The Runaway Dream
Introduction - Sketching Lisa
“For ‘tis not in mere death that men die most.” – E. Barrett Browning
I'm down on my luck. All of fifteen years old, running away for the third time in two years, and determined not to make the same mistakes again. I ain't gonna get caught. I've had enough of Family Services and Foster Care, and playing bingo with all the other orphans on Friday nights. My folks had died on a Tuesday when I was nine, leaving me with nothing but hate, and it's a bitch, yeah. Being alone. Nobody wants a half-grown girl with a bad attitude.
I wasn't ever abused or anything, although I heard the stories. Nobody beat me all that much, or locked me in a closet, or any of that stuff. I was just pissed on my own, you know? Not so much at people, but at God. He didn't seem to be around so much though, unless you believed the penguins, the nuns who smiled and hugged too much, and said God was inside me.
So when I was thirteen I decided to cut the fucker out. All that did was get me in a hospital, a couple hospitals, but the state didn't have a lot of extra cash for a kid with no parents. No prospects. No hope. So they pumped me full of dope, gave me some tough love, and turned me loose, putting me back into the ever lovin' arms of Jesus and the homeless lonely children of St. Luke's. And I wasn't stayin' there.
I'm tall for being fifteen and not ugly, I know that. I've seen ugly people and none of them are orphans. That must be one of God's little jokes, like "I'll make you beautiful, kid, and then I'll fuck ya good." I imagine he likes screwing pretty people just like everyone else does. Every kid at St. Luke's was pretty, and so old inside it hurt to be in the same room with them. You grow up fast in a world like that because time really is relative.
The kids born without parents got it easier because they didn't know any better. Kids like me, we did all our growing in a few minutes. During the time it takes some stranger to tell you that childhood is over, all of five minutes, maybe ten if it's a woman and she's crying. I went from nine to ninety in ten minutes and I knew the big secret that the deathbed holds…Living is a lot harder than dying.
Hard times. I have my hair tied back in a short blonde ponytail hanging just below my shoulders. I have my old denim jacket which looks cool, but it doesn't keep the cold out. Some flair on it, a yellow smiley face pinned upside down on the left side, and an anarchy A in a circle pinned to the collar. Just a couple small buttons to warn the world I'm coming. I got my t-shirt, plain white, and a red and black flannel shirt, with all my money buttoned up in the breast pocket. All thirty-four dollars of it, mostly gotten from the collection box at the church.
Some well worn jeans, faded and frayed, but no holes anyway, and some work boots half a size too big that I'd swiped from a Payless shoe store not an hour before. I scuffle my feet in the gravel along the railroad tracks in South Seattle, knowing those boots look too good, too new. I need them dirty and old looking because everyone likes the shiny stuff.
The rail yards aren't that big, not like you might expect in a gateway city like Seattle, but they're big enough for me to get lost in. Maybe grab a train going south, to California where it's warm and doesn't rain so much all the time. Some guys are sitting in an open boxcar, rusted and covered with spray paint. Some choice street art touring America, bringing the message that "Rah ba-Zin Kilz" and I wish I had my own can of paint. "Gahd Kilz" that's my message.
"Bring it," one of the guys says to me, not loudly, and with a little nod of his head. The other one is smoking, both of them sitting in the dark doorway with legs dangling. It's getting late in the afternoon and the sky is warm and yellow red, but the wind is cold. Summer's coming, but it ain't here yet.
I ignore them, feeling the knife in my back pocket, a 7" folding Buck knife I'd traded kisses for with the old black guy who cleaned the halls at the orphanage. He was old school nigger with a pregnant belly and an anorexic mind, asking me what I wanted and dumb enough to give it to me. I'd slipped that blade real quiet into his groin and taken a bloody nose when he backhanded me before he staggered out, pressing his hand between his wobbly legs and dripping blood down his trousers.
He didn't talk and he didn't come back. Maybe he'd died someplace, out in the alley with the trash. Bleeding in the rain. I'd hoped so, laying in my bed and fucking the handle of that Buck in and out of my immature sex. My juices mixed with the dried blood, bringing it back to life and running pink and sticky over my fingers. God was in that nigger too, maybe, deep down in his balls festering and I'd let him out. Maybe.
