A Rainy Night In The City

She kicked the door open, surveyed the room, then shuffled, slumped over, to the red chair in the corner. She was pouting dramatically, but not angrily, as if demanding attention. The expression was in vain, though, for besides some basic furniture, an outdated computer, and herself, the room was completely empty.

The room would’ve been quiet as well, had it not been for the shouting going on around it. the girl got up, never pulling down the soaked hood of her dark red sweatshirt. She stretched, yawned, then walked over to the window on the far side of the room.

“It’s dangerous, Steven. She shouldn’t be walking to school. Do you know what the streets are like in the morning? At night?”

“It just wasn’t a convenient day to pick. Her. Up, Caroline.”

“It’s fucking raining, Steven. Fucking raining .”

It most definitely is fucking raining, the girl thought as she slid the window open, filling the room with the noise of scraping paint. The wind outside was sharp, cold, and wet. But even with the frigidity of the air and the shouts of the inner-city, there was something peaceful lingering in the world just outside the windowpane. She breathed the air in, coughed, and pulled down her hood. She stuck her head out the window and smiled. All there was to hear was the pit-pat of the rain on her long brown hair and the tink-tank of drops on the fire escape. Water was collecting on the railing, dripping rhythmically in ¾ time.

“It’s been raining all week, it’s fucking freezing, don’t you care at all about your daughter? I let you name her, goddamit, you can’t even fucking drive her to school?”

“I told you, it just hasn’t been convenient.” He was almost pleading.

“Will it ever be convenient? When will it be convenient for you? Will it
ever be fucking convenient for you?”

“My God, Caroline, do you have to curse so much?”

“Fuck yes I do!” At this point she was audible even to her daughter in the next room. “What do you care? You never listen to me anyways!”

“Shut up, Caroline! Just shut up!”

The girl started to shiver. She pulled her head back in, but didn’t shut the window. She tugged her sweatshirt off, getting lost in it for a second before tossing it haphazardly onto the faded wood floor. Her hair darkened the shoulders of her light blue t-shirt. It was a size too small, and there was a space of pale skin between where the shirt ended and her jeans began. “It’s fashionable,” a classmate had told her, “it looks nice on you.”

She stepped over the damp red lump on the floor to her computer, and booted it up. After waiting through loading bars, she turned her speaker up all the way and started to blast the loudest song on her playlist.

Her parents shouted something inaudible but clearly emotionally charged. All she could hear was a “No, fuck you!” before her mother swung the door open. “Honey, Priscilla, please lower the music.” She was tired, almost sounding vulnerable and holding her cheek with her left hand. “My god, you’re soaking! If you’re not coming down with something already…my god.” She sighed and walked over to her daughter, who was standing against the back wall, right next to the window. She picked up a piece of her daughter’s waist-length damp hair. “Shut the window, Scilla.”

“What happened to your cheek, Mom?” She asked, lowering the music but ignoring the open window.

“Nothing. You need a haircut. And some new clothes. My god, how’d you get so tall and thin? That’s not from your mother, that’s for sure.”

The girl smiled. “I like my hair the way it is.”

“Doesn’t it just get knotty all the time? I mean, it looks nice, but it must be impossible.” She shivered. “It’s freezing in here. what’s with you and the rain, anyway? You’re gonna get sick.”

“Your cheek, Mom,” she lowered her voice, though they were the only two in the room, “was it Dad?”

“What? No! Heavens no. don’t worry abut it, Honey. Everything’s fine.” She smiled and kissed her daughter on the forehead. “Priscilla Annamarie Glass,” she muttered to herself as she walked to the door, “you’re growing up so fast.”

When she was sure that her mother had left, the girl stuck her head through the chipped window and started to cry.

A Rainy Night In The City

youmedancing

Joined August 2008

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Artist's Description

That family always did have problems.

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