Voodoo Child

By Mizu Ash

I was so miserable my freshman year at college, but so miserable. The classes were much harder than in high school, and nobody spoke to me, absolutely nobody. At least in high school I'd had a few people to talk to, but here, no one. I was even thinking of dropping out because I was so homesick. Homesick for a home I didn't even like much, that's how miserable I was.

And then one day, at the end of that year, I was lying on the grass outside the cafeteria and I fell asleep in the sun. It was hot and I was angry and I was unhappy and lunch had been horrible and a few girls had giggled about my skirt. I fell asleep and I was dreaming this strange dream full of noise and colors and movement. And suddenly someone was shaking me, waking me up. I thought I was still dreaming, but then I realised it was outside the dream. I woke up, slowly, completely groggy, and looked up at the girl who'd shaken me. She was black, very black, and she looked at me from above the small tinted sunglasses she had on her nose.

"Hey you," she said, "I've seen boiled lobsters with a better tan."

I sat up, alarmed. The black girl was right. My arms were burned, my lower legs, my feet. I felt my earlobes and face. Yes, those too. My heart sank. This had happened before, obviously. I'm so white I turn red just from thinking about the sun, but this seemed quite bad. Everything that hadn't been covered by clothes was bright red and starting to sting. My head was pounding as I tried to get up, and I sat down again. I looked at my arms. Not just red, but fiercely red. Bad.

The black girl squatted next to me and looked at me with interest, as if I was a bug under a microscope.

"The tarot cards told me I'd meet someone new today and make friends with them. Do you think that's you?"

She didn't wait for an answer, but put a finger under my chin and lifted my head a bit. She shook her head and tut-tutted.

"Your eyes are swollen, and the rest of you doesn't look much better. Hey! Even the parting in your hair is red! You have a thin red line on top of your head!" She shouted this last bit with delight, as if she was quite pleased with such a strange thing happening. I just shrugged: I knew about that, it had happened before.

She got up and so did I. My head wouldn't stop spinning and everything hurt. I knew I was in for a painful week or so, with nothing to look forward to but peeling the thin layers off as they let go of my skin. I looked at the black girl. She was taller than me and slim. She had a very short afro, and then those blue-ish sunglasses from the sixties. Her clothes were from the sixties too: striped and flowery mixed. Very colorful, and she looked amazing in them. And it wasn't just that: she looked together, confident. I just bet she had people to talk to here at college.

She suddenly spread her arms dramatically. "You're lucky I found you in time. Because me, I was as lily-white as you are and I fell asleep in the sun one day and nobody woke up me up and then when I finally woke up I was a negress!"

For one improbable second I couldn't understand what she was on about, and then I started laughing. And that's how I got to be friends with Lally (Never ask me what that is short for, Whitey, and you will live a long and happy life ). She called me Whitey and that's what I stayed.

Me, I lived in a dorm, and I had a roommate who didn't like me and who used far more than her fair share of the closet space. Lally, she'd found this wonderful room in town, first floor, with an old tiled floor and high ceilings, and all that for less than my parents paid for my boring dorm-room. She'd painted some second-hand furniture in white, yellow and green, hung some green velvet curtains, filled the place with cushions she'd made herself and usually had flowers in a vase as well. It looked astonishing. That's who she was. That's who I was.

To give another example : I was the girl sipping an orange juice at a party, patting the rhythm of the music against the glass with one finger, trying to look as if she was having a good time. Lally danced, talked, sang at parties and always brought a book or something to knit for when she’d get bored. And if someone asked her what she was knitting, she’d burst into tears and say something like "Woolly hats for the little negro children in Africa, because they are so poor! " That shut them up in a hurry. She never said Afro-American. She thought it was the ugliest word. She used Black, or Colored, or Negro even, all the older words.