No bra, little pink panties, and a pair of boys athletic socks, pulled halfway up to my knees. That's all I've got. Thirty-four dollars, my knife, a silver Zippo lighter running out of gas, and three smokes in a crumpled pack. Two buttons on my jacket, a stainless choker chain around my neck that I'd got from a dead dog on my last walk-about, and a key. I don't know what the key is for. I found it and kept it. Something for my pocket, something to put my fingers around with an odd shape, interesting and mysterious. I try it on every door I can find, but it never works.
Blonde hair, tall thin body, puffy boobs and a little hairy blonde hole that's only been used by me. That's all I am. That's everything I'm bringing to the fight. I skip through the rail yards on my way to the 7-11 uptown, on Pike Street. It's a long walk, but that's what running away is; the long walk to forever. I couldn't leave the city; not by myself, not really. Thinking about hopping a train was nothing but smoke. The runaway dream.
I had a beer, a forty ounce malt liquor in a brown bag, what a stereotype, but that's where I live. I was going to see Vin and it had become sort of a tradition anyway, me bringing something to share and him giving me that accidental attention that I needed without all the bullshit concern. I leaned against the counter and pushed the forty at him with a shrug. I'd only had a little.
"Thanks. How ya doin?" Vin lit a cigarette and handed it to me. He was still smoking French cigarettes, even though he was HIV positive and if he got anything it was gonna kill him in weeks, not years. They had cloves in them, just a little, so that the smoke made me a little dizzy.
"I'm okay." I looked around without much shame. I was just a kid in a porn shop, like that was normal. I take in the dildos and vibes and pocket pussies and all the magazines and videos. It looks so stupid, all of it, but what do I know?
"Running away again?" he asks, sipping the beer and drawing hard on his smoke.
"Yeah. What am I gonna do?" I shrug. "I can't go back to family, no fucking way."
"Yeah," Vin shrugged too. He'd run away from someplace in East Germany before the wall came down, when he was like twelve or something. Just him, hiding in some truck, and he'd never looked back. He had a soft spot for kids and walls.
"You looking?" He puffed his cigarette like a fag, holding it almost delicately between his thumb and forefinger.
"Not yet. Why? You got something?"
"I know a guy." Vin gave me a little look, expecting me to shake my head probably.
"I ain't going back," I bit my lip. "What do I gotta do?"
"Just lay there." Vin had blue eyes, like grey blue, almost white under the fluorescent lights. "You gotta pop your cherry sometime."
"Says who?" I ask him seriously and then giggle, sounding like a little girl suddenly so that the two or three guys shopping me have an excuse to stare.
"I got some too, if you need it," Vin says quietly. "Don't feel a thing."
"How much?" I'd met Vin the first time I'd run away, when I was thirteen and he'd picked me up on the highway. It had been my first time with the needle and we'd become best friends.
"Nickel?" He smiled as I licked my lips. "Not enough? A dime and you get some cash anyway."
"Sure. Yeah," I swallowed hard. "What's it called?"
"I dunno. Four Finger Discount or something," Vin shrugged. "Lesbians. They said little girls, I thought of you."
"Oh, like you knew I was comin' around?" I giggled again, sort of on purpose and I tossed my hair at one of the pervs, an old guy in a suit.
"Girls like you are always comin' around, baby!" Vin grinned. "Here…go get yourself well, on me." He pulled out a little leather kit, black and dull and heavy. He dropped some tokens on the counter, slapping them down with his fingers so they wouldn't roll. "Go in the back, I fixed a couple of the locks."
"Four Finger Discount, huh?" I grinned at that. "I knew you were fuckin' with me." I swiped the pouch and the tokens quick. I'd done a few movies, mostly playing the girl next door seduced by an older woman. It wasn't really acting, but the sex was good when they just let the cameras run.
Vin chuckled. "Figured you could use a reality check."
"Shit," I rolled my eyes. My reality check was in my hands.
The arcade was dark and the shadows moved. Everyone back there was a ghost, a shell of something else. My boots clomped on the dull concrete floor and I ignored the eyes shining in the dark. I found a booth, locking the door and sitting down, my heart racing. I hadn't fixed in three days and I was shaking a little as I opened Vin's kit.
He was all traditional and liked to cook the old fashioned way, so he had a little tin of shoe polish and a spoon. Three minutes after I sat down I was drawing dreams out of a bent spoon and slipping them into my left arm, wincing just for a second. Vin didn't have any cotton, no water, and that shit was hot.
