It Happened One Night
It is my pleasure to introduce to you the highly anticipated Vivienne's POV! LOL! Tell me what you think :D
~ It's a Bad Way ~
The painful rhythm pounds on and on. My feet have fallen asleep, my wrists are surely bruising, and in between my legs is a sharp pain. Ouch! Ouch! Ouch! Stop! Stop! Stop!
No-no, I mustn't think like that, if I do I won't be able to stop myself from shouting at Him to get the fuck off. I don't know who He is, I don't even know His fucking name, but, hey, when do I ever know the clients? I should be used to this jagged, pressing feeling, but I'm not, perhaps I never will be. As His weight shifts, so I feel more of Him on top of me, my breathing comes to a halt. Panic. GET OFF! PLEASE GET THE FUCK OFF! The words bubble on my lips, in desperation I search around the room for some sign of hope. The window, the window is open. Just in case. I relax instantly, I am fine. I'm always fine – that's just the fucking problem.
Shit, I'm not making the sounds. If I don't make them Rodney gets pissed off and I have to go without food – again. I try to sound as pleased as I can, I must admit my acting is pretty spot-on. If only my drama teacher could see me now!
The feeling of alarm washes over me once more and I know I am close to my breaking point. I squeeze my already closed eyes tighter. Avoid eye-contact; love comes in at the eyes. Breathe, I must breathe. Calm, I must stay calm. Focus, I must focus. My brain is desperately trying to recover something to keep my mind off of this discomfort…
Think, I must think…
My name is Vivienne Price. I am eleven years old – so old I can't show you my age with my fingers anymore. I live in Lewiston, Montana with my mom, Pops, and G-ma. I like to play in the fields behind my house. I pretend I am a princess who is waiting for her rescuer to slay the evil warlock keeping me from my love. The squirrels annoy me with their dead, doll eyes. I throw nuts at them when they get too close to my sandcastles. I hate the color red. I love the color blue. I have three fish, they are all goldfish. I like school, I do well in school, I have fun in school. My mom is pretty, she looks like me. We have the same brown hair, but hers is shinier. She has brown eyes, mine are green. I like hers better. I can see when she's sad, I can see when she's happy, and I can see what makes her my mom when I look into her eyes. "Brown eyes can never lie", that's what Pops always says, at least. My eyes are green. I can hide behind my eyes, I can never show you when I'm sad, I can always lie…
I have become a night dweller. It feels like so long since I've last seen daylight. I've always preferred the morning to the evening sun – the colors are brighter, bluer and less rusty. It's a new dawn, the beginning of a new day filled with so many possibilities. My nights blur together, my days are often forgotten, and my life turns meaningless. I crave some sort of focus object, a calculus problem in need of solving, a sentence in need of translating, or a book in need of reading. I had always done so well in school, I had always enjoyed school – it is almost painful to now have to do without. I miss my deep conversations with teachers, the satisfaction in winning a debate, fuck I even miss the shitty cafeteria food!
Today was November 18th – exactly two months since I had left Lewiston. I had always hated it then – the empty fields, the narrow-minded people, the boring atmosphere – but now I would give anything to go back. I miss how the breeze would blow through the long grass in the golden sun that warmed the rich, brown earth. I miss the ever-present snow. I miss the winding rivers where Pops and I would fish – well Pops would fish and I would pick flowers in the valley's field. Fishing was always such a dumb concept to me, mainly because I wasn't allowed to talk. "Your voice'll frighten all the fish away!" Pops would yell in frustration. In retaliation I'd run to the water's edge and sing-shout with my face inches away from the waterline. Yes, I was not the ideal fisherman.
Sometimes I just close my eyes and pretend that I'm home. Pretend that I'm lying on my bouncy bed in my banana-colored room. It was the perfect color for the room because it would become illuminated by the sunlight. I had lace curtains that were made from the same material as my great-great grandma's wedding dress during the Depression. Vanilla-scented candles were always scattered everywhere. My mom would joke about how the smell of vanilla would become permanently embedded in my skin. I wish that were true so that I'd have the comforting scent of home with me everywhere I went. But it was not true and where I am now certainly does not smell like vanilla.
Cigarettes and dust are the two most distinctive odors in the apartment. The air is always thick with everyone's cologne and perfume. The air gets so dense that I practically die of suffocation my sleep. No matter how many times I light the candles or wash the sheets and curtains, the smell remains. It must be rooted in the carpeting and walls. Other strange smells, which are most likely from the various drugs used among the tenants, appear from time to time. There is, however, one lurking scent that can never be washed away – the smell of sex. I can't describe it, nor do I want to, but I know it when I sense it. Dirty, it makes you feel dirty. Perhaps I deserve to feel dirty – fuck I am dirty!