She was the loud one and I was the quiet one. She dressed conspicuously and I didn't. She had loads of friends, I just had the one: her. She took me along to parties and introduced me to all her friends, and they were friendly to me, which never ceased to amaze me. I took her to the park to cool off when she got worked up about things. She taught me to drink beer, and to smoke, neither of which I liked. I took her swimming, and she loved it. She always had boyfriends, I never had any. She even offered me an ex-boyfriend "to practice on", as she called it, but I refused in a panic. She was restless and exciting, I was just me. And still we became best friends. Go figure.

She did all sorts of things I had hardly ever heard about. I had to tell her my exact hour of birth, to make a horoscope, and I even wrote my mom to ask about that, but my mom didn't remember, not exactly. Then she asked me for a a bit of toenail-clipping and some hair and a photo and something personal, to make me a voodoo-doll. "Nothing bad, Whitey, it's for good voodoo." And she burned all that stuff, very seriously, and put three little scoops at the place of the heart of the little burlap doll she'd made of me, and gave me the doll. She had one herself and she swore it got rid of all her headaches and backackes when she had her periods and so on. I don't think she believed it herself, though. She was just interested in everything. And she tried everything.

I thought that little voodoo doll was great. I put it on my nightstand and I even started to tell my roommate that it was not okay to borrow my deodorant without asking.

And then, and this I’ve never told to anyone, not even Lally, not even Oswald, in the vacation after my sophomore year, I got pain in my lower abdomen. Right-hand side. Appendix side. I was home at that time, of course. But I couldn’t bear the thought of the doctor cutting me open. I never even watched surgery on TV. I got gooseflesh just thinking about it. But every day the pain got worse. I couldn’t sleep any more from the pain, and I had to bend double just to be able to bear it. And what I did was, I took my little voodoo doll, and very carefully I put some alcohol on her lower belly, right-hand side, and then I took some nail scissors and very gingerly cut her open a bit, just a bit. I cut out some of the burlap, and then I sewed her up again, very neatly. And I know it sounds incredible, I know it sounds unbelievable, that’s why I never told anyone in my life, but it worked. The pain went away. Doesn’t that sound crazy ? But it did. And an appendix never heals just like that, never. Everyone knows that. And still.

Well, to continue, in our junior year Lally and I rented a couple of rooms together, in the same house Lally had lived in before, but now on the fifth floor. Two tiny bedrooms, one even tinier bathroom, and a larger room which was kitchen, dining-room, sitting-room and study combined. It was heaven. We painted it, in earth tones this time, lots of ochre and umber and burned sienna, combined with cream. And then one day in October I came in and there was this big black man in front of me, and Lally, who was just coming out of the shower and drying her hair on a towel, said : "Whitey! I told you about my brother Oswald, didn't I? Well, this is him." But all thought had fled from my mind. I think he shook my hand and smiled, but I don't really remember. I was totally and utterly, head over heels, in love.

We couldn't have been more different. Me, I look like a shrimp. I'm short, 5 foot 3 at best. I'm not even slim, I'm just skinny, I weigh less than eight stone and I have hardly any breasts to speak of. My hair is almost white, very thin and straight, my eyes are blue. A light watery blue, at that. And Oswald, well, he was something like 6 foot 3 or 4. Very black, like his sister, but much broader, not slim like her. Not fat or anything, but broad-shouldered and well-built. He looked like a tower no army can conquer. Close-cropped hair, and he still had a beard then, a thick black beard. He was one year younger than Lally and me, but he didn't look it. He was 18 but he looked 28. I was 19 and I was lucky if people gave me 16.

"Lally's told me about you," he said, and his voice, well, I can't describe it. It was deep, very strong, though it wasn't very loud. I couldn't answer him. It was so weird. I'd never believed in love at first sight, I thought love grew, slowly but surely. And here I was, tears springing in my eyes from longing for this man. I can't call him a boy, he was a man, even then. And for the love of me, I didn't know how I'd ever get together with him.

