Authors: Shane Morgan
BY SHANE MORGAN
This is a work of fiction and is a product of the author’s
imagination. Anything mentioned that relates to actual names, events, places,
or institutions are all used fictitiously.
Copyright © 2014 Shane Morgan
All rights reserved, including the right of reproduction in
any format. Please do not partake in or encourage piracy of copyrighted
material. Purchase authorized editions only.
Cover Image ©
Formatted by S. Morgan
‘I Had a Lover I Thought Was My Own’, ‘Spare
Parts’, & ‘See the Sea’
© Allysen Callery.
ISBN-13: 978-0692225394 (paperback)
Also by Shane Morgan
Impossibly Forever: the Duology
my family and beloved, I wouldn’t have reached this far without your
unconditional love and support. Thank you for snapping me out of it
“Have enough courage to trust love one more time and always one
Several months ago, that was me. Mitchel
Stephens. Those words described
life. I had to keep my head down
whenever I left my house. The way people looked at me—screwed up their faces,
whispered, pointed fingers—I couldn’t even go to the grocery store without
falling under someone’s microscope.
But that’s life in a small town like Haxtun,
I’d been released from juvie, and I returned
I wasn’t sure what to do next. My
counselor at Haxtun Detention Center sat me down during a session and told me
the best solution to my problems.
“Mr. Stephens, you have to try to move on. Leave
the past behind.”
Easy for him to say.
too much to deal with. First, Dad turned his back on me. Then Grams died during
my time away. The pain from losing her hurt like Hell. She’d been both parents
to me. She did what they couldn’t do: stick around and love me unconditionally.
Move on? Where would I go? What would I do?
I’d let Grams down. After everything she did for
me, I ignored her warnings about Jason. I did what I wanted to do. My selfish
decisions led me to where my grams didn’t want me to end up: in trouble.
The kind of trouble people don’t forget.
The kind that turns so-called
friends and neighbors into judges.
It also gave them this power enabling them to
treat you like nothing.
Worse than nothing.
Move on, huh?
I finally had no choice. I took my counselor’s
advice. The only way to truly move on was to move out and leave Haxtun, the
memories of my grams and my past life behind.
I needed to make a fresh start somewhere else.
I hopped on a train to Illinois, trying to get
as far away as possible. Then I wound up in Georgetown. After two days of
searching the classifieds, I got a job as a part-time waiter at Chang’s Little
Those first few months were all right. I met
some interesting people, had fun with some girls, and ultimately, I got by.
Then it began two nights ago.
The bad memories.
They crept up on me, and the itch to leave
spread throughout my body.
So here I am now, my old duffle bag draped over
my shoulder, climbing off a greyhound bus a few days after deciding on my next
destination: Newport, a seaside city in Rhode Island. Seems like a nice enough
place, just as far from Colorado as Illinois was. No one will know me here,
either. It might be that I’m running away, but that doesn’t matter. I just want
to keep going. Maybe travelling will help me shake my guilt.
The furious afternoon sun stings my bare arms.
I’ve been wearing the same grey t-shirt and black jeans for two days now. My
armpits feel sweaty. I seriously need a shower. Fast.
The instant I walk inside the near deserted
transport center, a mellow pop song called ‘
No Place like Home
from the speakers. How ironic. Purchasing a bus pass, I stand around and wait
for the next trolley.
Within minutes it pulls up outside. I hop on and
sit down in the back. According to the map app on my phone, this one will stop
at the corner of my new digs.
Soon after I jump off the trolley at Pelham
Street and look around. Nice neighborhood. Road’s a bit patchy in some parts
but you can see the attempt in trying to keep a clean environment.
I walk up to the blue painted multi-family house
at the corner of the street. After I pay the landlord enough Franklins to cover
the first and last month’s rent, my sneakers squeak on the hardwood stairs as I
amble up to the third floor. There’s a small window a top the stairs but I
can’t really see anything with the huge tree blocking the view.
Wiping my feet on the rug outside my door, I
unlock it, and step inside. It smells like wood and fresh paint. I take in the
large studio space with a separate bathroom with a door.
Two double-hung windows look out onto the houses across the street and a park
in the distance.
Just the right size for one person.
This is my home, for now.
Settling down on the beige leather couch, I call
up a restaurant that’s hiring for the summer. The owner tells me to stop by
first thing Monday morning.
I shower and haul on a t-shirt and shorts, then
order takeout for dinner, more specifically Chinese. Hey, it’s what I’m used
to. I’m not cooking for anyone besides myself. After I finish eating a pint of
, I go for a walk around the
neighborhood, ending up at the park near the harbor.
I’m just in time to watch the sunset, something
I haven’t bothered to do in months. For some reason, I’m compelled to observe
Sitting down on a park bench, I stare up at the
colors of the fading sky. The bursting orange and yellows mix together like one
big orgasm. I appreciate the natural beauty for a while, until something, okay,
, more captivating graces my view.
A young woman, lost in thought, walks barefoot
across the sea wall made of rustic red pebble stones separating sand from sea.
With the poise of a gymnast, her body shivers with each step against the ocean
breeze. Her cute blue dress with floral prints flares modestly just below her
knees. She pays no attention to anything else around her, unaware of how my
eyes are trained on her every move.
As the setting sun slants across her tanned
legs, she pauses for a beat. Flipping straight light brown hair off her
shoulders, strands falling elegantly down her back. I love long hair on girls;
the smell—that’s if it’s
, I’ve had instances
where it wasn’t—the feel, and the texture. Caught up, I lean forward, my gaze
fixed on nothing but her.
. How I wish she’d turn around so I could
see her face. Even my heart begins to thud with anticipation.
Finally, as if hearing me, she twists, her
attention riveted on something out on the street to her left.
Oh c’mon, turn
. The sun will be gone in minutes. She swivels, fully around this
time. I’m breathless as I catch a glimpse. She’s beautiful, but I don’t mean
that in a shallow way. Something about her intrigues me.
So what am I doing? Why am I just sitting here
Snapping back to my senses, I spring from the
bench and start to walk over to her, hoping she won’t run away when I tell her
how angelic she is before my eyes.
. That’s corny as Hell, but I
don’t care. I have to talk to this girl.
I’m almost there when the loud
of a car draws her attention. She twirls and I stop in my tracks. A wide smile
spreads across her pink lips, and like an idiot, I convince myself she’s
actually smiling at me. Realization bites me on the ass when she hurries past
me like I’m invisible, heading for the red jeep parked on the side of the
street waiting for her.
She didn’t see me. Like seriously?
I stand in place and watch as she climbs inside
the jeep, shuts the door, and the driver takes off. Now I feel like crap,
because I wasted time and missed the chance to talk to her. I wonder if I’ll
ever see her again.
With hunched shoulders, I walk up the sand onto
the grass and sit back on the bench, dumping grains out of my flip-flops.
A lone gull scampers across the sand. A bright
moon rises in the sky. I run my fingers through my already messy hair and start
to laugh at myself.
Dude, why did you get so riled up?
simply another pretty face. How many have I seen these last few months?
should I care?
We meet, hook-up, and I move on.
The last thing I’m looking for is a girlfriend.
I’m a no commitments type of guy. None of them ever took the guilt away,
But it’s crazy how I feel now. From just one
look, my gut says that girl is worth getting to know. Maybe someone I wouldn’t
mind sticking around for.