“I will make you that kind of girl. I will make you a woman, a woman who isn’t confused about what she wants, who doesn’t need anyone else deciding for her. You could be that woman—I can see it now.” — Britney King, Water Under The Bridge
Water Under The Bridge releases two weeks from today. TWO WEEKS. 🙂 Because I wanted an excuse to share the sketch (below) which was drawn for the book by my better half this post is not a deleted scene. It’s an excerpt.
This morning, I heard you wake and rise from your slumber because I listen for the sounds of you. I want to know you, I want to know everything. This is how I know you’re up with the sun, and we were made for each other. I listen as you go into the bathroom and do your business, and I hope to God you’re the kind of girl who washes her hands afterward. I listen to the water run as you turn it on full force, and I am in luck, it seems you are. But you take forever in there, and I’m not sure exactly what you could be doing that lasts so long. But then you are beautiful, and everyone knows that beauty takes time.
Eventually, I hear your voice, and it’s perfect. I wonder who you’re talking to, and I intend to find out. I say a silent thank you that these so-called walls are paper thin.
“Thank you, Daddy,” you say, and you and I, we know gratitude. Still, I know that your father is dead, and you are a dirty girl with daddy issues, you are. “This is the best gift I could possibly receive,” you say, but you are wrong.
You have the water running again, and now I can’t hear anymore. So I climb out of bed and rush to the bamboo slat I’ve removed between our bungalows just so I can see you because I can’t miss a thing. My eyes hurt from straining, but there you are, and I can breathe now that I have a visual. You’re in your panties, lace, with nothing on top, and you are not holding a phone. You move away, and I hate it when you hide from me. You’re still talking, and I’m still waiting when suddenly, I can see just a sliver of your silhouette. I wait for more. I could wait forever until you come into full view again. Only, when you finally do, you are crying, and you should only ever know happiness.
“I know, Daddy,” you whimper, but you are talking to no one, something in a mirror that doesn’t exist and maybe we all have our demons. “You’re right, I’m not getting any younger,” you cry as you stare into your reflection, into the invisible Daddy version of yourself, and then you sink to your knees. “I know I have no one—I have nothing. You always tell me this… but why today?” you demand, and you stammer, dig your heels in. You are a fighter, I can tell.
“Of course, I want to make you proud,” you tell him, and no one, and you sigh. You shouldn’t have conversations that wear you down, and someday, I will tell you this. For now, I just listen. “You know I do,” you go on, and this is getting uglier than I imagined. But then again, how can I be anything other than turned on at the sight of you at the altar, bowing to your demons, begging for mercy?
Named One of….