Oswald had started college one year early, so he was a junior too. He was very bright. He’d just transferred to our college, so I saw a good deal of him over the months. Lally had of course noticed I was crazy about him, but in the first (and only) hysterical fit of my life I made her swear not to tell him or anyone else. She couldn't understand why I didn't just tell him, that's how she did it. But of course I couldn't. Speaking to people has never been my strong point, and speaking to a man I was madly in love with?

And I was in love with him. I daydreamed about him, how he'd take me in his arms, how he'd kiss me, real kisses, you know, French, and I'd go all gooey just by thinking about it. I'd think about us lying in bed together. I'd try to imagine us having sex, but that I couldn't do. Lying in bed together, close, sometimes even without any clothes on, that was as far as my imagination could bring me.

So I saw him at parties, at our flat, on campus, at the cafeteria, at the little Vietnamese place Lally had found for all of us to hang out. Never the two of us, fortunately, always with Lally, and often one or two of Oswald's friends, Keith maybe, or Sam or Harry, and maybe one of Lally's boyfriends, or several of them, and Hayley and Kim, from the flat on the fourth floor, or even other people. If it hadn't been for Lally we would never have come together. I would never have dared speak to him, and though Oswald seemed to like me and often talked to me, I don't think he noticed me, as a girl, I mean. But Lally decided to take matters into her own hands.

One day in the middle of winter we were sitting at that cheap Vietnamese restaurant that had become our favorite place to hang out. It was just Keith and Oswald and Lally and me, them talking, me listening. But Keith was still hungover from the night before, and he went back to his room early. So there were three of us. Lally suddenly sighed and said: "Well, chillun, momma's off too. Play nice now." And before we could even answer she'd grabbed her purse and coat and was gone.

I was in a panic. Here I was with the man of my dreams and I couldn't say a word. There was music on and the waiters were talking and the customers were talking and I always have to think so long before I have enough words together to make a sentence. He was nice and friendly, and he was trying to keep me amused, I could see that, but it must have been tough going for him what with me barely saying 'yes' or 'no'. I must have looked like a rabbit caught in the headlights of a car.

And then later he walked me to our flat and all I could think was: "In eight minutes he'll be gone, in five minutes he'll be gone, …" and I still couldn't say anything. Oswald was quiet too. I had to tell him I loved him, I just had to. And I couldn't. We were so close to our flat now. I took a deep breath and stopped. Oswald looked back, surprised, and came back to where I was standing.

"Anything wrong?"

I shook my head. I couldn't even say 'no' any more. His breath made little puffs in front of his mouth. I wanted to say I loved him, but of course I couldn't. So I did the next best thing. I put my arms around his waist and put my head against his chest.

"Hey, what's that?" he asked, completely taken by surprise. But he put his arms around me too and that felt so good, so incredible. I felt all funny and tingly and my heart was beating like mad. With one hand he turned my face up to him. He looked concerned.

"Whitey, is anything wrong?"

And I shook my head vehemently, smiling my very broadest, my very very happiest smile. He laughed, and then he started smiling too.

"You don't like talking much, do you?"

Again I shook my head, my loose hair flying in my face, all the while smiling like I was insane. I put my face back against his chest, where it was happiest, and I edged even closer to him. And then I felt the weight of his head on my head, and my heart skipped several beats. He was holding me too, and his arms became stronger around me, less sisterly. I closed my eyes, and what I felt was pure bliss. That's how it started. And I did it myself.

The next morning he was waiting for me on a bench outside our house, smoking. I went to him. He looked at me, one eyebrow raised.

"I wanted to see if you still respected me in the morning."

I smiled and nodded happily. We hadn't even kissed the previous night. I put one hand on his back and kept it there. It felt so strange, so proprietary. He took my other hand.

"So, what do you want to do today?"

I knew exactly what I wanted to do.

"Learn how to kiss." That sounded a bit impolite, so I added "Please".

