there’s a leak somewhere (chapter 28)

(image courtesy NIcky Reynolds)

For those who have not been following along, this is chapter 28 of my novel, What Would Water Do, which was inspired by the birth of my second daughter and Kate Chopin’s Awakening, a story about a woman torn between her own desires and what society expects from her.

To start at the beginning, click here and scroll down.  

Almost as an afterthought and before she can stop herself, Drew picks up the phone and dials her father.  He answers on the sixth ring.  

“Hi, it’s me.”  She’s fresh from the shower, sitting at Katherine Lillien’s well-lit mirror, inspecting her pores in a retractable magnifying mirror.  “How’s everything?”

“Oh, you know.  Just the same.”  She can see it all without closing her eyes:  dark corners of the garage furred with cobwebs, metal shelves stacked with mildewed boxes, tools hanging in their outlined spots on the pegboard, humid air thick with dust and turpentine and gasoline and him, perched on the worktable stool in his graying undershirt and boxers like a pale, spindly spider.  He says, “Actually, I’m going through some old boxes.”

“That’s good.  Out with the old, in with the new.”  She’s waiting for him to ask so she can tell him about her plans for the day, how she will attend the premiere of the film she wrote, red carpet and all, how she will see her name listed in the writing credits on a wide screen, but he always gets to talk first in their conversations–he’s the father, after all, there’s that unspoken hierarchy of importance, so she asks, “Find anything good?”

“Just a bunch of old junk.”


A large portion of this chapter has been deleted.

To read more, contact me and we can discuss publication. (!)

About Anna Fonté

Girl in the Hat, aka Anna Fonté, is an author who writes about invisibility, outsider status, everyday monsters, and her attempts to befriend the neighborhood crows. The things she writes want you to look at them.


  1. Holy shit. I keep meaning to go back to where I left off, but I couldn’t help but read this one. Forgive me for reading it out of order, but I remember the chapter near the beginning about Drew and her mother, and I just became mesmerized. I felt for Drew as a little girl and I feel for her now stranded with this news on such a special night.

    Not being listened to is such an awful thing. I want to hate him for not waiting.

    • Oh, god. Novels suck. What if I took you this far just to let you down? I really don’t want to let you down. But I also want you to tell me the truth. Thank you so much for reading.

  2. Oh poor Drew! On the day of the premiere?!

  3. elma

    Say on, say later, silent for a long time what is the best solution …. we act according to what we are and think in the place of those who are also affected and might react differently.
    Unfortunately these things do exist around us. I know an old woman close to my family who does not know that his son died of cancer 2 years ago and still wonders why his son did not visit her. Her daughter and another son were afraid to tell her the truth and now they do not know how to tell her.
    Maybe they are afraid of losing their mother or of being hated by her to do not telling it at the right time.

    • We all want to tell stories sometimes, don’t we? Sometimes they’re lies and sometimes they’re just alternate realities. Went away=died, for all intents and purposes, I guess. But the reckoning can be murder.

  4. 2&4&12B&24 9 27C 26B 18A 14B 22 12A 18B 26A 20B&7&16A&16B
    14A 15A&15B 11 23C 3B 3A 19A&19B 28&13&27A&23A&23B&21A&21B
    20A 6 10 21C 25A&25B&8&17A&17B&5&1 – On this night? Was he trying
    to ruin things for his daubter? – but then he only mentioned the photo graphs
    and she made him mention the rest. The revelation that it was sucide is a little
    dissapointing, I was wondering if Mae would turn out to be her sister or something,
    or Drew’s mother would turn up to thwart the characteres at some crucial moment
    – any who I’de watch the sucides from now on, too many might start to look silly.

  5. Still – you left room for something really big
    with the lost sucide note – what could it have
    said? Perhaps something really telling – like
    a secret affair?

  6. Aaah. What an excellent idea. 🙂 wish I thought of that myself. Or perhaps I should not mention a note at all. Perhaps it teases too much.

  7. So you gonna put away the guns you
    don’t plan on shooting? Someone else
    may have thought of it but it’s still your
    book – I just like to draw your attention
    to things are expandable – an undecided
    ending is a flexible one – unless you
    have already decided. 🙂

    Though if something is relivant to the
    plot – there is no such thing as too
    much teasing 😉

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