You and I, Me and You

Cadence Jones (Volume 3)

MaryJanice Davidson

St. Martin's Press

chapter one
 
 
I’m moving in with my boyfriend, the one I share with two other women, and I’m doing this because we’re in love and want to live together and make a family, our own family, and not because I’m desperate to do one normal thing. For once in my life.
There.
 
chapter two
Except for the murders, Moving Day would have gone on with no trouble at all. Okay, the murders and my partner showing up uninvited. And my best friend’s OCD being fiercer than usual. And my dog’s stealth pooping. That put a yucky tinge on the day. The murders were definitely the worst part, though. Okay, the murders and the poop.
Until Poopfest 2013, though, it was fun. Despite the nagging feeling that I might possibly be moving in with the wrong man.
(No! Even to think it is a cheat!)
Except of course that was ridiculous … Patrick was 100 percent the right man and any
(Stupid bitch.)
(Disloyal.)
—thoughts otherwise were … were …
Anyway, it was exciting to direct the movers and figure out which boxes went where. I was well into my twenties but could count on one hand how often I’d moved. I’d lived in a psych wing, and then near a psych wing, for over a decade, and after that in government housing. I’d only had my first apartment for three years when I had to leave because I had recently acquired a dog. And fallen in love! Those two aren’t in order of importance.
(Something you might not know: the nice thing about being an inpatient is you’re not expected to bring your own furniture, no matter how long you live there.)
This was my first house.
Our first house, I guess.
And it was beautiful! Utterly, utterly perfect. Which made sense because I was moving in with my utterly, utterly perfect baker. Boyfriend, rather. Who is also a baker, which is perfect because I love pastries. Perfect inside, perfect outside. All things in my life were coming together in a perfect fit. It was finally just so … Hmm, what’s the word? Starts with p …
“Are you all right?” My best friend, Cathie Flannery, had stopped dragging boxes up the sidewalk (the loading cart’s wheels were too dirty for her to be comfortable using it) to come give me a close-over. (Close-over = Flanneryism combination of giving someone a close-up and a once-over in the same glance. Yeah, it’s weird.) “You look kind of glazed.” She was close enough to make this out as she looked deep into my eyes, which was as unsettling as you’d guess. “Cadence, are you in there? Helloooooo?”
“Stop that.” I waved her back a step. “You know perfectly well I’m driving the body this morning. The glaze is because it’s so hot out.”
“It’s the week before Christmas. Here in balmy southern Minnesota.”
You might think it was condescending or weird to have someone tell me the season and the state, but Cathie was only covering her bases, and she thought she was covering mine.
Two other people live in my body, is the thing. Sometimes they steal it for weeks at a time. They’re squatters; I guess that makes me the slumlord.
(Don’t ever tell Shiro or Adrienne I said that. Please.)
Sometimes I start my evening heading out for another viewing of High School Musical (but never in 3-D; it’s hard enough living in a three-dimensional world without piling movies on top) and wake up in mainland China. That can be a problem for all sorts of reasons, beginning with my utter ignorance of all Chinese dialects.


 
Copyright © 2013 by MaryJanice Davidson