Polvorón and green tea.
They were the pretext of a conversation neither of us wanted to have.
The tiny kitchen window with the prison bars and the tired yellow paint had been dressed up as much as possible but it gave off a forced cheerfulness, not an actual one because this place hadn’t seen a whole lot of happiness. Pain, disappointment, grief, it all kind of lingered about like an active haunting. That was the ambiance when the lady of the house had been through her fair share of hell. The scent of vanilla, the fresh baked cookies and the framed picture of Micaela Villegas only helped the mood some. La Perricholi was like the 18th century Peruvian version of Marilyn Monroe, a famed entertainer who was allegedly a mistress to a dude in high places. Her Mona Lisa smile seemed to indicate that everything was relative, that it was all going to be okay but the verdict was still out on that. I was seated with the woman I considered to be an honorary mother. Having a sit down with her was all good and well, I enjoyed her company tremendously, I just wasn’t feeling the reason why we were face to face. At this point, we were past pleasantries and small talk. The only thing left to go over was the real.
Magdalena was having some trouble broaching the uncomfortable so I took it upon myself to get this started. I wasn’t intending to go for the jugular but I couldn’t be delicate with this.
“Do you remember the first time?” I asked. “I don’t want to but I do. It’s in crystal clear, HD quality. We were arguing. It got bad. We were too emotional, I felt that but I never thought that would happen. I don’t know, I’ve never been one to put anything past somebody but I wasn’t prepared for that. How could anybody be prepared for that? Five fingers to the face is not anything I had ever experienced before. There was this still moment I had right after he did it. I was so caught up, so mentally blown, I didn’t know how to react. It set a precedence because everytime after that, I paused. He puts a hand on me and my first reaction is the most dangerous: no reaction. I’m frozen. I’m paralyzed. I’m afraid. I legitimately fear someone that I love at the same time. If that’s not the ultimate conundrum then I don’t know what is so I’m asking, was that how it was for you?”
My words had to have struck several chords because her eyes filled up. I didn’t want to inspire tears but apparently, I had done a number on the both of us. I wasn’t cognizant at first but then I felt wetness on my cheeks. I thought I was done with that but I guess my experiences weren’t finished with me just yet. I told Mosai I didn’t want to talk about everything that went down because articulating what still remained fresh on my mind felt impossible. Writing was a start but it would hardly begin to cover what I had buried deep. The only reason I hadn’t spun out and damaged myself further was because of lover. My self-respect was another reason but I knew my own pattern. Something happens when I feel wronged. I get this streak in me. A fuck-everything streak that made me react first and think later but not this time. I had a human buffer. I was good. I was excellent. My life was shaping into something nice and I was sitting her shedding water for someone who reduced me to fragments. Two months give or take and I had been transformed into someone unrecognizable. Having space from that only hit home more how fucked I was.
I was still hurt.
Magdalena was feeling that.
It was probability that 1 out of 4 women in their lifetime would experience domestic violence but we were 2 for 2 at this table.
“I am so sorry,” Magdalena said wiping at her face with the back of her hand. “He would not tell me anything in detail but even if he had said nothing at all, I would’ve know. I know my child and I know what his father used to do to me. I pray. Every since he was born, I pray that he would be nothing like him but my wishes were not heard. I can do nothing to change what happened to you but I apologize. From the depth of my heart, woman to woman, I apologize.”
I reached over and rubbed her hand. “It’s not your place to account for actions that weren’t your own. None of this is your fault. He’s not your responsibility.”
“Don’t you see that he is? I am a mother Ayanna. He is my flesh and blood, my image and he disgraced himself. I let all of those things happen to him.” She put her hand over her chest and I knew the weight there was nothing nice. “I don’t know how to feel. I am so angry, so let down, so appalled at his character and then I think of what he experienced and I could falter. He is repeating a cycle, not because he wants to but because it was already written for him. Like you were. If Max had not crossed paths with you, he would be dead right now. You saved him. You saved him and now he abandons you. He loves you. I cannot question that but his love has become too much. He loves you too much.”