Some guy was watching me through a hole in the wall and I smiled at him, pushing the plunger halfway and then jacking it back, drawing some blood and watching it mix in the flashing bright light of the porno playing on the screen. I did that a couple more times, playing with myself, jacking my dope like a fiend until I sighed and pulled the needle free, holding it in my lap and staring at the guy's hard cock sticking through the hole. I dreamed…dreamed…
My next stop on the trail of tears was Denny's, just cause I needed some food. I wasn't hungry and my mind was still a little numb, but I'd learned my lessons young. When you run, eat every fuckin' chance you get. A girl named Clarice worked there and she was always good for a handout. Tall and thin, looking a little like Uma Thurman's ghost, with dull brown eyes. She needed contacts; green maybe, bright like a cat's. She slipped out the back where I was waiting and handed me a Styrofoam container with a club sandwich and some fries in it.
"Shit, you look wasted, girl." She watched me for a moment as I nodded, taking a big bite, and she shook her head. "Can you come around later?"
"You want?" I asked with my mouth full.
"If it's cool," she smiled, just a little one.
"What happened to what's her name, the one with the tits?"
"Amy?" Clarice pulled a smoke out of her apron and lit it, sighing heavily. "She's back in it."
"County?" I made a face.
"Shoplifting. She got forty days." Clarice was twenty-five and she looked thirty-five standing there, but she had a good heart and that was why.
"Yeah. I'll come around," I nodded. I'd almost finished my food, barely tasting it. I sorta figured she might want to put me up, so I was glad I didn't have to ask.
"Here. I gotta get back inside. I get off at six okay?" She handed me her cigarette and smiled again, then closed the door behind her.
I was walking down the boulevard, looking at the sidewalk when a car pulled up close, driving slowly. "Hey, baby. How much?" some guy was asking and I shook my head. He was the third one in an hour, but I was mostly killing time anyway. It was just after two and I had four more hours and not enough money.
"Can I talk to you?" Another car and this time a woman's voice. She was older, middle forties maybe, and dressed casual nice in her Volvo sedan. Somebody's wife, mom too, judging from the toys in the back seat. GI Joe and Barbie, so she had one of each. Out pretty late for a mommy, musta been saving up. She was pregnant with the need that Daddy didn't know about.
"Hi." I leaned in the passenger window a little, giving her a look at my small breasts as my t-shirt fell low. She could see my pointed nipples, just barely maybe. I always liked watching the eyes, cops always looked at your face first, see if they know you, but the regular people, the horny soccer moms from Bellevue, they only came out when they were famished. Fucking vampires. They didn't care if they knew you or not.
"Hi." She licked her lips and then looked up, into my face. "Do you need a ride home?"
"Yeah," I nodded. "That'd be great." I opened the door and slipped inside.
"Where we going?" she asked and that was too bad cause I didn't have a place yet.
"Gimme eighteen bucks, I'll show you," I told her and we ended up driving two blocks to the Amsterdam. It was a junkie hotel renting rooms by the hour, but that's all we needed.
The woman looked around with some small hint of disdain and finally sat down in an old arm chair, stained and ripped. "Is this where you live?" she asked me.
"No," I answered, not wanting any sympathy. "Don't worry, the bed's clean."
"What's your name?"
"Lisa," I answered. "What do you want?" I was standing there with my hands in my back pockets, a few feet in front of her, looking down at the woman but not feeling superior at all.
"An hour," the woman shrugged. "Maybe uh…" she licked her lips. "Can I see your pussy?"
I nodded, unbuttoning my jeans and unzipping them, pulling the denim open enough so she could see the swell of my sex and hooked a thumb in my panties, giving her my blonde covered pussy. I pulled at my skin with my fingertips a bit, briefly stroking my smallish clit, coaxing it to come out for a little peek.
"Yeah," she nodded and checked her watch. "Two hours. How much?"
"Fifty," I said, leaving my pants undone and hanging around my hips. I watched while she opened her purse and pulled out one of the fifties that must have been right on top. She probably figured it would be more, but I wasn't pushing. Fifty bucks was easy to negotiate and so cheap she wouldn't bother stealing it back, as if she could. I was doin' this for fun anyway.
I took the money and buttoned it up in the pocket of my flannel shirt. I shrugged, giving her a genuine smile. "I'm all yours."
