Thank you for having me!

“Thank you for having us!” My father said. A show of white teeth. He said it was important to be polite. 

Even though we didn’t like the food.  
 
 
When I was 10 I went to a friend’s house for dinner. When my dad picked me up he said, “Did you thank them?” 

“Thank you for having me!” I said. 

Even though I felt awkward.   
 
 
When I was 13 I went for a girls sleepover. 

“Thank you for having me!” I said. 

Even though I didn’t have fun.   
 
 
When I was 16 I met a boy named Steven. He was so cute, everyone said. We ate dinner with his dad, who swore at his Mom.  

“Thank you for having me!” I said. 

Even though it made me uncomfortable.
 
 
When I was 17 I met a man named Bill. He bought me a margarita I think. I went home too late.  

“Thank you for having me.” I said.

 Even though I vomited on the sidewalk. 
 
 
When I was 18 I met a man named Roy. He said he loved me. 

“Thank you for having me.” I said. 

Even though I said no.

Running safe

“Three things.. three things.. three things…”

Frantically I swept dust, stale Cheetos, and abandoned books off my table. Orphaned red and white pills sprinkled the carpet along with all the crap that used to be best intentions. Feeling as if I was keeping them waiting gnawed like an animal clawing inside my gut. 

Got it! The D batteries clinked together as I dropped them into my pocket. I also grabbed my pink neon lighter, a sock, then headed out the door forever.

Sprinting down the street, wind whipped at my face, it should have been bitterly numbing, but it stimulated me. Energy surged through my body in waves, unlike any high I can describe to the common man. My laugh was lost in the wind. This unstable world, the weather, the people, the political climate, would soon be left behind. And finally I was ready to depart. 

I spotted the launch pad ahead, clearly marked with yellow paint. And as their communication had directed, I sprinted toward it, and leaped over the edge.


 
I woke with hands and feet bound in leather. Stale drool and tears caked my skin, cracking as I opened my mouth and squinted my eyes. I let out a moan, then held my breath when my ribs objected.

Restraints hugged my wrists, but it was apathy that held me. The juxtaposition following my mania filled my limbs with lead, and solidified with time. 

“Anna? Anna? Can you hear me?” 
“Ughhh” I groaned. 

Through squinted eyes I saw a blurry woman. She stroked my hair and I felt faint signals of pleasure. The fuzziness of my vision and mentation made her aura angelic.

“Shhhh.” She whispered. “It’s okay, you don’t need to speak. You’re in the hospital, today is Sunday, I’m your nurse Cara. You fell one story. When the paramedics arrived you were raving about replicating and leaving earth.”

I wondered how much time I had lost with this episode. Each damaged my brain more. On my bedside table was my gray hoodie, I could see the outline of D batteries in the pocket and wondered what the hell I had wanted those for. 

“We have you on suicide precautions so Rob from security is going to have to sit with you at all times. I’ll be back soon dear.”

The security guard smirked. The hospital gown was much too big for me and had slipped down almost revealing my nipples. He scooted his chair closer while readjusting his groin.

I closed my eyes. Trump’s voice on my roommate’s television. A patient yelling. Rain splatting my window. Hunger gnawing my gut. I retreated into my head, simultaneously safe and imprisoned. 

 
 

-LRose

CopingĀ 

Eyes darted back and forth, like a hungry squirrel, she snatched the cookie off the ground and cramed it into her mouth. She relishes the moment until a devistating swallow marks the end of her salivary soothing. The guilt is overwheming and she starts down the hall. 

Finding a bathroom, she checks the stalls to make sure she is alone and proceeds to stroke the back of her throat with two wet fingers. With a cough and a gasp for air, cookie crumb vomit and whole noodles (leftovers she found at 6 am) flow out of her. Hitting the porcelain pool, water splashes back onto her face and hair, like a bullies spit.  

Exiting the stall, she glimpses her red conjunctivia in the mirror before jumping into action. Scrubbing her face and arms with wet soapy paper towels, she attempts to rid the bile stench. She wipes her hair the best she can and then ties the dirty mess on top of her head. When was the last time she showered?

“One last thing,” she thinks, “and then I can face them.”

Out of her coat pocket she takes a small bottle of stolen Adderall which she had previously crushed, just for this occasion. It keeps her alert, helps her focus, and suppresses her appetite. Sprinkling it on the dry porcelain sink, she grabs a straw from her other pocket, places it into a raw nostril and inhales the coarse powder. 

She hears footsteps and the bathroom door opens; simultaneously she drops the straw on the floor kicking it to the side and sweeps the remaining powder off the sink. She faces the sink to hide her red eyes.

“Doctor?” says the young nursing assistant. “They are ready for you.”

-LRose

Hiding usĀ 

Like a hungry squirrel, her eyes dart back and forth before she snatches the cookie off the ground and crams it into her mouth. She relishes the moment until a devistating swallow marks the end of her salivary soothing. The guilt is overwheming and she starts down the hall. 

Finding a bathroom, she checks the stalls to make sure she is alone and proceeds to stroke the back of her throat with two wet fingers. With a cough and a gasp for air, cookie crumb vomit and whole noodles (leftovers she found at 6 am) flow out of her. Hitting the porcelain pool, water splashes back onto her face and hair, like a bullies spit.  

Exiting the stall, she glimpses her red conjunctivia in the mirror before jumping into action. Scrubbing her face and arms with wet soapy paper towels, she attempts to rid the bile stench. She wipes her hair the best she can and then ties the dirty mess on top of her head. When was the last time she showered?

“One last thing,” she thinks, “and then I can face them.”

Out of her coat pocket she takes a small bottle of stolen Adderall which she had previously crushed, just for this occasion. It keeps her alert, helps her focus, and suppresses her appetite. 

Sprinkling it on the dry porcelain sink edge, she grabs a straw from her other pocket, places it into a raw nostril and inhales the coarse powder. The power that surges through her makes her gasp aloud with pleasure. 

She hears footsteps and the bathroom door opens; simultaneously she drops the straw on the floor kicking it to the side and sweeps the remaining powder off the sink. She faces the sink to hide her red eyes.

“Doctor?” says the young nursing assistant. “They are ready for you.”

Want

She wanted to be a fairy: sparkly translucent wings, and delicate tiny bodies. She gazed out of her dirt streaked bedroom window into the flower garden, but try as she must, squinting did not reveal any magic.

Ritualistically placing her hands over her ears to hide from the commotion, she dreamed. If only she could be airy and blithe, pause and pose on a flower petal and paint the morning world with dew. Her emerging grin was abruptly cut off by the heinous screeching. She tensed a moment, then took refuge, leaping into bed, her favorite pillow covering her lovely blond head.


From her delicate perch, she frowned at the old house. Not only had they taken over this beautiful world’s appearance, they dominated smell, taste, touch, and at this very moment, sound. 

She couldn’t take it anymore. 

Spreading her crystalline wings, she bent her knees and sprung away from the dewy garden and towards the angry home.

The male human was large and red in the face, and at this moment at the peak of his anger. She had been observing them, the male and female humans. And knew of their power, rage and destruction.

When she reached the noisy place she dove down near the man’s ear. “A FUCKING FLY!”He swung at her and missed. She delicately perched in the center of the table, her heart raced and as the rolled newspaper sped towards her she did not flinch because she knew she was ready.

 

-LRose