Cindy-Part 5 (Image: Dancing Girl # 5)

I’m about to leave the cabin with blanket under arm, he opens the screen door and decks me. He stands there with his right fist still cocked—with his other hand he points a fore finger at me. I’m lying there on my ass with a bloody nose looking up at him.

“Susan told me you seduced her and made her have sex with you in the back seat of Cindy’s car,” he’s yelling at me.

“Don, you idiot,” I say holding my nose, “do you really think I could seduce a girl like Susan—or any girl of normal intelligence? The only guy you know that’s a bigger dork than me is you, you jerk. You’ve known me since 5th grade—when did I get so suave?

He’s standing there thinking about this. He relaxes his fist and the expression on his face turns to suspicious uncertainty then confusion. He sits down next to me. I lay all the way back—resting my head on the floor to slow the bleeding.

“Think about this you butthead,” I say talking through my bloody nose, “I’ve never had even one regular date, never had a girlfriend, can barely talk to girls. Susan is one of the fastest, prettiest, most popular girls at school. What do you think happened in that garage you asshole?”

Don’s a little slow but he’s not stupid. I see the light bulb go on.

“Hah!” he snorts, “She seduced you. I doubt she had to try very hard. But why did she do it then say that about you?” he asks, still suspicious.

“I don’t know,” I moan still holding my nose and talking to the ceiling. “She doesn’t like Cindy—wants to hurt her for some stupid reason. Everybody except Cindy knows that. I think she’s just a crazy, mean bitch.”

“I’m sorry I hit you,” he says hesitantly,” do you want to hit me back?”

“No, you moron, just help me up,” I say sitting up and standing. The bleeding seems to have stopped.

I wash my face in the adjacent bathroom—Don has sat down on a bunk just outside the door and is looking at the floor. As I’m about to leave he looks up with a scowl on his face…

“But you had sex with another girl—in Cindy’s own car,” he said, now giving me the evil eye.

Shame washed over me like dirty water.

“Don—you’re a guy,” I said helplessly, tears filling my eyes, “Susan is—just so…”

An angry light flits through Don’s eyes. The light bulb has come on again.

“You know you’re really a dirt-bag,” he says looking at me with contempt and pity. “I’m not sorry I hit you after all.”

Then my own light bulb went on. I break into a cold sweat.

“Please don’t tell me Cindy knows,” I gasp.

Don looks toward the door, sort of shrugs and says Susan has gone to speak to her.

“I think Cindy’s leaving the camp,” he adds and stands up.

I run out of the cabin toward the parking lot—Don just walks along behind. I get there just in time to see Cindy slam the door of her car. She sees me coming across the parking lot and hits the gas—dirt and gravel fly everywhere as she roars toward the highway. Don stands back at the edge of the lot with his arms crossed, looking at me, small and alone in my shame and self disgust.

For several very long minutes I just stand there—while the dust settles over me—feeling like the world’s biggest piece of shit. But as bad as I felt then, it was nothing compared to how I felt a few hours later when we got the news.

At 16 years of age Cindy was dead.

The police report would later say the wreck happened because of brake failure—the fluid had leaked out of the lines—which were not repaired because I was busy having sex with Susan. Cindy was killed instantly when her car hit the north abutment on the east end of the bridge over West Canada Creek in Middleville at 6:23 P.M. on October 4th—16 years to the minute before my accident at the exact same spot.

End part five

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