The name read: Allen Henry Buell.
Her heart, her joints, the sinewy tissue that aligned her spine popped and tore, so one moment Robin was flanked by the twins and the next she wasn’t inside her body.
She was inside her memory.
“Nothing good comes with babies,” her father had whispered when she first told him, and it was worse than if he had yelled it because Robin knew there was a tumor of disgust inside of him, and she wouldn’t be able to find it, to cut it out.
But Robin proved him wrong and gave birth to goodness personified: Eleanor Lynn.
Life was rougher but better. School (tenth grade) where the boys called her a slut, a job at Pickwick’s Pizza where the air moved heavy with oil, then to Mrs. Garrity’s next door to pick up her daughter who loved the woman with gnarled hands and a lovely voice still tinged from her British upbringing.
And then home. It was an interesting word, home, because it was where the blinds were always shut tight and the bitter taste of beer hooked her attention whenever her father said, “Trash. Needs to go out,” from back inside his cave of a bedroom. His doorway vibrated with color and sound from his always on TV set, and Robin would strap Eleanor to her chest to the beat of that noise, the baby clinging warmly against her.
She’d take the cans out in the broken ink jar of an evening and watch the stars, watch the skies for hints of her mother.
This went on for years, three to be specific. And everything was mapped out, rough but better, until the day Robin came home to find her father and daughter missing.
The past ripped through her, sewed her back together while the present battered her body like a pair of angry fists.
“You will pay,” Robin said, balancing on knees and hands in the wet cemetery grass, tempering her nausea against the bitter tang of beer in the air.
For the next part of the story, head over to My Write Side.