He roared with laughter, and pulled me to him. I was standing between his legs, and that felt so exciting, so sexy. A bit scary, too.

He softly stroked my hair. He just looked at me. And in that deep voice of his he said: "You know, a guy could get used to a snowflake like you."

So that's how we got together. We were deliriously happy together, so in love even Lally was surprised. "Come on," she said, "I wanted that girl to get some hands-on experience, sow her wild oats so to speak, and what do I get? True love, day and night, true love. It's sickening." And then she sighed and said: "I need to get me a lover too. A Jewish one, I think."

And Oswald did teach me how to kiss, and how to be naked next to him, and with him. And all of it was wonderful. Full of wonder, and love so deep it sometimes frightened me. There were a few raised eyebrows over our being a couple, of course. It don't think it was just the race thing, everyone had seen Lally with all colors of boyfriends. It was also our being so different in everything, in looks and in height and in character. But people got used to it quite quickly.

Oswald was as funny as Lally, but not so loud. And we had this one routine, and that was so funny. I was in it, maybe that’s why I liked it so much. If we were sat somewhere with a lot of people, he’d suddenly pat on his knee and I’d go and sit on it, and he’d ask in this pseudo accent : "Honey chile, these people would like to know if it is true what they say about black men." And I’d say in this breathless little girl voice : "Yes, all true !" And I’d open my eyes very wide. And he’d get his wallet out, lick his thumb, take a ten out, put it in my cleavage and say something like : "There you are. Go and buy yourself a coke." And he’d slap my bum as I walked to the bar, trying to sway hips I don’t have. The crowd we hung out with knew the routine and played along with it, calling Oswald ‘sugardaddy’ and things like that. It was strictly for horrified outsiders. Is it true what they say about black men? I don’t know. He was my first. He was my only.

Lally got herself her Jewish lover. He was called David Goldstein, so you can't get any more Jewish than that. He looked like her, only white and male. They were equally tall, equally slim, they had the same crazy sense of humor. If you saw David somewhere, on campus for instance, he'd come at you with his hand stretched out and this big game-show host grin,and say something like: "It's GREAT to have you on the show, contestant number THREE!" or "Pick a card. Come on, don't be shy, pick a card, any card!" And he'd hold up a couple of condoms to choose from. That was David. You know what ? He spoke better Black English than Oswald.

That's the moment it clicked. Us four, we belonged together. It's not that we didn't talk to other people, we did. Well, the other three did. But more and more we spent time together with the four of us. I loved it. I had people I belonged with, and not just one, but three. And one of them was my very own boyfriend.

The following year we got different accomodation. We wanted to rent something as couples, but landlords didn't like to see names of different sexes on the lease, and besides, I was terrified my parents would find out. So we arranged things differently. Lally and I kept sharing our flat, and Oswald and David got a flat together too, and then we just swapped. Oswald moved in with me, while Lally lived in the guys' place with David. She said she needed a challenge: in two months' time their flat looked like it could go in an interior design magazine, and David looked like he could use a break.

But for me there was nothing better than our little flat. We threw the single bed out of the one bedroom, and put down a double mattress. There was no room for a double bed, just for the mattress.

And, you know, in the outside world, Oswald protected me. Nothing special, talking to official people, smalltalk at receptions, complaining to waiters, all things I don't like very much. And I'm sure that's what it looked like to people: that big black guy protecting that skinny white girl. But at home it wasn't like that, at all. I took care of him, he took care of me. Simple. Sometimes I'd start making love, sometimes he would. He would do the dishes, and I'd dry, or the other way round. We didn't even have sides to sleep in bed, which apparently is unusual for a couple. At home the differences didn't matter. I'd feel safe in his arms and he'd feel safe in mine.

