Thursday, 31 July 2014

Pyromaniacs do it with fire.

Yes. Waxing trucks. Watering gardens. Pulling blackberries. (Fully clothed because amazingly sunburned.) Sigh.

Though if I'm good I've been promised ice cream and sparklers tonight.

Wednesday, 30 July 2014

While making potato salad:

Bridget, are you going to acknowledge the fact that Cole has been gone for eight years this month?

I did (even here!). Maybe it just wasn't as poetic or Cole-centric as you had hoped? 

Are you going to continue to be this disrespectful? 

Sure, if you're going to keep up your attempts at full control, Caleb.

We'll talk about it later. We have a lot to discuss at this point. Don't delay much longer.

Forgot about the telescopes, oh my Lord. Wait, I think they've all seen everything already and if they hadn't well, those days are over now.

Loch overruled me, deciding on my behalf (something he's always done, if that matters) that anything Caleb has to share that he has kept to himself thus far is of no consequence at present. What will it change? Who would it benefit? Hell, how we do even know if he's telling the truth or lying? He continued to talk over me, talk me into it, talk himself out of it while I sat on the counter and he does the same thing he does every other month. Comb my bangs straight down and then hold them and cut careful along the open edge. Then he lets go and nods like I am some sort of work of art (I was, once) and then he dismisses me but he doesn't let me go and he says,

Hey. What would you rather do instead? Today, I mean. For the whole day. 

The whole day? 

All of it until bedtime. 

Let's take a picnic to the nude beach and then watch the sunset.

What? No, Bridge. You want to have a nude picnic we should stay on our own beach. 


Well, yeah.

Awesome! I'll go pull the food together. 

What did I just get myself into?

You mean what did you just get yourself out of! Which would be your clothes. Take 'em off. We don't need them where we're going!

I lasted until threeish. I'm just not a 'sit on the beach and do nothing' person. I swam a little bit and I looked for shells and Caleb texted me asking if naked everything was my bucket list and I laughed and Loch frowned and texted him back Yes, just not with you.

He turned off both our phones and smiled and said he thinks he burned his arse. He's kind of uptight. While I was looking for glass and shells, much as usual, he was facedown on his towel 'sunbathing'.

Right. He was hiding his junk is what he was doing. I don't know why he would do that. I've never complained.  Tomorrow he said he gets to pick the activity. He'll probably make me help wax the trucks. Maybe we can do that naked too.

(I still plan to talk to Caleb. Just because I'm so curious I'll die if I don't.)

Tuesday, 29 July 2014

Momentary weakness.

PJ came home with a big bag of bottles and we cheered and he proudly displayed...

Dish soap, iced tea and some more of that pineapple coconut water. I promptly switched to that and was sober before Loch made it back, which is a feat in itself.

No fear, he yelled at me for an hour anyway.

We're a little on edge the days that Caleb takes the kids for his all-day spoilage jaunts. He takes them out shopping, lunching, for a show and then dinner and brings them home with stars in their eyes and then I promptly have to stuff them back into the box with all the rules and limits and denials and hard lessons and they say those things are sharp and they're getting too big to fit and maybe I should just take a few things out, but no. Once Caleb gets his lifestyle in there under their skin in the hole left by the sharp inside edge of Lights Off by Eleven, then what will I do?

Ben came home and yelled at Loch for yelling at me and then we all sort of retreated to our corners for the evening. I finished the coconut water and my book and Sam found me a little after eleven, still stuffed into the little chair in the library and he sat cross-legged on the floor in front of me and talked a little about good escapes and not so good escapes and how Mondays should maybe become something else to make them go a little faster and eventually he stretched out on the rug, shirtless with only old jeans and a cross on a black cord, caramel waves all over the damn place, neat beard covering his chin, endless smile brought to you by Jesus, hotness brought by God and I wondered what the fuck is wrong with me that I'm sizing him up instead of taking his advice and so I closed my eyes and when I opened them next, Ben was picking me up out of the chair, not saying a word.

Today I get to go ask the Devil questions. Wish me luck.

Monday, 28 July 2014

It's well-known how much I despise Mondays (PRINCESS FAIL).

You better watch your step when you're coming back down
From the city on out to the sea
And if your brothers come after me
With their horses so wild and so free
I'll be waiting at the gate in a terrible state
With the man who holds the key
And he'll treat you quite carelessly
For he knows my face from a previous place
From a country in a foreign land
Throwing dice in a game of chance on the sand
But I lost my cool and fate loves a fool
Now I'm standing on the edge of the pack
In my spacesuit hoping that this women will call me at last
Cuz' I'm an astronaut on the shores of this grand illusion
and I'm falling down at the sound of this beating heart
Today has been cancelled due to the overwhelmingly brilliant Monday-morning decision to get drunk with Teflon Jesus and his Lizard King of an older brother and listen to Blitzen Trapper's American Goldwing on repeat until I throw up.

Astronaut. The song is fucking called Astronaut. I die.

Hey, fuck off, sometimes it's better than being a grownup. LK isn't drinking, he's just sitting here smiling, crushing hard, enjoying the moment. We recruited PJ to come home and join us shortly with better alcohol (oh Dalton can hold so much more than I) and Sam has tried to physically remove me twice to no avail. Ha. He said wait until your husband comes home but I didn't know which one he meant so I don't think I should be worried exactly.

Stalling? Yes, very much. You?I don't want truth. I don't want anything today except oblivion, franklish.

Sunday, 27 July 2014

Fun today, truth tomorrow.

This is the third best view in the known universe, right up there behind the eyes of all those that I love and then the Atlantic ocean with it's razor sharp seaweed, relentless wind, and unspoiled horizon.

The Ferris wheel was ridden multiple times, as I shrieked over the first few rotations before settling in and realizing my fingers were all stuck together from cotton candy and I should probably put away my phone.

I got kisses at the top. Every single time, just like always. Summer is complete now. Bring on whatever comes next.

Saturday, 26 July 2014

Stop ganging up on him.

Oh, sneaky. This morning Ben woke with a start, which means I woke with a start though I didn't really open my eyes or anything, and he very gently rolled me away from him and into Loch. Loch did not wake up. I stuck my face in against his neck and fell back asleep. Ben got up and got ready for his early meeting. I wonder how many nights he's been repositioning me just to keep the peace. I wonder why he feels he has to? He wants to make things easy for Lochlan. I love that but I don't love enabling control.

That's why breakfast was so ridiculous. I went outside and Caleb is describing one of the restaurants we visited in the most hilarious terms possible. Dalton seemed mildly interested while PJ was losing his shit, laughing out loud.

How can bread be 'esoteric'? You're fucking serious, that's the worst part of this. You know she prefers french fries made by a clown, right? He gestures to me.

