Sunday, October 31, 2010

Sundays are for Storytelling: "Wait for Me"

Happy Halloween! Here's some fiction for you.

I'm too old for dressing up and knocking on doors and opening my bag for treats. I know this. But I still want to go.

I have it all planned out. Mandy is leaving at 8 o'clock. When the doorbell rings, I'll slip out behind her and into her group of friends. No one will notice me in the dark.

I would never say this aloud, but I know this is her last year. October next, she'll have breasts and hips and long, black eyelashes. Trick-or-treating will be so uncool. She won't understand what she's trading in for.

I watch her silently from the bathroom doorway. She leans close to the mirror as she paints her cheeks white. She doesn't know I see her stick out her tongue, making weird faces at herself.

Now she's painting streaks of red around her mouth. She transforms so easily.

She backs away from the mirror, taking in the full view. Satisfied. She breezes into the hallway and I step back into the shadows. Would she be mad if she knew I was standing here?

There's the doorbell. She pummels the stairs with her sneakers on the way down and opens the door. I'm halfway out when she slams it in my face.

I shatter into a million pieces.

Just like the windshield. That night. 13 years ago.