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A Chapter by Imara
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We are introduced to our main characters :)

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I remember seeing her for the first time on the sidewalk outside my school. She didn’t have a car, she wasn’t waiting for anyone that I could see. She was just there. Half asleep, opening her eye every couple of seconds to see if anything had changed in the five seconds she had wandered off the the land of dreams. “Um...” I started, she rolled one big brown puppy eye towards me. “I’ll let you know when the bus comes. I’m waiting for it too.”

“Oh.” She smiled, her teeth a faded dull white. “I’m not waiting for the bus.”

“Then what are you here for?” I dared.

She thought for a second, apparently she had forgotten why she was there. “I don’t know.” She giggled at my shocked expression. I took another look at her. An army green jacket tied around her waist, black cargo capris, a clearly recycled purple and yellow shirt. Upon her dread lock hair was a dark green beanie. Her face was brown, both from her natural complexion but also from dirt; lots of it.  Her smell alone convinced me that I was right; she was homeless.

A wash of ice cold water flushed through my stomach, she couldn’t have been much older than me. “Well then how did you get here?”

Again she had to think, “I think I took the bus.”

“Then you should probably take it  home.” I had hoped that her response would destroy my hunch that she didn’t really have a home to return to but she only informed me that she didn’t have bus fare which did nothing to confirm or deny my hypothesis.   “If you don’t have bus fare how did you get here?”

She shrugged, “I don’t know.” I shook my head, even then I knew she was going to be an exhausting person.

She went back to sleep, or her half sleep, and about ten minutes later I tapped her lightly. I don’t know what I was thinking but I woke her, “Come on, I’ll pay for your bus.”

She smiled, “Really?”

“Yea I have a bus pass, so don’t worry about it.” I helped her up. Her hand was dry and dirty, I sneakily whipped it on my skirt as the bus rolled to a stop. “So what’s your name?” I asked taking a seat.

“Grace.” She smiled, “What’s your name?”

“I’m Robin. Nice to meet you.”

“Ditto.” We were quiet for a few stops, “You’re in a uniform, do you go to a catholic school?”

“Yes but I’m not catholic.”

She laughed, “Really? Then what are you doing there?”

“Well my family is catholic.”

“And you are?”

“Questioning.” For some reason we both found this amusing and we giggled, “What about you?”

“I’m Slacker.” She laughed at my confused face, “It’s a religion I made up. Well, I don’t know if you’d call it a religion because there isn’t really a god but then there really isn’t. I just try to live my life taking things as they come and not ever working.”

I laughed this time, “Doesn’t sound very productive.”

“That’s the point.”

We looked at each other and laughed, I knew then that she was a good person. Sometimes you can just tell when someone is a good person or not, and I knew Grace was a good person.  I looked at her wrists and blinked there were scars, and bracelets. “Oh you like Queen?”

“Hell yea I do.” She said with a big grin.

“What’s your favorite song?”

“Don’t stop me now!” She looked at me with mischievous eyes and sang a line, testing me. I sang the next line, back and forth we went until we got to the chorus where we sang off key, not harmonizing, giggling but together. “What’s your favorite song?”

“Another one bites the dust.”

“Mainstream.” She teased.

“Death to all the hipster scum,” I said andglanced out the window, “It’s an awesome song, and it’s the first song I learned on the bass.”

“You play?”

“Bass and guitar.” I smiled.

“What kind do you have?”

“A red one? I don’t know types like that really.” I said awkwardly. I felt really stupid for some reason like I should have known that like it was common knowledge.

She laughed, “What kind of music do you play?”

I told her that I liked to play jazz and pop but in school we played more classical pieces with straight beats. We were quiet for a while, “Do you play anything?”

“Saxophone and piano,”

“Really? Do you own or rent?”

“Own of course. Renting is gross.” She was lying, I knew she was but I decided not to call her out on it.

“When is your stop?”

“I don’t know.”

I smiled gently, and looked out the window. “My stop is next, you want to come over and see my guitar. You can tell me what kind it is besides being a red one.”

She gave me a look, confused. “Really?”

“Yea why not, I have snacks.” She didn’t answer me only looked out the window. I remained silent too and at my stop I stood up just as quiet.  At first I didn’t hear her behind me but when I stepped off the bus I knew she was there, I smelled her.

I texted my mom asking if she was home, I silently prayed to whoever is up there that she wasn’t. I led her down the overly clean streets and down the rows of evenly spaced one story houses, trees and lawns to a large brick apartment building. I led her up to the second story to my apartment, 2D.  Nervous, I opened up the door, “Mom?”

No reply.

We entered, “Welcome to my house. Do you want something to eat?”

Again she looked at me skeptically but this time replied, “What do you have?”

“That is an excellent question.” I smiled, “Yogurt, granola bars, we have some bagels left not sure on our crème cheese levels though.”

“Jeez,” She laughed, “With this much money you’d think that you guys could afford some real food. Don’t tell me you’re vegan.”

“Do you want something or don’t you?”

“How about we go to the store and buy some good stuff?”

“There’s nothing within walking distance really.” I said and shifted uncomfortably. I really wasn’t allowed to leave the house, I wasn’t supposed to bring anyone home either. “Besides I thought you wanted to see my bass and guitar. Come on, my room is  upstairs.”

