"Oh, it's okay. It didn't seem like you were trying for anything except just being nice. Anyways, the ring isn't even real." she confessed, waving her hand nonchalantly.
"What do you mean?" he asked, his interest peaked.
She slid it off and stuck it in her blouse pocket. "I just wear it so people don't give me those snooty little looks. 'Oh, unwed teenage mother'. People can be really judgmental so I wear the ring just to keep people off my back. The baby's father never proposed to me. In fact, he booked when he found out I was pregnant. Dad of the year material, huh?"
"Oh, I'm sorry," Justin said, genuinely disappointed for her.
She shrugged. "Well, he got his fun, now I'm left with the hard work. It's okay, though, I'm going to keep her. She's mine and I'm going to love her twice as much since her dad doesn't love her at all."
"That's great. I'm glad you're sticking with it. A lot of girls would cave under the pressure and just give the baby up for adoption or something..." he said as he sipped his coffee.
"No, this responsibility is mine. She's a part of me and we're going to get through this together," Lisa declared, firm and resolute. She'd cried her tears but had grown stronger. The days of weeping were long past.
Justin and Lisa chatted for over an hour, just learning more about one another, making those nuanced analyses that people do when they talk. Justin happened to work for a local real estate company. He was low on the company's food chain but was a natural talent at the game and was quickly moving up the ranks. He came from a wholesome family background; your idyllic house in the suburbs with the white picket fence, the hard-working dad and stay-at-home mom who raised their kids. That's the life Justin had.
The more Lisa talked to him the safer she felt in his presence. Strangely, her volatile hormone profile had been shifted and manipulated. For the time being it had essentially been tamed. She hadn't known a man like this in her entire life. As he spoke, his words blurred into an incomprehensible clamor as Lisa became distracted. Here was this young man who was clean-shaven, well-mannered and who had exhibited, on several occasions already, a chivalrous nature completely alien to her.
Lisa had run with rugged, rough-around-the-edges crowds, usually haunting block parties where underage kids played host when mommy and daddy were away, predictably raiding the liquor cabinet or throwing money into a pot to supply their own. There you'd find Lisa, in the thick of it, reclined back on a couch, feet up on the coffee table, surrounded by a collection of friends, acquaintances and strangers. A queer, thick haze of mysterious smoke, that had that familiar hydroponic odor, patrolled the air as a low beat of rhythmically thumping bass rolled through the house. With a beer in one hand and a reckless smile on her face she'd be giggling at a joke her friend had told or some crazy physical stunt one of the party-goers had attempted. She was barely 15 years old, then, but already a seasoned partier and club kid.
It was at a party just like this that Lisa met Carlos. Blushing and wide-eyed, surrounded by an ever-shifting crowd of people around her in the party house, she shook his hand after her friend at the time, Bella, had introduced them. He was a rough-shod, charismatic fraud. The type of guy who scoured parties like these for girls like Lisa. He had been a friend of the party host's older brother and said brother happened to decide to attend the party, bringing Carlos with him.
Lisa kept eye contact with him as they made senseless small talk in Bella's presence, her cheeks red and convicting, her smile nervously played. In her mind, though, Lisa had other thoughts, thoughts she dare not express. The kinds of thoughts that girls her age shouldn't have about young men Carlos' age. She was hellbent on making some mistakes that night, as though her well of mistakes was on a time limit and she only had a certain amount of time to spend them.
Carlos was in his mid-20s and had a series of unsuccessful runs at several local service jobs. Now, he was relegated to doing freelance mechanic work at a nearby used car shop. His ship, as it were, was likely always going to be docked with no prospect for a fruitful voyage. A stained wife beater, tattered jeans, shaved head and jaw wrapped with unattended stubble... this was his professional uniform. To any sensible young woman his uniform was a red flag, but to Lisa it might as well have been the dinner bell, it was so obvious. Guys like Carlos are the ones you're supposed to make mistakes with. At least that's what the misguiding little devil in Lisa's ear whispered. As Carlos looked down on her slim, diminutive frame, those big, doe-eyed, blue marble eyes looking up at him and that unmistakably eager grin, he knew he already had her in the bag. She'd given him a blank check and now all he had to do was decide where and when to cash it.
That night, as many young people are regarded as doing, Lisa was making a willful mistake. The alley behind the party house was dark and the low reverberations from the sound system inside thumped constant, yet muffled by the walls. You could hear the swarming cacophony of remote party-goers laughing and talking, but even from this short distance it was a detached, far-flung wave of noise. Inside and outside were practically different worlds. Inside, hectic and chaotic. Outside, though, the wet, cracked pavement was cool and untrampled, desolate. The darkness hid the vocal crickets and only the hum of a lone lamplight interrupted the near silent night air. There, Carlos' beat up mid-90s Ford Explorer sat inconspicuously. The rear cab seats had been laid flat weeks ago because he'd been delivering jumper cables to and from his job.
Now, though, the only thing filling the rear cab were the entangled, merged, writhing bodies of Carlos and Lisa. They were in near darkness, save for a thin slice of illumination that cut along them from the lamplight a good fifty feet away. As Carlos laid atop her, his khakis bunched up around his ankles, his hips slowly but firmly driving into her, he made desperate little panting noises. Gone was the suave oral tactician. Carlos was cashing in his chips and made no attempt to mask his declaration of victory.
Lisa, on the other hand, pinned beneath him, whimpered, a mask of twisted pain on her face. She visibly winced with each of Carlos' urgent thrusts, baring her teeth in lust-drenched excruciation. She was not a pro at this, just a dumb little girl who'd only had two dicks in her up to this point. The first boy managed to get it into her after being her boyfriend for six months. They were both at a friend's house and the friend conveniently stepped out of the room for twenty minutes. Lisa and this boy quickly moved to latch their mouths together. After scrambling clumsily to undress, the boy needled his desperate spike into her and throttled into her for a minute before spilling his seed.
...to be continued