This is a short story I have written during a Creative Writing seminar while I was a student. Of course, it is not perfect but I hope you enjoy it:)
– Gertrude, are you leaving again?! asked her mother with a hysterical voice while her body was leaning on the doorjamb of her room. The girl looked a short time at the woman standing in front of her and waiting for a response. She continued to search with anger something in the pile of clothes. There it was, her red scarf. She took it in her hands, smelt it and a scent of perfume invaded her nostrils. She turned in the mirror and arranged the scarf around her neck. Smiling in the mirror with a half of her lip. – Are you listening to me? her mother’s voice got angry. She was. She could hear that sharp voice deep in her brain as if a train had brake and its wheels made that sound. She couldn’t stand anymore. She took her coat and in a hurry, she avoided the woman and gone out of the door. The girl could only hear behind her: – …meds! Your meds, stupid child! and an outburst of crying filled up the air.
Her knees were trembling as she was sitting on the bench. Gertrude turned her head to the left, then turned her head to the right and with the corners of her eyes she was watching people. Staring at them in an intimate way, smiling from time to time. The weather was cold, she could see her breath evading from her mouth drawing a shadow of hot air. She was pretending that her mouth was leaving a dense steam locomotive. The holiday was about to end and she would go back to school pretending to be happy, pretending to be a best friend for some dumb chick which got in depression because she couldn’t buy herself a Prada purse. And her street was full of this species of human beings. People… bloody people! Where is your mind? Do I know you? Do you look at me as I am looking at you? Pretending to smile and say ”Hello!” to each other. Little fuckers! Her every day morning had this beginning: the alley on Váci Street, the bench, the air, the people. The air is cutting my lungs but look at this beautiful yellowish leaves falling down on the ground carried by the wind on the alley and all this people crushing them. People … again. Look at this one’s face. I bet he is a bloody rich lawyer. He is going home from work and he’ll find his wife cooking dinner. And there are only the two of them at the table because he is too selfish to have any children. How about this one? Walking as if he was the King. I bet he’s single. And proud. And what not. He is about to meet some new girl, takes her to a fancy restaurant, having dinner, bla, bla, bla, and bang! she’s laying naked in his bed, drunk probably. Blah! Look over there! An old woman dressed in black. Hmm let’s see: a widow? She has her eyes filled with tears. She is coming from … mmm … her second husband’s funeral. That’s it! She decided to be forever alone! Oh, oh, one more! What a slutty young lady. Short skirt, huh?! First time clubbing? First intoxication? First sex? Oh, craaaap! Bloody cigarette burned my lips. I’m going home. More stupid people later. This bench has frozen my but, that’s for sure! An old man was sticking posters on the notice board on the Váci Street when Gertrude has raised her body. She struck him with her eyes like she could see his inner body, his thoughts. Who is this little man? The old man turned round and looked at her. Stuck. A moment nothing happened. Then Gertrude hesitated a second, turned her body in the old man’s direction and made three steps. – What are you doing? ! -Excuse me? asked kindly the old man. Now Gertrude could see his poor clothes, his unkempt nails. He was dressed in a shabby dressing gown and the pocket had some holes into which Gertrude could see his nails from the hand that he kept in his pocket. How on earth can a human being have these nails? Yellow…old…wrinkled. – Where do you live? Who are you? – Excuse me?! asked louder the old man. He is deaf! The bloody old man is deaf! – You are not from here! You don’t live on this street!! She could feel her lungs burn as she raised her voice. – My name is Jancsi! Jan-csi!!! And he left gesturing something with his hand in the air. Gertrude turned her eyes on the poster: Free hosting for young student girls! Call: 0036-23-40-40. She stopped reading. Free hosting? Really? Why would he give to YOUNG GIRLS free hosting? The fucking old man wants some action. Fuck me! The next day she was there, on the alley; she felt as she stayed on the bench that she had to wait just a little more, he would come, Jancsi must come. She was swinging her legs like a child as she was waiting. He must come. Dirty old bug! I’ll show you the perfect young student girl.
