can you afford that?”

“Do I have a choice?”

“Sure, we are flexible. You have two meetings left in your membership. The next one, you pay your dues. The following meeting, you pick up a box like this one. After you leave the meeting, you open the box. On top you will find detailed instructions on what to do with the box. The rest of the contents of the box are covered. Under no circumstance are you to look and see what is under that covering.”

“So, I never know what request is in the box?”

“Bob, we have all manner of people in this organization. Most are haunted and flaky in their behavior. You, like me, have shown you say nothing to anyone. You can be trusted. There are two types of people in this organization: victims and victors. Depending on the wish being carried out, some of these victors are not nice people.”

“Swell. I will be handing a box of money to a criminal.”

“Bob! Stop it. You will do no such thing. You will hand a shoe box to a stranger.”

“Yeah, yeah. What are my chances of survival?”

“You will wrap the shoe box, in say bright green paper. Your instructions will include sitting in the post office, or a bus stop, when lots of people are around. You will be approached by a man who will ask if that is the package for Aunt Mildred, or something like that. My guess is you’ll survive.”

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