And Caleb took that and ran with it. Oh, Loch get a new job?

I was smart and lifted my coffee mug into my hand and pushed my chair back. If the table's going over on him I refuse to give up my Saturday morning coffee.

Good thing I did, because there it goes.

No one's enabling control around here. We don't seem to have any.

Friday, 25 July 2014

Wizard mode.

Back into Lochlan's arms this morning, his hands closing around my head tightly. One of these days it's going to squish and burst and then they'll find the embroidery scissors I lost in the last move, a few pens with colored ink I am forbidden to use in public and what's left of my brain, most likely the stem and the black part that was inedible to the brain tumor that never gets full. My head hurts so badly and my mouth is dry and he asks quietly if I'm okay.

No one bit me, if that's what everyone is wondering. Caleb and I stayed out way too late last night eating dessert and drinking coffee after the proper meetings were dispensed with and then we found a pinball machine in a convenience store and cashed in twenty after twenty for tokens, failing to beat the high score. Not even coming close.

He can be fun when he chooses to be. His tie was stuffed in his pocket, trailing out behind him, his eyes bright and the grin fixed to his face. We started laughing hysterically somewhere around eleven and didn't stop until close to one in the morning, when he finally grew more serious as we walked back to the hotel and he said,

How much truth do you want and where am I supposed to start? 

All of it and don't start tonight, whatever you do. I'm tired. 

Let's find an airplane and go home to our son then. 

Does it start with him?

Bridget, we'll talk about it tomorrow.

What else will we talk about?

I figured I would just let you start with questions and once those are answered, we'll reconcile whatever is left. 

An open book?

An open book, Neamhchiontach. 

Why now?

You asked. You asked and I'm not going to live forever and I'm probably never going to get what I want so why the hell not?

Why aren't you like this all the time?

I told you. Truth tomorrow. Tonight I'll lie and say that I am. 

I was falling asleep on the plane before I was fully settled and he fastened my seat belt and told me to get some rest. I nodded and he said he loved me.

But do you or is that a lie too?

That's never been a lie. It never will be a lie as long as I'm breathing. 

Too bad. Your life would be so much easier if it was.

Thursday, 24 July 2014

He just wants to be buff for dinner.

Also I've been forbidden to liveblog this trip any further. Starting last post. Oops. Haha.
Hey, not only did our little plane not disappear but I've graduated to watching Caleb do exercise ball rollouts or whateverthefuck they're called in the hotel gym!

My life, I tell you. Tinged with greatness.

I can go home now? Please?
Well, that settles it. I'm officially the only person in the developed world who doesn't hate the trailer for Fifty Shades of Grey.

I did have a few criticisms but kept them to noting Jamie Dornan's prop (cheap) watch, too-perfect hair and smooth face for a middle of the night piano practice and the fact that virtually every scene is lit with the same fake Seattle overcast mode, including the night scenes. I hope that will be fixed by February when the actually movie comes out but we're not going to be able to do anything about that watch, now, are we?

At least Dakota's bangs have probably already grown back by now.

(Please excuse the quick and dirty (not very) post. Packing for Toronto. Business. Big Epic Hates.)

Wednesday, 23 July 2014


(It stands for One Of A Kind. Just like that time I spent looking at a recipe that called for EVOO and I spent hours, days even, speculating what incredible, amazing new food EVOO must be that I hadn't even heard of it only to find out they meant Extra Virgin Olive Oil. I kid you not.)

Ben is trying really hard here and I should be letting him off the hook. Sometimes he forgets we were friends before we were married. That would be dumb. He's concerned that I haven't been sleeping at all and wants to arrange for some indulgences, as if he's lost his mind and is falling back on weird lists from a magazine we probably don't read. I'm not exactly the most predictable, typical girl out there. I make no apologies for that or for what you're about to read.


I don't want anyone I don't know touching me (snort).


I can do it myself for pennies. I have like eight bottles of stuff in the drawer. 

So that rules out the toes too? I forget what it's called. 

A pedicure? No one touches my feet. Including you. 

Want your hair done?

No. Loch cuts it. I'm good. 

Uh. Facial? (we both snort and blush at the same time. Jesus, Gutter and Christ, we're perverted)

I'll pass. (More laughter.) You know, for now.

Hot bath?

It's the middle of the day, Benny!


Maybe later. 

Bridget, what would make you feel better? 

I laugh again and cover my mouth with both hands.

Oh, well, shit. You could have said something sooner. We've just wasted ten minutes. You know what I could do to you in ten minutes? 

I hope you'll take longer than that. 

I meant the first ten. Don't you know me at all?

I was beginning to wonder the same thing!

Oh, just shut up and take off your clothes, Slowpoke. 

Oh! Promise? I give him all the dazzling grins in the world and he laughs again.

I can't guarantee it will be slow for long. 

We both blush again. I'm almost glad we didn't know each other as teenagers. There would probably be nothing left.

Tuesday, 22 July 2014

Not going to end well, is it?

Better moods all around today as I walk around with my hands outstretched, collecting reassurances that no one is choosing sides, that this is all for one and one for all. When I woke up this morning Ben had his arms around both of us, locked tight. Probably so he wouldn't fall off what barely passes for a double cot in the camper. Fifty inches of springy, uncomfortable goodness and yet I sleep better out there than I do in the finest hotels in the world. I'm sure I'm allergic to double-digit thread counts, and possibly air that isn't completely fresh. Case in point, Ben left the door wide open when he joined us last night and a bear could have walked in and had me for breakfast, I wouldn't have noticed. What I did notice that his hands were holding Lochlan's and that in their sleep they love each other and in waking they're learning.

Both pretend I was imagining things when I pointed that out but no one clarified whether they meant I was imagining that they held hands or that they actually are still learning things.

I'll go with learning, because I know what I saw.


A truce offered by the Devil, who knows his way around these sorts of things and wins just as you figured out he's been cheating at the game all along.

Your mark is healing nicely, he tells me as if I somehow injured myself.

I don't say anything.

We're on a loop here, Neamhchiontach. 

Still nothing. But I shrug because sure. I guess we are.

What do I have to do to get through to you? To get your attention and a little bit of your time without forcing you into situations that leave everyone with a bitter taste? 

(Oh, I have a flavor now. Who knew?)

Tell the truth. But not just when you want something. All the time. Anything I should know that I don't? I want it all laid out. Put all your cards on the table and stop holding things back and plotting and scheming and planning. Just tell the goddamned truth, Diabhal. For once in your life. I mean, for a man who's done as well as you have I don't know how you can sleep at night for all the lies you live. 

I don't sleep. I wait for you. 

See what I mean? 

You want truth from now on. 

