Whatever you dream to do, be sure to do it well.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Adolescence 2.0: The Blue Bird’s Song. Part I.

Click HERE for previous installment. 

"Where you used to be, there is a hole in the world, which I find myself constantly walking around in the daytime, and falling in at night. I miss you like hell." ~ Edna St.Vincent Millay 

Early mornings followed a ritual at the Itou household. Trinity dragged her reluctant body from the warm, cozy hug of her blankets, pillows, and queen-sized bed to step into the prickly cold arms of the mistress called five AM. Once she cleared that most difficult hurdle, she switched into a comfortable, familiar rhythm: opened the dresser, grabbed her exercise garb, socks, and dropped her knees to the floorboard to reach under the bed for her sneakers. 
            She combed her cropped hair, but nothing too serious since she was headed out for her usual eight mile run. On the way to the stairs, she walked past her mother’s room, its door always flung wide open. Her mother, Miranda, sat in an armchair facing the window, and she rubbed her fingers back and forth against the upholstery. She stared outside as if the most interesting show in the world was on display.  
            An enemy of inane idleness, Trinity disapproved of how her mother focused on nothing before every sunrise. However, she knew enough to leave her alone. For nine years, the woman refused to talk to her only child, and as far as Trinity was concerned, the only person who cared about her existence. Her father, Henry, divorced her mother when Trinity was in high school, and he later married a beautiful blond woman named Julie Andrews (no relations to the amazing, real Julie Andrews). 
            They moved to Washington State forever and had three beautiful children that she had yet to meet, but had seen in pictures when she spied on her father through facebook. He looked happy with his beautiful family. His parents had died before Trinity was born and, unlike her mother who too was an only child, he had four siblings, all scattered in different states. Her mother never cared much for them and vice versa, but while Nana was alive, Miranda had recovered and been okay. With her grandmother in the house to mediate between them, Trinity almost forgot her mother’s silence toward her.

You shouldn’t have died so early; You shouldn’t have left us alone, she said to her grandmother’s picture that sat on a round, three-legged Mahogany table at the base of the stairs. The elderly woman with the broad warm smile said nothing of course. Nana had always loved her even when Trinity came out in the first year of college.
            “So you fall in love with women, you’re still my Trin Trin, strong and kind. I thought something was strange when you didn’t bring any boyfriends home. Oh dear, was that best friend of yours actually your girlfriend, then?” Nana had laughed, holding her belly, and Trinity had laughed along with her, giving her a tight hug, tears of joy in her eyes.  
The news zipped Miranda's mouth shut, and she stopped talking to Trinity altogether since then. Her father had bombarded Trinity with a series of offensive rhetorical questions, and worse, blamed her sexuality on her mother. At present, they held sparse communication with an email here, a facebook message there, and phone calls on major holidays. Her father had yet to invite her to his home because they both knew Julie Andrews, a staunch Evangelical Christian, would not accept her presence at the house, and heaven forbid, around the children.   
Trinity went to the kitchen to fill out her mini water bottles to snap around her hydration belt. When Nana was alive, this house breathed and lived with her laughter, old jokes, bustle and movement, sizzling aromas of meals she cooked, and commotion from the game nights that she hosted for her friends from the YMCA where she exercised and swam every week. 
          Nana loved to exercise. She had always been an athlete since her younger days. The autopsy dryly reported she died of natural causes, but nothing natural could explain the way she died at seventy-two. It was shocking and cruel like a kidnapper killing his victim even with the ransom paid.
Nana took the life of the house along with her death last year. Trinity’s mother shrank further into herself and stopped teaching English at the local high school. At least she still wrote her poetry and occasionally played the piano in the living room, but nothing more. She hardly left the house except to go grocery shopping or have her hair cut in the same chin length bob she had after the divorce. 
           Her best friends were that armchair in her room and whatever happened outside her window. When was the last time Miranda cracked a smile? If she did, Trinity was never there to see it. All she saw and felt now was emptiness. Emptiness transformed this four bedroom Victorian house into some arctic castle in the middle of nowhere, tucked far away from all life, joy, and hope.   
She stood frozen with a bottle in her hand. She half-expected and half-wished Nana to walk into the kitchen and begin making steamed white rice, grilled fish, miso, and omelet.
“Don’t want you to eat that miserable bowl of cornflakes before going to work. I know you. That’s depressing. A real meal is better,” she would say.
 No one made her breakfast now. Miranda had stopped that when she was in college.
            And that’s why Trinity wanted a life long partner, someone who was in it for the whole journey, not just a joy ride. She had enough of joyrides. She wanted someone by her side to love and love her back, someone to share this home with her and hopefully, raise children together. She wanted to resurrect this dead house, to again feel something close to the life that Nana kept alive.  
            She thought she could have that with Valerie, but her ex-girlfriend’s uncertainty blocked any progress. Maybe this final break-up would give Trinity a chance to meet someone willing to grow with her. Valerie. Although she said she wanted some distance, she still hoped they could remain friends. Nana had loved and treasured Valerie like her own granddaughter. She remembered how they would sing and laugh together while Nana played the piano…
Trinity eyed the clock in the kitchen and realized she was twenty minutes behind schedule.  But for the first time in the past year, she didn’t care. Instead of rushing out the kitchen door like yesterday and the day before, it occurred to her that ever since her grandmother died, she had never made it out to her runs on time. Maybe without knowing she too did what her mother did alone in her room. 
Think of Nana.   

To be continued...

Adolescence 2.0 © 2013 C.S. Severe All Rights Reserved.



Anonymous said...

Trinity and her mother are so different, it's kind of ironic that the one thing they may have in common is the grieving for Nana. I hope they find a way to communicate and "live" again.

CS Severe said...

Thank you, Janna! It would help them both if they broke their barriers and grieved together.

Anonymous said...

Oh hai,

I haz read ur story Adolescence 2.0: The Blue Bird’s Song. Part I.

It haz start slowly and I not hooked until last three paragraphs.

Last three paragraphs is like wow!

But ur story is not my genre, so feel free to disregard my opinion.

ok thx bai.


CS Severe said...

Hey there! I appreciate your advice and can see how this started out slowly. I'll be sure to fix it the next time I go around to editing it.

Steve said...

Ugh, lost my comment!

Anyway, Shibue, just wanted to say that I enjoyed the voices in the writing and the use of the dead house image-- was great to read. Xo

CS Severe said...

You think so! Thanks! I appreciate your words, Steve. I actually plan on rewriting this series. So much happening! Hope all is well! :)