"Take off your clothes," she said and I undressed for her slowly, taking off my shirt first and then my t-shirt, uncovering my breasts as it came over my head, pulling the small mounds of flesh taut and flat for a moment. I played with them a little, just cause it felt good and she didn't mind. My nipples were hard as diamonds, sharp like pink points of fire. I kicked off my boots and then finally my Levi's, letting them fall down around my knees and standing there for a second so she could see me in just panties.
"How old are you?" She was staring at me, breathing softly through her open mouth.
"Fifteen," I smiled, sitting down on the short rough carpet and pulling my socks off first, and then my jeans over my feet slowly. I spread my legs, letting the woman see the crotch of my pink underwear pulled tight over my sex.
"Runaway?" she asked and she was touching herself, just a little through her nice middle class American J.C. Penney's clothes.
I nodded, "Uh-huh." I sat there, leaning back on straight arms, naked except for my panties, looking up at the woman.
"You're so pretty," she swallowed thickly. "Let me see your pretty pussy."
I pulled my panties to the side, thinking she liked them, and I let her look at my sex, pulling my labia apart for her so she could see my little pink hole. She told me to finger myself while she undressed and I did it slowly, rubbing my pussy and then tilting my finger inside gently. I was moist and tight and hot, and it felt good, fucking myself while this woman watched me.
She was nice looking, even old as she was. I liked older women better anyway. Her boobs had a little sag, and she had some old faded stretch marks around her waist, but she had a nice shape. I loved her body, the motherliness of it. I wondered if she'd want me to call her Mommy the way a lot of older women wanted me to. I hadn't really been with that many, maybe a dozen, but that was enough to clue me anyway.
She had me eat her for about twenty minutes and then she wanted me too and it was a good 69 with me on top. She was noisy when she came, and wet, but so was I and I wished I was still fixed. I'd have jacked her too, just to see Mommy higher than a kite. We spent half of her time doing that, her mouth on my cunt while I tongue fucked her hard. She had a big sloppy pussy and I could have fisted her probably, if she'd been into it.
But she was into other stuff.
We were hot and sweaty and smiling when she told me she wanted to piss in my mouth. "You do golden showers?" she asked and I just shrugged.
"It's your ride," I told her.
A few minutes later she had me on the floor, neither of us really caring about messing up a shitty hotel room like that one. It wouldn't be the first time someone had pissed on the floor probably. She knelt over my face as I lay there, her knees on either side of my head, looking down at my waiting face. Her pussy was a foot above me and I watch her fingers moving in the shadows.
"Open your mouth, Lisa," she said softly and as I opened wide she began pissing, hot and salty and bitter. "Swallow it…Uh fuck! Swallow it, Lisa…"
She was spraying my face, moving her hips and tightening her bladder so she could aim the stream into my mouth. I swallowed fast, but it was useless. The yellowish liquid was in my hair, in my ears, running down my neck. She moved to wash my puffy tits and then my tummy and then finally pissing her last little bit onto my pussy, rubbing her cunt with her fingers as she did so.
"Ohhh God…" She was turned on by it and I didn't really care, except my stomach churned a little.
The woman lay on top of me, licking my face and kissing me, sharing her piss as her breasts worked across mine. I lifted one of my legs so I could press my thigh against her sex, giving the woman something to grind against as we made out. It was hot and good like that, and when I came, I didn't mind being pissed on at all. We kissed and I held her tight, moaning and biting her ear as she shuddered and came hard against my thigh.
She left before I did, not talking a whole lot. She showered while I smoked and then dressed while I watched. I was tired. She gave me a look at the door, one of those 'I almost give a shit' looks that people offer when they're done using a person, but that's just guilt, and then she was gone. Back to her sleeping husband, her precious kids, and desperate lies.
I showered and got dressed, checking the clock in the dull yellow lobby. An hour and a half and I could crash with Clarice. There's a diner, a Korean place, with Korean writing and chicken feet in the window. That's where I went, sliding into a booth and sitting low, looking at the little cardboard pop-up advertising Michelob. The waitress is Korean, flat faced, flat chested, flat assed, like somebody steamrolled her.
"Get some coffee?" I ask and she makes a face, or maybe that was her smile, I dunno. I gotta watch for the cops though, cause they like coffee too and if they see me I'm going back. I hate that shit, like criminals get away and I get caught. Being a kid is a crime. Being alone is a crime. Being a kid alone is a death sentence, so they gotta arrest me to protect me. My brain wanders a lot at 4:30 in the morning, coming down off a buzz, coming down from good fuck. Coming down all the way, all the way…
I'd fallen asleep, just a little, and the waitress had nudged me. I paid for my coffee before I took a sip because that's how it works in places like that. They'd rather kick you out right away then let you catch your breath before you told them you didn't have any money.
