For a second, another face flashed back at her. Bruised and swollen, looking up from the alleyway, “You always hurt the one you love.” She shook her head, trying to get the image out, but it wouldn’t leave. He looked at her from one good eye, somehow, unbelievably, still filled with adoration. The bruise hadn’t faded for days.
She lay down on her bed, Mr. Gordo clenched in her arms, and closed her eyes. Another face looked back, another bruise, one she had forgotten. It was long ago. Her mother’s face, her black eye, vainly hidden under dark glasses, even at the grocery store. “I fell against the doorpost.”
She’d forgotten, wanted to forget, all the bad times in LA. He wasn’t like that, not usually. She loved him. But she knew that, every once in awhile, her mother donned dark glasses, or stayed inside on a beautiful day.
She dropped the stuffed pig beside her on the bed, and held up her hand. Clenched her fist, unclenched her fist, clenched her fist. She was her daddy’s girl, after all.