With some people that might not be such a horrible thing.
Love was supposed to be sent out in mass. You were supposed to give it in abundance and once you got it, you gave it back. It was a reciprocal process but I’d gotten a raw deal. Being on the receiving end of love had broken me into pieces. I had been put back together thankfully, built back up by those in my life who really cared but all of them sharp edges, those cracks, they were still present. Invisible but still there. I hadn’t forgotten how his touches felt and I probably wouldn’t ever but dwelling on that was only going to bring me back to square one and since I had already collected my cash and passed green, I wasn’t revisiting. I was going to be happy, even if it killed me. Not having Max around cut, I wasn’t resolved with that yet but I wasn’t asking to be. I wasn’t going to be square when it came to him for sometime to come but I knew better than to repeat my mistakes. I was starting to realize that I loved myself way more than that.
“Max might think he knows what love is but any definition he’s going with don’t measure up to mine. Magdalena, I’m okay. I wasn’t at first but I’m getting there. I know who’s real around me. I understand my worth better and I’m in love. I have someone who thinks of me like a princess, no it’s more like he treats me like a queen but Max, he made me out to be common. I’m not that. I mean this as respectfully as possible but su hijo es un monstruo. Él es el mal. Él tomó mi alma but the scariest part of all of this is that couldn’t even help it.”
“He can and he will because he has to. Ayanna he needs you. You are the only one who can get through to him. I know I am wrong for asking, for even thinking that you’d want anything to do with him but I am begging you. There are no expectations, all I can do is hope that you’ll reach out to him. He is suffering. Max is so gone. I see him just yesterday and his hand is broken. No explanation as to how, just another platitude. I cannot lose him and I’m going to without your help.”
I wanted to turn the table over.
I had every right to show outrage over what was being presented to me. For her to pose this to me was out of bounds but I couldn’t act out. Not with her. Magdalena looked so small. So tired of fighting and defending someone she knew in her heart of hearts was damaged beyond repair but you had to respect the drive. Max had this woman going insane on his behalf. He was steady pounding her heart and she was steady braving blow after blow. She didn’t like who Max had become but disapproval didn’t dismiss love.
As fucked up as it was, this lady loved her kid.
And that, above all else influenced her to ask the impossible of me.
There was more going on here though. I knew who really was the mastermind here.
“He asked you to to do this, didn’t he?”
Magdalena’s lack of reply told me that. This fucker was bold. He couldn’t get at me any other way so he had his mother do his dirty work. The desperation was that real and sent up more than a few red flags. I almost preferred the stalking activities to this. This was getting an innocent involved. I always tried to project it but I wasn’t heartless and no matter how much I didn’t want to be, I was affected. She meant something to me and he knew that. Ever since I met Magdalena, I felt for her. This woman was warm and kind and she loved me like I was hers. Staring at her burden made me falter.
“I’ll see what I can do, okay?”
An inkling of hope crept into her face. “You are his angel and you are mine.”
I got up and wrapped my arms around her. She squeezed me hard, kissing my cheek. “I’m far from that but thanks for thinking so. Do something nice for yourself. Nobody else but you.” I had slipped greenbacks into her pocket, not for her to donate or give to some downtrodden neighbor or family member. Magdalena was one of those people that never lived for her own pleasure but others. If I could help her enjoy herself, then my day was a little brighter.
She shook her head, wanting to remove the cash but I held her hand still. “You’re a beautiful woman, you should have something for yourself. I mean it woman.”
She gave me a long stare then nodded, seeing me to the door. “Thank you Ayanna.”
“You’re welcome. Chau mami.”
I waved going down the rickety steps from her apartment and kept my smile until I cleared the door but when I got back to my car, it faded. Things were sinking in. I had agreed to let Max back in. It was no grand gesture but making it would mean more to him than it actually did. I wanted to back out of it. How could I willingly reach out to him? What were we supposed to discuss? 100 ways to humiliate your significant other? How happy I was to see the man that graced my eye with his fist? It made no sense for me to be doing this but I didn’t divy out my word unless I was meaning to keep it. I could do this. Not over the phone or via keystroke either. I was going to take this one step further.
