I’m publishing daily installments of the novel I am writing under the working title The Psychopath Across the Street. As the title of the post states, this is the fourth installment. If you are just starting to read the work, scroll down to read the first three posts before reading this one.
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Brigitte had in fact run away, but not far. She was staying with a guy she had only met two days ago at a park. She had been sitting on the grass in a circle with two of her friends in Bayfront Park, stealthily passing around a joint and sipping vodka mixed with Mountain Dew through a straw out of a two-liter 7-11 Big Gulp cup. By the time they finished the joint and about half of the drink, all three were feeling no pain. Then, three young men walked by.
“Hey, you handsome guys! Where’re you going?” Brigitte called out.
The men, who were dressed in shorts and T-shirts, stopped in their tracks and turned to face the girls. “We were out looking for you,” one of them quipped.
Sally, one of Brigitte’s friends, poked Brigitte in the ribs with her elbow. “Hey, you’re going to get us into trouble!” she said in a low voice.
“Chill out!” was Brigitte’s responded in an undertone. “We’re nice and high, and I want to top it off by getting laid.”
By then the guys were too close for the girls to whisper to each other. “Cummon, girls! Move apart and give these guys a place to sit!” Brigitte commanded.
The three girls enlarged their circle so that there was room for one of the men to sit between each of them.
“I’m Billy,” the tallest of the men said. “These two guys are Al and Harry.”
“Watcha’ got in that drink you’re passin’ around?” Al asked.
“It’s just some Mountain Dew,” the third girl, whose name was Norma, answered.
“It looks kinda weak to me,” Harry said. “Want me to freshen it up a little,” he added as he pulled a half-empty pint bottle of vodka out of his hip pocket.”
“Yeah!” Brigitte said. “Dump it in there.”
It wasn’t long before each of the men had his arm around the waist of one of the girls, who were giggling and obviously very intoxicated already. Billy let his hand slide up until it was cupping Brigitte’s right breast. She didn’t resist.
Brigitte rolled another joint, and after some more chatter and a few more rounds of the joint and booze, Billy whispered into Brigitte’s ear, “Let’s blow this place.”
“Where’re we going?” Brigitte asked.
“Just trust me. I promise you’ll like it.”
The place they drove to was Billy’s apartment. They were no sooner in the door than Billy grabbed Brigitte in his arms and gave her a passionate kiss. Two minutes later, they were in Billy’s bed. After their lovemaking, Billy asked, “So, was that great or what?”
“Awesome!” Brigitte lied. “The truth is,” she thought to herself, “I’ve had better.” Normally Brigitte would have told Billy that he was a lousy lover and walked out, but a plan was hatching in her mind. She had to get out of her parents’ house, and she might be able to do it by taking advantage of Billy. “Do you live here by yourself?”
“Yes, it’s just me.”
“How about I come and move in with you. Then we could do this all the time. I promise to make you happier than you’ve ever been.”
Billy wasn’t so sure about this idea. He had only been looking for a quickie with no entanglements. However, Billy was not an assertive type. “I guess it would be OK.” Then after a moment of reflection he added, “Wait! How old are you anyway?”
“Nineteen,” Brigitte managed to say with a straight face. “Don’t worry, I’m not jailbait.”
“When would you move in?”
“In a few days. Give me your phone number, and I’ll give you a call. I’ve got a few things to bring over.”
Billy still wasn’t sure that this was a good idea. “What’s a’ matter with the place you live now?”
Brigitte was practiced at making up stories on the spot. “I’ve been living with my sister and her husband, and we don’t get along so well. I’m out of work, and I can’t afford a place of my own.”
Billy reluctantly agreed to let Brigitte move in. He didn’t know this woman, but having sex available anytime he wanted it seemed to be a good idea. At any rate, she probably wasn’t serious. Once he got her out the door, he’d probably never see her again.
“Gimme your telephone number,” Brigitte ordered. “That way I can call you when I’ve got the hots and need somebody who knows what to do about it.”
The next day, before she left school, Brigitte emptied her locker, dumping her schoolbooks in a nearby wastebasket. She wouldn’t need them anymore. Brigitte still had to sneak her clothes and some of her other possessions out of the house. It wasn’t easy with a stay-at-home mom who was around most of the time. However, the next morning over breakfast Katrina mentioned that she had some shopping to do. Brigitte left the house as usual as if she were going to school, but she only walked to the end of the block and sat on a bench from where she had a clear view of the house but was partially shielded from view by some bushes. She didn’t have long to wait until she saw her mother drive away.
Brigitte returned to the house, grabbed two suitcases, and began stuffing them with the clothes she wanted to take. There was no telling how long her mother would be gone. She dragged the suitcases down the street and to the nearest bus stop. She didn’t ride far until she got off and used a public telephone to dial Billy’s number. There was no answer. She dragged her suitcases into a nearby McDonald’s, bought a Coke, and sat down to wait. An hour later, she tried the number again from the payphone outside the McDonald’s. This time there was an answer.
“This is Brigitte. You haven’t forgotten me already, have you?”
“Ah, no. How are you Brigitte?”
“Well, right now I have a problem. Can you help me?”
“Ah, sure. What do you want me to do?”
“I’m at the McDonald’s on Flager Street. You know where it’s at, don’t you?”
“Yeah, I think so. Isn’t it at Tenth Avenue?”
“Right! Can you come here and pick me up? It’s kinda’’ urgent. I’ve got the hots, and I need to be with you right now.”
“Sure! I’ll be right there.”
Brigitte didn’t tell Billy the real reason why she wanted him to pick her up. When he saw her with her suitcases, she would have to have a story prepared explaining that she was suddenly on the street with no place to live. She couldn’t tell him that she was only 16 years old and was running away from home.
“Why do you have suitcases with you?” Billy asked as Brigitte knew he would. “Are you going on a trip?”
“Yes, I’m going to travel, but first I need a place to stay for a few days. You said I could move in with you, remember?”
Billy was doubtful, but he didn’t have the self-assurance to refuse. “I guess it’d be alright. My apartment isn’t very big, you know.”
“We’ll fit in OK. Anyway, we can be much cozier in a small space. You’d like to be cozy with me, wouldn’t you?”
Billy had been happy to have an afternoon of passion with Brigitte, but he didn’t want her living with him. She would cramp his style. What would he tell his girlfriend? He wished he could just tell her no, but he couldn’t bring himself to do that, so he kept his thoughts to himself and drove Brigitte to his apartment.
When they arrived and had entered the apartment, Billy’s questions resumed. “Tell me again—where were you living before? How could you suddenly be on the street with no place to go?”
“My roommate and I had a fight, and I moved out. This is just for a few days. I’m leaving Miami. Here, let me pay you for your hospitality.” Brigitte grabbed Billy by the hand and tried to lead him toward the bed. Billy resisted.
“Your roommate? Didn’t you tell me you were living with your sister?”
“Yeah, my roommate was my sister. Now, common! We’re wasting time!”
“Brigitte, you can’t stay here. I have a girlfriend. She’d kill me if she found a woman living with me.”
“I don’t care if you have six girlfriends. I’ll be gone in a few days. Now, common! I’m horny. You’re not going to let me sit around and be horny, are you?”