Struggling with writing about myself, so I wrote about someone else instead.
Her name is June Violet Wilde, and I made her up.
This is all pretty new to me, because I would never call myself a fiction writer. That being said, I have needed to find ways to channel my thoughts in a productive way, so I've been sussing out the details of June for about a year now, but have kept her hidden away in a little word document. This tiny chunk has been through a fair share of edits and will need a few more, I'm sure. I didn't feel ready to share her with anyone else until I was overlooking a pass of mountain this evening and felt like doing something brave.
I haven't fleshed out much of a coherent exposition because I think scenes come in waves. And also, I have no idea where I would even begin. Not quite sure where I want to take this yet, or how much I'd like to share--still trying to wade my way through story outlines, conflict resolution, and dialogue, oh, dialogue.
Please keep in mind that June Wilde is very much a person to me, dear and close to my heart, so please be kind.
“You’re pretty. I like you and love you and I want you to put down that newspaper, come over here, and let me kiss you for a while.”
“Did you know that the average cost of a dinner in New York City is forty-three dollars and thirty four cents?” I walk over from the kitchen with a half-eaten apple in my left hand. My right holds the New York Times. “See that?” I hold it up to his face. “It’s right there in The Times.” I take a bite of the apple, sit down on the arm of the chair he’s sitting in, and continue reading. He puts an arm around my waist.
“I think you’re worth every penny.” He pulls me in and kisses my cheek. I’m wearing pink and grey cotton pajamas with my pants tucked into tall socks, and that’s how I know he’s telling the truth.
“We shouldn’t go out anymore. With the taxi, just to get out of Tribeca--that’s a hundred dollars a night! Think of what we could be spending that money on!”
“A trip to Bali,” he says, kissing all around my face. I continue reading.
“Oh, babe! Look at this,” he doesn’t mind me, but continues his charade. “They’re honoring Reagan at the Guggenheim on the seventeenth. My dad loves Reagan.” He begins unbuttoning my pajama top when I gasp. “My dad!” Startled, he sits up.
“Well, if that isn’t the most alarming buzz kill at a time like this…”
“No, no. That’s not—I forgot that I told my parents we would stop by next week. And also, I think I forgot to tell you.” I straighten the buttons that have been undone. “Wait, you want to go to Bali?”
“We. As in, you and I?”
“Who else would I mean? Yes, you and I.”
“Okay, well, your parents live in New Hampshire, so just stopping by is a difficult thing to do.”
“The seventeenth. Six o’clock.”
“That’s going to be tight, but I can probably make it if Grant will handle my last account. By the way, your parents. They don’t know that we’re…”
“Getting married? No.” I bite my nails. It’s a nervous habit I picked up somewhere along the road of debutant balls, beauty pageants, and I blame my mother for it."Or sleeping in the same house. Or bed. Or even that we know each other."
“Well, where do I sign up?”
“You're playing in jest, but you don’t get it,” I say, standing up, “they’re wealthy and my dad plays golf.”
“What's not to get? I could play golf!”
“I love you, Ian, but you cannot play golf.”
“Okay, no golf, but I can schmooze your dad, and that's something!”
“You didn’t even vote in the last election.”
“Yeah, but I’ve got stuff! Magic, June. I can work dad magic.”
“And I think it’s sweet that you genuinely think that. The point is that I promised a trip to see them with you in tow, and, well, I didn’t promise them you, but you’ve got to meet sooner or later.”
“And you've chosen to make it the night you tell them that I even exist, which is equal parts terrifying and fun.”
"You're not understanding this because you're from Portland where people have time. Lots of it. The land of Keens, organic juice cleanses, and riding your bike to work. I don't want to give them time to think you over. They just need one dose of you in one fowl swoop, and you're in. I just--with too much time they'll... I don’t want them to wreck you up.”
“First of all, going to add ‘wreck you up’ to a list of ‘Things I Never Thought June Wilde Would Say’ and second, I am the accountant version of James Van Der Beek. Everybody loves me.” He’s trying to calm me down, which is something that often works, but I am still internally panicking.
“I know. You’re right. So, let’s go. Will you go with me? I guess I never really asked.”
“Happily, I will. But only if you won’t embarrass me in front of them,” he says. “I’m concerned about your outward appearance because I’ve only just noticed your pants tucked into your socks and it’s making me second-guess our agreement.” We laugh together and he takes a bite of the apple in my hand.
“If I promise to adjust myself to a list of set stipulations, will you come with me to New Hampshire?”
“Let me… think about it.” I slide myself from the arm of the chair and into his lap.
“Please?” My apple arm is around his neck and I’m removing one of my socks with the other.
“Oh, is this how you’re going to get me to go? You’re just going to keep removing your clothes?”
“No, I was under the impression that my socks were the only item of clothing you opposed. But the clothes-removing theory you speak of has worked in the past, so I might try that if this doesn’t do the trick.”
“I hate everything you're wearing. I hate it all!”
I kiss him long, apple in hand, one sock removed, and we’re both very, very late for work.