Wednesday, December 14, 2016

A fork in the road

I miss going for walks. I used to love going with dad and Jaime -- Jamie! Was that a dream that he got punched. Not likely. He stays out of the way, but…

She didn’t want to think anymore. If he did get punched, what could she even do about it anyway? She’d think about it when she returned home. Right now, it was time to not think. She looked around for something to take her mind elsewhere. Spotting a squirrel near by, she quickly took off her heels and dashed after it. She didn’t care that the couple walking on her left stared after her. How could they even tell who she was in the fog and wet, anyway? Annabell’s skirt fluttered in the wind as she darted in and out of trees after the squirrel as fast as she could. What the heck am I doing? But she reminded herself, she wasn’t thinking. The ground was getting softer and softer under her bear feet.

BAM! Her feet has slipped on something slimy on the ground, and she landed flat on her butt, hitting her tailbone on a rock. “FUCK!” She rolled over onto her stomach, clutching her butt with both hands, tears beginning to streaming down her face from the pain. She laid there, with her face in the mud, crying.


Annabell opened her eyes to find a man and a little boy sitting about 3 feet away from her.

“Can I provide you with your prophecy?” the old man said in a quite, mysterious voice.

Annabell looked at him with a blank stare, utterly startled.

“WHAT THE HELL MAN! I’m sitting here crying my eyes out from pain and you’re asking me if I want a prophecy? What is wrong with you! No, I don’t fucking what a prophecy,” she yelled with such anger in her blood, she forgot about her pain until she tried to roll over to face the man.

“Ahhhhh!!!” The pain seemed to be sneaking up her spine.

“Your prophecy will help you heal,” he responded with the calmest tone. He paused, “The truth with all its power lives inside you.”

Again, Annabell stared at him simply stunned at his response.

“WHAT? I think that is actually your own prophecy because the truth right now is that I am hurt and I need help because this pain is becoming worse by the second and all you are doing is sitting there acting like you’re simply commenting on how good your food is but that is not what is happening. FUCKING CALL 911!!!” She responded with all her might because the pain was overwhelming her. Her vision began to blur.

All she heard as she lost consciousness was the old man repeating himself: “The truth with all its power lives inside you. The truth with all its power lives inside you. The truth with all its power lives inside you…”

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

#3 Debris

Again, Annabell stared out an open door, but 30 seconds later Jamie returned to shut the door after himself.

"Sorry," he mumbled.

Alone again. Behind a closed door.

What an odd day. A gun and a long lost step-brother.

Why does everything always come back to England. I need some air.


“I’m glad a lack of water doesn’t stop the drinks from coming!” She said through her giggles as if it was the funniest thing she’d ever said. The alcohol was working well to distract her from her father, from her mother, from Lucas.

The man next to her stared with a smile on his face.

"I hope you don't mind my saying, but your eyes are beautiful,” he said.

Despite the alcohol's strengthening whirr, her mind grounded itself a bit. She shot him her glare, one that normally convinced people to leave her alone, gulped down the rest of her martini, and threw down a 20 on the bar counter. This time her stride wasn’t so swift as she headed for the door. Last time someone said that to her, it was Lucas.

“Leave me alone!” She opened her mouth to repeat herself but instead a ball of throw up came out. The man caught her just before stumbling into her own vomit.

“We need to take you home. Where do you live? or would you prefer me to call someone to pick you up?”

Annabell just stared at him. Another one was coming.

“Ok, then. We’ll just sit here awhile,” he said while leading her to the nearby concrete steps.

They sat there in silence except for the occasional vomit session and the scarce passerbyer.

Tears started running down her face.

I’m a mess. Lucas can’t continue to control my life anymore. I’m in America now. I’m away...Why did mother have to die? Why? Why did father have to become such a jerk after mothers death? Why? Why did Lucas have to have so much power over me? Why?

As she raised her head, a wave if comfort fell over her if she looked up from her vomit covered self.

“Jamie! Jamie!” Annabell yelled.

Jamie looked away from the woman to his side.

He hesitated, noticing her vomit. “Anna! ok?”

