The Angry

April, 2017

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My name is Leticia Jackson and I am Angry.

 

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I know that I am Angry because the eyes that fall upon my wrist monitor tell me that I am Angry. I know that I am Angry because the paperwork tucked neatly inside of tightly fastened manila envelopes tells me that I am Angry. I know that I am Angry because the man in the crisp charcoal suit sitting across from me, who calmly drums his fingertips across the steel surface even as a bead of sweat lazily trickles behind his earlobe, tells me that I am Angry.

 

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I tuck my bottom lip between my teeth when he asks what happened this time. I tell him about the man, about my purse, about the beating. Blip. Blip-blip.

 

Blip-blip.

 

He asks me if I remember striking the man. I lie. He knows that I lie because the neatly stacked paperwork includes the pictures of that man's body. He knows that I lie because the coiled wires of his earpiece carry a flood of information, statements from witnesses and recorded audio from security cameras.

 

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He knows that I lie because my wrist monitor is telling him that I am afraid. It is telling him that I do not want to go back to sleep.

 

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He asks if I am sorry. If I understand what has to happen now. If I am ready to go back to sleep. I lie again. He does not believe me.

 

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The strained calm in his voice is a cold blanket, desperate to smother the fire in my blood. The stool and shackles and steel of the table are too hot, and he is hissing between his polished teeth when he grabs for my wrists.

 

The tranquilizers are too slow to release.

 

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He is screaming.

 

He is good at it.

 

I am laughing and my chest is hitching and my cheeks are dry.

 

The room is a haze of red and ruin and rage.

 

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My eyes are heavy. His are open. I shakily reach forward to close them, overcome with solemn lethargy and regret. His ashes paint my palms. I am ashamed.

 

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The door opens and another man in a crisp suit pulls another stool to the side of the table. He keeps his eyes on me and brushes the crumbling hand of his partner to the side. Then he opens another folder and asks me my name. If I know why I am here. If I know what I have done.

 

Blip. Blip. Blip.

 

I tell the truth. My words are slurred and my limbs are lead.

 

My name is Leticia Jackson and I am Angry.

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