She spent a few minutes looking around my boxy room, with its dirty white carpet, my single person bed, big  closet opposite of my one window that faced the street outside and led to the fire escape. She smiled, “Sadly your guitars aren’t really special.”

“Dang I thought it’d end up being some really famous guitar that people would pay me to see, then I’d get rich from that.”

She laughed, “Tough luck.” More silence, “Are you any good?”

“I think so, I mean I’m not great or anything but I can play my band music?” I pushed an awkward laugh.

“Can I hear you play?”

I shrugged and picked up my guitar. “What do you want me to play?”

“Anything. Solo for me, the fanciest thing that you can.”

I smiled and let my fingers fly, I started out slow and bluesey but then turned it into a hard rock solo. “It sounds better hooked up to the amp.”

We smiled at each other for awhile, “You not half bad, you ever play in a real band?”

I laughed, “Like once when I was little, and it lasted about two days.” There was more silence, “Are you in  a band?”

“Yea, actually we’re playing this Friday.”

“Oh that’s so cool!”

“You wanna come play with us, our normal bassist is out, he got a concussion last weekend.”

“Oh wow, that scary how he manage that?”

She paused and thought it over, “I don’t know. So you wanna play with us?”

“Sure, when and where?”

“Friday, show starts about 11 and I don’t know when it’ll end usually around 3a.m. It’s at this club called the Blue Tigress. I’ll pick you up around 10 so we have time to warm up.”

I thought about it, “Eh...” I got hit in the face with her smell. Sweet and bitter all at once with smokey smell. I couldn’t figure it out. Was she homeless or not, “That’s late. I don’t think my parents would let me, plus it’s at a club...”

“Don’t tell them.” She said like it was so simple. “We really need you, if we don’t play thi gig we don’t get paid. My friends really need this money, we’re saving up for a trip to Vegas.”

How could a homeless person be saving up, maybe her friends weren’t homeless. I looked at her again, she was lying. I could tell by the way she was playing with her hair, I read in a book once that when you lie you tend to touch your face. She was homeless and was just too proud to admit it. What was I supposed to do, this was so weird. I’d never snuck out before. “Say I did say yes, like, how would I get out?”

I got jumpy and excited, water rushed down my stomach. I looked out my window to see if my mom would come home and catch me in the crime. She looked around the room, “Go down the fire escape, I’ll be there for you.”

Her brown eyes lit up and she grinned at me, “Eh...”

“Please.” She begged.

I bit my lip, “Um...”

She smiled, “Here, take my phone number. You don’t have to give me an answer right now.”

I let out a breath and put her number in my phone. “Thanks.”

She giggled, “You’ve never snuck out before?”

“No.” I don’t know why I felt so ashamed admitting this to her but I did.

She laughed, “Hey, I remember the first time that I snuck out. I got caught by the police and had to sneak out of the station to get back home.”

I looked at her in disbelief which caused us both to laugh. “Seriously?”

“Yup. Honest, I snuck under the table and had to go out the front door. Security wasn’t too tight.” It wasn’t really funny but we laughed anyways.

I brought up some snacks, which she made fun of but ate anyways. “My mom is going to be coming home soon, I’m not supposed to have guests over without permission.”

She winked at me and took a bagel. “Yknow Lucy, you’re not bad.” She laughed at my confused look, “Thanks for the ride. See you around.”



© 2013 Imara



Author's Note

Imara
Do you like the characters? Overall thoughts? Thanks for reading.

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Featured Review

They seem like two likable characters, each with their own obvious set of issues, but honestly I'd get worn out on the story fast unless more developed and quickly. But don't be discouraged, that could partially be my reading preferences. I do agree with Andres, this chapter is very dialogue driven and there's not a lot of other content to build the story. That makes me feel like pieces are missing. But your writing overall is strong. You have great imagery and descriptive skills. And your technical command is impressive. This coming from a girl who has two advanced degrees and has read a LOT of papers :)

Posted 4 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Imara

4 Years Ago

Oh thank you for your read and review, I actually found this true after taking a fews days away from.. read more



Reviews

They seem like two likable characters, each with their own obvious set of issues, but honestly I'd get worn out on the story fast unless more developed and quickly. But don't be discouraged, that could partially be my reading preferences. I do agree with Andres, this chapter is very dialogue driven and there's not a lot of other content to build the story. That makes me feel like pieces are missing. But your writing overall is strong. You have great imagery and descriptive skills. And your technical command is impressive. This coming from a girl who has two advanced degrees and has read a LOT of papers :)

Posted 4 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Imara

4 Years Ago

Oh thank you for your read and review, I actually found this true after taking a fews days away from.. read more
It's very dialogue driven (for lack of a better term) and you don't really get into the thoughts of Robin, which would have been nice. I feel like it's missing something that I can't point out, maybe it's the awkwardness you feel in the entire chapter. The only thing I could think of is to take a break in the dialogue.

Posted 4 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Imara

4 Years Ago

I wrote this very spur of the moment. It's a very awkward meeting but you're right it doesn't flow t.. read more

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Added on May 31, 2013
Last Updated on May 31, 2013


Author

Imara
Imara

Cranston, RI



About
My Name is Imara, if you couldn't already tell, I'm currently in High school and completly unsure what to do with my life. I've been to a few places in America, which I try to incorporate into my writ.. more..

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