Jesus, yes. It's not so hard. Look at how well things turned out when I told Ben I wasn't going to give up my friends with benefits. I flash him the biggest smile I've ever made and he breaks into hard laughter but then he swallows it so fast I worry he'll choke.

Okay. But you'll regret it. 

When do we start?

Have dinner with me tonight?

No, because I'll be killed. How about lunch tomorrow on the patio?

Just us?

Well, I don't know. Ruth will probably eat before she goes out and Ben will be hungry. So I doubt it. 

Then it will have to wait. 


He smiles at me but it's pained. I told you before. I'm not a good person and in order to fix you I'm going to end up breaking you more. 

His choice of words throws me because they're words I would say, not him.

I can take it. 

That's what scares me. You can but you shouldn't have to. 

Try me anyway. 

I'm actually going to think about this. Not sure at this point that any truth I could provide would be worth the damage it does.  Get back to me in the morning. 

Dismissed, I guess. My head starts to hurt, badly. I didn't think that would be so easy and now I'm wondering if he's right. If it's not going to change or fix anything, is there any point to being truthful?

I decide that yes, there is, because the truth is always better than telling a lie to the people you supposedly love. Because if you have nothing else in your miserable life, at least have a little integrity.

Monday, 21 July 2014

Perks include a chemical toilet, wardriven wifi and a free angry redhead.

An hour after biting her and he's off the hook? This is rich. 

Loch got up and left the dinner table. He has a point. Caleb has managed to turn the tables and take the focus off his own mistakes, shining a light on Lochlan who can't catch a break even though he's chased them all his life, and I'm left in tears beside an empty place at the table, with my appetite lost in the woods and no amount of consolation to fix this suddenly. It's just one more thing blowing up in my face. Drama after drama after issue after death and I don't want this. I want peace and harmony and camaraderie and happiness here. This whole point was designed as a safe place but the only actual safe place is the camper in the driveway. Okay, it's the only place that feels like me, feels like us.

Damage control will need to start now. If you think for one second I'll allow anyone to make him feel like he's an outsider for a single second more of his life then you don't know me at all.

I left the table too. You should all take a cue from Ben and see that Lochlan wants for nothing but my happiness. Not yours, not his own, MINE. It's a first here and I think some apologies are warranted. You know where we'll be when you're ready.

Ours alone.

I'll say it then.

I'm so incredibly excited for the FIFTY SHADES trailer coming this Thursday I squealed when Christian (the irony) showed me the teaser on the Beyonce twitter. I don't know what a Beyonce (?) is but damn. Okay, I know vaguely who she is. But FIFTY. I'm so excited and I'm not ashamed in the least.

The books were fucking amazing. Awkward sex descriptions but perfect character development. Judge me, I care not. Or better yet, try to write about sex and see how well YOU do.

I'll wait right here for your submissions.


Speaking of submission (HA), Caleb tried to nail Lochlan to the wall this morning for his possessiveness, after I wrote about how he tried to keep Ben from touching me when we're asleep. I thought it was very sweet  of Loch to show how he felt without fear of retribution (and here it comes anyway). Apparently I'm fucked in the head when it comes to normal relationships and don't know any better but that isn't right and Lochlan can't make rules like that.

Oh, okay.

Says Satan, oh he of normal relationships of which he hasn't had a single one ever.

Ben still thinks the whole thing is funny/sad and continues to coddle Lochlan to pieces.

Sadly the rest of the boys backed Caleb up, saying Loch was becoming a little bit difficult with this and maybe he needed help. Maybe he needs time, I plead but they just insist that I have no idea what normal is.

GOOD! I yell. If it's not loving someone so hard people become alarmed than I don't want to know what normal is! 

Sunday, 20 July 2014

Polyawkwardness (shhhh).

(I don't want to talk about yesterday, the two things actually cancel each other out, and my heart isn't in either, frankly so whatever. Call it filler, it makes no difference to me, I'd rather just keep steamrolling forward in the way that I do. It's neither interesting nor relevant but I was having a rough day so I wrote about other things instead of death. Instead of the things death brings to life that it has no right to.

I do that a lot.)

Ben continues to teach Loch how to share, how to not get up and leave, that sometimes there don't have to be such things as turns, and how, like with children, love isn't cut in half, it's simply doubled, magnified. Lochlan remains hesitant, reluctant, possessive in the same way he always was right through until Jake arrived and pretty much cut him out of the picture.

That was a mistake. Oh God, such a mistake. Jake saw Loch's possessiveness and trumped it whole and tried to bend something that broke and look at the mess we made.

But Ben is determined to do the opposite of everyone else and he welcomes Lochlan with his fears and his outward wariness of everything and everyone. Ben understands and steers Loch's attempts at control and he gives up so easily, letting Lochlan get away with things he has no right to ask for.

I hold her when she's sleeping. Not you. 

(Taking orders in your sleep. Try that one on for size.)

I actually don't fully understand why Ben puts up with Loch's bullshit half the time except that Ben is trying to do unto others. He's trying to understand Loch's own pain when everyone treats Loch like the glory boy, the one who has it all and doesn't have to work for anything, it's just given to him. The proverbial charmed life. This versus Ben who has lost it all four times over and is hanging by a thread and he's the one teaching patience and generosity? He's the only one who seems to understand that Lochlan's pain is different but that doesn't mean it's lesser.

I try to make up the difference in affection for Ben and he practically pushes me away and tells me Loch needs me more, or he asks me where he is, tells me to find him, suggests I go share all this cuddly stuff with him too. 

I fight with both of them about this. I demand that Lochlan open his mind and that Ben not let Lochlan walk all over him and they both laugh and tell me not to worry. It's maddening, frustrating to be bounced back and forth.

It seems like it should be so easy but between the greed, the guilt and the selfishness I'm never sure if it would have been easier to cut myself with my losses and bleed openly but do completely good by one instead of good enough by all.

Except that I tried that once and he didn't survive it.

Saturday, 19 July 2014

Museum quality.

Two phone calls today before I even got out of bed, during both of which Ben molested me unrelentingly and I had to fight to not burst out laughing when asked if I was okay.

The first was a cancellation for a shoot planned for October for a new album cover for Ben's friend of a friend of a friend. So, not the usual guys, but some of their friends, also in a band. Up and comers overseas. Took a look through the portfolio (AKA a Youtube playlist Ben sent up of the videos and an Amazon wishlist of albums LOL) and booked me but have since decided I am too old for what they're looking for.

Too old.


Ben's friends said not to be alarmed, that their vision was more around me twenty years ago when I first did a video for Corey and I was in my early twenties. Please don't take it personally, Bridget. 

I'm not. It's fine. I'm not, really.

Okay but I am. They sent flowers and champagne to the house an hour later to apologize for keeping me booked so long and then hosing. Dammit, champagne. I wonder if they'll let me bring it to the nursing home. I'm checking myself in this afternoon.

