So. Apparently you all were shocked by my teenage willingness to mention human reproductive organs in poems calling attention to the spiritual consequences of infant abuse. I have to say, the others were quite jealous of all the attention "Stupid Mommies" received, throwing around phrases like "show off" and "special treatment" and "I thought the Mrs. Fletcher bit was HILARIOUS. She was gipped, I tell you, gipped!"
But that's all in the past, and as I post today's TLF installment, I indirectly continue my theme of highlighting my adolescent works of "art." Too bad I couldn't just scan in all of these pages and submit them to Cringe Book, eh?
CHAPTER TWELVE - MICHAEL
I was heading towards my room, looking forward to a good night's sleep when the doorbell rang. I hurried to the door and unlocked it quickly, so it wouldn't wake my parents. There stood a woman with short red hair holding a sleeping infant in her arms. "Jenna, is that you?"
She nodded, and I motioned her in. She sat on the couch. I followed her, mesmerized by her sudden and different appearance. "I just came to say good-bye," she said softly.
"What? Good-bye?" I rubbed my eyes and finally realized that Jenna was holding Katherine, Kayla's daughter. [What the hell did you think it was, Michael? Her Cabbage Patch?] I felt sick to my stomache. She had kidnapped her.
"Don't leave," I said.
"You know I can't stay here, Mike," she said and started to cry. I took Katherine from her. "Why, Jenna? Why did you take her?"
She looked around the room sadly with those big green eyes that broke my heart. "I--I...I can't be alone. You know I was never happy unless someone was with me."
I shook my head. "You're lying to me, and to yourself. Just admit it: you did it for revenge." She stood up and glared at me. "So what if I did? You don't know me, Michael Spencer. You don't know the pain I'm going through, or the anguish I feel when I wake up in the morning! Two parts of my life were taken away when Kayla hit David and me. [Except you weren't hit, remember, sweetie?] You don't understand! You never can!!"
That did it! I laid the sleeping baby on the couch [car seats and bassinets are SO overrated] and slapped Jenna's face, good and hard! She let out a small cry and raised a hand to her cheek. "The hell I don't!" I yelled.
"Michael? Michael, what's going on?" I heard my mother call from upstairs. "Nothing, Ma," I called back. "It's just the T.V."
[Nothing, Ma. Just smacking around the woman of my dreams!]
[Also, if I'd been just a few years older at the time of this writing, Jenna would've slapped him back, you know, to even the score, and after a moment of mutual heavy panting, grabbed him by the base of his neck and kissed him passionately. They would've ripped each other's clothes off, fallen down to the carpet, and come together in a spontaneous round of hair-pulling, grunt-inducing Angry Sex, giving Katherine an inside look into how babies are made.]
I lowered my voice. "The hell I don't," I repeated. "I do know you, Jenna. I know you better than you know yourself. No, I can't imagine your pain, but it's over now! Make peace with Kayla and yourself so you can go on with your life! If you leave with that baby, it'll never be over!"
[First the prison speech and now this. Man, Mikey's just knockin' em right out of the park!]
There was silence for a few minutes. Then I ran upstairs. "Where are you going?" she whispered.
"With you," I said. In my room, I got out my gym bag and threw in clothes from my drawers. I put on a pair of jeans and a T-shirt. My wallet had 50 dollars. I put it in my back pocket. Taking the bag, I snuck into my parents' room. I went through my dad's wallet and found 350 dollars. [Because of course adults carry this much cash on their person at all times. They're adults!] I gave them one last glance and ran back downstairs. "Let's go," I said. "You don't have to go," Jenna said in a hard tone. "I'll be fine without you."
"How about Katherine? Do you have a car seat for her?" She shook her head. [Now Michael is Mr. Mom?] "And what about money?" I asked. "How much money do you have?" By the surprised expression on her face, I could tell she hadn't remembered to bring any. "Come on," I pleaded softly. "Let's go." Jenna hugged the infant to her chest and together we walked to her car. She gave me the keys and got into the passenger's seat without a word.
First, I got the car's gas tank filled. I had been driving for a half an hour when I decided to break the ice. "Where do you want to go?" I asked. "We could always go to the prison and--"
"No," Jenna cried.
"OK, OK. Where then?"
"Iowa," she said dreamily. "It's such a pretty place. Very peaceful."
[Clever strategy, Jenna. The police would never think to search for a missing baby one state over!]
"Have you ever been there?" I asked.
"Mmhm. My grandparents used to live there a few years ago."
"What happened to them?"
"I'm sorry," I said suddenly.
"Don't be. They died a long time ago."
"Not about that. I'm sorry I hit you." I took my eyes off the road for a minute and stared at her intensely [aka "creepily"].
"It's OK," she replied after a minute. "I shouldn't have spoken to you like that. You don't deserve to be yelled at by a bitch like me." [But you deserve to be slapped? Low self-esteem, anyone?] She smiled. "Your my guardian angel, remember?"
I shuddered as I drove on. How could I tell her that I wasn't the angel she made me out to be? That I was the one who brought up David's old feelings for Kayla, so maybe he'd go back to her and I could have Jenna all to myself?
She could never know, I thought. If she did, I would lose her.
That was something I couldn't bear.
[OK, it was a crappy thing, but not really the big deal Michael thinks it is. David was clearly looking for excuses to get it on with Kayla, and even though he never admitted his love for her beyond their one-night stand, and even though we never hear Jenna's thoughts on the affair, I think a part of her knows she and David never would've worked out; that if he were still alive today, he'd probably be with Kayla. Maybe that's why she takes the baby, because she couldn't live in her own skin knowing Kayla had "won."]
[Also, Michael's "encouragement" never does come out, in this book or the sequel. I really wasn't very smart.]
A shorter excerpt today, but I'd really like us to savor this time we have together, and that's not going to happen if I share more than a few pages at a time. However, the sequel is longer, lustier, and even MORE inappropriate. There's even incest! V.C. Andrews would've been so proud.
Indulge me, dear readers. What would you like to see happen in the sequel?