06 January 2011

Imperfect Prose - Somewhere to fly to

All through the next summer she gave boys what they wanted, in dark garages and basements. There was nothing they could take from her that hadn’t already been stolen.

Billy was different. He just wanted to be with Jessie, to hold her and stroke her hair. He called her beautiful and said she was like a strange bird that didn’t know how to fly. She wasn’t sure how to respond to him, always thinking there must be something else he wanted, just like all the other guys.

He was eighteen when she turned fifteen, and had moved into a place of his own. They were sitting in the single room, on the frayed green sofa he had taken from his fathers basement when his Dad was moving out of town. Jessie snuggled close against his side. He handed her a tiny box wrapped with frilly ribbons. “Happy birthday, Jessie-bird” he smiled.

“What’s this?” she asked, not used to pretty packages.

“It’s just a little something to help your wings find a place to fly to” Billy replied.

Jessie untied each ribbon slowly, which made Billy laugh impatiently. “Come on already, Jessie-bird, open it up.”

She finally opened the box, and wrapped in layers of tissue was a door key on a silver chain. Billy took it from her hand and placed it gently around her neck.

“Now you can come here whenever you like, even when I’m not home. This will be your place too.” Jessie had never told him about all the trouble at her place, or the men that would come and go, but there was something so fragile about her, he seemed to know what she needed. “I think sometimes you need to be alone” he said.

“Why would you do this for me?” Jessie asked, so unaccustomed to kindness.

“Because I care about you Jessie-bird. I care about you very much.”

“Thank you Billy. I’ve never known anyone like you.” She kissed him on the cheek and leaned back into his arms. She expected him to want something in return for his gift, so she asked “Do you want me to take my clothes off now?”

“No Jessie-bird” he shook his head. “No, just relax.”

Sharing this bite from my work-in-progress in all its imperfection.  Stop by Emily's In the Hush of the Moon where we share broken pieces and more.


alittlebitograce said...

each new segment you share has me wanting more. i'm eagerly looking forward to what comes next.

emily wierenga said...

so well written. heart-renching. loved the first stanza especially. thank you for this gift, friend.

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