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This BBNB entry takes the reader back to the source of everything. The townhouses I used to live in. This setting is essential to the rest of the BBNB project. Further BBNB entries will center around other characters, and will require this "townhouse setting" as a foundation for understanding them better.
As with all BBNB entreis, this one is VERY rough. I haven't paid nearly as much attention to form as I have to imagery. Any technical or stylistic input I can get from readers will be very important for possible redrafts. Thanks in advance.
There’s always a source. That is the one thing to remember.
Though the abuse moves from phase to phase, eating everything like a cancer
Though it can take you over and cripple your emotions entirely
Though the abuse may use any number of carriers to get to you
There is always a source. One source.
His name is Satan.
Satan was not responsible for my abuse, no…
Satan is neither omnipotent, nor omnipresent…
But he is surely the one who got this whole ball rolling
And the very greatest delight he has ever received on earth
Is to sit back and giggle while mere humans hate each other
For abuses he carried out long ago. Like revenues to a lender.
There is always a source. So how did the abuse find its way to him…
Making it possible to pass on to me?
That trademark evil grin was probably not so evil when all of this began.
And so, having put decades between myself and the abuse
I look back at that little boy who seemed so big with a brand new set of eyes.
It’s really a tragic thing to look at your abuser as a victim himself…
I’ve never once had a meaningful conversation with him.
Not even in the year that our mothers were roommates.
The year I kept secrets no six year old should keep.
He was already damaged when I first met him.
But was he already damaged when I first met his sister?
I’d lost those memories for good, until I chanced upon the photos.
Back in the days when we could still count our ages on one hand… (if we really focused.)
Jackie and Michael lived in the townhouses too.
It was a great development when me and my mother moved in.
But as my little head was only focused on the things right in front of me
My mom watched in disgust as the dealers started moving in.
Mom said it was a year away from joining the ghetto before we moved out.
I’ll always remember the fun we had. Riding around on big-wheels.
Playing at the sand pit, where I lost my first Transformer to burial.
Every-so-often, a new kid would hang out.
Like the girl who stole my Snake Eyes G.I. Joe.
Like Rusty. The kid who had braces on every limb.
Had assisted breathing. A rightfully over-protective mother.
Used to talk to me through the windows at night. Okay, maybe only once.
But I’ll always remember that day he risked his life for us…
The day the ball went bouncing into the street, with a car coming fast down the street.
Here we were, all pudgy little babies, and Rusty ran like Forest Gump.
Tall and lank from a two-year head-start on life.
Rusty made the sound barrier wish it would just crack already.
Grabbed-up the ball and returned to his gaping mother in a fit of hyperventilation.
It was the last game of kick-the-ball that Rusty ever played with us.
So while his mother and mine remained friends
It was understandable why Rusty was mostly a no-show.
I’ve always wished I had kept in contact with him. Lord knows if he’s still alive…
But the other kids, hey… their moms were strangers. They only had bit parts.
The main event was me and Michael and Jackie.
Her brother, separated by almost a decade, spent most of his time in the house.
I didn’t know him back then. Not even sure we met once.
I can look at that picture in one light and smile at the three of us stooges.
But in another light, my soul is torn in two… not one of those amigos escaped the abuse.
All three of us have had skeletons removed or buried over time.
There’s always a source… and the townhouse was only ever good for me.
I stayed outside. I had friends to play with and moms watching over me.
So did Michael and Jackie… But not her brother.
Now I can only speculate… and in fact, I am not even the author of the story I believe.
My mother said that Vito was a very disturbed man.
An alcoholic, a recluse, only seen at work, at the store buying beer, or at home.
Home with the boy.
Later on, after the divorce… when they came to live with us…
When he used to argue and slap back at his mother’s discipline…
Mom said it was Vito who taught him to act like that.
Maybe it was Vito who taught him everything he did to me.
I consider myself lucky. Lucky to have only been captive a year.
Roommates are highly temporary. I wish skeletons were too.
I look back at my abuser with a different set of eyes.
I see the evil in the source, and can’t imagine it wouldn’t rub off on him.
I look back at that photo and smile, all the while fighting back tears.
Mom said the town house was a year away from joining the ghetto before we moved out.
I say we didn’t move quick enough. I say we brought a little of the ghetto along with us.
Which is why it hurts every time I try to get close to someone.
Close enough to meet her father. Close enough to be asked about mine.
The one who left us with no choice but to live in the townhouses for a time.
The one who wasn’t there to save us all from Satan’s work through Vito…
But then again… I’m forgetting my place. He and Mom were never married…
So Mom was an agent too… reformed as though she may be.
And so why would any father accept me as a suitable companion for his daughter?
Mostly for the same reasons she accepted me herself. Crafty avoidance on my part.
But if I could offer some insight into this matter…
It would appear to me that I’d be the PERFECT companion for anyone’s daughter.
Not because my mind has been bent until kingdom come…
But because I have hands-on experience with every dysfunction
That a man could ever want for his grandchildren to avoid.
A gift comes in that “overwhelming sense of awareness.”
I am a brutal guardian, wise to the ways of The Offender.
I have a toughness embedded in my soul that can’t be sought-out and obtained.
There is no training other than life itself that can teach the things I know about hardship.
And so there is one common truth which binds together
All of my greatest credentials and inadequacies.
You just have to dig down to the source.
And so from great weakness, God has given me great strength.
And though it may be harder for me than some, I will continue to get close.
And continue to avoid sharing things until they become completely necessary.
And though I know where my skeletons came from, it is beyond me to hold a grudge.
Such would only please The Offender.
The one who has taught me himself the one common truth between abuse and awareness.
There is always a source.
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