“Call Yoshi,” I said out loud as I took off.
The hands-free system rang a good fifteen times before Queen B picked up. “Yeah?”
“Three hours. I need you dressed and ready to go in three hours so tell Rodney to get his last in.”
“Is there some reason you’re interrupting my all day fuck-fest?”
“Yes but you won’t know until I come scoop you. Be outside. You know I hate buzzing and double-parking.”
“Fine. To be so little you’re very bosy but I’ll bite. I’ll be there but you better make whatever this is good. I have an endless supply of bud, numerous potions and a stiff dick all at my immediate disposal. Show me a good time.”
“Don’t know about good but I can guarantee you interesting.”
I called my other sister next.
“Leah T, my best of the best buddy, my sugar, honey and iced tea, light of my life, I need you to roll with me somewhere.”
“And you had to go through all of that to ask me?” she joked.
“Had to add some flair.”
“I’ll go with you but where are we going?”
“Somewhere you’d least expect.”
With my two person crew assembled, I went back to Mosai’s place only to feel extreme guilt about what I was going to do. I didn’t want to qualify this as deception but for me, right now, it was better that he not know about my plans. Even better that he wasn’t here and couldn’t be reached until a lot later. If he knew where I was headed he’d tie me to the bed and barricade every door. I appreciated his protectiveness even in the theoretical but I was doing this. I didn’t contemplate my wares much, I just had a color palette in mind. One color: black. It was the only suitable for this occasion. High-waisted 80’s jeans tucked in boots, sports bra and my trusted army jacket. I hadn’t pulled that out in sometime but tonight was as good a time as any. Severe top knot, monster hoops, black lipstick and I read ready for war. My shades got tucked into the top of my shirt as I went to the safe in our closet. My hand hovered over my tool of choice. Peggy sat in good company along with some other weapons. Mosai was a pretty boy but that didn’t mean he couldn’t carry himself. He was toned down but he wouldn’t hesitate to turn back up if the situation called for it.
It didn’t tonight.
I’d let my gun rest. It wasn’t going to be that kind of party. No battles just a very brief detente. Pocketing a fresh pack and a matchbook. I started to head out but stopped and picked up the framed photo sitting by the bed. Mosai had silently transferred the photo of him, Cai and shorty to Davina’s room. Now one of us was there. We were at a restaurant a couple of weeks ago when a couple of eager photographers had snapped at us while we were cozied up at a table. I sat on his lap, offering him a pull from my smoke. To the outside world we were the couple to hypothesize about, people were always interested in who a model was dating but between us we were just two people who just really dug each other. We needed no public proclamation or notoriety to be who we were. We were secure, nestled in our own world and that’s how it would always be.
I loved him something crazy because at his core, Mosai was a man.
A real fucking man who put his daughter at the highest level, who took care of his, who never made me feel unsafe. He had pissed me off extraordinarily, we’d had major misunderstandings and we’d both hurt each other but the deciding factor with him was that he had never made me feel fear. When it came down to it, he wouldn’t put me in real danger. He wouldn’t cry to express his love and he wouldn’t break any bones in my face to show it. Abuse was a non-factor with him because he wasn’t the person to take his anger out on a woman’s body. He had the ability, just not the mentality.
I trusted that.
I trusted him.
At this time in my life, that was worth everything.
Mosai was everything.
I knew where my allegiance was now. Whatever happened tonight wouldn’t change that. I left out, feeling secure. That sensation didn’t falter when I walked into my destination and saw myself. Not like in a mirror but I was reflected. I was everywhere. People were marveling at me, discussing me with complimentary wine and refreshments in hand. Some of me had been sold, red stickers indicating that I’d been bought. I was being distributed because I was goods. It was strange for me but stranger for them. One step in the gallery and I was being stared at like an optical illusions. I was in two places at one time.
