Welcome to the A to Z Challenge : 26 Stories during the month of April
Welcome to… The Apartment Building: Swan Rise
(For Links to the previous stories, CLICK HERE
Amy slipped the lock then snuck out onto the roof. One A.M., and she was still flying. Three acceptance letters in one day, with her prime choice school the last one she opened but the one she wanted most. She wedged a book she hated (“War and Peace”) between the door and jamb so she wouldn’t get locked on the roof. Then she wrestled the door stop cinder block onto the mostly closed door to prevent anyone opening it easily. She wanted some alone time, just her and the night sky, with whatever stars and moonlight that would shine through on this cloudy but warm evening.
Amy unfurled the quilt she brought with her, took off her sandals and knapsack, and stood in the middle of the blanket her grandmother made for her, a long time ago.
“Boston..Here I Come!” she shouted, in a very thrilled hushed voice. It was 1:00 a.m., after all, and she wanted no intrusions as she celebrated. Getting into the school she dreamed about was a chance for freedom, both musically and personally. While things had definitely gotten better with her mother, Amy still wanted to just be away. Needed to just be away.
Laying down on the comforter, she folded her hands behind her head and stared at the night sky. She quieted herself down, listening to the thumps of her excited heartbeat, and tried to match the rhythms with her breaths. Clouds passed her by, and the Earth turned, shifting the placements of the stars above. Sighing, Amy lifted herself up on her elbows, pulled over her knapsack, and took out the bottle of wine she “liberated” from her mom’s stash.
Uncorking was a struggle that caused her to giggle, and grunt a bit in the effort as well. The cork popped out and Amy told it to “shhhhhhh,” giggling as she took a swig from the opened red. It felt good going down, and while this was only the third wine she’d ever had, she deemed it “The Best Ever!”
It was half empty when she decided to take off her clothes and Moon Bathe. She’d never done anything like this before, and…well, “Why not?” she thought. She was laughing, shushing herself as she removed her shorts and tee shirt, and then got really quiet when, resolve at hand (well, the bottle had been in hand up to this point; she gently put it down), she undid her bra and then took off her panties. She covered her breasts with her right arm and covered “down there” with her left hand and then looked around to see if anyone could see her. This caused her to get a fit of the giggles that she had a hard time stopping.
Plopping down on the quilt, hurting her tush in the process, Amy buried her head in her raised knees until she both stopped the giggling and calmed down from the slight anxiety she felt. Resting her turned head in such a way, she got a glimpse of night, and it relaxed her, and her breathing returned to normal, and the beating of her heart was an accompaniment she was used to.
Amy stretched out, wading the knapsack up and using it as a pillow, and felt at peace…and a little bit naughty. She finished the wine in spurts, and as the hour drifted along, and then passed on towards three, Amy redressed slowly, her striptease now in reverse. Clothed, Amy again laid down, fluffed out the makeshift pillow, and closed her eyes.
Sleep came to her as her eyelashes met, a kiss good night, pleasant dreams, pleasant future to come.
Unbeknownst to Amy, at 1:00 A.M. at Swan Rise Apartments…
Lev was on his terrace, eye glued to this telescope, searching the heavens, but not remembering who he was searching for…
Frank was looking out his window, apartment lights off, watching Meredith being kissed and held tightly by a man…
Doris, woozy, was trying to ward off her attacker, and fell when she was struck in the head by her own Buddha…
Marc was in bed, staring out the bedroom windows at the moon, a hand on Sean’s stomach as he snored….
Mrs. Beatty was dreaming of David, her beloved, and called out his name three times…
…and, if she had really looked, Amy would have seen The Weather Man sitting on the roof by the fire escape, his back to the wall, facing away from her, with his head tilted up to the same night views. If he had turned around, he would have seen Amy, but he did not when she arrived; he did not when she undressed, nor when she dressed, nor while she slept. The Weather Man just sat, head raised to the skies…
He was looking for a sign.