Thursday, January 25, 2007

Spadina streetcar, with a healthy glow.

Caucasian woman, late 30s, brown hair in a tight bun, wearing a black parka and blue and green scarf. Her mittens are stuffed into her pockets. To keep her hands free to turn the page, she bites the lip of her Starbucks cup.

A Spot of Bother: a Novel, Mark Haddon (Doubleday)

Page 38:

Jean felt ashamed. As any sane person would. If you kept quiet about it you felt like a liar. If you told the story you felt like something from a circus.

They switched places, her elder sister taking the top bunk. The two of them figured this would keep the younger sister safer. She wasn't as likely to have accidents if she didn't have so much space around her. She didn't like being enclosed, but she couldn't disagree; this made sense. When the parents asked why the change, the elder sister panicked, chirping, "If cleanliness is next to godliness, then she doesn't deserve to sleep so close to Heaven!" The parents seem to accept this and closed the door. The younger sister kicked the bottom of her sister's bunk.

"What was that?!"

The elder sister swung her head over the bed, her hair hanging loose as vines.

"You want me to tell them the truth?"

"...No."

"Then go to sleep." She propped herself back on the top bunk. "Maybe you should wear Mom's ankle weights."

The younger sister scowled at the bottom of her sister's bunk. All she had to do was get through the night. That would show her. She closed her eyes and dared sleep to come swiftly.

Two hours later, she awoke to the urgent whispers of her sister, standing on a chair trying to reach her. Her face was pressed against the ceiling, her body levitating in the night.

“Dammit…”

2 comments:

The Chapatikid said...

Effing BRILLIANT.

Julie Wilson said...

Well, if you saaaaaaay sooooooo! :D