Hannah’s Place (4)


After dinner, Roan goes to the library.  I watch her fingers slip up and down the metal pay phone cord.  She whispers when she talks, but when she laughs it echoes against the dusty, stained glass windows.  It stings my ears, her happiness from the man on the other line.  I want her to get off the phone, to come and keep me safe from the rest of the girls with mean eyes and big fists.  But she only gets ten minutes of phone time, ten lousy minutes to connect with the outside world.  Jail is like that.  Only, the jail-bird has to call collect.

Roan hangs up the phone and skips towards me like she’s playing hopscotch. “Oh baby! I’ve got a secret for you.” She places her finger to her lips, another attempt at a sex kitten move, but she still looks like a little girl in mommy’s high heels with too much rouge and eyeliner.

“Come lunch time tomorrow, I’m a gonner. I’m skipping out with Mitchy!”

“Why?” Electric sparks shock my spine, my brain, my heart.  It skips around, never catching a rhythm, a regular beat.

“Cuz I love him stupid. Haven’t you ever been in love? I’d do anything for him, for his hands on my hips, his lips…” her voice trails off, her eyes cool and glassy as she floats to another time and space, away from wayward girls and rules and therapy circles. A place with strong hands and arms and someone who will weigh you down, keep you from blowing away like dandelion seeds in the summer.

“Of course.  Who hasn’t? Love is my middle name,” I say.  Maybe wanting to love or trying to love is more like it.  Being loved.  How does it feel? Electric, warm, like your blood is on fire.  It makes you feel immortal, so you won’t need to eat or sleep and booze and drugs and your best friends can all slip away.  Your shitty family doesn’t matter, your past, your pain.  All of it buried underneath the warmth of hands and arms and lazy morning.  Cigarettes and match sticks and secrets shared between drags. Love.

Roan leans forward, her skinny arms folded against her chest, her hollow little girl chest that waits for tits to bust out of button-up shirts and v-necks.  She hides her flatness.  I hide my voluptuousness.  Two sides of the same coin, flipped around for different reasons, but still the same. I’ll miss her when she runs away to Mitch. I wish I was him, that she’d run away with me instead, that she’d feel the same weight and safety from me.  But I’m just a stupid kid: a lost runaway without a car, money. I can’t heal her pain.


5 Responses to “Hannah’s Place (4)”

  1. “Two sides of the same coin, flipped around for different reasons, but still the same.”

    Love that!

  2. 2 pinklightsabre

    I miss your frequent blog/tales! I’m sure you have other stuff going on, but I’m looking forward to more when you’re able to share.

    • I know, right? It’s been hard to balance with the approaching summer and graduations and kids. But I’m trying to keep some sort of presence, if only brief.

  3. Wow. Love this.

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