Cara was the easiest girl in school. Or so everyone said. What little I
knew of her did little to convince me otherwise. She wore her skirt two
inches above regulation, and Mark Hallet said he'd given her a seeing to
behind the bike sheds whilst they'd both been skiving double maths.
You see, where I come from you're guilty until proven innocent when it
comes to proper comportment. You either shag any girl who'll have you, or
you're a raving bender. My Uncle Arthur says the latter ought to be strung
up by their unmentionables. That's the way he speaks, my Uncle Arthur.
Arthur is not my real uncle; he's my mum's new husband. She is a monophobe.
So afraid of being alone that she lets Arthur press bruises onto her milky
white forearms and keep the bank cards to their joint account in his own
overstuffed wallet. Some other phobias you might like to know about
- Phalacrophobia. Fear of becoming bald.
- Ranidaphobia. Fear of frogs.
- Primeisodophobia. Fear of losing one's virginity.
"I don't 'ave all day," is what Cara says when we get back to her house. A
tea party of dolls stare up at me with sinister intent, she tells me she
shares a room with her sister. I fumble with the buttons of her blouse and
she watches me disinterestedly as I transform from a boy into a man.
It doesn't feel any different and, when I tell Cara I'm leaving, she
doesn't bother to show me out. Uncle Arthur claps me on the back when he
finds out, and Mark Hallet makes up dirty jokes all through combined
physics. Cara never says a word to me again, and my mum leaves a belated
box of little foil wrappers on my bedside table.
Putting out is easy I will later tell my own son, it's the bringing up
that's the hard part.
Jessica Powell is a third year history undergrad at the U of
Cambridge, UK. She likes to write about anything and everything. With the
notable exception of material intended to help her obtain a degree.