The second call was from Batman, who was speaking with Caleb and heard about the incredible knack I seem to have with charming men out of their money.


Lemme just-

No, nevermind.

Caleb likes to do business over dinner and usually brings me with him so he can pretend he is successful. I am to behave. Vegas rules, as such. Only I seem to really appeal to his clients and they wind up offering so much money he is now in a unique and wonderful place where he has more capital than projects to invest in. Batman would like to turn the tables and see if I can't work my magic in reverse and find the companies that need seed investors. Have our pick, he says.

I wasn't aware my two titans were working together. 

We're not. I know of some companies that need investors. 

Bullshit, they're your companies if I'm a dollar over Thursday, I told him and hung up. I'm not going to be the bait in some new power struggle between them. I would like Batman to stay out of my head. Besides. I only charm the old men as a sport. I was as surprised as anyone else when they voiced their respect for my acumen.

Oh, I'm not arm candy, boys.

Maybe I was twenty years ago.

(Someone please bring up that champagne. Glass? No, I don't need a glass. Come downstairs? No, thanks, I'm staying in bed all day today. Why? Lost my youth. Could you look under the bed for me please? Maybe I dropped it last night after those two double cocktails.)

Friday, 18 July 2014

My first ever pound of chicken wings all to myself?



Hahahah oops.

Advantage Pyro.

For Henry's birthday, Lochlan built him a telescope out of copper, glass and wood. He built a platform for it out on the end of the wall for viewing and pretty much put everyone to shame, including Caleb. And then Henry felt very bad about referencing Lochlan's legendary self-imposed poverty but Lochlan explained to him that most of the parts were foraged, and he actually started it two years ago, thinking it would be a fitting present for a young man, now in his teens.

I thought he was practice-welding on an old bike frame that's been under a tarp in the corner of the garage of the other house all this time.

He's really good at this quiet oneupmanship. Freakishly good, naturally, freak that he is. He's going to teach Henry some astronomy because Caleb says it's a foolish science so it's all the more important now that Henry understand just how big that sky really is. It's rare I see a speechless room full of boys over something good but I'll take it anyway.


Five in the morning and I am turned by the elbows back into Loch's arms. He is awake, against all odds and couldn't find me in his dreams so he found me in life. He pulls me back into the dream with him and I go willingly, carefully so as not to disturb anything. Lochlan's thoughts are colorful, all muted sunshine and sticky sugar high excitement. In his dreams I ride a Ferris wheel that actually touches the moon and a roller coaster that loops around the world. The swing flings me through the clouds and I reach down into one, scooping up a handful of gritty blue cotton candy just in time to be caught gently in a teacup as it spins around a post, bolted to a saucer made of July.

When I wake up next it's eight and he asks me if I liked the trip. I nod and say I'm going to make coffee and he can tell me how he does it and he shakes his head and tells me he'll take the coffee but not spill the secrets that keep us bound together so tightly, that magic, once explained, loses everything.

Thursday, 17 July 2014

Bear sighting #6.

This one was waiting for me on the sidewalk as I approached the lower road to get to the driveway, dog on the leash, sun long set. I clapped my hands and yelled for it to go home as I followed it to my house and it disappeared into the woods just in front of our property while I went flying through the gate and down the hill, looking behind me the whole way.

I wonder if it's found the electric fence yet (switched off but still installed until we figure out what to do with it) and I sent the Devil a photo of it telling him all the fences he can commission aren't going to keep me safe in this world and he's fighting a battle he lost when he became the first predator.

The bears are less scary. They don't play games. They're just hungry.

(Yesterday is nothing more than random drive-by doubt, okay?)

Henry's birthday was incredibly successful, with two out of three parties down and only one marginally hyperactive guest that we had to gently remind not to jump on furniture or torment the dog.

I tried to wear my hearing aids all day so I could pretend I was like everyone else and stressed myself into a corner with the noise and now my nerves are shot and they'll die a slow death in amongst the rest of me, drowned by anxiety. The coroner will come and remark that I must have died of a broken heart before realizing my lungs were full of fear, I was shot by a dozen arrows aimed by a cupid with evil intent and that self-destruction was blissful, not as painful as you would think and most likely wholly unnecessary, same as always. My brain will weigh nothing, for it's empty save for some crumpled up wrappers from the midway and one lone marble rolling back and forth that will fall out of my eye socket when they remove those and give them to someone in need.

(Surprise! Your eyes change color with your emotions, now, recipient! Like a psychotic Blythe doll.)

I would be up for a nerve transplant to fix my ears but I think things would be more fun if they just rewired my whole brain so that when I thought about popcorn I would see the color blue or when it rained I would automatically draw a flower. That would be great. Then I would have excuses for days like these.

I could say, Blame the nerves! I felt hot so I heard a song which made me do jumping jacks. Only they messed up and it put me on a perpetual loop and quick! Show me some popcorn so I can cool off already with the blue and then hopefully it will rain because it's hard to hold a pencil when you're jumping.

Wednesday, 16 July 2014

Birth days.

He did it again. Right there in the middle of the day, he's watching Henry open gifts from some of the boys and he smiles as if he's about to lose his shit and he says,

I wanted him to have the same opportunities Ruth has with having a present father. 

It makes me cold all over but when I ask him what he's talking about he dismisses it as me mishearing or him not being very clear, he just wants to be a part of Henry's life since he doesn't live in the main house with his son.

But my gut. My gut tells me he means something else entirely.

Tuesday, 15 July 2014

A tightrope I never come down from.

Today I'm forced to coexist with Caleb. He wanted me to accompany him to find presents for Henry's birthday. Why he waits until the day before I'll never know but it's mildly irritating.

We went to the Microsoft store. I think Henry's going to be very happy. We also went to the book store which means Henry will be incredibly thrilled and has no idea how blessed he truly is because one rarely learns the lessons of character in a bubble such as this.

I do try my best though. Henry's already expressed concern that Dad will spend too much.

Let him. Less for him, more for you. 

But then everyone else will feel bad. 

No. Your father's wealth intimidates no one. 

Henry laughs in relief. Good. Well, I mean, I'm glad. 

They're tough guys, Bunny. And wealth is only a small part of the measure of success in life. 

You always say that, Mom. 

That's because it's true. 

How much is enough then?

Enough money? Well, you know you have enough when you have some for emergencies, some for fun and everything is paid up besides. Then you have enough. But always save first and keep the fun for later if you have to choose.

Dad says everyone should be more concerned with making as much as possible and then you've proved yourself better. 

Do you think that's true?

No. Not really. 

Dad can't be faulted for not knowing what it's like to be average, sweetheart. He's a self-made man, as they say. 

That's what Lochlan says about himself but he doesn't have any money at all. 

