Tuesday, January 11, 2011


229 – blotches

“…happy birthday to you!”

I blew out the candles without stopping for a wish and, laughing, reached for a knife to cut the cake. I stretched out a plate to James, but he wasn’t looking. His eyes were caught on my sister’s hair. I set the plate down and kept cutting. This had happened before with other guys, and now it was happening again.

As the birthday girl, I really should have been the one getting drunk, but at the end of the night James was tipsy and I was sober, so I drove him home.

“Your sister’s hot,” he shouted over the music.

“I know,” I said, but I don’t think he heard me.

“Not even hot. She’s beautiful,” he screamed. I turned off the radio.

“You don’t want to get involved with her,” I told him.

“Why not?”

“She’s a psychic. She reads your future in, like, blotches of coffee you spill on the newspaper. I don’t know, she’s crazy.”

“That sounds cool,” he said. I glanced over at him. His eyes were red and glassy and the blinking yellow of the stoplight played on his face like a candle flickering. “That sounds really cool.”


A month later he knocked on my door looking five years older. “Your sister’s crazy,” he said. “She told me all this terrible shit. Freaked me out.”

“She does that,” I said.

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