Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Friday Night Races - Part VI

Shanna stayed at home for two more weeks, and then boarded her flight to Israel. To begin her year. It wasn't going to be the year she expected, but it was going to be her year to make whatever she could out of the next 10 months.

She spent most of the past two weeks alone. She couldn't face her father; the disapproval in his eyes spoke volumes more than the words he was saying, words she was sure her mother had coached him on. Her sisters were both busy, her younger sister starting 10th grade, her older sister passing the time studying at Wayne State University and teaching Navi at Bais Yaakov while she waited to get married.

Shanna just needed the time to compose herself, and get ready for the new year. She wanted to go to the funeral, but her father wouldn't allow it. Please, she had begged. She wanted so badly to be near Chaim one final time. But he refused to let her. Refused to let her pay a shiva call. Refused to let her ruin her sister's shidduch chances.

So Shanna stayed home. She tried to get some perspective on her relationship with Chaim, from a safe distance. And for two weeks, she thought about the notebook entry. She thought she knew what it said, but it couldn't be. It didn't make any sense. David was one of Chaim's best friends.

Just before leaving to the airport, Shanna ran back to her room. She grabbed the notebook, and put it in carry-on bag. She needed to read what she had written on that sad day. The saddest day in her life. Before this week.

She had a window seat, perfect for privacy, not so good if she needed to use the restroom. But for now she was happy. The flight attendants finished their instructions, and soon she was airborne, headed for Tel Aviv.

She tried to read a book, then a magazine, trying to push off the notebook that had acted as a diary for so long. But now it was time. She didn't want to read the words she had remembered since talking to the detective.

And she knew, that even though she put Chaim on a pedestal, even though she thought he was the greatest, there was another side to him. He was sweet and charming and adorable and pigheaded and violent and dangerous.

Shanna took out her old notebook. "My shrink would have a field day with this," she thought to herself. "If I had a shrink, that is." She chuckled. Her notebook was filled with poetry, and journal entries, but there was one that she needed to read.

She flipped it open to March. A poem.

tha-thump tha-thump tha-thump
i can hear it
can feel it

three of us
occupying one space
where only one belongs

to keep it
but suicide

what will they say
what will they say
what will they say

She heard the heartbeats that day. It was a sound that haunted her. The twin sound of beating hearts living inside her. Abortion. The word made her want to throw up. But there was no other way. No way at all she could go through with it and live in her house and show her face again. And so she terminated her twins. Their twins. But there was no their anymore.

She turned the pages, some suck together by tears. Chaim was so unreasonable then. He blamed her, and when she asked him to take her to the family planning center, he hit her. Slapped her across the face and left a mark. He was stunned, and ran away.

She had called David, Chaim's friend, and asked him for help. She needed a ride, and she needed some cash, and David was there with both.

She found the entry she was looking for. It was the first time she was looking at it since she wrote it, but she remembered it was there.

I did it today. Chaim is such an asshole and wouldn't take me, but his friend David did. He picked me up around the corner from school and took me to the clinic. He asked me what happened to my face but I wouldn't tell him. I told him the same thing I told everybody. I wasn't paying attention, and I bumped into a door.

He was smoking and I asked him to put it out cuz its not good for the baby. Like what we were doing was good for the babies. I shouldn't call them babies. it makes it all too real.

When it was over he hugged me and helped me to the car. He touched my face and asked me what happened, and I was so high on the drugs that i told him Chaim hit me and he’s such an asshole and David said he was gonna kill Chaim when he saw. First he was going to kill him for hitting me, and then he was going to kill him for not being there for me today. what a chicken shit.

Then David drove me back to school and I walked in and tried to pretend like nothing was wrong. But I was in too much pain, and went home.

There it was, in black and white. David had threatened to kill Chaim for her. He must have just been waiting for the right time, and when it happened, three months later, he did it.

What if she had carried the babies, she wondered. Would Chaim’s mother embrace her? The babies would have been born just about a month ago. She always wondered if his mother would have liked her, if they ever got the chance to meet each other. But the only people Chaim could ever introduce her to were his friends, the car guys.