In the flesh and on the walls.
I forgot about this, that the whole evening was geared around me. I easily ignored the inquisitive and lingering looks.
“Yes,” I said.
“And that motherfucker is—”
Yoshi and Leah stood to my left and right, both unpleasantly surprised at where I’d brought them to. From their expressions, they were both wearing, they didn’t approve of this outing.
“What in actual fuck are we doing here Ayana?” I took a glass from a passing waiter and stepped up to the largest painting of myself. Like the first time I saw it, I didn’t know how to take it. I looked like myself but at the same time something was off about this depiction. I turned around and faced my girls.
“Culture of course. We can all use it.” Their screw faces turned more sour. “Look, I gave my promise that I’d take a step forward so that’s what I’m doing.” I nodded along with The Weeknd’s “What You Need.” That selection was purposeful of course. Nothing made me more agreeable than Abel Tesfaye and his sorrowful yet sex voice. Again I got quizzical/head scratching looks. I was standing in the gallery showing of a man who had for a time crushed my very spirit and was rocking to the music like that was nothing.
They didn’t understand.
“I get that you want to bust up the joint and give everyone a taste of the real deal but you don’t need to be here. This fuck doesn’t deserve to be in your air space, let alone get a moment of your time,” Yoshi lamented.
“He got enough of that,” Leah added.
“Ladies, there are no misconceptions here. We’re not going to kiss, make up and run off into the sunset. I’m not inviting him to touch me, I’m just here to show my face because his mother says he needs that. If seeing me will help her help him, I’m for it.”
Yoshi sucked her teeth. “I get it. Mothers are gold, we gotta protect them but you’re better than me. I’d leave his traitorous ass to his demons and send a Hail Mary up on Moms behalf. I don’t forgive and I damn sure don’t forget. We’ll follow your lead and by that, I mean we’ll actually tail you.”
“Nothing’s going to happen.”
“That’s right because we’re going to be with you every step of the way.”
That was Leah backing Yoshi up.
My friends were all business and part of that was them willing to go toe to toe with Max. We were at his show, on his turf and there was no kind feelings around. I had nerve. I had audacity. I had the balls to be walking through here like everything was fine and dandy. Strangely, it was. I didn’t feel so apprehensive. I felt like a cool breeze but like breezes, I shifted and ended up committing a crime.
I was leaning against Leah, pointing out the embellishments of one painting when people parted and she stood there. I guess I should’ve seen this coming. She would be here, she’d had her claws in him for a while now. It could be my fault. I had brought her around again but who knew that birthday sex would result in this treacherous chick still slithering around? Leah and Yosh stopped talking, noticing my switch. Joelle came up to me and I stood there gearing up for whatever was going to take place here. With half an inspection, I noticed that something was off about her. Her looks were different. She’d gained a little but it was more than that. I quietly wondered if Max was getting warmed up with her but I stopped myself from asking. I stopped myself from speaking at all.
“Ayanna I didn’t expect to see you here.”
Yoshi snorted. “That’s the best she could do?”
Joelle decided to ignore that, attempting to warm me up more. “I know we’re not friends, we’re not acquaintances but I’m sorry for what happened to you and I think you’re owned the truth. Max hasn’t given either of us that lately so I will. I’m pregnant. I just thought you should know that.”
To further demonstrate that, she placed one hand under her stomach. Sure enough there was a bump. This bitch had a plus one and somehow she thought that information was supposed to fill me. It filled me alright. With the need to wrap my bare hands around her neck. I smiled widely because if I didn’t, I was going to snap and losing it on an expectant mother was not how I wanted to be remembered. I didn’t hate the baby, you couldn’t hold a grudge on somebody innocent but I could despise his or her’s mother. Her and the super sleazy son of a bitch motherucker who hadn’t bothered to pull out. I wasn’t the only one feeling negatively. Yoshi vocalized her feelings while I felt a stinging disapproval from Leah. If Joelle wanted to be a crowd favorite, she wasn’t going to win over my squad.