He has more character. His 'self-made' definition is more about integrity.

So you get character if you're really poor?

Mostly, yes. My turn to laugh.

So he has tons and tons?

Okay, zip it, Henny. And remember it's not the price of the gift that counts, it's the sentiment with which it is given. 

You always say that too. 

It's even more true than the other thing, that's why.


Going to make sweet sweet love to this big bottle of pineapple coconut water. God, I love this stuff.

Monday, 14 July 2014

Thinner atmospheres.

Today I did a lot of chores while Joel followed me around expressly not helping unless you count his leading questions and quiet consideration of my answers. By the time the lunch hour rolled around he had his evaluation and I had clear drains, clean taps, folded laundry, swept floors and a newly clipped dog who is really happy to be so much lighter in this humidity.

I had my own opportunity to fire questions right back, finding out exactly what's going on between him and Sam, what he thinks of Caleb's efforts to simultaneous keep and destroy this collective and what my future holds. He's much like a scientific fortune teller and I found it amusing to watch him visibly soften a lot of things and contradict himself at will if he thought I was going to dismiss his observations or even question them. I have no interest in pitting my knowledge of who I think I am against who he thinks I am.

It was just interesting to watch him pale visibly and try not to wretch as I fished huge clumps of hair out of the upstairs drains. Such is life with these guys and their Allman Brothers hair and plentiful beards, in case you thought it was all glamorous. I'm getting better at not being grossed out by living in a house with seven oversized men (okay, six, shhhh, since Loch isn't oversized and Gage is away right now) and they do try very hard to clean up after themselves and do the grosser chores.

I suppose I could have left that paragraph out but it's relevant to demonstrate life in the every day here. That Ben isn't around enough and Loch is always mad or too logical to be fun and the kids have their friends to play with and really I'm minding that no one has time for me.

Well, some do but that's besides the point.

I begged off having Joel analyze my afternoon and instead took the dog for a long walk up around the neighborhood above us. I came home, washed the dog's face, gave him a cookie and warmed up my coffee that was ignored in the morning and I took my paints and went outside. I came back inside three seconds later because the full sun hits the front yard midafternoon and I just can't take it like I used to be able to.

I counted eight more freckles and Loch came downstairs, freshly showered, home from yet another job he will quit in a week or a month and I forgot to drink my coffee again. He thanked me for doing the drains and said he'll do the next round. I sorted another dozen envelopes full of photos from Cole and Sam asked me to proofread this week's bulletin and then it was already time to make dinner.

The day went so fast, I feel like I just connected moons with a string of utter nonsense.

Sunday, 13 July 2014

Enchant me, then eat me alive.

Ben swooped in just as we were dishing up plates last evening.  Oh, there you are. Finally. He's been holed up in his studio for days.

Leave two of them out, he said and grabbed my hand, pulling me out of the kitchen and up the stairs to our room. When we get there he tells me to find a comfortable dress that won't be too warm, for being outside.

I grab a pretty eyelet sundress and matching shoes. He looks at the shoes when I come back from dressing and says Not those. Something comfortable. 

I exchange the pumps for my keds and he says Perfect. He's changed into a tissue-weight henley shirt and his utilikilt so I know I've hit the mark.

Back downstairs and he grabs his keys, everyone says Have fun! and we are off.

Only I don't know where.

He turns out of our neighborhood and I'm like Yay! Whistler for dinner! But he just says Nope and grins, turning abruptly, heading down a fire road then turns again and then after fifteen minutes of what seems like twisting and turning and I can no longer tell where I am he drives through a heavy stand of trees and we come out in front of a glorious lake. A mountain lake that I haven't seen on the map and I figured everything on this side was just grizzly and black bear county and I should stay the heck away. But there are no bears that I can see, only this perfectly still lake.

And on the beach I see a pretty table covered with a yellow tablecloth and fresh wildflowers in a big tin pitcher. The path there and all around the table someone has layered woven blankets.

Ben smiles at me and says he wanted to try a new restaurant, and that I can leave my shoes in the truck. We get out of the truck (so much cooler up here) and he unloads a wicker picnic basket from the bed and I ask him what the restaurant is called so I can tell all our friends and he thinks for a minute and he says Chez Ben. But it's only open one night of the year. 

I see. Well they'll be disappointed then. 

I'm not, he says.

Me neither. I tell him back.

We settle at the table and he goes about unpacking. I don't have to pinch myself because when I see the food I know it's Ben and it's real. Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and cans of iced tea.

It was the best picnic I've ever had.

We took our drinks down to sit on a log after we finished our sandwiches, sticking our bare feet in the cool water. Pond skaters were all over the place, as were mosquitoes. We got eaten alive. I offered that maybe we should head back because we both had so many bug bites and also it was dusk now and bears are more active and I hear they love peanut butter but Ben said he wanted five more minutes and then we'll go. He squeezed my hand and looked at his watch. Then he did it again.

Then again.

I'm thinking...what the heck is he waiting for?

Then he looked at it once more, pulled me in tight against him and kissed me like he meant it. Long, heavy and hot. The split-second his lips touched mine fireworks went off on the other side of the lake. Actual fireworks.

I laughed mid-kiss and got another kiss because I messed up his efforts on the first one with my laughing. Half because he isn't usually given to this level of romance and half because deeply kissing someone after you've eaten a peanut butter and jam sandwich is uncharacteristically...awkward.

When we finally stopped kissing each other the fireworks ended and he nodded quizzically and asked me if I saw anything. He got to his feet, pulling me up too and said he swore he saw fireworks during that kiss.

Me too!

This proves it, Bridge. We are meant to be.

I think kissing after PB&J proves that. You have to really love someone to make that level of sacrifice.

Yeah, I learned something else tonight too. 

What is that? 

Kilts and mosquitoes really don't mix.

Saturday, 12 July 2014

Too beautiful of a day to wake up feeling like everything is too desperately worthful to lose.

Even a well lit place can hide salvation
A map to a one-man maze that never sees the sun
Where the lost are the heroes and the thieves are left to drown
But everyone knows by now fairy tales are not found
It's thirty degrees in the shade and Lochlan is throwing fire. He doesn't notice the heat. His nose and forehead are already pink along with his shoulders and the back of his neck since I put his hair in a low messy man-bun this morning and he left it like that. It has lightened to the color of polished copper. I want to keep him like this forever. If I squint he is seventeen. If I focus I still wouldn't even come close to guessing that he'll turn forty-nine later this summer. It just doesn't compute. He doesn't age. All this sun and fire and hard living (not now, I mean previous to this house) and stupid stubborn syllogism and he remains the same.