The old man didn’t come; Gertrude felt her pulse going wild, her blood running in her body. He did not belong there, on that street, he was not from there. Oh, where is that bloody old man?! He’s like the others I have met in District VIII. Degraded bunch of cockroaches. She turned her eyes on the notice board were Jancsi had stuck his poster. There must be an address. She looked impatiently at the surface of the board, touching with her frozen hands the posters, tear them angrily with her finger as if in this way she could separate Jancsi’s poster from the others and she would easily find the address. Gertrude stopped as she heard the silence people were doing while she was already on the cold sidewalk resting her head on the board. She looked at them with tiny eyes: What?! Fuck off you fat dogs! She did not say a word of what her mind had planted in her head. Nothing. One drop of sparkling liquid gushed from her left eye and her tensed maxillary framed two bulbs on her cheeks. Gertrude felt a tension in her teeth and felt that if she would tighten a little more her maxillary she would remain empty in her mouth. She kept silent. And stared at people as if she would beg them to vanish. She looked again at the note board. A piece of tiny paper was still stuck there. With two fingers she snatched the paper: … 40-40. Kálvária square, 8/A, NO. 28, District VIII. 8th district. Bloody me, the very same district! She remained there stoned. She knew it wouldn’t be a good idea to go there. She knew it! She knew it before, when her parents told her not to go there, because there are people, sinful, degraded people and those people would notice she’s not from there, from those damned hoods. They could hurt her. She didn’t want to listen then to her parents, neither now if they say it again. The roads seemed not to be large anymore, the roads seemed to cut her breath. Common balconies were invaded by clothes of all colours: reddish blouses, washed blue trousers, all were hanged on long ropes. The patio was surrounded by the tall Jewish blockhouses. Gertrude entered the main staircase searching for the apartment 28. The stairs seemed to be obsolete, the handle was made of iron but because of the time it became rusted. As she touched the handle she could feel the slime that ground there in the last years, she felt on the surface of her finger the slippery deposited slime and the rust scratching her fingers. For a second she stopped on the stairs, she could see the number 28. That’s it! The reddish door was embraced by a huge grating. The bell-push had a circular form with a little red button in the middle. Gertrude pushed the red button and a sharpening noise could be heard from the inside as one had dragged one’s nail on a blackboard made of glass. The door opened. Jancsi stood erect in front of her, without any gesture on his face. He turned only a little bit his right ear. Gertrude could see some white fuzz coming out of his ear. – What?! asked Jancsi, putting his right hand at his ear.
Gertrude didn’t say a word. I must yell so he can hear me. Everybody will know that I am here. Every little fuck stare at me, or grab me by my hands and legs, or undress me…again. But no, not again! Once was enough. She raised her hand aggressively in which she had Jancsi’s poster and showed it to him. Pointing it straight into Jancsi’s face. – Ah! said Jancsi. He understood for what the girl had come. He turned his back and with a finger in the air he made a sign for Gertrude to enter. Gertrude made a step in the room. The ceiling was high. Very high. The old man truss his dressing gown as not to fell down, looked at the girl and made a short sound of ironic laugh. Gertrude looked only at the ceiling and when she noticed there is no noise in the room she looked at Jancsi. The old man closed one blue eye and with the other he struck her with his look. – Do you want to stay here?! He asked. – What? No… with you? So you can touch me in my sleep? You filthy old man! Do you think I don’t know you, you putrefied people living in this area? Don’t you think that I know what you have in your perverted mind? You and the rest of you…are the same. You like touching young flesh, don’t you? Huh?! As she was saying all this to the old man, she got closer to him, raising her voice, pointing her hand as if she wanted to take him by his neck and strangulate him until his last breath would vanish leaving behind a stream of stench. She couldn’t do it. She knew it wasn’t Jancsi’s fault for what happened the year before. That night! That bloody night, when her parents told her not to go in that district. She went though. She did it. Jancsi opened widely his eyes, examined Gertrude’s clothes and shoes, and face. He shook his head in disagreement. – Then why are you here? To expose your expensive shit clothes?! OUT! He yelled, pointing with his finger the exit door.
Gertrude’s head was pumping the blood in her cheeks, she could hear and feel her heart beating in her forehead. Her maxillary got tensed again. She stared at him in this position of his, pointing the door . With her two hands grabbed the old man’s chest and pushed him hard. Jancsi fell on the floor. She could see him rolling his eyes as if he was searching for something in the room, his facial mimicry looked as if he was lost. She grabbed her knees with her nails and looked at him for a short time with her mouth wide open. She got closer to him, grabbed his face with her right hand and with her four fingers she pushed his tongue deep in his mouth. Just because I can do to you what they did to me. A moment Gertrude stopped. She knew it was wrong to be there, she knew it was wrong what she was doing, she knew she have forgotten her meds. She turned round and started to run downstairs.
In the street she could feel the cold air going through her clothes, her bones, her milky skin. She felt her boots dragging her feet and she couldn’t run anymore. She looked back to see if the old man is following her. Or someone else. Or just someone. She put her hands in her pocket. In the skin of her right hand she could still feel Jancsi’s teeth. She was cold. When she reached on Váci Street Gertrude laid on the bench and looked impatiently at people, rapidly moving her eyes from a corner of her head to another. People …b-l-e-a-h! – Gertrude?! Please! Please take your meds, I brought them, here, I have some water too. Her mother stretched her hand in which were Gertrude’s medicine. The girl took the pill in her two finger, opened wide her mouth showing to her mother that she was about to swallow it. – Thank you! You should have brought them sooner though. But is fine. I think … I want to go home now.