Shame

Oct. 26th, 2005 07:43 am
mistersmith_tm: (i walk a lonely road)
[personal profile] mistersmith_tm
Talk about something you did that made you feel ashamed of yourself afterwards.


I didn't know she was pregnant. How could I? That was . . . before. Before the lake. Before the Voice. When it was just me, in my own head. She was desparate for anything. Food. Shelter. A reason to keep going. I guess we were alike that way. And we found comfort in each other, for a little while anyway.

She was afraid of everything at first. Even me. Funny that. I'm the last person you'd think would scare anyone, just being myself. She was so lost and alone. I think I gave her some comfort. And she gave me herself.

It wasn't like that! I didn't ask. I didn't force myself on her. She offered. She needed it as much as I did.

It was just a few days in Spring. The only really peaceful days I can remember.

She loved roses. She collected them. Her bag was full of petals of different colors. Some fresh, most dried and shriveled. She kept pictures of roses. Books. Perfume bottles. Anything that with a rose on it become a treasured possession.

"One day I'll have a little house with a garden and a white picket fence," she told me. "The way it used to be, before the Big Death. And I'll have a husband who loves me and takes care of me and we'll have a beautiful daughter." She looked at me with her dark brown eyes and said, "We'll name her Rose."

She was gone the next day. I didn't hear her leave. I didn't follow after her. Didn't even bother to find out where she went. It was the way of the world, after the Death. You did what you could to survive. Even if it meant a few nights in a stranger's arms.

I never saw her again. But five years later, I saw her brown eyes and her blonde hair and my smile in a little girl named Rose.

In those few days together, we'd made a baby. I never knew she was pregnant. I never knew what happened to her afterward. Rose was too young to remember.

Worse of all, I never even knew her name. It never occurred to me to ask. And she never said.
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