Which was more than she could do. She never introduced Chaim to any of her friends. Did she even have any friends anymore?


Back at the Utica Police station, Detective Mitchel took one last look through the Gregg file. The evidence of foul play was tenuous at best. The damage to the car was too severe to know for certain, and the victim had no known enemies or anyone with a motive. Mitchel took out pen and wrote Accidental Death in the file.

Then he closed the file, and put it away.

The preceding was a work of fiction. You can catch the story from the beginning by clicking on the The Race under Friday Night Races on the sidebar.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

abortion - thats weak man. you could have come up with a better motive than that.

July 26, 2005 3:16 PM  
Blogger Air Time said...

so you think david did it?

July 26, 2005 3:16 PM  
Blogger AMSHINOVER said...


July 26, 2005 3:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think shanna's father did it - you probably have not made up your mind yet

July 26, 2005 4:09 PM  
Blogger Air Time said...

I have made up my mind. I know who did it. I just haven't exactly worked out why.

July 26, 2005 4:12 PM  
Blogger Heidi said...

Wow this story has gotten very dark.

I dont think that the chapter about "the girl" adequately described the seriousness of their relationship. I think it said they "fooled around a little bit". While this is absolutely amazing writing, I dont think it is consistent with the rest of the story.

July 26, 2005 4:17 PM  
Blogger Still Wonderin' said...

it's good. It's good.

you got in, you got out, you told a good story. how did keg know about the pregnancy?

July 26, 2005 4:19 PM  
Blogger Air Time said...

SW - keg just thinks like I do, i guess.

Heidi - Sometimes, fooled around is more than just fooling around. She did blush at the memory of it.

July 26, 2005 4:22 PM  
Blogger orthomom said...

Wow. Twist. I'm looking forward to the next. Don't let this peter out too quickly...

July 26, 2005 4:34 PM  
Blogger Still Wonderin' said...

not so fast mom. I've already optioned 'Races' and the next three!

July 26, 2005 5:13 PM  
Anonymous Anon encourager to continue said...

This has been a very disappointing ending to this story.

An abortion, a decision made so quickly by a very frightened young girl. It doesn't compute.

Where did they have time to have sex, nothing has been developed in the story up until now to suggest they had such a relationship. I think that Shana's story needs some more tweaking to lead the reader to believe this part, it is too shocking for the reader, and sounds unbelievable.

You led us on a great journey, even adding a murder twist is great, but this is too much.

Just my anonymous thoughts... I really think you have talent and there is a lot in here, it just fell apart for me with Part VI.

July 26, 2005 5:19 PM  
Blogger Air Time said...

AETC - Don't give up now on the story.

Where did they have time? This isn't a novel. We aren't going through every day of their lives. The first time they met was january. Their meeting in the mall was late february/early march. The abortion happened the following march.

There was previously confirmed vague levels of fooling around. Now we know how far they got. Farther than we actually thought.

From what I can tell, we are about half way through with this story.

July 26, 2005 7:30 PM  
Anonymous anon encourager to continue said...


Shanna is so conflicted about calling the police, why? If he treated her that poorly, left her alone during the abortion, slapped her, she should have called the police immediately. It doesn't compute...

I know its not a novel, and you allude to things, but you need more allusions, so we are not totally surprised.

July 26, 2005 9:50 PM  
Blogger Air Time said...

Anon- You are thnking like a man. You need to thnk like a woman (or teenage girl) to understand why she does the things she does.

July 26, 2005 10:05 PM  
Blogger Still Wonderin' said...

oy. the girls ain't gonna go for that my friend...

July 26, 2005 11:34 PM  
Blogger Air Time said...


you think teen age girls think the same way as anonymous (presumably male, 25-45).

July 27, 2005 12:48 AM  
Blogger Still Wonderin' said...

you know that. i know that. i bet anon knows that. But the girls....well, who's gonna tell them?.

July 27, 2005 10:12 AM  
Blogger Air Time said...

I think all the women who read this would agree that they think differently than they did as teens.

July 27, 2005 10:16 AM  
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October 28, 2005 4:46 PM  
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April 23, 2007 4:39 PM  

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