I bit into the inside of my mouth, twisting my lips like I found this shit most amusing. “You thought I should know so I could have just cause to bash your face in right? That’s how I’m feeling right now.”
Joelle took a step back. “I don’t want any trouble.”
I covered that distance and invaded her personal space. “You’re right. You don’t want any with me. Congradulations. You won. You wanted him and you got his sperm as the grand prize. Now that you got that off your chest, take you and yours and get the fuck out of my face.”
That was a bully move but I didn’t really mind her thinking bad of me. She needed to understand that I harbored nothing but ill will toward her. Joelle wasn’t a punk but she wasn’t stupid either. The signals I were sending out said I was in no mood to be tried. She walked off but her words still lingered. I had one of those moments then. Nothing made sense because again, it was like the rug was being pulled out from under me. Why care right? An illegitimate had little to do with me or my life but it did. I wouldn’t be feeling like my chest was going to pop open if it didn’t. The lies, the amount of them, the magnitude of them was unbelievable. This was not a recent discovery. She was more than a few months which meant this pre-dated anything Max and I had. He knew and he kept his new family to himself. I was guilty of a lot, I could be casting the first stone and shit but when you were with someone in a “relationship” capacity, it should make you automatically privy to whether or not you could potentially be someone’s stepmom. I didn’t how I looked but it couldn’t have been good.
“And it gets worse,” Yoshi commented. “This is really thick. Baby momma bitch making confessions like she just listened to Usher. I’m sorry about that but now you know who you’re really dealing with Yanna…Ayanna?”
“Where are you going?” Leah called out.
I heard them, I did, but my focus was elsewhere.
He was standing in the opposite corner of the room, talking with some silicone broad, too eager to have his attention. She lost that the second our eyes met. I didn’t cause a scene, didn’t approach at all. I walked by. He’d follow. He always did. I left the main floor and went back into staging area of the gallery and down some narrow steps that led to what looked like storage. A shadowed, pretty secluded area was not the best environment to meet up with a confirmed batterer but anger invalidated any reasonable concerns I had for my safety.
There were footsteps and then he was there.
Handsome as always in a leather shirt and jeans. The hair I had ran my fingers through on so many occasions was out, framing his face and his manicured beard. Take our experience away, our past and I’d want to get to know him. I’d butter him up with my wit, listen to him go on about his art and I’d probably take him home after. I almost wished that were the case. That this was our first meeting, that I didn’t know about his daddy issues, his sexual issues, his confidence issues but wishing never solved any real problem and time machines were hard to come by so I put that thought away and returned to reality.
“She wasn’t exaggerating about the hand,” I said. “How’d you come by that?”
Max didn’t answer at first, he seemed dumbfounded right now. He touched the cast going up his arm. “Ask your man that question,” he replied. His brown eyes filled with the anxiousness of a starving man. It was the personification of fanaticism. A look I was, unfortunately, familiar with. “You came…I asked, I just didn’t think that you would…” He saw the hardness of my features and stopped rambling. “You look amazing. I’m glad that you came, that you found it in your heart to come. You don’t know how much it means. I’ve been fucked up since everything happened and seeing you, it makes a difference. I’m sorry Ayanna. I’m so sorry. For all of it. It’s beyond forgiveness, I know that but I’m working on not being that man. I’m going to therapy again and I—-”
“Where you ever going to tell me?” I interrupted his apology session because I wasn’t there for it. I trusted nothing he had to say because I didn’t have a grasp on him anymore. My bullshit detector with him was out of commission so I was choosing not to listen to him. All I was looking for was the truth. The little light we had vanished overhead. My back up had come to stand watch. Leah and Yosh fixed Max with looks severe enough to melt you on contact but remained quiet. This was my conversation.
“What? I don’t know what you’re talking a—”
“I think you do. Your namesake, your offspring, the fruit of your loins—when were you going to tell me about your span?”
