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Vol. 3, No. 2

The Worst Thing a Suburban Girl Could Imagine
by Melissa Bank


It was almost 7:30 when I got to my apartment, but there was no sign of Henry. I called the shore and told my mother we'd be late, and she said her usual, "Don't worry, whatever time you get here is fine."
    I looked out my window and I watched a young family packing up their jeep and leaving for the weekend. I suddenly got scared about how sick my father might be, and how little time I might have to spend with him. I thought, Whatever time we get there is not fine.
    I decided I'd talk to Henry about being late. But when he finally arrived, he had a guest with him, Rebecca.
    Outside the Holland Tunnel, Rebecca turned around in her seat to talk to me, and I saw that she was pretty, though you could tell she didn't think about it. She was husky with brown skin, large dark eyes, and a tiny gold dot in her nose. She told me she was a landscape painter who sold water purifiers to pay her rent.
    When she said, "You should get one," I thought she'd caught me staring at her nose dot. But then she told me that the water in New York was even worse than Boston's as far as chlorine, lead, and particulates were concerned.

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