Just a few words about Rolling Thunder

I just wanted to send a shout out to Juliet and Kimmy whose stories have recently been inspiring me and to my readers who, I hope, enjoy these stories

Friday, October 29, 2010

Chapter 15

Love's singing our song
But we fail to sing along
Wherever you go I will follow

So please don't let it
Please don't let it go
'Cause if you won't let it I won't let it go

You try to be strong
But you're always so alone
Whatever I do I do it wrong

(lyrics from “Please Don’t Let it Go” by HiM)

You never looked up
You never look back
You never did anything in between
Are things black and white with you
You never believed
You never belonged
Never made milestones to call your own
I've got this feeling something happened here
Something happened here

Hopeless - it's not hopeless
Doubtful - but not hopeless at all

(lyrics from  “Did Anyone Approach You?” by a-ha)

“Let’s keep all that to ourselves, okay?” Becky says quietly but firmly from where she is sitting at the kitchen nook, a glass of orange juice on one side of the newspaper she’s scanning and a steaming cup of hot dark coffee grasped tightly in both of her hands. She’s wearing a pair of black leggings under a black HiM heartogram t-shirt, her hair pulled back in a severe pony tail.

“By ourselves I guess you mean not Max,” I reply, dragging a towel across my wet head and glancing towards the coffee maker to see if there’s any more of the rich, dark liquid left to be had.

“Well…yeah him too,” she begins, looking up from circling something in the paper. Her gaze lingers on my bare chest, which I’d selfishly hoped it would which is why I came out to the kitchen in a towel. I need to see if she thinks about that night. That, and having woken up with her head on my chest and her hand on my hip, it had taken every ounce of willpower I had not to roll her onto her back and take advantage of her. It was only the realization that she is in a fragile state and that it really would be taking advantage, plus the fact that it wasn’t my bed she was in, which was part of why I’d chosen to bring her into Max’s place and not mine. Even now, as I watch her struggle to focus on my face I have to remind myself that we’re friends and that’s what she needs right now, not my hang-ups but still, I’m a guy, and even if I know it’s a little childish and it’s probably something Max would do, I can’t help but enjoy watching her gaze roam over my bare chest. “But uh…Sidney’s wife doesn’t seem to really like me and I kinda get this feeling that’s there’s some kind of a pecking order when it comes to the…what do you call them?”

“WAG’s and I don’t know that she doesn’t like you. I haven’t seen her go out of her way to exclude you from anything,” I point out, only to have Becky sigh and return her attention to her coffee.

“Well she hasn’t exactly gone out of her way to include me either,” she mutters, sounding just a little petulant but I can hardly blame her. That particular club of women can be hard to break into with any club and I have heard the things they’ve been saying about her.

“If it helps, Sid is one of my best friends in the world and he’s one of the least judgmental people I know.” It doesn’t sound as helpful as I mean for it too when I say it but she nods, like it does mean something.

“I just don’t think it would help for them to know about, y’know, the trailer. Especially now,” she sighs and shakes her head. “I could kill my sister. She probably left the place unlocked when my mom went to the hospital. I mean…yeah I know that she was probably thinking about other things at the time but…,” she shrugs again and looks up at me with glassy eyes and I know that she’s been trying to hold it together but she looks like she’s ready to fall apart again. “Anyway,” she adds squaring her shoulders and putting on what I know is her version of a brave face, “I’ve made some decisions.”

“Oui, qu’est-ce que c’est?”  

“I’m going to get a job and I’m going to go back to school.”

It really isn’t fair, him walking around in that towel. Having finally come to my senses some timer during the deepest, darkest hours of the night, I’d found myself wound around his body like he’s a really warm, really sexy teddy bear. I’d had to fight the urge to let my fingers do the walking, to read his body like Braille. It would have probably gone a long way to making me feel better, but it wasn’t the right thing to do. So instead, I counted sheep, hated myself and eventually fell back to sleep.

And now here he is, wearing nothing but a towel, his wide round shoulders bearing the echos of my handiwork like some kind of badge that he’s proud of. But that’s not what keeps distracting me and nor is it the smooth, pale skin of his chest or his well defined pectoral muscles. No, damn it, it’s that line of soft brown fuzz that begins just below his navel and leads…well, at the moment, beneath the towel and I don’t allow myself to think about that.

“You don’t have to change you know,” he says softly finally sliding into the nook and behind the table which makes it both easier to breathe and easier to pretend that he’s not just about naked. I watch him run his fingers through his west hair, slicking it back only to have it fall into his eyes again. “We’re none of us perfect. Certainly not Max, not me,” he adds with that almost lisp caused by his accent, which draws my gaze to his mouth, that nearly perfect cupid’s bow that, when he smiles, only goes up at one side.

“Right, because Max is being a saint in Haiti and you…,” I find myself lost in his deep, dark eyes and I have to force my attention back down to the pages of the newspaper open in front of me. “You’re being my angel of mercy.”  I keep thinking that I should find it harder to open up to him especially now that I know that he doesn’t bat for the other side, but when I look up at that crooked smile and into those velvet brown eyes, he doesn’t seem different just because we’ve had sex. In fact, I feel closer to him than I did before which I know is definitely going to complicate things but on the other hand I feel safe with him. “You saw that horror show, the bombed out rat’s nest,” I begin, a shiver running down my spine as I think about having to go back to the trailer park to clean up that mess. “I know now, because of you guys, that I don’t want to go back to that but I don’t want to be that girl…the girl that the other WAGs obviously think I am. I want to be more than that.”

“You make it sound like you have to be a brain surgeon to be our girlfriend,” Kris says quietly, his dark gaze holding mine for a long moment that makes it clear that it wasn’t a slip of the tongue or even a mistake made by someone for whom English is his second language. “Don’t let them make you think you have to be something else.”