There's a girl sitting at a table and I noticed her because she noticed me. There's only four of us in the place anyway, six if you count the Koreans. The other two are guys, hard luck cowboys who are waiting for something, but they don't know what. They notice us too, me and the woman, but we don't care. The girl though, like twenty something, maybe thirty, she looked at me over last night's newspaper, pretending to read and drinking her coffee. She was wearing real clothes too, like Mom in her Volvo.
I'm so cloudy right then, I couldn't tell what was past and what is now. So I sit there, sipping my coffee and the taste is bad, like dirty water painted black. Piss tastes better and I throw some sugar in it, three little white packets and some creamer from those little peel top cups. Now it looks like old river mud, so I can't drink it anyway. I just stir it for awhile.
"You wanna eat?" It was the girl, the woman.
"What?" I looked up at her. She'd gotten up and walked over and her hair's dirty blonde, but all natural and pinned back.
"Are you hungry? You look like you haven't had anything in awhile." She didn't smile and I was grateful for that anyway.
"No. I ate before," I shrugged, trying to be cool about it. A little bit of kindness and a pretty face always fucks me up.
She sat down without asking, sitting across from me and putting her arms on the table. "I'm Angela."
"You're a cop." I stared at her. It was all over her, the way she moved and the way she smelled. Only cops and whores had that smell, the smell of other people all over them.
"That bother you?" She liked looking into my eyes.
"I'm going to my sister's place," I said. "She gets off at six."
"Okay," the woman shrugged. "I was thinking maybe you were out here by yourself."
"No," I shook my head.
"You sure? I saw you going in the Amsterdam a couple hours ago." She looked at my coffee and then waved at the waitress. "You got orange juice? Real stuff? And some toast."
"I told you I wasn't hungry." I licked my lips, looking around, but it was just her.
"Yeah, I know." She smiled then, for the first time and it was sorta nice. Not too much teeth, not a lot of lip, just a little humor around her dark blue eyes.
"So, you got me in the Amsterdam," I shrugged like it didn't mean a thing.
"How much?" she asked and then looked up as the waitress was putting down a glass of juice and a plate of toast between us, like she didn't know who it was for.
"You shoppin' me?" I gave her a little smile of my own. If she wasn't I'd have been gone already, halfway back to Luke's in the back of her car.
"How much?" she repeated, sitting back a little.
"Got some apple jelly?" I asked the Korean and she shook her head. "For you?" I shrugged, looking back to the woman's eyes. "Depends. How long?"
"Long as I want." She shifted a little, reaching out and pushing the juice at me. "How long since you fixed?"
"Couple hours. I'm okay."
She nodded at me. "I got some, back at my place."
"You're fuckin' with me," I laughed, stretching a little and rubbing my eyes. They felt red and dry, like my eyeballs itched.
"Uh-uh," Angela shook her head.
"Let's go." I had my hands on top of my head, like she was takin' me down.
"Drink your juice first."
We were riding in her car, getting on the highway going north out of downtown.
"You pick up a lot of strays, huh?" I yawned, feeling tired. The sun was gonna come up soon. "Got a thing for it, I bet."
"Yeah." Her thumbs danced on the steering wheel, but Angela didn't look at me. "I don't meet a lot of regular people."
"Don't want to?" I turned my back to the door, pulling the seatbelt for some slack as I turned to face her in the dim light.
"Not really," she did look at me then, just for a second. "What are you looking for?"
"Nothing," I took a deep breath. "I just want it to be over with."
"Go to sleep," Angela told me.
"You ain't a cop, are you?" I took off my boots, kicking them onto the floor.
"Nope." She smiled straight ahead, happy maybe I wasn't so dumb.
"Figures," I laughed weakly, pulling my legs up and hugging myself, wriggling my ass a little to get comfortable. "You gonna kill me?"
"I dunno," Angela shrugged then. "It isn't up to me."
I fell asleep after that, feeling better because she'd told me the truth. Most people lie. They might lie all the time, or they might tell the truth about the little things, but when it comes time, they always lie about the big things. Like God being inside me. Angela wouldn't lie though, I knew that. She was like me; we were the only ones we could trust.