By Kate Everett
Copyright 2011 Kate Everett
Smashwords Edition, License Notes
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All of Selena's friends are out. They are grinding against eager men with rounded cheeks; laughing too loudly at mimed jokes, while holding brightly coloured drinks. Selena is staring into her bathroom mirror, working bleach through her dark hair, holding her breath against the piercing, chemical smell that lets her know the colour is being stripped away - and maybe a few brain cells are dying.
She is looking at her reflection without really seeing it, focused instead on squeezing straight lines of grey goo onto her hair and rubbing it in, making sure not to miss any areas. Her plastic gloves crinkle with each movement. When finished she sits straight like royalty at the edge of the bathtub so the hair piled on top of her head does not fall and stain.
I miss you so much. Your brown eyes filled with emotions, your swimmer's body. Your humid breath whispering in my ear as your calloused hand slides down my back.
When the tingling feeling on Selena's scalp shifts to searing, it is time. She kneels down on the tile floor, and leans over the tub, exposing her head to the cold clear water, quickly halting the discomfort.
The night air was overpowered with the smell of campfire, but when the wind blew south, away from the party, they smelt the pine trees surrounding the property. Selena was at this house party with friends, but was enjoying it mostly because Mitchel was there. She made the rounds; stopping to talk with friends and fellow students, but always circled back to the fire where he was hanging out with his friends. She warmed her fingers and listened to their conversation until she thought of something clever to add so she could look at him and earn a smile.