We spent a lot of time with the four of us. Sometimes going to a party, a concert, a new play maybe. But what I liked best was when we stayed in, to watch TV on the old set Oswald had bought cheaply from a guy who'd graduated. Lally would be doing something, sewing sock-puppets or leafing through a cookery book, she never liked to just sit down and do nothing. David and Oswald would lie on the sofa, watching, cigarette in one hand, beer in the other. I liked it best when they watched an old movie, something like 'The sound of music'. They'd make bets about the outcome of the scene. "I'll bet you ten to one that she'll leave those brats and become a nun again!" or "I'll bet you fifteen to one, my good man, that nazi kid is going to rat on them!" and "Done, here's my two cents!" All the bets were for real, but it was always for cents. Or we'd play a board game, like Scrabble. Only it was the other way round: you were only allowed to make abbreviations or proper names. Dirty words would net you three times the word value and a lolly. Sometimes Lally would read our futures in the I Tjing or Tarot cards. She also made two real voodoo dolls for the guys, just like we had. She dressed David's one in very stylish clothes, because she said there was no illness so serious as a lack of dress sense. She’d started dressing in fifties-dresses with petticoats herself, very sweet, "Because all the hoi polloi are dressing in sixties clothes, my dear. It"s time for a change !"

I used the voodoo dolls now and again, for myself or for Oswald. I told him, but he just laughed. Still, there was that one exam that I think he wouldn’t have been able to go to if I hadn’t used the voodoo doll to get rid of his toothache. But a toothache is not like appendicitis, it can go away like that, so I’m not sure.

Okay, so we graduated, all four of us together. By that time David and Lally had slowly drifted apart. No fights or anything, it’s just that they were never as much in love as we were. They made a big show of saying goodbye to each other, tearing at hair, wailing, gnashing of teeth. They were funny even then.

Oswald and me, we wanted to go and live in New York, naturally.  No country life, no small town life for us. We were going to make it in the big city. We found a tiny apartment in Brooklyn, which cost us 820 dollars a month. The apartment wasn’t half as nice as our place at college, but it was clean and easy to get to by subway.

But if we wanted to keep it, we’d have to get jobs, quickly. So we set out. For me it was hard, with a not very useful degree in history, and for Oswald it was even harder, even though he had a degree in business studies. You never realise what a recession is like until you have to look for a job in one. After two weeks I got a job in an office, and only that because a girl quit, swearing loudly, while I was waiting there for a job interview. Oswald got a job after three weeks, helping in a warehouse, for heavens’ sake. There went our expensive degrees. Oswald lost even that small job about two months later, and it didn’t look too good for me either. I hung in there, and Oswald was off again every morning in his suit and tie for job interviews.

And then just before Christmas Lally came over, and one day later David. We had a pull-out sofa which they shared with lots of laughs and snide comments, because it was official now, they weren’t together any more. We sang with ‘The sound of music’ and like old times the guys made bets about the outcome of certain scene: "I bet you eight to one she is going to strip off her clothes in the next scene." We went to a Catholic midnight mass even though none of us was Catholic, and we felt warm and happy and together. We ate a lot of Chinese take-away and we drank a lot too.

And then on the 27th we were all on the sofa and the floor. Lally was putting some recent photos in a photo album, she still couldn’t stand to be sitting around without anything to do. I was making us some sandwiches in the kitchen. David and Oswald were talking about the economy and jobs. David was teaching high school and not liking it very much. They’d both been drinking a lot of wine. Oswald was telling David how hard it was to get a good job. And he said, only half jokingly : "So what do you think, is it because I am a nigger ? " David, who’d drunk more than was good for him, said : "No man, because you are such a goddam huge nigger." The words hung in the air. I’d stopped buttering the bread, the knife with butter in the air. The guys went on about something else, but my heart was hammering away. I knew he was right. I’d just thought Oswald was having bad luck, just like me, but it wasn’t that. He was too big, too black. People would have hired a shorter black man, or whatever, a lighter, slimmer one. This one was just too much for them.