“Don’t be daft, Jamie! I’m just a little tipsy. Come on, take me home instead of that girl.”

He just stared at her. First, with a blood red face from embarrassment and then anger hit his face.

Suddenly, he turned to the girl next to him. “Sasha, this is my step-sister Annabell who just moved to America. Annabell is an expert at ruining my fun, so I’m so sorry to say this but I am going to have to bail on you tonight. I promise you, I’ll make it up to you.” He gave her a kiss on the cheek and stared into her eyes for a long second.  

“I’m not that bad, Jamie!” She said smiling at him, oblivious to his frustration.

“Let’s get you home before you hurt yourself.”

Monday, October 10, 2016


She checks herself in the mirror as she walks to the door. Heavens! She quickly applies mascara.

She opens the door to find a tall woman dressed surprisingly well.

“Good day. How may I help you?” She couldn’t hide her thick English accent.

“Oh, how exciting! Your English?” the woman responded.

“Yes.” The woman put her on edge. “And who, may I ask, are you?”

“Oh, I’m so sorry. My name is Beth Roberts, and I am working on an article for a magazine called 'Southern Living'. You may have heard of it. Would you mind if I asked you some questions?”

That was forward. Annabell really didn’t want to, but she didn’t dare sound rude.

“Of course, please come in,” She directed Beth to the small living room with her two small arm chairs. “May I offer you some tea?”

“That would be wonderful, thank you.”

As Annabell assembled the tea, she watched Beth out of the corner of her eye investigate her living room.

“From where and when did you move here?”

“I moved here from Leeds, England about three weeks ago.” She didn’t dare expand.

“I don’t mean any rudeness, but why move here? It’s a dump.”

Why did I let this lady come in?

“It’s no dump here! I’m gobsmacked by the beautiful river. You wouldn’t believe your eyes if you walked it at dusk.”

Golly, that was a daft response.

Obviously unsatisfied with Annabells response, Beth looked at the family picture on the side table.

“Who is this?”

Why? Why? Why?

“It was a family portrait we took when I was 13: My mother, father, little brother, and me.”

In the following silence, Annabell struggled to stop tears from escaping her eyes. She couldn’t bare looking at the picture. Her aunt had taken it three weeks before her mother was killed in the car accident. Three weeks before she began leading a very different life.

Suddenly, someone in the hall yelled “Out! Reporters, out!” and shot a gun.

“If you are a resident. Don’t move. If you are a reporter, come out into the hall. Don’t make me cock this trigger another time! Do you understand? Either leave peacefully, or not. Either way, you will be gone by the time I make it back to this floor.”

The guilt and sadness left Annabell at once. “Bloody hell! She’s lost her mind! Americans and their guns!”

Without even a goodbye, Beth bolted out of her apartment, leaving Annabell to look out her wide open door.

Friday, September 23, 2016


As she exists her block of flats, a pop and sizzle a couple blocks down prompts her to briefly pause in her swift stride to roll her eyes. Not again. What is wrong with American electricians? This is the fifth power outage since she arrived with her English passport in hand two weeks ago. Her stride wavers now because in her favorite baby blue wedges, her path became a dangerous place to tread without light.

She continues on her way to what her overly friendly neighbors say is “literally the best bar in the surrounding 55 square miles,” but that doesn’t mean much, since this town is not a city. Also why do Americans say “literally” all the time? Do they normally talk metaphorically? What should I say to the waiter when he compliments my outfit? ‘I am literally wearing my favorite outfit that literally costs 500 euro. You might think it ugly, but it actually isn’t. Americans literally just don’t have a fashion sense and literally walk out in public without pondering their appearance’....Well that sounds stupid. That last thought put a smile on her face, which some stranger thought was for them. Literally awkward.

She spots the sign two blocks up, “Burger Bar.” As she approaches, a smaller sign comes into focus: “must be 21 to enter after 9pm.” All she can think about is how she secretly wishes it said “must be 22 to live America.” I hope they literally serve good tea. She smiles kindly at the man holding the door for her, but quickly looks away as to avoid the always ensuing stare when they notice her eyes: her left hazel and her right light blue. Hopefully, this new world can give me a new start.