He dropped his gaze, his face drawn with defeated recognition. His baby mother had just added a whole other dimension to this. “I was going to.”
“Eventually right? When it was most convenient for you, when you had me suckered and screwed so much that I would’ve just went along with your bastard.”
“It wasn’t good timing. You’d just had your own situation.”
I looked off into space trying to figure that one out. “Oh, so you were thinking of me when you decided to be dishonest because somehow me making the correct choice for me and having an abortion stopped you from opening your mouth? What the hell is wrong with me then? I should be grateful that you cared just that much.”
I cackled at the ridiculousness of what we were now and decided that I was going to kill our relationship this time.
“Well, since we’re both in the revealing mood, let me put you on to a few of my activities. I bet you thought you were it, that you and you alone were hitting this, so let me clear that up for you: you had some competition and you didn’t even know it. You caught onto Mosai. That was a no-brainer because you’ve been threatened by him since introduction. Why wouldn’t you be? Unlike you, he’s a man. Even if he didn’t put it down the way it does, I’d still be attracted to him but because he beats it up something nice, I’m even more into him.”
Max swallowed. I continued.
“You knew about him but you weren’t aware of Malik or Dean or my chick on chick interaction with Kristina. Who else am I forgetting? That’s right, Silvio. You remember him, you got to. He was that waiter you were trying so hard to flex on. I had to make up for your behavior Max and I did that orally. You might’ve detected something extra when you kissed me after. You were getting another man’s sample. I personally enjoyed it but you I’m guessing you can’t say the same.”
“That’s not…you’re lying.”
“I have no reason to do that. Homie was seven inches give or take but that width? It was a beast. Keeping control of my gag reflex was difficult but you know me, I love a challenge.”
Max closed his eyes, his skin slowly turning green. “Close your mouth.”
“That’s exactly what I didn’t do.”
I felt his rage building but it wasn’t enough. The Hulk wasn’t the Hulk until he was bulging and coming out his clothes. We were almost there. I just needed to ice this cake. I put my hand up, telling my security team not to intervene. I didn’t need the assistance. I wasn’t scared. Max was very small to me right now.
“I would’ve given you the same treatment willingly but I don’t do my best when I’m pushed to my knees and shoved into. I don’t know about you but I’ll never forget that morning. Me crying hysterically, you still going at it anyway.” I got on top of him, my body against him and him against the wall. I slapped my hand against it, slower than faster. “That was the rhythm. I just knew you would be finished quick but you kept going like a rigid body was what turned you on the most. Control has that effect on some people.” I yanked up his good hand and gripped his fingers. “These went down my throat and this,” I said grabbing his dick, “this went into an unsanctioned hole. You don’t know love until you have rectal bleeding.”
He moved, tried to get my hands off of him but I wasn’t letting go. He hadn’t. We were going to switch roles and to effectively do that he needed to understand what it felt like to be ruined inside and out.
“It ended with me choking on spit and you unloading all over me. It’s a toss up but I think I’d rather be spewed on then have you cum inside of like last time. You have no idea how quick I took the kill pill after that. My ass could barely walk but I made it to the drugstore because having a piece of you inside me was out of the question. Getting knocked up before was bad but I think our situation would’ve trumped that. I’d rather have a kid with deformities than have one from a pseudo-rape.”
It was too much for him to hear his crimes. This simulation was a bit too real for him. Max pulled away from me violently, his eyes wild. “Shut up. Shut the fuck up.”
“There you are. I was wondering when the real you would make an appearance. We’ve had our fair share of experiences. You’ve backhanded me across the room, nearly crushed my ribs in your hold and left me with some beautiful bruises but we’ve never officially met. I’m Ayanna, the girl you couldn’t help but put your hands on.”
“You won’t get a chance to handle me again but you can get practice in with Joelle. She’s the mother of your child. What the hell, you might as well fit the full stereotype of the black and brown male.”
“What are you trying to do?”