In the morning David left. Hurried kisses and goodbyes and promises to write and call. That was the last time we saw him. In the afternoon I took Lally to Central Station, and just before the train left, she said : "Oh wait, I totally forgot. I found something of you at the flat!" And she started digging in her luggage without a care in the world, as if she had hours instead of minutes to catch the train. Triumphantly she got out the little voodoo dolls of Oswald and me. "I found them in my stuff from college, don't know how they got there." Funny, I’d never missed them, but I was so glad so see them back, as if they were the protection we’d missed all those months. Lally got on the train with about five seconds to spare. I put the two dolls on our mantelpiece.

And then in the spring things got a bit better. I got a better job. The sister-in-law of my boss was curator at a small museum, and they needed someone for their archive. It was something right up my alley. My boss, Mr Williams, liked me but he knew he’d have to let me go sooner rather than later because there just wasn’t enough work. So when he heard about this job he recommended me. He was a nice man, Mr Williams. The pay was better, too, and most importantly I had job security.

Oswald wasn’t any more lucky than he’d been before. Sure, he got jobs, but always temporary and always beneath his abilities. Still, he didn’t lose hope. He kept on going for job interviews, just not every day any more. He’d done the rounds of all the firms which might hire him, and it was too soon to start the rounds once more. And David’s words just kept playing in my head. I thought about them a lot. I don’t know if Oswald thought about them. I don’t even know if he remembered them. But I honestly think they were true.

Then came fall, and a phone-call. Oswald’s mom had had a stroke. It was insane, she was only 49. Her older sister called, crying. We flew over there immediately. Lally was a bit harder to reach, but two days later she flew in as well. We went to the hospital and talked to the doctors and made sure her dog was alright and her house and her plants and we felt so helpless. It was hard to see her lying there, on the bed, and not being able to do anything. But she kept fighting, the doctors said, so that was good.

But the biggest change was Lally. We hadn’t seen her for months, and she, I don’t know, she was more serious or something. She was talking of this wicca workshop she had taken. It seemed like she was starting to believe the things she’d done for fun before. Or maybe she’d always believed in them, I don’t know. She wasn’t so much fun any more, but she was kinder. She sat next to her mum for hours and stroked her forehead. She never would have had the patience before.

Anyway, his mom got better and we had to get back home. We called her more regularly than before, and she kept doing well, so that was good news. We didn’t hear so much from Lally any more. She wrote sometimes, because she hated the phone. The last we heard she was going to travel to an Indian reservation where she knew a guy. Then we got a cheerful postcard from New Orleans that she had changed her plans and that she’d write us soon. She didn’t.

I don’t think his momma getting sick was the last straw for Oswald . I think that was when he had this job in a bar. He often had jobs as bartender. Well, this was an up-and-coming bar in Tribeca, and one day the boss, an arrogant young black man with four eyebrow-piercings, told him he was going to have all girl bartenders. Young models and dancers with pigtails and very short school uniforms. But no sweat, Oswald wouldn’t be out of a job, he could be the bouncer. Well, he didn’t say bouncer, he said he needed someone responsible to facilitate the goings-on at the entrance of the establishment. Oswald came home, totally dispirited. He didn’t want to be a bouncer. He didn’t want to be a bartender either, but he wanted to be a bouncer much, much less. Big black man at the door. I had never, ever, seen him so down. I told him not to worry and that of course he shouldn’t take that job. I still knew words to comfort him then.

You know, at the beginning they were wrong not to hire him. He had a good degree and he was motivated and dedicated and eager. He would have done a great job, they’d have been lucky to get him. But after that bouncer thing he changed. He became what they thought he was : an angry black man. White people’s worst nightmare. A scowl on his face. In the end he stopped going to job interviews or doing the odd jobs he’d done before. He just lay on the sofa all the time, watching talkshows and quizzes. Or just listening to CD’s, mostly Jimi Hendrix or the Doors. ‘Voodoo chile’ twenty times in a row, I’m not kidding . Drove me insane.

