Bea drank half her beer before roughly setting the bottle down on the end table. She stood, pacing a few times before walking over to a bookcase mounted in the front room. Scanning the top row, several fading, cracking photo albums collecting dust captured her attention. On tip-toe, Bea stepped up and gingerly slid a blue album from its’ place. She pursed her lips and blew across the top, releasing puffs of dust into the air. The depleting sunlight captured the particles before they wafted across the beam, finally settling again onto some other rarely used collectible.
Crackling and creaking, the aging pages groaned against her intrusion into the past when she opened the cover. Gazing upon the photo of a baby in a cloth diaper standing snaggletoothed in a pair of oversized cowboy boots, Bea reflected on how her life began. I was happy once, secure once, where did it go?
Continuing to turn the pages, she recounted more toddler photos, pre-school images, and finally elementary school days. Bea with a boy best friend, Danny, always playing cops and robbers or cowboys and Indians. Bea, hesitatingly playing Princess Leia in never-ending recreations of Star Wars and the Empire Strikes Back. Bea who wanted a light saber to battle Darth Vader, because as she stubbornly insisted, “I don’t need rescued, I can save myself.”
Bea inhaled sharply, viewing the photos of junior high. Her best friend, Danny, moved away the summer of seventh grade. His absence glaringly noticeable in the eighth grade graduation ceremony pictures created an emptiness in her heart no one quite filled until Craig and Tammy came along. They felt like home to her, much like Danny did, and she cherished it. Bea finished the tepid beer in two long gulps and brushed away a solitary tear.
Closing the album, she fixed her gaze upon the next one on the bookcase. Another dust covered trip in time encased in burnt orange covers sat waiting for her examination. Bea situated the blue book back on the shelf and reached for the grubby orange one. She clutched the memories to her chest and closed her eyes. I let him take my confidence.
"Now that you've read my contribution to TT, please visit my creative friends over at our main blog, Tuesday Tales for their take on our word prompt "rough".
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