Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Holly Holly oxen free

Saturday, November 26, 2005, 8:30am
Steve's house

My phone rings. It's Holly.


"Hey! I'm coming over!"

"What? Why?"

"Why, you don't want me coming over?"

Ever since I nailed Holly, she's called from time to time. Occasionally she's invited me over, but I've always refused. I got enough shit the first time I was with her.

Lately she's been calling more often. I thought it was just because she was excited about getting her grandmother's old Hyundai and her $7-an-hour job at the mall. But inviting herself over first thing in the morning seems odd.

"Holly, it's 8:30!"

"Yeah, right. You just don't want me coming over."

"That's not a good idea."

"I've only seen you twice since last year!"

"You remember what happened the last time we were together. Right?"

"My sister was spying on me!"

"Uh huh."

"I was talking to my girlfriend on the phone and she was listening next to the door!"

"It doesn't matter how she found out. I got a lot of shit for that, Holly."

"I'm sorry," she says, tearfully.

"Yeah, well I'm not going down that road again."

"Why not?" she demands.

"Holly, you're 17."

"I'm 18 in less than a month!"

"I'm with someone."


"None of your business, Holly!"

"Just tell me!"

"I gotta go."

"Don't hang up, Steve!"

"I gotta go!"

"Do not hang up!" she shreiks.


Bitch. I really hope she doesn't turn psycho.


My cell phone rings. Tim calling, says the readout screen.




"Are you ready to talk to me now?"

"Depends. Are you ready to be an adult?"

"Steve, you have to stop this defensiveness. I-"

"Tim, is your mother there? Is she standing next to you with cue cards? Why don't you just skip the middleman and put her on the phone?"

"She's not here, Steve."

"So she just gave you your script and left?"

"Steve, cut it out!"

"You got what you wanted. She got what she wanted. Is there anything else I can do for you?"

"I told you I didn't want to break up!" she says, exasperated.

"But we're moving too fast."


"What does that mean, Tim? You want to date me, but fuck every male in a five-mile radius?"


"Either you're in or you're out, Tim."

"Steve, we just need to slow it down. We were talking about moving in together!"

"In February. If everything worked out ok."

"That's like putting pressure on the relationship. It's like setting a deadline."

"You're not serious about this. You can't be."

"I am! Why would I be calling you-"

"If you're serious, you'll tell your mother to go straight to hell and live your life the way you want."

"You don't under-" she stops herself before the word is out.

"Go ahead, Tim. Say it."

"I'm always going to be close with my mother. Don't make me choose!"

"I'm not. I'm just going to make you be a grownup, and evidently you can't deal."

"This is the best I can do right now, Steve."

"That's not good enough."

Beep! goes my phone. Holly calling, it says.

Long pause. "I don't want to leave it like this."

"You just did."

"Fine. Bye, Steve."


I place the phone down on the table and it rings again, somehow seeming to vibrate harder and louder than it usually does.

Holly is coming unglued on me. It's a wonder this doesn't happen more often, with as much screwing around as I do.

I turn the phone off for a while as I do my errands. I turn it back on after lunch, and it's funny how the innocent message on the screen makes my stomach twinge with fear.

7 new messages, it says.