Thursday, February 21, 2008

A new story for "Frau Trude"

Today's tale, “Frau Trude” is a change of pace. We've mostly been looking at happy endings-but not today!

I think the original fairy tale is more than a “mind your parents” cautionary fable. It speaks to the dangers of naïve and unbridled curiosity--a risk for all ages.

Jamie watched the shadows on the ceiling. Their movements depicted a battle between light and darkness. She was part of the story too. A valiant maiden, fighting for truth and freedom. Her parents (represented by the black smudge in the corner) were the cruel tyrants to be overthrown.

Jamie saw the entire saga playing simultaneously on the ceiling, in her mind, and in the cryptic lyrics pulsing through her ipod. She wanted to write it all down, but the mystical tale was moving too fast and she was very tired. She'd taken a higher dose of the shroom than before. Too much? She felt faint.

Eight hours later Jamie was ready for more. She'd be more careful this time to get the perfect dose so she could record the brilliant messages coming to her through the TV, the fish tank, the stars and most especially, the trees.

But when she went to find her stash (perhaps she'd just do the pot and save the mushrooms for another day) it was gone. Confiscated by her captors.

There was no use confronting them. They'd simply yell or lecture or threaten her. But what could they threaten? No prison was worse than this house. She'd warned them to leave her things alone. She'd warned them.

It was a Friday night and her tormentors were leaving. Perfect. She'd have a head start.

Jamie grabbed cash from her hiding places, and a duffle bag. She'd travel light. She couldn't hitch with a suitcase. Besides, she didn't need much. Just some more money.
A trip to the ATM proved lucrative. If she were frugal, she'd have enough for a month or more. She'd get a job with the fake ID Kira had provided.

In three days, she was in Berkeley. So poppin! If only she’d been born 30 years earlier. To be here during the summer of love? Epic!!!!

Her first evening in town, she found a party. Was she the youngest there? Hard to say. Most looked like college gowns but there were some townees--girls who looked 14. Jamie studied them. Could they tell she was in their grade? She tried to stand tall and stick out her chest. She told the group she was 17.

She was hungry for a hit of something-pot, speed, something. But this group, however friendly, ignored her less than subtle hints. Did they think she was a NARC?

Crap! Here she was in friggin Berkeley, CA and no drugs??? A Monday night and no way to get high? She'd have to ditch this party. It was too bad, the guys were cute and the vibe was awesome. Everyone was beautiful and sexy and fun. She was meeting film people and musicians.

An older woman (was she 35?) sat in the corner, surrounded by a harem of eager, young guys. Frat boys? She was telling them a story and they were screaming with laughter. Were they high?

Jamie inched closer and smiled. The woman, Trudy, beckoned her closer. Trudy's eyes sparkled and her smile was like a bank of camera flashes. She sent the male harem away and cuddled on the couch with Jamie, asking her questions.

Jamie felt like a princess, chosen by the Queen to have a visit. She told Trudy her new improved bio-much more glamorous than the real thing. They shared pizza and coke and finally Jamie steered their talk to drugs.

“Are you looking to get high tonight?” The Queen’s smile widened. Jamie wondered if perhaps Trudy had bleached her teeth once too often. The shocking white glow now appeared almost blue.

“Yes,” Jamie whispered, “do you have something I could buy?”

Trudy pulled Jamie closer. “I have something very special for you. A mixture very powerful…”

“Sounds good to me.”

“Are you sure?” Trudy sang this question and then laughed.

“I'm not afraid.”

“Good. I didn't think so.”

Jamie swallowed the large pill and then lay down on the couch, her head on Trudy's lap. The light in the room began to dance and conversations looped back on themselves. She'd hear the start of a joke, then the end, then the middle, then the start again. The room seemed broken up into fragments of time and space. Jamie laughed.

“Right… be…. be… back…. right…” Trudy’s words echoed as she moved off the couch. She moved off the couch again and again. Finally, Jamie stretched out and closed her eyes to enjoy the music. Then she felt a tickle near her face. She opened her eyes and saw an enormous cat sitting near her head. She pulled her arms over her face.

Jamie peeked out through her fingers. The cat was still there. It was planning to scratch her. Jamie wanted to scream but she was too relaxed. Her body wouldn't move.

She peeked again. Now there were two cats hovering over her, large and cartoon-like. Jamie swatted the air and one cat scratched her hand. She pulled back again and covered her face.

She listened to the punk playing in the background. She tried to breathe deeply and focus on the beat. “Trudy?” She murmured.

“Yes, dear. Yes, dear. Yes, dear.” Jamie heard Trudy's voice echoing. She peaked through her fingers to look. The two cats and now 20 other eyes were staring down at her.


“Yes, dear, nothing to worry about….”

The eyes gathered nearer. Jamie felt herself lifted and moved to another room. The eyes followed close by. Then the room became white light as Jamie's mind when dark. ©Lewis-Barr 2008

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