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28 Day Writing Challenge #13

By , Elk Grove, CA

Weeks passed. Carson ran out of milk. It was two weeks. His mom sent him to get more. She gave him her debit card and twenty dollars just in case. He was off, driving to the store on the other side of town away from the ice cream parlor. Upsetting memories there. His car had gathered a dusty feel, he was using it less and less since school had ended. He should be picking a school for after his gap year. He assured his mom he was. He wasn't. * Carson's POV*
I bought my own Fats Waller CD because it was something new and not pop. "I'm going to sit right down and write myself a letter" was my new favorite. The store was crowded. It shouldn't take so long to get milk. Where was Emily? I grab 2% by accident. My mom likes whole. I miss her. Emily. Not my mom. The checkout is populated with sorry people. Sad that they're stuck in Linda. I'm not stuck here. I choose to be here. Do I have 20 items or less? Duh. I get in the shortest line behind a grandma with bright purple curlers. I could mindlessly scroll through my phone. Someone I know enters the store. My instinct is to hide. Everyone asks me what school I want to go to. I don't end know what I want to do. I want to buy milk unnoticed. This is who could never be a celebrity like Loren or Neil. Finally my turn in line. The man gives me a bag for the milk. I swipe the card. Speed walking out the door. My phone vibrates, but I can't answer it with the bag in my hands. Speed walk faster. I finally get to the car. Quickly fish out my phone, and its Emily. My breath is taken away. I don't hesitate to swipe and say, "Emily. Hey, what's up?" "Carson. I need your help." Her voice is shaky. Like my mom when she talks about the divorce. Vulnerable. "What do you need? Money?" Cringing way to say it. I try to sound lowkey. "I've been arrested. My sister can't afford bail." And she relates the address, which I hurriedly jot onto the store receipt. Its two hours north of Linda. Time for a road trip. I'm an hour there when I realize I didn't ask what she did. She never seemed like a tweaker. When I met her in the woods she was looking for an earring. She never told me where she was from. Why she was visiting. I was desperate. So desperate for attention from someone from the opposite sex, to get my mind off Jean. And Emily was funny, and pretty, and - I knew her for four days and I was bailing her out of jail. What am I doing? Whatever it was, I bet she's innocent. Her informed sister was easy to spot when I arrived. Only blond haired, blue eyed woman there. Only one not half asleep. "You're Carson." She says dismissively. She's smartly dressed in a grey pantsuit. Too much eye-shadow but she's trying not to look as tired as she feels. I guess early twenties. "Where's Emily?" I say. It's with a newfound confidence. Maybe if I sound like I know what I'm doing she'll answer my questions. "I'm Parker.Come with me." She says, grabbing my arm. I'm dragged to a desk and an overweight woman telling me how to pay bail. Paperwork happens. I have to use my mom's debit card. I'm sure she won't mind. If I don't tell her. Emily looks pale and thinner than she was. "This is the last thing you needed after the hospital." Her sister says in a compassionate way. The color has ignited so her eyes are like blue fire. Emily avoids her gaze. "I'm sorry." She says. Biting the insides of her cheeks because she won't cry in front of her sister. That's like saying, you're right. I'm wrong. It's never fun to be wrong. "Let's go talk outside, Emily." Parker drags her arm like she did mine. I sit in a waiting chair so they can have some privacy. I shut off my phone so when my mom inevitably rang I wouldn't answer. I did text her before I shut it off, 'Going to see Emily.' Emily and Parker return to the waiting room after fifteen minutes of me tapping my fingers on the metal chair edge. Emily stares at me like I'm going to reprimand her. "Parker and I talked." She states. She's wearing a dirty white shirt, black jeans. Contrasted with her sister's sharp attire. "Emily wants to know if she can stay with you. Her court date is in Linda." Parker aggressively but calmly relates. "Yes." I speak before I think. "OK." Says Parker. Then we all walk out to my car. Parker surveys it unsatisfied, like it's pond scum. "How old are you?" She asks. "I'm eighteen." I respond. Her countenance is unchanged. I unlock the car and slide into the driver's seat. "I'll see you next month." She says to Emily. Her face is contorted in a grimace. Emily gets in the passenger seat and slams the door. Politely. Everything she does is polite. "Why were you in jail?" I ask. Parker is clicking her heels to her own car. I watch her shrink in the side mirror. "I attacked him." She uneasily spits out. "Who?" I ask, rhetorically because I have at last put the pieces together. "Loren." I say under my breath. "The court date is next month in Linda." She adds. "Why?" I ask. I'm feeling sick to my stomach. "I'll tell you when we get there. Its a long story." She plugs her nose. "Your car stinks." This is the source of my nausea, more then the bad news. The milk in the back is spoiled. I chuck it into a trash can inside the jail. The car is stalled when I get back. Fats Waller drifts in my ears. Emily is leaning on the side window, tapping the keys on the window. She swept her hair ino a bun, making her neck look longer. Elegant. We don't talk on the way to my home.




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RashelLiko said...
today at 11:09 am
Good job!! Keep up the great work!
 
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