I can’t understand it. I never will. Why? And why me?
And why my sister?
He shook my hand with a sweaty group of sausages. He smiled and said his name and even in that short moment of meeting him, with two steps of distance between our bodies and his thick and soft fingers in my hand, I noticed the smell.
From that day on it was always there. I walked past his nodding face behind the reception desk, unsure whether to breathe in deeply or to hold my breath. It was not something that made me jump out of my shoes, but it made my nose itch and my feet sweat. The smell was musky but light, intruding and penetrating but relaxing and, even as that is hard to admit, arousing. Continue reading →
They made me swear by their lives. I have sworn never to tell – or else. Now it’s too late. It’s all too late.
I was married. We were happy. We had two children. I think we still do, but I’m not so sure.
The bank I worked at was just a small branch. An Italian name, if you must know. I worked first at the counter, then they promoted me. Back office. Deputy manager. Manager. All that within a year.
And then the men came. There were four of them and they opened an account for a small company. I don’t know why i had the account number written on my notebook. I must have told it to them or maybe they asked me to write it down. I wish I’d remember.
I checked just out of curiosity. It’s something I did – not often, but once or twice a day. When a customer looks interesting and you are curious who they are – nothing is more enlightening to check their account.
The account was not even a day open. 700 million. Seven Zero Zero Million Dollar.
The money came from different accounts, not just one or two – hundreds of them. Continue reading →
I woke up. When I looked to my right Roxana was just climbing out of bed.
“What are you doing?”
She didn’t respond. Her movements were slow but directed.
She started walking. Her hand pressed the door handle down.
My childhood wasn’t easy. First there was no father, then there was one, then my mother was gone.
They arrested her partner. I remember sitting in a large room with brown walls. Many people were staring at me. I sat at a small table. The old man that sat higher to my right scared me. An old woman kept asking me questions.
“Did you hear a fight?”
“What did you see that night?”
“Did he hurt you?”
At some point I started talking. I remember wondering what answers the old lady was looking for. Sometimes, when she seemed unhappy with my answer, I said I remembered something else. Continue reading →
Marvyn stumbled into the sandpit while his sister still sat on the stones, unsure what to make of the yellow material in front of her. That day, in early March, I saw the boy for the first time. He was older than most of the other kids, maybe eleven or twelve. his t-shirt and jeans had holes.A paper hat sat slanted on his dirty blond hair.
The boy just stood at the other end of the playground, staring towards the sand and sometimes at the other kids. I remember thinking that he must be cold.
It was Anne’s first time at the playground, at least she wouldn’t remember the first time. For Marvyn it was the first time in a few months – and he was accordingly excited. Marvyn was five. Anne was only one. Continue reading →