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That One Wednesday by Ray Printer Friendly

Stop it, he goes, and I just laugh a hateful laugh and run my arm across another table, knocking every damn thing onto the floor. It feels good, you have no idea.

Did that help, he asks. Does that make you feel better.

I'd kill everything about you if I could, I tell him. I'd kill myself if I was the only thing left on this planet that had a memory of you.

You hate me, he asks.

Nope, I tell him, and I grab the wine glass from the counter and I break it and I push it into my palm until I have a garden of red bulbs growing up from the skin.

He goes, Kendra.

Don't call me that. Don't you fuckin call me that, you fuckin bastard.

What do you want me to call you then, he asks.

Call me Mellow Yellow, or Janet Clementine.

I don't want you to hurt yourself, he says, I just want you to be safe.

And I just want you to fuckin die, so we're both out of luck.

In the mirror, I see what might be me. Crazy chick, bugfuck crazy, waving a bloody stump of a wine glass around, laughing through tears, screaming through laughter. I hate her so much, whoever she is. Almost as much as I hate him for asking about my meds.

He tries to say something, something about keeping me safe, but I'm busy breaking the could-be me into triangles of shiny nothing.

And then he's on me, he's crying, bawling his fuckin eyeballs out, prolly gettin snot all in my hair, and he's going, Jesus Ken, what happened? What happened to you, how did we get here.

You told me you'd keep me safe, I tell him. Remember that?

Yeah. Yeah, I remember.

By the time you made that promise, it was already too late, I tell him. Hey, I go, hey, what do you think it would be like if you never had a sister? And before he can answer, I shove the jagged edge of the wine glass stem against the flesh of my wrist.

But instead of tearing into me, instead of spraying blood, instead of showing me blackness, the glass just stays there, barely pressed against my skin, a too-big hand wrapped around it.

It moves away and I watch it, and I cry and I call him names, but I never take my eyes off it. This tiny crunch sound, you can barely hear it over the sound of the stereo. The blood drips from his fist, and then he drops the dead glass onto the carpet and his bloody hand brushes my hair away from my ear and he says

It doesn't matter, because I do have a sister, and I love her very much, and I would never lie to her.

I hate his voice because it's filled with tears, and I hate his voice even more because it's filled with love.


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