I used to be one those girls who didn't want to lose her precious v-card to just any dick that came along. I was more or less concerned about how embarrassed I'd feel with someone in between my legs. That special someone wouldn't have made me feel embarrassed, he would have made me feel loved and cherished and beautiful. Don't get me wrong, I've done my fair share of fooling around – but no one has been permitted to enter my "hidden treasure" and I have never touched "the key" to it. I used to be so goddamn nervous just before I'd make out with someone especially since they were the popular guys. Thanks to Jared Sax I had earned the reputation as "the girl with the sweetest mouth to taste" or whatever that meant. After that saying was attached to me I was never left unattended to at a party.
I liked the feeling of knowing guys thought I was pretty. I'm sure every girl does. I never tried to hide my face under pounds of makeup or show as much skin as possible because I thought that whoever would find me attractive would like me for the real me, not this plastic girl they had created in their heads. I wore what made me feel pretty, I cut my hair how I liked, and I was never one to fish for compliments because I just didn't care about what other people liked or didn't like about me. "Love yourself first," was my golden rule. Maybe it was my confidence and self-worth that made me more appealing to the boys at school, or maybe it was because I didn't vie for them twenty-four-seven. I wanted to be elegant and graceful and have boys look at me without trying to get their attention. I wanted to be one of those girls who just commanded a room without demanding it. I wanted to have presence.
I don't know when I changed from valuing to hating myself. I suppose I just began to realize that everyone was so much better off without me. Having presence did not make me the easiest person to live with. Stressing out about my four AP classes, being so nit-picky around the house, and pointing out all the flaws in my mom's boyfriends rather than their fine points, did not make me the best person to be around. I don't know how my mother survived seventeen years of me – her barrier from happiness.
So no matter how much I hate my life here in Seattle, I can't bring myself to go back home. Not now that I am tainted. I don't deserve a home. I don't deserve love. I don't deserve to be saved…
"It's called that evening buzzzz," Tammy hummed as she threw herself on my bed. She really was quite pretty when she wasn't so fucked up. I could tell it was more than a joint this time, maybe she'd taken a few hits from Sonya's pipe?
"You promised we'd get the laundry done! I've been wearing the same bra for five days!" I flashed the strap of my cheetah-print bra that made my tits look "fantabulous" as Tammy liked to say. She just rolled her bloodshot eyes and giggled.
"Stop nagging! We'll get the fuckin' clothes washed!" she rolled off the side of the bed, on her feet, and grabbed my hamper from the corner of our room. I would have taken her more seriously if she hadn't gasped at the sight of the overloaded basket and then burst into an uncontrollable fit of laughter.
"You're blitzed! Worst. Roommate. Ever!" I shouted at her. Her face turned into the perfect puppy-dog pout as she wrapped her thin (way too bony to be healthy, thin) arms around my neck.
"You're my slut! Never forget it," she kissed me on the cheek and then skipped to the doorway. "I'll talk to Mr. Sunshine about going out; you know how paranoid that mothafucka gets." With that she was gone.
Tammy was a sweetheart, complete bitch, and raging psycho when she was on something. This time it must have been an "upper". Every girl is different, every drug is different, and any girl high on any drug is different. Some girls would just cry, others would fight, most were just hunky-dory, and a few would get so dazed that they hardly knew you were there at all. I was glad I was one of the few who hadn't stooped so low, because once you cross that line you'll never get back on the other side completely the same. There would always be a yearning for that little moment of "Zen".
She was right about one thing; Rodney was not known to be lenient when it came to "free time". Especially with the new girls. I probably would be tethered to his side if it wasn't for the fact that Felicia joined us several nights ago. She was pretty and that meant big bucks for the Barter King.
"Because these shorts smell like dick! Dick, dick, dick!" I heard Tammy shouting.
She was really the only one of us girls who could yell at Rodney without fear of being punished. Once and a while I find myself thinking that he loves her. She wasn't given just any "client", only the best looking and highest paying for Tammy. She normally got what she wanted whether it was clothes, drugs, or me as her roommate. She was obsessed with me!
"You remind me of who I always wanted to be." She once whispered to me in the dead of night. Who the fuck would want to be me?
Anyways, Rodney was known for his flaring temper. He was usually all bark and no bite, but now and then someone would push the wrong button. He's hit a few girls – only with his hands and never more than two or three slaps – but it was enough to instill terror in me. He never hit me, usually because I was so compliant with everything. He looked at me like you would the runt of the litter, and it made me feel a little safer knowing I was in his good graces.