I put my own hair in the same style of loose bun and he laid down his torches and came over, putting his top hat on my head. It's far too big and sits with the brim on my shoulders. I can't see. He doesn't want me to get too much sun. I don't need to see like I don't need to hear. I'll just navigate based on touch, like always.

And if he dies, I'll go with him. I already promised myself that years ago.

Friday, 11 July 2014

Weirdly effective.

Send out the signal and I'll fly low
If it means the death of me, I won't let go
And if I'm lost in the worlds shadows
I'll use the light that comes to me
From your halo
I think Loch was waiting for everyone to relax a bit. He acted so normal (relatively speaking) all week and then this morning he threw himself at Caleb out of the blue and bit him.

He bit him.

The yell Caleb let out was unholy and the answering call even quicker as Loch roared right back with a question, asking him what it felt like. Caleb launches into a curse-filled diatribe and says it hurts a lot and was completely unprovoked.

It doesn't look as bad as Bridget's.

No, but it hurts like fuck. I should have you charged.

Let me just make sure I have this right. It's not as bad as the bite you gave Bridget but it hurts a lot and you want to call the cops. You think the bite you gave her that is worse hurts? She's half your size! You think we should call the cops? Loch throws himself into a chair. Call them. I'm not going anywhere. In fact, I think when they come we'll need to give them the full backstory here so they understand things.

Caleb stands there for a moment holding his arm.  His face is ashen. Takes him so long to figure things out but he's bent from hell and never fully straightens so even if it doesn't turn out to be a lesson it can be payback.

He turns to leave without a word (LESSON ACCOMPLISHED) and Loch calls to his back. If I see that camera around here I'll take a bite out of it too. Don't take any more pictures of my family.

I have to hand it to Lochlan. He struck not half a day after PJ finally relaxed and we had decided that it was once again safe for them to be in the same building with each other.

I should have bitten his fucking heart right out of his chest.


Just imagine the visual, Peanut.

Still yuck.

True. It's most likely rotten. Black.

Okay, well THAT would be cool.

I knew you'd say that.

Morning coffee and I was trying to make a playlist when this happened (What a fucking BUZZFEED headline.)

Scrolling by song title. Ahahaha, I give up.

Thursday, 10 July 2014

And by last night he had purchased a big fancy new camera.

Ben either has far more self-restraint and a magnificent ability to calm down the entire household with his very presence or he is about a thousand times more fucked up than even I give him credit for.

I will never be sure which, at this point. When I came outside, drill in hand, ready to start converting the long galvanized tubs to be windowboxes for the stables, Ben was in the middle of telling Caleb he thinks he has an incredible eye as a photographer and maybe it runs in the family.

(Cole, not sure if you remember, was taking pictures when he wasn't painting. His photos were our bread and butter and were what brought Batman into my life, proper. Or maybe that's improper. Either way I still have around three thousand of his prints here. No, that's not a typo.)

And Caleb is agreeing with Ben. They're discussing the merits of erotic photography using unconventional subjects and provocative arrangements meant to inspire uncomfortable emotions in the beholder.

Oh, well, just great.

But then Ben abruptly points out I won't be Caleb's subject. That he needs to use models who aren't emotionally connected to make his work that much more diverse. Oh, I love him so much.

Caleb sees me through the screen and refutes.  Bridget is what sells this. Her fragility translates so well to film. She's the reason Cole made it. So I would say the opposite holds true, Benjamin.

Cole didn't make it. Cole exploded. I press my head against the screen. It pulls on the sides and I'm wondering if I force this if I'll come out in long tiny squares and reform out on the porch. Ben's head whips around in surprise and he gets up.

I can't believe you're encouraging him, Benny. 

You have to admit, Bee. It's possibly the hottest picture of you I've ever seen. It's like porn but classy. 

Oh well that just makes it all better then. Loch will be thrilled. 

That's why I said Caleb should use someone else. 

But then would it still be so hot? Or would it just be porn?

I don't know. I'll have to look at them first. 

Of course you will. 

Wednesday, 9 July 2014


Caleb's scorched earth campaign continues and it appears I will go on until I'm staggering down the road missing limbs, fully lobotomized and amnesic, breathing borrowed air. No one understands this, no one can parse exactly at which point all attention turned to me and I became the possession, the doll they would fight over, pulling me apart in an effort to be victorious until my seams rip open, my guts spill all over the road and I am ruined, in pieces, empty and worth nothing.

I wasn't all that special at eight or nine, I didn't think. I was sort of average. I was willing and determined, I was flighty and dependent at the same time. They just had such an overwhelming need to save me, to control me, to stand in front and fight away all my demons for me and they've never let up for a single second of my life from that first night.

I want to ask how they can waste any more of their lives fighting for me, over me, on my behalf. Its been half our lives now, if we're lucky. It's been decades and nothing's changed save for the fact that the stakes are literally as high as they will ever get, as we fight through life and death and children and threats and lawsuits and custody battles and financial particulars and living arrangements and marriage arrangements and everything that goes along with everything else.

We've tried breaks. Absences. Forcible removals. Protection orders. Death. Life. Birth. We've tried making things work and we've tried adjusted collective living now too. We've tried lawlessness and we've had rules. We've had leaders and followers. We've watched the years tick past but nothing every changes except that I get older and less beautiful as each night passes into the next and still they fight on. It doesn't even matter if I'm HERE, they're still fighting over the memory of me, the idea of me, something.

I had to go around and request that each of my beloved friends delete the photo. Most tried to pretend they didn't really see it or it was no big deal. Some made really bad jokes to cover up their horror. Some gave me lectures. Some denied they ever got it until I chose to wait them out and they crumbled quickly. Some laughed and refused, saying I got what I deserved.

Some still threatened to put it up for the world to see until I pointed out that I don't care about the world at large, I care about the people who live here with me. The rest is just static, white noise, a constant roar of life passing by while we all remain locked in a ridiculous war and no one even knows why we're fighting anymore.

Sure we do, Bridget. We're fighting for you. 

Well, stop it. I never asked for this.

Tuesday, 8 July 2014

I changed my mind.

I've decided after a fitful night's sleep that I'm really not prepared to sign my mind back over to Joel. I'm not really sure that Joel isn't here to help make Sam redundant and marked for banishment. I don't trust them enough to believe them when they say no. Sam has always been a threat to Joel. I'm not sure the history there and it's none of my business. It was just far too easy for Joel to appear, herald a list of good boys and bad boys and then wait patiently for control to be give to him. Especially since he is Caleb's guest, not mine.

So yeah but no, I'm going to pass.

I also passed on an opportunity to wage words with the Devil himself, ignoring his messages, his invitations and apologies. Then his demands, his threats that turned to pleas so fast his desperation dripped down the walls and drowned me. I turned on my back to float, breathing shallowly, staring up at the sky, spreading out my arms and legs, floating in the deep water as it slowly filled the room. Now what? I ask Lochlan, who is teaching me to swim. I want to be done, the knot on my bathing suit digs into the sunburn on the back of my neck. I want to be done.

