Author: Fruitiest of Mallards PM
A collection of short stories, varying in genre, theme, and ... basically, everything. Some are personal, others are so far from any experience I have ever had in my life, you'll wonder how I managed to write them at all. This is not a pillowbook, but it sure is – something.Rated: Fiction T - English - Drama - Words: 1,388 - Reviews: 1 - Published: 06-15-12 - id: 3032554
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[ © Celeste Angela Pichowsky. All rights reserved. No part of these stories may be reproduced in any manner whatsoever without written permission from the authoress. These are works fiction. All of the characters and events portrayed in these short-stories are either products of the authoress' imagination or are used fictitiously, without intention of copyright infringement. ]
A CANNIBAL BEGAN OUR RISE TO SUCCESS.
A new spin on an old tale, except, there's no house made of candy or breadcrumb trail this time around ...
"Look, I just don't need you here, okay?" Says the burly, swarthy man who'd absentmindedly mumbled bedtime stories to her only nights before. He throws some plastic containers full of randomly thrown-together food into their hands, "Not right now, okay?" Behind him, Greta spies flashes of too-clear skin and barely-there, brightly colored clothing. Her father is haphazard in appearance, dark hair all astray and his face is flushed.
Beside her, her fraternal twin Hans is stiff and stone-faced, and she is not sure why. Hans always seems to know more than she does, even though they're the same age. A female voice calls out from behind Daddy — "Are the two little fuckers gone, yet?" and Greta wonders how a voice that was so sweet and warm and melodious when they first heard it a few weeks ago could scratch at her eardrums so much now.
Daddy grimaces, cranes his neck around, "Yea, love," tries to give them a hard look ( which fails, he's too desperate at the moment ), and then shuts the door without staring them in the eye; especially not Hans. Daddy doesn't interact with Hans much lately, says school and whatever TV they manage to watch puts too much bullshit into his head, makes him feel like he knows more than the elders he's supposed to respect.
Greta, like most of the time, can't figure out what to say to that, so she says nothing, ever. It makes Daddy stomp his feet and spit and froth aloud that he wants to pull his hair out. That makes Greta go even quieter and it makes Hans louder. Hans talks enough for the both of them, she decides, and he usually comes up with smarter ideas anyway. She doesn't understand why all the older people feel like they have to scream about it, how little she speaks. The less she comments, the more confusing everyone else gets.
Everything is soundless. Hans keeps clenching and unclenching his fists with that wide-eyed expression that reminds Greta of what few memories she has of their mother, who made that face a lot when she was around, before she just stopped showing up a few years ago. Hans realizes he's being stared at by his sister — again — but, unlike all the other people, he takes it in stride and doesn't even blink, doesn't seem weirded out. He takes her hand and tells her they'll just go to the park, then, since our fucking father's in a worthless mood again with his bitchy on call slut again the fucker. Right in front of his daughter, I can't believe this son of a bitch and Greta blocks out the rest of his flaming words because they beat on her comfort zone.
When the sidewalk below their feet transforms into short, yellowing grass, Hans has stopped raging under his breath. Greta watches the fuzzy butterflies she used to chase and catch like a pro when she was little and Hans exhales, nearly collapsing on the ground Indian-style. Now we sit here and nibble on shitty food while he's in there fucking that stupid whore ... I love you, Sis, you know I'd never do that to you, right?
And Greta nods, because Hans is the one constant in her life.
She slides down to the dirty earth next to him, and they breathe. There has never been much in the way of 'having fun' in their general area of day-to-day life. She stares at the graffitied fences, sometimes, and she can see the chains connecting her to them, declaring you'll never live in the nicer houses like down in Laguna Beach. You'll have to move in with all the relatives you hate just to keep yourself alive because Hans will probably be stabbed or shot dead by then and they will tell you so and hang it over your head like an anvil and then you and she stops the thoughts there.
It's a long while before it occurs to Greta that there is someone else in the tiny, square, rusted park, which isn't really a park, Hans just took to calling the junk field that to make Greta feel better, every time they try to go to the real park, the upperclass kids and parents stare at them and clutch at their belongings like they think the brother and sister will march over any minute and demand for valuables. They eye, they glance, they leave.
Greta elbows Hans. Points.
Hans blinks at the new woman, and in true fashion of their paranoid lifestyles, doesn't say a word until she does, "Hello. I'm Medea Sweet. I'm a baker ... are you kids alright? Do you need help?"
No one's ever offered them anything before, so for a minute, blindsided and unsure, Greta sinks behind Hans, who searches for sentences. "I ... uh, hi, nice to meet you. No, we're ... fine," Hans doesn't usually pause over and over like this. It's weird. This tentative respect is something Hans doesn't usually give freely. He must be startled. Greta can't remember the last time someone willingly approached them. Their neighbors liked saying their dad was a plague on the block, and told their kids to avoid Gret' and Hans because of it.
"Can I get your names? I know the social workers around here."
Hans is studying Medea.
This is like a dream come true, Greta thinks, this stuff only happens in happy-ending books. She's immediately confused, however, when the tension doesn't fade from Hans' shoulders. "We're ... I'm Hans Lawger, and this is my sister, Greta."
Medea's smile is wide and sunny, and for a second it doesn't register to Greta that it brings up images of sharks, "It's so nice to meet you, too! Wait here a sec', I've got a surprise for you," she flits out of view to somewhere that Greta can only guess is where her car is parked, and Hans catches her eye.
"She ain't too smart giving out her name the same week they announced the local cannibalistic bitch on the news," his voice resonates in his chest, and Greta is filled with nostalgia of the time he told her to stay still when the rabid dog set loose around town almost caught their scent on an afternoon walk a few months ago. "Whatever you do, Sis! Don't eat her treats or anything she gives you — they're drugged. Fuck, I wish I had a cellphone, that cheap old bastard," the subject of all wrath becomes Daddy again, and Greta's heart rate stabilizes somewhat at the familiarity. Hans glares up at the sky contemplatively, "What bothers me s'that she apparently knows so much about us, she brought up social workers," he bares his teeth, "Damn."
For the first time in a long, long time, Greta feels the urge to speak again flare up in her throat, "You told her our names."
For a second Hans freezes, and then the grin that explodes across his mouth is beatific, "Shit, I did, didn't I? Oh well," the sides of Greta's mouth twitch up uncontrollably, "I think we'll be fine." He holds her for a minute.
Then, "We need to run, find a police officer, 'fore she gets back."
That's what they did, and that was what set off a chain-reaction of events that did lead to their happy ending.
"Alright, you two, this is very serious. Where can we contact your parents?"
"Okay ... why?"
"Our dad doesn't want us home right now."
" ... Could you elaborate?"