Yahoo! I’ve managed three days on this serial! A record for the past 2 years (if you forget about last year’s NaNoWriMo, which I hope you have! 😉 ). If you missed the previous two installments, you can find them here.
My Life Behind Bars
Did I mention I was a bartender before returning to Conroy? Ah, probably not. You and I haven’t been friends very long.
Being behind a bar is entertaining, lucrative, and frustrating.
Being behind bars, so far, has only been frustrating. I can hear Russ’ voice from a distance while deputies and gawkers of unknown job title…gawk. Word has already gotten out that I am Madeleine McKay and evidently my reputation precedes me. One deputy, the kind I remember (not the kind that Russ embodies), skinny and deathly pale, looking as if a minor gust might propel him like a sagebrush along an old dusty road, stood in front of my cell munching on a crumbly muffin that smelled like…barbecue?… while sipping coffee and staring at me. Now I know how animals in a zoo feel.
And, yes. After he’d stood there for three minutes saying nothing and staring in stalker mode, I bound against the bars and roared like a wildcat. That resulted in his coffee being flung against his khaki shirt, his frightened and pained cry, and Russ yelling “Maddie!”
So, it’s evidently okay for me to be stared at but big cat mimicry is out of the question. Duly noted, oh, great sheriff.
Twilight descends while I twiddle my thumbs. At least I presume that’s what I’m doing because I’ve never done it before. When will he decide that I’ve been punished enough? He and I both know that I did not recklessly endanger anyone. He’s the one who taught me to be a highly skilled driver of Nascar quality; you know, if I’d ever wanted to drive around in circles and waste gas.
“Russ, I’m bored, and I might start singing.”
He has forgotten that I do a very bad Celine Dion imitation. I begin singing, okay, some might call it wailing, “My Heart Will Go On.” Neither one of us liked “Titanic.” Blasphemy, I know. But we did some good parodies of it.
Like magic, he appears, looking pained. I continue wailing.
“You still can’t sing,” he says, while his lips are not smiling, his eyes are. I take what I can get.
“I know,” I say. I do grin. At him. This is what it’s like to be home. He actually smiles and it’s like the earth tilts on its axis. Huh. After thirteen years, his smile still does it for me. Both good and bad to know.
Until my little sister bounces through the door like the cheerleader she always was, wraps her arms around his and stares at me like I was a caged specimen, which I guess I am.
“Russy, you’ve found my big, prodigal sister. Now it’s time to let her go so she can go back to the strange hell she came from.”
Russy? I chew on that strange little murmur of affection and then consider the other words. Ah, sisterly love. Don’t you love it?
end of Part 3