chicks, pants, showing it all, dancing


See the Shadows of Innocence and Sanity

a shadow of the day

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chicks, pants, showing it all, dancing
About Alex.

Whenever December rolls around, and he feels the first blast of winter again, he remembers Kate and the way they were. He remembers Catholic school; and short plaid skirts; and sitting on a hilltop that was covered with crunchy snow and ice with the extra blanket he would always have brought out so they could. He remembers her so vividly; it is like there was nothing else to remember about school. He remembers her like he remembers Joanna and Gage, all summed up in one incident and nothing else matters.

He remembers that winter was his favorite season because of the crunchy snow and talking on hilltops and just beneath them so they were out of the sight of strangers. He can remember her knees being red with cold before she remembered her sweatpants, and he knows her voice was spilling secrets to him she knew he would not tell anyone else. He knows there was something that she said, something that he was told to never tell anyone and her cannot recall exactly what was said. Only that she was there and she had confided in him.

His Kate, he knows, was more than what met the eye. And when they lay out on the hill, she bore it all out to him. How she was tired of her parents and school and the usual teenage angst parade they all went through. He trusted her then, because she told him all of her secrets without guile. She trusted him.

He spoke to her, then. He spoke and used his voice, while it was still capable of being used and no one knew that he had it. It was soft then, and easily forgettable. But he spilled out his woes to her as she had to him, and begged her to keep the fact that he could talk a secret. She smiled and told him not to worry. His secret was safe with her. He taught his Kate sign language so that they could truthfully say that he told her something and not be looked at as liars and evil. He taught her sign language so that they could talk to each other behind the sisters’ backs.

When December comes around, he can smell the faint odor of snow and frost in the air. And he can smell the soft Downy fabric softener on the blanket, and chocolate on their breath as they explained to each other everything past, present and future. It makes winter almost his favorite season. He can deal without the holidays, the cheer and the time pretending to be a hale and whole young man.

In December, with winter cracking across the city like lightning, Alex can remember what it was like to have friends who trusted you and never left you. There was not any reason to watch your back or worry. There were no monsters or anything like that to break their fragile bubble of safety. In the winter, he can recall normalcy.


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