Wait for help, Loch says.

But I'm not nine anymore. I roll back over and swim for shore. It's just so far away.

When in this situation, you're supposed to wait for someone to rescue you. Loch insists.

How do they know I'm here? 

They just do. Don't worry about that part.

Monday, 7 July 2014

Should have built UNstables.

At the eleventh hour yesterday Joel formally declared his allegiance and called Caleb a psychopath.

To his face.

I closed my eyes. Didn't much want to see Joel's brain sucked out of his nose or his head squished like a ripe plum between Caleb's hands but Caleb chose not to engage. He'd lose. Joel was the one who gave me the labels I won't wear easily and is now the one who has convinced the others that I'm not responsible for the way I am or the way I act, even as I insist I'm an adult and stamp my feet. He taught us that it has nothing to do with being an adult, that I'm not in control, that I'm just doing what I need to do to ease the pain and I can't help it.

He blames them collectively for me.

He was harsh on everyone and so easy on me I stood there thinking he's about to make a play too and Jesus, no, not again.

But he saved his biggest criticism for me and told me I'm not doing what they made it so easy for me to do. Let them lead. Let them decide, steer, supervise and control. The ones who will protect and not exploit. He thinks he knows who those ones are and who are not. The list contained a couple surprises and one incredible disappointment.

And he asked Caleb to stop. Stop hurting me. Stop leading me down those roads. Stop torturing me. Stop making things worse.

Stop being evil and help, here.

And Caleb was so startled he agreed because Joel caught him by surprise. Because maybe Joel has ethics after all and maybe he knows what he's talking about and because he's the only person I know to make a mistake, learn from it and never do it again.

The rest of us aren't as bright. I was (am still) fully prepared to admit I put myself there. I go to Caleb willingly. I goad and tease him into these situations and then I find myself in over my head. He is deep water and I'm the ever-weakening swimmer. He's the shark and I'm the oblivious surfer. He's the predator, I'll be the prey for the rest of my fucking life. So whatever he's promised to do to help, it's most likely a lie, and for the next several meals I'll be using the unbreakable dishes and feeding the boys in shifts, because even though Joel promised to do a little crisis counseling on the fly with Loch and Ben and Caleb together, well, I don't buy his insistence that my brain exists as if it was indeed born yesterday. I don't think it's fair to be excused for the things I do but I don't exactly do them on purpose either. I don't know what it is. Joel says he knows, and that's the important part.

I somehow gave control of my head back to him. I don't know if that's any smarter but at this point it doesn't seem any dumber.

Sunday, 6 July 2014

(If electrocution didn't kill me, the abject humiliation will.)

In the picture I look as if I'm already dead. Stark naked, tangled in quilts, tied up quite neatly, hands behind my back, ribbon looped around my neck so my hands are almost between my shoulder blades. I am facedown. I am waiting for him to come back.

He must have taken that photo as he returned to the room with a fresh drink.

He sent it to everyone on the point.

The more I fight
The more I work
The more I dig into the dirt
To be fed up
To be let down
To somehow turn it all around

But then fate knocks me to my knees
And sets new heights beyond my reach
Below the earth
Below concrete
The whole world shackled to my feet
Caleb is playing songs I adore on a loop. He's in jeans and a waffleknit tee with a beer in hand. Hasn't shaved. Invited me down to the boat for pizza and music. I went and we hung out in chairs until it got very cold and then we went into the saloon and he turned on the fireplace before switching us from beer to brandy.

Yup. Let's mix alcohol at eight-five pounds. He's a hundred and eight-five pounds. He won't even notice but I defer and tell him to have mine, that I'd rather switch to water.

He looks irritated. Your invisible babysitters are starting to piss me off. 

It's my choice to drink or not. 

If there were no recourse for you, you'd be shitfaced and in my bed by now. Instead you're on your best behavior. And that's bullshit. You're either free to do what you want, or you're not. Which is it?

I'm fine with keeping you company occasionally. This has nothing to do with anything else or anyone in particular. I'm here because I want to be here. I take the glass and drink the brandy. It burns.

What would you like to do?

(Don't ask me that, Jesus. No one ever learns.)

He smiles.

At four in the morning I'm in the waffleknit tee and nothing else, sitting on the floor in a blanket eating toast with cheese. He smiles wider still, hair messed up, barechested and fucking brutally magnificent, drinking yet another brandy, and I adjust my arm where he's bitten the inside of my elbow so it doesn't hurt so much and he tells me I'm so beautiful it's criminal. He tells me if I fought less he wouldn't have to tie me down, wouldn't have to bite right through, wouldn't have to be so harsh, so strong, but that smile tells me different. Then the smile disappears and he says he'll make it up to me and he says,

I love you. 

I shake my head and finish my toast.  He passes me his drink and I finish it. Fuck it. We've passed the point of no return. I know this place like the back of my hand. Or at least I did. There are teeth marks there too now. It looks so alien and new.


I find my things and return to the house as the sun comes up. Ben sits quietly at the island staring into a long-finished cup of tea. He doesn't say a word as I walk right past him, not until I take the first step upstairs and he says,

You shouldn't be there without me. He can't deal with this.

I don't reply, I just head up the steps. Loch is sitting on the edge of the still-made bed. No one has slept. He looks up at me, dark rings under his eyes.

 If this is payback then, Peanut, you win. I don't know what to do but just stop. Stop going there. 

I show him my arm, I know. 

You know but you never learn. How do I teach you this part? He frowns at my arm, inspecting it. His blood rolls in a slow boil, I feel it through his skin when he touches me.

You can't. 

I have to or we're not going to make it. I won't survive this. You definitely won't survive this.

We have to. 

What if we don't? 

Then everything just stops. That's what death is.

No regret?

Oh, so much regret, Locket. 

Then change this. Do something different.

I don't know how.

I did everything all wrong with you and I'm sorry. I'm sorry, Bridget for all of this. 

Don't say that. You're perfect. 

I wish I was. If I was I'd know a way to stop this. If I was so perfect we wouldn't be in this fucking mess for life, now, would we?

Friday, 4 July 2014

Conversations with Ben.

I walk into the kitchen just as Ben, PJ, Danny and Duncan are bringing bags?

I look at PJ. I didn't give you the list yet.

PJ laughs. This is for dinner tonight. Ben wants to make it special for the fourth. 

(Ben is American. I'm sorry it's true.)

What did you get? 

Ben says we're going to barbecue and he pulls out some ribs from the first bag. Ben is supposed to be watching his diet because his cholesterol is creeping up. His liver is usually angry. Basically all of his things, well, he treats them poorly. I coddle the parts I can, but you know. It's tough. Or maybe I should say it's hard. LOL

Ah! Ribs, yum! I say.