“But it’s not them. Or at least not just them. It’s me. Yesterday was…,” I search for the right word to describe how my entire world had come crashing down around me but at the same time I finally saw the light. “It was…awful but it did make me realize that I don’t want to keep perpetuating the same shit over and over again in my life. I don’t want to use all the shitty things that have happened to me as an excuse anymore. I’ve been spending my whole life acting like I didn’t believe the shit my mother and my sister have been saying about me, but I haven’t done anything about making my life any different and I really don’t want to bring up kids in a trailer park.”  I look over at him, wondering if he can even understand what I’m trying to say and the honesty that looks back at me, the earnest empathy hurts my heart. 

“You don’t have to,” I begin, wanting to tell her that she’s already found her way out, that I’m ready and willing to provide the life that she wants but it isn’t really me she’s talking to. She’s psyching herself up and I’m just a sounding board.

“I know, right? I mean, I’ve been saying it. I’ve been saying that I’ll get out, but it’s like I thought it would just magically happen and then when it does…,” her voice trails off as she looks over at me with this sort of sad little smile and shrugs. I know what she’s trying to say without saying it, or at least I think I do. She doesn’t want to screw up her chances with Max.

“I won’t say anything, je vous promets,” I tell her earnestly, even though it makes my stomach roil to do it when what I want to say is something else entirely.

“I know you won’t mon ami,” she sighs and there’s something in her eyes and I want to believe or maybe I’m just hoping it’s regret. Regret that it wasn’t me she met first, that I’m not her knight in shining armor, even though I want to be. For just a moment I think if I speak up, if I tell her that she can choose, that it will be okay, I know she’ll believe me. But then I think about Max and even though he’s a jerk a lot of the time and I don’t think he takes anything seriously, I know there’s one thing he wouldn’t do. He would never do this to me. So instead of telling her everything that’s in my heart I keep my mouth shut and say nothing at all.

She shows me that sad little smile of hers’ again and then she gets up and walks over to the sink and tips her coffee into it and I realize that I’m being dismissed. I’m not needed or maybe just not wanted right now and it feels like a knife in my chest

I stand there for a long moment, wanting to go to her. The friend part of me wants to ease the anxiety I can see so clearly in the tension in her shoulders and the way her usually full, sensuous mouth is pursed as she stares out the window, her dark eyes vacant. The part of me that wants to be more than a friend, that wants to consume her and have her all to myself, itches to press my body against hers and remind her of what we shared, what I know she felt before and what I want again.

Neither of those parts of me wins. Instead, I turn and head back into the bathroom, tug my jeans on and leave without looking back. I don’t trust myself enough to do that. I’m pretty sure if I look back, if I even look up at her in the window as I cross the shared driveway, I’ll go running back and throw myself at her feet like some kind of pathetic boy.

I’m pretty pathetic, just not that pathetic. Not yet anyways. 

I watch him go and I’m glad that he didn’t argue. If he had, if he’d even asked me to think twice about it, I probably would have given in and thrown myself at him like some kind of feeble puck fuck. I’m even more glad that he didn’t look back. The last thing I need right now is for him to see me cry because if he did, he’d do that whole white knight routine and I’m way too weak right now to resist that. I can’t believe I almost made it through a whole cup of coffee without crawling across the table and into his lap just to have his arms around me again.

But I can’t do it. I can’t do that to him. I’m way too fucked up. I’m way, way too fucking damaged to ever be good enough for that sweet man. I can want to be good enough, I can try to be good enough but I know that no matter what I do, I will never, ever really actually be good enough for him.

He knows too much. He’s seen too much. I can put pretty icing on it and a big ‘ol dollap of ice cream on it but underneath I’m still plain old crusty sponge cake that’s maybe a little overdone and a little stale.

It’s like the clothes that we bought together. They’re just wrapping paper that make me fit in with the other WAGs but that’s all they are. Underneath I’m still the same white trash girl with the alcoholic mother and now, it turns out, an ex-con for a father. Maybe it worked in Cinderella but there isn’t going to be a glass slipper for me, even if Kris is a prince.

I know Max likes the party girl, the fun Becky that laughs at everything. I know that he’s mostly in it for the sex. I’m even pretty sure that if he knew about all the “dreckatude” that is my real life, he’d probably overlook it, or better yet, ignore it, but that’s what’s best for me. Max won’t keep trying to kiss it better, like it’s an actual open wound. Max won’t remind me of it by looking at me with pity in his eyes scarcely disguised as sympathy.

And if I lose Max because of the darkness in my life, it will hurt, of that I’m sure, but it won’t break me. If lost Kris…it doesn’t bear thinking of.

It’s just easier this way, better, for everyone.

Yeah, I tell myself as fingers dig into the countertop. It’s better this way.


  1. No, it's not better this way!! Sometimes I want to yell at the screen! They're both so oblivious...

  2. Anyone else want to smack the shit out of Becks and Kris? they both need it. Becks dont know what she wants and Kris and Max arent helping matters.

  3. I think she will do very well with school and working. Becka can do whatever she sets her mind to. She obviously has great inner strength and willpower. She was in close proximity to Kris Letang with wet hair and naked except for a towel and did nothing. Not even rub up against him and purr. That’s restraint and self discipline!

  4. She's done the impossible and resisted a wet and naked Tanger. Obviously she can do anything she puts her mind to... except when she can't and he'll be there to pick her up again.

    I still think she assumes a lot to say/feel Max couldn't deal with the deep dark of her life. She hasn't really given him the chance.

  5. Buahahahha Letterhead. You ain't lyin' on your 1st sentence.