Chapter 2 of The Farmers’ Sons isn’t ready yet so I’m sharing something I started a few weeks ago. I’m not sure where I’m going with this one but it’s based on a secondary character in A New Beginning and it’s all I have so far.
That social worker said it wouldn’t hurt to have that baby. She lied. It hurt like that place Mama said I was gonna go for getting pregnant in the first place. I never felt so much pain and thought I was going to die. They wanted me to hold the baby, but I didn’t want to. He weren’t mine anyhow. He belonged to those people I’d met at the agency and he was squawking and hollering; all red and squishy and ugly. I told them to take it away and let those people who were going to be her parents deal with it.
I don’t remember much after that. I slept for hours and hours. Everything in my body hurt and I was so weak I could barely stand. When I opened my eyes, it was dark, and I knew I had to get out of there. I didn’t want to watch that social worker give that baby to those people. It was weird. Having something growing in you for nine months is weird. Pushing it out your private area while you scream is weird. Giving that baby to people you only met once is weird too.
It’s all as weird as what that man did to me that left that baby in my belly in the first place.
The nurses didn’t even hear me leave.
The social worker weren’t even there.
Wasn’t. That social worker said I’m supposed to say wasn’t instead of weren’t.
What do I know? Mama stopped making me go to school in third grade after she married that man who hit me a couple times before Mama kicked him out. She didn’t kick him out because he hit me. She kicked him out because he stole her booze money.
My clothes were in a drawer by the bed at the hospital and I changed into them quickly but cried because it hurt so bad all over. The area where that baby came from hurt the worse. Blood ran down my leg and I wiped it away. I had to get out of there.
I walked a long way to get to Mama. Thought I wouldn’t make it. My stomach ached from hunger and my body screamed for sleep. I could barely lift my hand to pound on the door to her apartment.
“How did you even find me?”
She spat her words at me after I’d finally managed to slam my fist against the paint chipped metal a few times.
“Mama, I’m tired and hungry.”
“What do you want me to do about it? Didn’t those social workers feed you anything?”
Don’t call me Mama. You know I don’t like that. You’re bleeding all over the hallway. You have that baby yet?”
I nodded weakly and winced when her hand encircled my upper arm and she ripped me forward into the dark apartment.
“Get in here and stop bleeding on my rug.”
She shoved me down the hallway toward the living room and I collapsed on the couch, clutching at the musty smelling cushions as the room began to spin.
I thought I’d die there. It seemed like days before there were voices at the door and strong arms lifting me. Maybe it was days. I don’t really remember.
It was the last time I saw Mama and now I’m living here in this place with a bunch of trees and empty fields and a stream like I saw a picture of once in a book.
I don’t know what life will be like now, but anything has got to be better than where I come from.
Chapter 1 beginning
That baby was squawking again. Lily Parker rolled over and looked at the ceiling, the room lit only by the light of the moon.
Why didn’t that baby just shut up already?
She was sick of listening to it.
She could never figure out why people wanted babies. They were loud, smelly, and couldn’t do nothing for themselves.
She hadn’t wanted that baby.
All she’d wanted was the stuff that made her feel good, made her forget about Mama and how she hated her.
If it hadn’t been for that, she’d have never let that man do what he did to her.
How was she supposed to know she’d end up with a baby in her? No one had ever told her how babies was made.
She heard Edith’s footsteps in the hallway, going down the stairs, then back up again a few minutes later.
Edith’s voice was groggy. “I’m warming the bottle. Hold him until I get back.”
Warm it quieter, Lily thought, rolling to her side, pulling the covers up over her shoulder.
Maybe she should have been taking care of that baby, but she didn’t know how.
She wanted Edith to be that baby’s mama, even though she wasn’t the one who’d birthed it.
Lily didn’t like calling her Edith. She thought she should call her Mrs. Sickler like she used to call her teachers before Mama stopped sending her to school. Edith said she didn’t have to call her Mrs., though, so she didn’t. Jimmy told her to call him Jimmy so that’s what she called him.
She closed her eyes tight against the screaming.
“Make it stop already,” she grumbled, pressing her palms against her ears.
Babies were so dumb anyhow. She was never going to have one. Not for real. Not one she had to care for. Not ever.