Book Two: I

The Big Day

I’ve managed to keep my average above eighty-five percent so far, which is a magnificent feat considering that Girl #1 is rocking my world these days. Patrick went down on her just before Christmas, and it was fantastic. He likes doing that a lot and she likes it a lot. He has done it to a couple other girls, he said, so that’s why he’s good at it. And so far I have made him come with my hand, I know how to do that, at least. I feel pretty shy about using my mouth, meaning I actually just don’t want to. No, thanks! 

Every time I think of a guy’s dick in front of my face, I can’t help but think of Charlie’s. It’s just plain scary. Anyway, I have looked at Patrick’s and felt it all over with my hands, and he showed me what felt good for him. He cries out loudly and splashes all over the place when he has an orgasm. I feel as if I’ve won an award. 

But I’m happy to stay a virgin even though we’re doing all these other things. I can still wait until I’m married to have actual sex. I told Myname on the phone that I’d seen and felt his cock, I thought she’d be proud for some reason; but she sounded flat. 

She said, “Whoop de doo, Myname. You touched a guy’s dick.” Which made me wonder how many she has touched? 

I can just picture she and Kelly sitting in her tiny narrow room doing nothing, going to stupid local house parties and lying on their backs getting fucked by unsophisticated hockey boys, and I’m so glad I’m not stuck back in Howey Bay. 

I got free! I swell with new confidence. A city girl. 

I decide not to call her much anymore.

Anyway, I’m having more fun hanging out in person with Chloe and Persephone and our crowd. Persephone’s already got her beginner’s license and soon we’ll be cruising around, but right now we ride the bus and subway everywhere. The two sisters and me, plus these acid dealers Scott and Donald, plus Patrick, Anthony, plus this guitar genius Randall and his long-haired grinning sidekick Mac — we hang out in each other’s basements when parents are out, in mall parking lots, in cars, in bedrooms. Persephone is thinking about whether to do it with Anthony. She did it once with some other guy and hated it, so she’s being really careful now.

Charlie is a whole ‘nother story, though. He’s been super weird about my having a boyfriend. Even Persephone and Chloe say he’s creepy about it. He says I’m too young, or that I spend too much time with Patrick. Sometimes when Patrick is over, after he leaves Charlie says, “I didn’t like when he said (this or that),” and complains about how Patrick treats me. “He’s probably a cheater.” 

“You’re jealous cuz you don’t have a girlfriend,” I retort. 

“I’m not jealous — Patrick is a wuss.” And he folds his arms.

It occurs to me that my brother is possessive of me, and I don’t like it. I think he’s probably jealous of Patrick, not me. And that is fucked up.


For Christmas, Mom made sure to call early and tell me she’d be spending hers with Sharla and Harold, giving me no chance of going home. I felt relieved and sad and homesick and free. I didn’t expect anything different, after how she left me alone on my sixteenth birthday to go visit my sister hundreds of miles away. 

It felt awkward and boring to spend Christmas Day with Dad and his wife and Charlie, and then eat a dinner far inferior to my mother’s Christmas dinner with my stepmom’s relatives. I do not give a crap about these people and I don’t care what anyone says, I’m not related to them. I’m never going to be.

The nice thing about Dad’s place is that he’s always happy to have us out of sight, so most of the Christmas holiday was just me and Charlie smoking cigarettes and pot, and me and my gang finding ways to drink and make out and watch movies through the coldest season of the year. It’s still a thousand times warmer here than in Howey Bay. 

I missed the crackling spark of nighttime cold when you’d come out from church on Christmas Eve, and the swirling steam of warm breath in the air; the familiar faces of longtime friends; the traditions of parties and caroling and seasonal food and church services. 

I missed Myname, who loved singing Christmas carols. I tried calling her but didn’t get through, the line was busy all day with everyone talking to relatives. I did manage to chat with Harold and Sharla who were with Mom, and suddenly I missed dear Harold’s calm voice and his advice to me about everything under the sun. I missed my doughnuts and coffee, and spending time with those little birds every Saturday morning. Harold and Sharla are still holding onto the shop, but they are trying to get pregnant so he is working at the mine, too. I heard Mom, Bonnie and Sharla bustling around in the kitchen as I chatted with Harold, and I couldn’t decide whether to feel relieved or left out.

I settled on relieved. 

This year, I feel much older and less excited and less connected somehow, like the mushy slushy snow has perverted my Christian sensibilities. Maybe I was purer there, in the clean hard white snow under the clean blue sky next to the skinny raw clean black trees shivering in the harsh icy clean Northern wind. I was bare to you like a skeleton there, and now I’m shrouded in southern Ontario fog. Here, Christmas is nothing but lawn decorations and a crowded shopping mall. 

I do give a thought to Jesus, but since I haven’t been going to church it’s like he’s far away and behind me. When I was a little girl, I felt this absolute love and compassion for the baby Jesus, I felt as if he spoke to me. But now he seems like a far-off uncle or something. We never talk. All that stuff I learned going to church for my entire childhood just doesn’t seem to apply to my actual life, now. 

I mean, sorry. I hope that doesn’t offend you.

Instead of praying, I spend my time finding excitement, fun and pleasure. Anything to be away from Dad, who pretty much doesn’t engage with me unless it’s to ask me to do the dishes, and Charlie, who keeps asking me questions about the seriousness of my connection with Patrick. He has the nerve to scold me about smoking too much pot. 

Ironically, it’s only Iris who doesn’t get on my nerves. She makes easy conversation when it comes along, and never forgets to thank me when I do a chore, and compliments me, and never makes me feel upset or belittled or ignored in any way. But I still find ways to avoid my own house, if possible, and I stay in my room when I’m there. 


