Friday, June 24, 2011

Some Sort Of Security

This is a prompt from the Red Dress Club. Write a flash fiction
piece 300 words or less inspired by the word Life.

This is part of Lina’s story before she went to prison. You
can read more of Lina’s story at I Never Left Her, Prison Cell From Hell,  Normal Is A Good Thing

Why did I buy that stupid pack of cigarettes? I won’t smoke them. Hopefully. They’re like some sort of security, I guess. Just in case I get nervous if my lawyer tells me something I don’t want to hear I’ll have them. Anyway I like the way a cigarette feels between my fingers, between my lips, and the taste brings back old memories. I’ll take them with me and keep the pack in the glove compartment of my sister’s Taurus.

At 15 years old my people-pleasing-self began smoking with my boyfriend. He taught me how to inhale and I sucked down the nicotine for years until I got pregnant with Ben. I wanted my first child to have a healthy start in life and somehow cigarettes just didn’t seem like the way to go.

After that it was quit, start, quit, start and the monster won almost every time. But this time I had been on the wagon over a year, yet here I sat with Lynn knowing after this meeting was over I could and probably would have a Marlboro Light to ease my nerves. I’m on my way to prison anyway what’s it gonna hurt?

What about Ben and Lacey and my dreams of happy, healthy lives for them? It began
to fade.  I pictured me blowing smoke out the window of the car while they rode in the back seat. The toxins billowing behind me up their tiny nostrils. They seemed content but how was that contributing to the dream? Actually I was helping to destroy it. Instead of giving them life I was taking it from them.

Walking out of the lawyer's office, Lynn's arm around me, I felt the walls closing in, literally. My lawyer  gave me heartbreaking news.

I needed some sort of security to help get me through.  The glove compartment door fell open and I was truly thankful my sister had gotten rid of the pack of Marlboros.