Fiction Friday: (On Sunday at 10pm). Heat Wave

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By Leslie Lindsay

 

What a week!  I don’t know where my brain has been , but it sure hasn’t been on my blog.  Thanks for being patient with me.  Here’s an excerpt from my novel-in-progress.  So, it’s not Friday anymore and in about 12 hours, I will be updating this again…but well, I tried.  [Remember, this is orginal work]

Chicagoland was in the midst of a dry spell.  Hot, oppressive heat clung to the horizon.  Sweat dripped, pooling in the small of my back.  I needed a shower.  I undressed and stood beneath the cool spray in the shower, tipped my head back and closed my eyes.  Even with the air conditioning on, I couldn’t get comfortable.  I traced my finger on the glass doors of the shower stall.  Joseph Douglas Munroe.  McKenna Clare.  Madison Grace. 

           When you doodle someone else’s name, it means you want to get to know them more. 

            Dr.  Joseph Douglas Munroe.  Dr. and Mrs. Munroe. 

            Steven Lawrence Kesselhoff.  I quickly wiped his name away with a swipe of my hand. 

           After turning off the shower, toweling off, and stepping out, I surveyed myself in the mirror.  I reached down and pinched a chunk of flabby skin circling my waist.  Loose skin.  Two kids will do that. If you can pinch an inch…I shook the voice away.  I had too much skin on my body. 

        I glanced to the bedroom door to make sure I was still alone.  Nothing worse than Joe walking in, leering at me when I am not at top form. He would never say anything negative – he wasn’t that kind of guy.   But I was alone.  I surveyed my profile.  My chin held more bulk than I cared to admit, my shoulders had thickened and my stomach protruded.  I tucked in my pelvis, pointing my tailbone down like my aerobics instructor had taught me.  Immediately, I looked taller, straighter.  And then I smiled, pressing my rounded breasts out and up slightly.  The veins across my chest crisscrossed, rivers of blue snaking across my body like a roadmap going nowhere.  I cupped my breasts with my hands, their weight surprisingly heavy. A new band of sweat developed under them.  I bit my lower lip.  I could still be sexy, couldn’t I? 

           I shook my head.  The towel I had twisted into a turban loosened, threatening to tumble to the floor.  I reached up to secure it, but on second thought, let it fall.  My wet hair jumbled on my head.  I raked my fingers through it, trying to tame the ringlets developing from the moisture.   Steve used to say my hair would look good shorter, “Why don’t you cut it?  I think girls look kind of sexy with short hair.”  I dismissed him, a wave of the hand and an eyeroll.  No one had short hair in college unless they were a lesbian.

         But as I got older, I admired women with short hair.  It seemed sophisticated.  Cute.  Easy.  But not sexy.  Definitely not sexy. 

         I wondered what Steve would say now?  Would the short hair somehow make up for the extra pounds?  Would he still find me sexy?

          Steve.

          My fingers, sweaty with humidity spread like wings amongst my chest. My nipples flattened from the heat and lack of stimulation. 

 

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