I’m actually happy when school starts again. In a month, I’ll turn seventeen. I’ve wanted to be seventeen since I was eleven. Because I was such a crazy little genius as a child, I had a very high reading capacity. At the library, I’d take out all these teen romances with a lot of handholding and kissing. For some strange reason, although with an actual boy I started getting the sick feeling, when I read about the same things in a romance book it made me shiver and tingle with anticipation. I thought to myself, Someday when I’m seventeen I’ll have a boyfriend and we’ll hold hands with each other and press ourselves up against each other. So, now that I’m close to seventeen I feel I’ve reached a milestone.

Both winter and spring are very wet-mushy here in southern Ontario. I can let my jacket hang open, it’s true, but my feet are always getting damp from the slush on the sidewalks. I find it dreary. At least I’m doing pretty well in my classes. Most of my partying happens after school and on weekends, but in the evenings I do my homework. That’s the one way Girl #2 prevails. She’s too proud to let her grades slip. She’s going to be a star pupil even if it kills her. However, she does allow me to skip class once in a while; I think secretly she likes the adventure. 

I forge a note from my Dad so I can skip last period because Patrick has a spare. His parents won’t be home till six o’clock. The evening is deepening into grey, and I feel raw and lonely so I jump into Patrick’s waterbed for a snuggle. He does oral on me again and I love the feeling of it so much, it makes me very happy.

Then he lies on his back, his boxer shorts slid down. I climb on top of him and squeeze his dick with my hands. He smiles at me. 

Then, just like that, I put the tip of it inside me and start sitting down on it. I am very slippery and it’s easy. Also, I know that I’m at the very beginning of my cycle, which means I can’t get pregnant right now.

“I wonder how this will feel,” I say casually, pushing it further in.

Patrick looks at me in wonder. “Are you sure?”

I just keep sitting down further until I am all filled up and his thing is all up in me and I’m not a virgin anymore. There’s no rip, no blood, no pain. Just a wonderfully full feeling. I look down at myself with my legs spread over the boy and him inside me: 

I guess I won’t wait until I’m married then, I think in my head. 

I feel a poignant feeling, and Patrick starts crying, smiling up at me. 

“It’s so special,” he moans as he starts moving his hips. 

The queerest thing is, I don’t feel much at all. There’s no guilt, pain or bliss. It just feels natural to slide up and down on him, and I feel an ache in my belly that I think is because I’m not a virgin anymore. I’ve popped my cherry. 

At home, later, I do feel different. I feel defiant and sexual. I’ve been fucked and it felt just fine. I tell Persephone and Chloe the next morning. They cheer me on like I’m an Olympic athlete who’s won a medal. 

“You definitely look different,” nods Chloe.

Persephone blushes, looking at my new wise sex face, probably recalling her own first three times with a guy in grade twelve named Siam, who didn’t use a condom and came inside her without asking so she was freaked out about an STD for weeks. Now, she wants to do it with Anthony, but she’s afraid it’s going to be like that again, a total disaster.

Later that day, after school, all four of us head to Patrick’s. Persephone and I have to tell Chloe to scram, which is hard, but she’s younger and has no boyfriend. 

“Plus, it’s weird to have my sister around when I’m making out with boys,” says Persephone with an eye roll. 

I think she likes to have me all to herself sometimes. She’s jealous because I think Chloe is an amazing singer and a genuinely beautiful girl. It must be hard to have a gorgeous sister so close in age. Me and Bonnie are four years apart, so we don’t have much in common. And then there’s the fact that she never says anything halfways nice to me and we never have any fun together. It’s like she’s been determined to hate me, for my whole life. I think she must have made a pact with herself to make my life miserable from the time I was born. There were only a few decent months when I was fourteen and she was eighteen, before she went away to Bible college. We were both sharing our clothes for a little while and I let her pick my blackheads. 

But then Mom told her I was smoking because I wanted to suck on boys’ penises and stuff, and Bonnie told me I was a dirty sinner and to stay away from her because she didn’t know where my hands had been. Now, I never talk to her at all if I can help it. It’s pretty easy because I only talk to Mom once every two weeks and Bonnie is still at college. She’s getting married next summer and moving down to Ohio where I’ll never see her again.

Anyway, I’ve got my own life here in southern Ontario, watching a movie with my friends in Patrick’s British-style family room. His mother likes to sit in there, smoking long thin cigarettes and watching repeats of Coronation Street, during which she always talks to the characters as if they’re her friends. I suppose they are. If I were re-located from my original country, I’d want to have a television show to keep me company. Sometimes I watch “Beachcombers” on TV because it reminds me of Howey Bay, even though it’s set on the coast of British Columbia. Something about the attitudes and the rural folk — it reminds me of that down-to-earth, natural vibe of my hometown. 

Sitting there watching TV, I begin to feel a deep hard ache inside my lower belly which I think is my body telling me I want to fuck Patrick again. I gesture to him, and we sneak off the couch to go upstairs to his bedroom. This time I’m on my back and I like it when he goes inside me at first, there is a giant warm swelling that feels so pleasant. 

But after a few minutes it gets very repetitive and boring. I like the oral stuff better. He wants to try it with me on all fours, which hurts, and in all sorts of other positions. I can see why it feels so great for him, but it doesn’t even get close to the feeling of him licking me in between the legs. Finally he comes on my belly, and we go downstairs and there in the lounge Anthony and Persephone are fucking too. Persephone’s cheeks are very pink and her eyes are dark. I wonder, does she like it as much as he does?

The next thing I do is write a letter to Mom saying I did it, I had sex and you couldn’t stop me, and it was great, and I don’t feel bad about it at all. I could never say this to her face, but it’s easy on paper when she’s so far away.

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