“Nothing anymore. When you see Max, the other one, tell him that his best friend, the bitch who gave him eight years of her life is through. Let him know that shit between us isn’t salvageable, that he destroyed everything we could’ve had. I don’t know him. To tell you the truth, I really don’t know either of you. And another thing, that stalking routine you got going on, give it up. I see you anywhere near me or anybody else I know and Joelle is going to be a single mother.”
I walked away, up the stairs and back into the event that showed me like I was some enigma. I wasn’t. I wasn’t some fetishized fantasy to be depicted and defiled. I was real but we weren’t anymore. It didn’t seem like an appropriate ending through. All the time, all the energy, the bloodshed, the pain and devastation there had to be something else to conclude this. A gesture needed to be made. Yoshi and Leah followed behind me closely, not sure what to say about what they’d just heard. They knew about the abuse in basic terms but no details like that had been given. We walked in tense silence for a few minutes when I stopped and turned.
“One of you mind getting the ride? I’ll stay here.”
I tossed the keys. Yoshi caught them. “I’m on it,” she said simply. She gave Leah a pointed look, telling her to keep me from manhandling any unsuspecting passersby. I appeared calm but after what she’d witnessed, she wasn’t taking any chances. Leah stood next to me, not knowing what to say.
“Ayanna…are you okay?”
“Mmhm.” I pushed up my cheeks and nodded like I’d never been better. She couldn’t see how that was possible but since I wasn’t making any rash movements, Leah decided not to talk about my mini-meltdown. Like a real friend, she allowed me my silence. Yoshi pulled up and Leah proceeded to get in but I went around the back. I took out what I needed and casually walked across the street where a Jaguar XJS V12 sat. It was an original from 1986. Classic shit but soon it was going to be extinct. I really hoped the driver of it was up to date with her insurance. I placed the red container on the ground and swung my tire iron like Sosa in his prime. The windshield crashed in, glass littering that lovely leather interior. The alarm went off as I gave the same treatment to the other windows.
Yoshi jumped out of my car. “The fuck are you doing?” she shouted.
I held my finger up. I needed a minute. Picking up the red container I doused the car with my emergency gass. My cigarettes and my matchbook came out next. I struck, holding my hand over the small flame as I lit tobacco.
That was Leah for you. She knew me and my capacity to cause trouble but it was too late. I threw it and the car went up in flames. It wasn’t very exciting to begin with but soon it burned angry and fierce and beautiful. I undid my shades and placed them on. Behind black lenses I watched my creation consume. Metal twisted and snapped, the heat brushing my face with a harshness I found strangely appealing. I inhaled my smoke, let the cloves hit my lungs hard before I exhaled deep all the while enjoying the view.
I’d set off a bonfire.
Not because I wanted to damage property or because I had some private urge to be a pyromaniac, this was a motherfuckling cleanse. As absolvement of something that was no more. There was nothing left between Max and I. Three more pulls and I flicked my cigarette away, successfully having my Angela Bassett in Waiting to Exhale moment and walked off. People had stepped outside by then and were peeking through windows. It wasn’t fireworks but a couple tons of metal being charred was still a spectacle. Especially when a small explosion rocked the ground. I was in the back of my car by then, waiting patiently for my girls to get with the program. When both doors slammed shut, two pairs of eye focused on me.
“That’s not his car,” Leah pointed out.
“No, it’s hers.”
Guilt by association. I was going with the premise currently. You laid down with someone and you could get got right with them.
“You’re a regular Timothy McVeigh,” Yoshi said. Her sarcasm was as dry as Seinfeld’s. It was the most serious I’d seen her. She was concerned but she didn’t need to be. I was chill. I offered them a knowing smirk as reassurance that I hadn’t just flown over the cuckoo’s nest.
“C’mon guys, I’m looking to get a drink and to have some form of Skype sex with my man, let’s get the fuck out of here. My work here is done.”
I eyed the fire with a lack of interest as we pulled off, not bothering to glance at it again.
It didn’t serve a purpose.
From this point on, there was no looking back for me ♥