Then he just keeps going.







What the fuck, Ben. Burgers, too?

And also pork chops. 

Wow! Did you leave any meat in the store?

No. Because...because freedom, Bridget. Today I'm free to eat all the meat. All of it. And you can't stop me.
(This is this, minus the rose-colored sea glass.)

Strung out and washed up, my tank top hangs off my bony shoulders as I buy two cokes to give us some sugar energy, bridging the gap between the two evening shows and when we can get to the pub and split a whiskey poured over a slow dance. We haven't loved each other the right way for years, we're just mutual parasites trying to suck the nostalgia from each other, reliving the innocent days of lights and excitement, that weird bubbly half-choked feeling that rises in your throat just before the floor drops out from under you on one of the screamer rides.

Fucking tattooed freaks, the man behind the counter mutters as I count out change. I nod and smile. Recognition. But he has already scooped my dirty American dimes off the counter and turned away. The Freak show is a nineties washed-up reflection of the glory days, a victim of its own success. People are too horrified to come now, they don't wish their curiosities to be turned transparent. We make them so uncomfortable.

I resolve never to be like them. The Averages, the Rubes.

I pass one of the midgets. Simon? I think. We don't use real names here. He makes me feel huge even though he's almost as tall as I am. He nods and begins to deal his charm on me. We're fairly new so we've kept to ourselves thus far. I'm alone more than ever as Loch continues to work around the clock making bank and when he's not working he's high until he's low and asleep. We're hanging by a thread.

I hear you used to be the wire walker on the Steadmann outfit a few years back. What are you doing slumming with us?

I was underage. We were driven out. 

Cut your losses then?


Did you adapt to the fire show? How did that come about?

We always did it on the side. Some shows are slow to settle up so we busked and did some underground stuff that didn't work out. I like the fire though. 

Can't forget about it if you're still here. 

I know it. 

Your... friend. He worries about you.

Not anymore he doesn't. 

Don't bet any money on that color, Doll. He does. He just can't get out of his own way to do anything about it right this minute. So you watch yourself. This is no place for a girl like you. 

He went inside the tent and I walked back to the room. Loch is still sleeping. He doesn't even know I left. I put the lukewarm cokes on top of the broken television and lock myself in the bathroom. The shower is only marginally warmer than the drinks but I stand there forever staring at chipped tiles and trying to be brave. I came this far, the least I can do is play the game one more time.

Thursday, 3 July 2014


I am awake
I am alive
I woke up this morning freezing cold, alone in the big bed upstairs with the windows thrown wide, the clouds grey in the morning sky and Ben's big Grado (shameless plug, don't worry this isn't a sponsored post but I would whore for those people if they gave me my own pair) headphones on my head. Transmissions played in a loop and I lay there for another three listens-through before I even opened my eyes.

Antigravity. Telescope. Seriously. Halo.

(You can stream it here.)

I could think of very few better ways to wake up, and you would know what those are as well as I do but instead I get to adore the second outer spaced-themed album by a band I love in a single season. How lucky am I?

When I was a little kid there were still nine planets in our solar system. Lochlan taught me their names patiently. I later wrote those names on a test for Grade 3 when asked to list the ten provinces and Lochlan laughed when I told him the teacher called my parents and jokingly said I was a real space cadet in class. He told me I should pay attention and it became our first fight, at eight years old and thirteen respectively. He was already in Junior High and told me things are important.

I stamped my foot and indignantly yelled back that I do pay attention to the important things. I pay attention to him.

Pluto was declassified as a planet in 2006 and I figure that's right around when everything started to go wrong but Loch just shakes his head and says no, that it was the beginning of events that led us to now where things are finally beginning to go right.

But then Caleb sends me a message and it cuts the music out long enough to play my ringtone and I look and it's a threat of sexual violence if I don't take down any entry on this page that references his sex life where it excludes myself.

Somehow the Devil has forgotten that to me, being told I'm going to be set on fire and then fucked to death isn't anything more than foreplay these days. He needs to try harder.

Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Oh, I fucking KNEW IT. Caleb never slept with Luke. The whole thing was a big misunderstanding left standing, as it were, to cover something else.

I don't know why I'm telling you. I guess I like it when I'm smart enough not to be duped by the Devil. It doesn't happen much but when it does I like to mark the occasion.

Princess projectile.

This morning out back midway through coffee and banana bread, Lochlan asks me about the tides. I point out high is just now but maybe we can go down to the beach after lunch.

Then he says while staring at his phone,

Oh! There's an update. Want me to do yours too?

I hand my phone over and not three seconds later Ben hauls me up over his shoulder and goes running for the cliff where he yells Fore! and throws me into outer space but instead of landing among the stars I land among the starfish. Godammit.

I need to learn.

Tuesday, 1 July 2014

It wasn't the fear that gave me the thrill, it was his confidence in me.

Loch has been sent up. The music's been on a loop for upwards of six minutes. Too long. They wait for a signal from me to show that I'm ready but it didn't come. The crowd is getting restless. The performers are restless. The show is now delayed slightly and that results in a percentage lost from lingering merchandise and snack purchases on the way out as people rush away instead, having expected the show to end at a certain time. The walkarounds will want more money because instead of sitting outside in the shade having beer they have to engage the rubes for longer. The whole thing gets harder and I can't give that signal.

Breathe, Peanut. No different from in practice. 

Trying. My chest hurts. 

A deep slow breath then. He holds his lips against my forehead. I'm going to be on the other side. Just come to me. Don't do anything else. Just come to me. See you in a few minutes, baby. 

He turns and leaves and I watch the top of his head far below me as he makes his way around the outer ring. Then he disappears and I take four long, slow breaths before he reappears on the platform across the tent. He motions for me to come to him and he smiles and I think I would do anything for that smile. I know if I fall he'll jump and hit the net before I do. We tested it in practice. He is unearthly. He is Peter Pan.

I feel the crowd thrumming now as I give the signal, an electric murmur in the darkness, blown away into breathless silence as the lights are switched on and I am temporarily blinded from below. My sweet smile is fixed in place already. I take my first step and the roar from the crowd is unbelievable. Loch holds his arms out, eyes glossy, stupid proud grin splitting his head in half. I don't watch the wire, I just focus on balance and I move steadily, slowly. A weird grace that comes out of nowhere as I walk across our inside sky. I can't even walk down the sidewalk while chewing gum without tripping in real life but this is not real life, not by any stretch of your imagination or mine.

The grin is closer now, brighter than the lights.

When I reach him, Lochlan will have the biggest cheer for me. He is magical. He is safe. I touch him and his roar deafens my world.