"The thing was that it just freaked me out that she didn’t have a pinky finger on her right hand anymore…" Quite an intriguing opening line to a story and it gets better, as Theo Versten writes about a relationship and college in his unique style. All six chapters are now online for you to read, but, be warned, it may not be suitable for the faint of heart…
Freshman Year, 2001: Part One
The thing was that it just freaked me out that she didn’t have a pinky finger on her right hand anymore. I mean, yeah, she was still basically the same person. Same face, and same tits and ass, and same personality, and she still wore a little cross around her neck and was sweet and her blue eyes shined like sex pistols blinking behind thick black mascara eyelashes, but an element of a freak or a disabled person grafted on to her when she lost that pinky finger. It was her right hand. And her right hand was her magic hand.
Some girls play the skin flute like it’s salami and they’re trying to take the skin off it or something . Heather played it like an angel though, and the torpedoes of my lustiness would spout like a balooga.
But her finger was lost to a jelly fish this summer. Hawaii with the parents. Swimming close in by shore, maybe even just wading, her younger brother by her side. The two splashing and laughing, shouting, and all of a sudden she dove into the water, hands clasped together above her head, fingers intertwined and in the warm watery midst of her reverie a shark bit her hand. She jumped to stand waist deep in the water, screaming “Shark Shark Shark” and looked down in agony to find a little translucent piece of jelly float casually away, treacherous blind tentacles dangling behind.
The family rushed her to the hospital as her mother sat in the front passenger’s side reciting her favorite bible quotes with a bitter fervor. Her brother stared at Heather, in the back seat with wide unbelieving, dumb jock eyes and said, “You’re lucky it wasn’t a shark. It would have eaten your whole hand off.” Tears rolled down her face and she said, “Lucky my ass. You’re lucky it wasn’t your little penis.” “That’s lewd,” her Dad, the hasty chauffer added.
She’s still an amazing girl. Only she doesn’t have her pinky. The hospital people treated it as a the typical vacationer jelly fish sting that it was. Sent her home and let her know that she might regain feeling or she might not. Somehow the poor little guy became apparently infected within the next couple days and back to the hospital the family went. The doctor sent the family away with a generally positive outlook on the situation: “Watch it closely. And if it gets worse, which it shouldn’t, but it might, return here immediately.”
It got worse somehow. Much worse. Turned swollen and black and blue and was even beginning to burst at the seams, with white frothy pus trickling up. It was like a reverse miracle. The type of thing doctors stand around and scratch their heads over, like monkeys reflecting on mortality.
They cut off her pinky in Hawaii. A bloody, dismembering end to the family vacation in the palm tree paradise. Back in Minnesota she saw a hand specialist. He wasn’t particularly special, though. Then she saw a psychologist, he was a little more helpful. And before college started she was back to her peppy, life-loving self; friends and movies and parties and flirting like a rabid dog with pink bows in her hair. I like the way she flirts. Like a figure skater.
We happened to end up going to the same University. And I got the feeling when I saw her that she might be looking to grasp my flute once again. We randomly ran into each other at a party. An older guy who graduated from our high school had a house and was throwing a pre-semester get really drunk and pass out in the bathroom type of party at his place. I had never been to a party quite like this.
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