For Lizzy, there were three first kisses: one stolen, one lost, and one that counted, but she only kept one of them.
The first was during the summer before sixth grade. She was sitting under the skylight in a plane of sunlight watching a soap opera on television when her mother’s boyfriend used his key to let himself in. He got a beer from the kitchen and sat on the sofa beside her, sipping quietly. When the show broke for commercial he said he was going to teach her a very important lesson. He put his beer down on the coffee table without using a coaster, grabbed her shoulders with his big hands, and pushed his lips into hers. His mustache scratched, his breath was sour, his pores looked big enough to swallow her whole, and his tongue was a shock.
She stared up at the skylight and let the sun whittle her pupils to splinters while the soap opera’s tinny organ music rose and fell. Finally, he pulled back and squinted at her as if he were reading a fortune cookie. “So. What do you think?”
She wiped her mouth and blinked. She felt like someone had held her at gunpoint and rifled through her pockets. All she could see was the frame of burning yellow light. “I don’t know,” she said.
He laughed and punched her in the shoulder. “That’s right. You don’t know.” He gave her a dollar and sent her to the store where she bought candy and lip gloss.
The rest of this story is being held in a box in the basement. To set her free, contact me about publishing!*
After I wrote this, I wondered what I have against men. Really, nothing. I’m lucky to know and love some really wonderful men. Perhaps I was just reacting to recent events in politics?
Oh, well. Who knows. At least I got a story out of it.