I was not disillusioned – I knew with him his heart was in his pocket. He loves all of us girls because he loves the money we bring him in. If I wasn't able to come up with my usual $2,500 a night, my ass would've been on the streets. I didn't need to give him another reason to want to kick me out. The police raid really shook Rodney, and the rest of us, up. He liked the fact that I "tasted illegal" but not when the cops gained word of a minor in a whore house. We were all so lucky that they found neither me nor any drugs. I wanted to be saved but not by the law.
"Come on down, Chickadee! We're going to the clothes pond!" Tammy screamed.
Maybe I shouldn't have pushed this; her head was clearly stuck in the clouds. Too late now. Besides, your wardrobe does smell like dick… a voice from faraway reasoned.
Downstairs showed little signs of the midday visitors who left a few hours ago. We always seemed to be working in shifts: wake up fuck, afternoon delight fuck, after dinner fuck, and midnight snack fuck. Rodney sat at his usual spot on the long, suede sofa – a king on his throne or, at least, he thought so. He didn't say anything to me as I walked past him towards the door, he didn't have to, the message was clear, be back before nightfall or face my wrath.
"The dickhead only gave me three dollars so it looks like we gotta go someplace cheap." Tammy rolled her eyes looking at our huge load.
"What else is new?"
Our usual laundry matt wasn't exactly the cream of the crop, but I'd take what I could get. The cheerful little bell dinged and Mr. Yang smiled his hellos and got us all set up. He was an adorable seventy-something-year-old with thick glasses that were far too large for his face. Tammy wasn't very good at the loading, or the unloading, or the folding, so I was used to doing everything myself with her just watching.
"Rodney told me he wants you to work tonight," she started, softly. I knew where this was going.
"I'll be fine, stop going all momma-bear on me," I laughed when I really felt like crying. I guess I had grown accustomed to not having to fuck every piece of shit that walked through the door.
"I wish you'd find some enjoyment out of it." Tammy always talked about how great sex was. She was always so shocked that it did nothing but disgust me. I was even more shocked that it didn't disgust her. I suppose one man's Heaven is another's purgatory.
"Me too." I mumbled. Just shut the fuck up and drop it! I wanted to shout, but I repressed those harsh words.
"Don't they ever…you know...touch you?" She asked quietly. She had already showed me the "trigger places", as she called them. She told me how they should "handle them" and how I should feel when they did.
"No, they grope me. Ok? They don't give a shit about my fucking pleasure." I did nothing to hide the distain in my voice this time. Might as well tell her how it is…
She wrapped her arms around my middle and squeezed me tight. "Don't leave me. I know it's bad, but you're my best friend," she sounded like she was about to cry.
"Maybe it'll get better," I whispered trying to make her feel better – trying to make myself feel better.
We stood there like that for a moment, she watched me as I stared at the wet mound of clothes spin round and round, mixing with foamy suds. After a few moments I sighed.
"Come on, let's walk around." I smiled.
Walking beside Tammy always made me feel so adolescent. She was a lot taller than me, her figure more pronounced, her skin a little rugged from tanning so much. She was twenty-five, so old yet so young. Sometimes she behaved like a five-year-old, at other times she was a wise old sage.
She had latched onto me so quickly that I felt like I had known her for years. She was the one who found me tired and hungry sitting on some park bench freezing my fucking ass off. She owned me from that moment on. The audience to your lowest point will always own you. She brought me back to the apartment and told me everything would be alright. She couldn't have been more wrong. I knew she didn't want me to be what she was, that wasn't her motivation to take care of me. I learned that much after…after my first time. I had hated her despite her pleas to forgive her for introducing me to this "lifestyle". The hate quickly faded and focused where it rightly belonged – on me.
I don't like to think about that night. So I don't. It's shoved in the back of my mind along with all the others and makes its routine appearance every so often.
We said nothing to one another as we walked down the block. Tammy was still a little a high off of God-knows-what and I was in no mood for conversation. My mind kept spinning round and round, just like the clothes in the washer. Who would I have to fuck tonight? Would it hurt more now that it had been a while since I'd done it last? Questions, scenarios, suggestions – they all swarmed like a hive of busy worker bees in my brain. I needed to calm down; I needed to regain my focus.
