Secret Sins: (A Standalone)

Secret Sins: (A Standalone) by CD Reiss

Book: Secret Sins: (A Standalone) by CD Reiss Read Free Book Online
Authors: CD Reiss
door, Cin.”
    I closed it quietly and gently placed my bag on the couch behind the board as if a sleeping monster were inside it.
    Strat wore a white T-shirt and black jeans with a chain that made a U from his front belt loop to his back pocket. It swayed with him as he sang. His voice was magic. It had been too long since I’d heard him.
    “I need to talk to you guys,” I said.
    “I think we need to kill the preamp,” Goatee said.
    Indy moved a lever so slightly it could have been nothing at all. A low-level version of Strat’s voice filled the room as he hummed to himself near the mic.
    “No,” Indy said, not even looking at me. “Make it work. We’re not cheaping out on vocals.”
    “Sure, but…” a pentameter of technical terms I didn’t understand followed.
    Indy parried with another jumble of engineering nonsense, and Goatee thrust with his own as he counted a bunch of bills he’d pulled from his front pocket. My request for an audience had been denied apparently.
    In the booth, Strat jotted notes, tapped his foot, and hummed verses.
    I’d never felt like an outsider with them before, but I’d never seen them working either. It was a bad time. I’d come back after I did the test. Or not. But either way, I was doing what I had to with or without their permission.
    I picked up my bag. When the handles got taut from the weight, I had to exert a little more energy to pull the whole thing up, and I wished I could lean on someone. I wished I hadn’t always been so far removed, so cold, so non-demonstrative. I wished I was used to emotions because I was having them and I couldn’t define them. They were moving through me so quickly I couldn’t define them, much less cope with them.
    I slung the bag over my shoulder and saw myself in the glass’s reflection. I was translucent. Overlaid onto Strat’s indifference.
    I hated this. Needy. Childish. Whining. Grasping. Desperate. I saw myself from the outside. Out of control. Floundering. Hungry for validation. A few synonyms for “it’s going to be all right” wouldn’t cure me of the problem. Not even a little. So why did I want them so badly?
    When I opened the door, Indy spun in his chair. “Didn’t you want something?”
    “It can wait.”
    I left, saving myself from myself. I could handle emptiness. I could handle solitude and isolation. This rush of neediness was going to kill me. If either one of them had started patting my head and saying he was going to help me/be there for me/whatever you want, baby, I would have told him to fuck off.
    So when I heard Indy’s voice behind me, I was tempted to just keep walking down the hall. But the needy part won. I turned to at least tell him, “No worries. I’m good.” His posture, half in and half out of the engineering room, told me that would have been a welcome dismissal.
    But I couldn’t. That hot bubbling mess inside me wouldn’t be silenced.
    “You all right?” he asked.
    I think I’m pregnant.
    I’m sick in the morning.
    “I’m fine. Welcome back.”
    “Thanks.” He leaned back into the engineering room, and I took the opportunity to walk a few more steps down the hall, rescued and abandoned at the same time. “You coming back tonight?”
    “Why?” I didn’t turn around, keeping him at my back.
    “Why?”
    I didn’t know how to answer. Didn’t know how to move or think. I only knew how to blurt out my problems.
    Something inside me feels like turned soil.
    And I’m late.
    And I knew how to shut myself up. I barely knew how to breathe without feeling the tension between breath and words.
    “Yeah,” I said. “Why?”
    “Because we’re back, and people are coming over. What’s the problem, Cin?”
    He wanted an honest fucking answer. He knew my fucking name, but he wouldn’t even fucking use it.
    Cin.
    Cin, my ass. My fucking left tit. Taking my stupid stunt of a fake name and throwing it at me like a bucket of ice.
    “You’re working. We’ll talk later.”
    If I’d

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