“Geraldine! Open the door, please, let me explain.”
“No, go away, Mother, I don’t want to talk to you.”
“Please understand, Geraldine, I had to do it.”
“That’s just so lame, Mother. You’re pathetic,” she spat out the words and rolled her eyes.
Geraldine’s cell phone played her favorite Red Hot Chili Peppers song: ‘Nobody Weird like Me’. She picked up her iridescent purple phone from the bed, where she’d tossed it earlier, and checked her caller ID. Crystal’s photo appeared on the screen. “Hi, Crystal, I’m not really in the mood to talk.”
“Geraldine, what’s going on? I was about to knock on your front door when I heard you yelling.”
“Where are you now, Crystal?”
“I’m at your front gate. Where are you?”
“In my bedroom, but…”
“OK, I’ll come round to your window.”
Geraldine was about to argue but realized Crystal had rung off. By the time she opened the window, Crystal was outside waiting.
To Geraldine’s relief, Crystal kept her voice quite. “So, are you going to tell me, or what?”
Geraldine threw herself on the bed. “I can’t believe she did it.”
“Do what?” Crystal said, raising her voice to a hoarse whisper.
“She threw Daddy out.”
Crystal climbed through the window. “Oh… he’s been drinking again, huh?”
“Just because he likes a drink after work… it wasn’t his fault he hit her last night,” Geraldine began to cry.
“Hey, girl, you can’t possibly think he should stay if he’s hitting her.”
“But, he’s my dad… and it’s his home too.”
Crystal sat beside her best friend and put her arm around her. “Do you remember when my mother threw my daddy out?”
“That’s different, Crystal; he was beating you and your brother. I remember going to the hospital with you when he broke your arm.”
“Like, before that, he was hitting my mother. She used to hide out the back until he fell asleep, but then he started beating us instead. Yes, Geraldine, that’s why she threw him out, but do you think your mother's going to wait for that to happen to you? Your mother knows what we went through.”
There was a gentle knock on the bedroom door as Crystal handed Geraldine a tissue to wipe her eyes.
Her mother’s voice was croaky. “Geraldine, can we talk?”
“OK, mom, just a minute.”
Crystal gave her best friend a hug and climb back out the window. As she waved goodbye, Geraldine took a deep breath before opening the door.
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