My name is Vivienne Price. I am twelve years old. I threw away all my Barbie dolls because the girls across the street laughed at such child's play. They try to wear makeup but it makes them look like Ronald McDonald, the thought makes me laugh. I'm still afraid of my basement, but I pretend like it doesn't bother me. I never want to be an explorer. The world has too many basements if you ask me. I really want a pet pig; they're actually very clean animals. My mom won't let me get one because she said we have no room for a pig. She's a liar. We have plenty of room. Whenever she says that, her brown eyes reveal her lie. My eyes expose nothing. Perhaps I am the greatest liar of them all…
We had circled the block and were now walking back towards the dry cleaners. How long had we been walking for? Was it time to switch loads? I didn't want to go back. The quicker we finished, the quicker we'd be returning to the apartment and the closer to my nightly companion would I be…
"Can I get a puff?" I asked. I usually liked to have the foul taste in my mouth when I felt especially low.
"Go for it!"
She allows enjoyed introducing me to harmful things: the apartment, the pimp, the cigarettes. She had already attempted to reel me into her trap of needles, pipes, and hallucinogens. What pleasure she had found in seeing me deteriorate, I know not. It is common knowledge, however, that misery wants company. Perhaps my downward spiral from pure to corrupt made her feel a little less fucked up. If someone is in the same boat as you, they could never criticize you. To Tammy that was the foundation for a friendship.
We passed the butt back and forth; each inhale calmed me further and further. I would need all the help I could get for tonight. My brain drifted for a moment to Joanie's pills before I quickly dismissed the thought. If I was comatose I could not fight back. If I was comatose I would feel nothing. If I was comatose I would do anything to be so forever – the most dangerous "if" of them all.
Shouting from the other side of the corner caught our attention. A totally inebriated homeless man stumbled through the crossway as he cursed off any car that dare come near him.
"Look Tammy! It's you on a Saturday night!" I cried pointing at the man.
"Saturday! Ha more like a fucking Tuesday!" She laughed.
"I think you could out-drink him any day." I giggled as I pointed once more to the drunkard. I had seen him around here before, but he was usually asleep by some dumpster and clutching a bottle of vodka.
"Damn straight!" she exclaimed. "Ugh why won't this prick ever let me smoke in there?" She grumbled as we stopped in front of the laundry matt. She then attempted to inhale all the Camel had to offer.
"It's not like I need you. Wait here I'll be back in a sec. Don't wander, ok?"
"Yes, master," she mimicked Igor. It only made me smile wider.
Transferring the huge mountain of mush into the dryer, I was suddenly floored by more dreadful thoughts. I didn't anyone's hands on me tonight. I didn't want to be touched ever again. I wanted bathe myself in bleach and remove every paw print of every beast that had ever touched me! It would be painful tonight, it was painful every night. I was so scared. I was so helpless to do anything else but walk back to Tammy and face the inevitable. I still had some time to buy.
Tammy hadn't moved from her spot, but her half-smoked cigarette was lying on the wet concrete. Odd, she never wasted a Camel. Her jaw had dropped fully open. What the hell was up with her?
"What's with the face?" I asked.
She pointed across the street, towards the apartment. Some tall guy was talking to Rodney who had this greedy smile plastered on his face.
"That kid wants to take you on a date," she mumbled, still shocked.
HUH? WHAT? HUH? ….no coherent thoughts followed.
Before either of us could say anything else, Rodney was waving us over towards him and the stranger. The closer I got, the more handsome he became. What on Earth did he want with me? I wasn't given any formal introduction, it was understood that I'd go inside and wait for further instructions. Hopefully, Rodney would clear this confusion…
"Take here upstairs and get her dressed in somethin' nice," he ordered Tammy and then turned to me and mocked, "See you in the morning." That was all he said before he left, counting the crisp Benjamin's in his hand…seven in total.
"He's probably just a virgin. A lot of guys do that. They fuck one of us so they know what the hell to do when they wanna empress a bitch." Tammy mumbled as she pulled out her white, lace dress. My favorite dress of hers.
A feeling of utter delight washed over me. I could show him the "triggers" and then maybe it wouldn't be so bad. He'd obviously do whatever I told him to if he was what Tammy seemed to think he was. Yeah, tonight could be fun!
Excitement coursed through my veins as I ran down the stairs and out the door. The boy was standing at the bottom of the stoop looking pretty guilty. Well, that's one I've never seen before…
He was really cute, like extremely cute! He was probably my age – a first for me. He was more than a foot taller than me and boy was he jacked – not like a steroids junkie, but he definitely worked out. He had this perfect complexion; he probably never needed to go tanning. His was beautiful, so many gorgeous features all molded onto one face. I felt like I had seen him before but I couldn't recall where. Maybe he's a model.
When I looked into his eyes my heart stopped. They were the clearest, deepest, loveliest shade of blue I had ever seen. You could just get lost in their depths. With eyes like that, he could deceive anyone. His eyes were blue – he could lie, too.