She had no idea whose house it was. Funny how she must have walked by the building every week on the way to see him, but she had never even noticed it. It’s as if it was never really there all along, but God decided to create it at the last minute just as the setting for her life’s plot to thicken. Then again, why would God go through the trouble of creating a whole new place just for her to commit such a sin? Surely a random big tree in the bush would’ve have sufficed.
OK. This was it. No going back now. She imagined herself a star fish as she waited. He was fumbling with the wrapper and making nervous small talk as if he was the virgin. Was she hearing a baby wailing in the distance, or was that just the years of ‘abstinence-makes-sense’ classes throwing in one last punch? Her arms, legs, everything was wide open. Except her eyes. She didn’t want to see it, just like she never looked at needles or her dentists’ tools. It was pitch black anyway. There was nothing to see. Would he just get it over with already? She squeezed her eyes tighter as he tried to do a thing with his fingers. That’s not how that was supposed to feel. His nails were too long and they were very sharp. Were they even clean? She reached for his hand in the dark and opened her eyes.
Gina sat up in the bed the moment she opened her eyes and instinctively grabbed the baby. Placing one hand under his back and up to his neck and scooping him up, she bounced with him on her shoulder while she used the other hand to free her leaking breast. His little voice sounded hoarse. He must have been crying for a while. She grimaced and checked her phone as he sunk his vicious little gums into her areola mercilessly. No missed calls. No messages. 3:44am.
“And I would have gotten away with a full four hours too, if it weren’t for you pesky kids and that meddling mutt named Scooby Doo,” she whispered under her breath.
As Aubrey suckled his way into a stupor, she slowly removed the rubber band that was holding her braids together and massaged her scalp with her finger tips. This was a big day and she needed it to go well. She stared at his chubby little cheeks as they mechanically extracted the oats and condensed milked she had drunk just before bed.
Today had to go well. For his sake.