- Vol. 09
- Chapter 04
My dad said she had presence. An alien fairy from Jupiter. Only Jupiter was Birmingham. And her moon-eyed expression from glittered eyelids did not come from seeing too many stars. A marvel. Like Margot in The Royal Tenenbaums. Only more mentally vacant. A hush from the audience. A pause whilst no child made a sound. And then.
‘What is she seeing?’
‘Why does her accent ripple?’
‘Why is she repeating the word magic?’
Sheer joy at the unexpectedness of her arrival. Sheer joy at the opportunity to break rank. To snigger and cajole.
She gazed around, hours later, unable to understand why they had laughed. To her this all felt surreal anyway. A child, once there, now here. A thick, pink line existing in part of a Quentin Blake scribble narrative.
I always wondered what went on in her head. If anything at all. Maybe the powers of dissociative distraction were too strong. A hybrid creature. Plucked out of her Brummie bed by the BFG. Transmuted into a Georgian villa. Ducklings on the river. A young duckling in the hallway.
She changed her name. Became an anime character. Played with the form of who she was. Much more dramatically than the rest of us. She was ever so attracted to shiny things. Fish scales. Golden ears. Iridescent fabrics and Mediterranean baubles.
Gangly and vulnerable, but ramrod straight. Posture set. Twinkly sequins and Vintage hair pin sets. A modern day Mrs Dalloway. A repressed wildness, civilized.