He even started picking fights with me. On purpose. That was so unfair. About the laundry or when I got home or, you know, anything. The spelling of a word, the brand of margarine we had. I sometimes wanted to say : « Pick a fight. Any fight » but I didn’t. I couldn’t say anything to him, I didn’t have the words, they dried up in my mouth. I was angry at him and I was angry at myself. I didn’t know what to do.

And then he stopped picking fights. That’s because he stopped talking. He hardly said anything any more. He grew as quiet as me, quieter even. He just lay on the sofa and looked at the ceiling, smoking. He didn’t turn the TV on, or the radio or anything. He came to the table to eat and to bed to sleep, but that was it.

I couldn’t say anything to him, I didn’t know what. Don’t say I should have, because I know, but I couldn’t. I felt like a bug frozen in ice. The flat sounded like a church.

Then one day in winter, when Oswald was asleep on the sofa, I took his little voodoo doll off the mantelpiece. My heart was beating very fast, and I tiptoed into the bedroom. With red thread I sewed a broad and happy smile on its face. Then I went back to the living-room and put the doll back. I put it hand in hand with my doll. And I prayed, I prayed that it would work, that he would go back to being himself.

And you know what? It worked. I know it sounds unbelievable but it did. He became happy again. We made love again, and he was kind to me and brought me home flowers and he didn’t pick any fights at all. He smiled at me, and he helped me do the dishes and everything. It was so wonderful I sometimes cried from the joy of it.

And then that day. It was late January, and it was snowing, but very softly. It melted immediately. But it was beautiful while it was falling. And I’d got the test and I did it at work. And the little stick, it was blue. And I said I was unwell and I needed to go home, and they said ok. And I took the subway and then I ran home the rest of the way. So I saw it happen. I stopped then. He fell with the snow, only faster. I couldn’t even scream or yell. And then I ran again, ran, ran, ran. I squatted next to him and I looked at him. I couldn’t even hold him any more, because he was too broken, and messy.

And even after the police had come and everything, I couldn’t believe it. I just couldn’t. He was alive that morning. People aren’t alive in the morning and dead at noon.

You know how much a funeral costs ? A lot, let me tell you that, a lot. There was the casket and the service and the plot and the headstone. My parents came, and Oswald’s auntie. She gave me some money. His mom was too sick to travel, but I called her and we just cried and cried. I couldn’t reach Lally anywhere. I photocopied my letter and sent the copies to all the addresses I could think of, and I even wrote ‘Please forward if addressee has moved,’ on the left-hand side in red letters. And still I couldn’t find her. I had to do it all myself. And the crying too. And now I’m sitting here at the kitchen table, thinking of that son of a bitch and that he left me. And that he emptied out all my savings, what with having to be buried, and I’m here all alone. That bastard, leaving me like this. Was I that bad to live with, huh ? Was I such a horrible person that you had to go and jump from the roof and splatter on the stones ? He was bleeding from his ears, you know. And his eyes weren’t closed or anything.

See what you’ve done, made me cry again.

There. That’s better. You don’t deserve me crying over you, anyway. You’re a coward. You horrible, horrible man.

And that day, when I went in, the black doll with the big smile was not on the mantelpiece, it was on the floor, face down. But don’t try to make me believe it fell from the mantelpiece, oh no. You threw it off, didn’t you, before you went up the stairs? I kicked it halfway across the room, hard as I could. I don’t know where it is now, probably under the sofa. And I don’t care either, you big fat loser. And that little white doll is sitting on the mantelpiece, all by herself. Again. I should cut her open and take some burlap away from her belly. Sew her up again, done. Or I should go to the clinic and let them do that to me.

Either. Both. You don’t deserve a child because you are dead and you did it yourself. You big fat coward. I should just kill your little one and be done with it. I really should.

But I’m not gonna.

The End

Copyright © 2003 by Mizu Ash

E-mail: mizu_ash@hotmail.com


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