This flash fiction piece was inspired by a writing prompt from the online journal, Typishly. Start your story with the first sentence, “She lived in a dented silver trailer.”
And, it’s freezing here in New Orleans, I watched a Law and Order SVU Baby it’s Cold Outside Marathon, and I’m procrastinating on some of my other writing projects.
Check out Typishly, you might want to try some of their writing prompts:
Fiction Copyright © 2017 by Sara Jacobelli
Rafael with the Green Eyes
She lived in a dented silver trailer. Mom found the trailer for rent in the classifieds section of the free weekly paper. Insisted Bernice move in. The rent was cheap; Bernice’s SSI checks would cover the rent and utilities. Food stamps would take care of groceries. I paid her cable and internet bill. Figured the TV and computer would calm her down. Mom was happy with her cats and her shaggy dog and her library books and her volunteer work and didn’t want Bernice living with her. Bernice with her temper. Her odd ways. Smoking and staring at the wall.
It was my sisterly duty to visit once a week, bring her Chinese for lunch. Bernice never liked going to restaurants, rooms full of people made her nervous.
She had the TV on with the sound off and sat typing furiously on her laptop. She was wearing her purple bathrobe. I plopped the cartons of food on the cluttered kitchen table.
She lit a cigarette. “I gotta finish this. He answered my tweet.”
“Rafael. From the TV show. The one with the green eyes.”
“Bernice. You do know those famous people don’t answer their own tweets? Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, all that crap. They pay people to do that. Secretaries or college students, interns. They don’t answer the five million tweets they get from lovesick fans.” I rooted around in the kitchen, looking for clean plates. “You taking your meds?”
She kept typing. “Not true. He answered me. I think I’ll visit him.” She stopped typing and took a deep breath. She closed her eyes. She was counting. One Mississippi. Two Mississippi. Three Mississippi. Some trick one of her counselors taught her.
“Just fucking eat something. Do you want the chopsticks or the fork?”
She stubbed out her cigarette, grabbed a dirty fork from the sink and ate her Kung Pao Shrimp straight from the carton. “I’m going to Los Angeles. To meet him, in person. We have.” She closed her eyes for a few seconds. “We have a connection.”
“Right. A connection with some guy on TV, who’s playing a CHARACTER, he’s ACTING. You’re going to LA with no money—to stalk some poor fucking guy. And get arrested. Remember the LAST TIME you thought you had a fucking connection with someone?”
She grabbed the remote and turned the sound on. “You have to go now. The Law and Order marathon is starting.
“That’s the guy? The one who plays the DA?”
“His name’s Rafael.” Bernice closed her eyes. Counting again. “He answered my tweet. We. Have. A. Connection.”
She opened her eyes, ran her fingers through her hair. She still had that thick shiny red hair, red with natural blonde highlights. When we were kids, she was the pretty one. The smart one. The best speller. The best singer. The best swimmer. The fastest runner. I used to kneel by my bed at night, praying that one day, everyone would like me more than Bernice. When we started high school she changed. Something happened.
I touched her hair. I was the only one who could still touch her. “I don’t think you should go to Los Angeles. I think you should leave this man alone. This man has his own life. Just leave him alone. OK? Bernie? Agreed?”
“I’ll talk to you during the commercial.”
“I gotta admit. He’s kinda cute.”
“Isn’t he? That voice. And those eyes. Those green eyes.”