Sweet Little Thing(58)

By: Abbi Glines


Slowly, that one word took my heart and shattered it while disbelief and despair consumed me.

Sister.

“Pamela was my sister. She was younger than me. More beautiful than me, but she’d had eyes for the worst boy in town. She’d thought she could save him. She had been saving animals and nursing them our entire life. It was her way. I found her and her infant daughter in a trailer park living in poverty in Alabama. I gave her my daughter and two hundred thousand dollars. Then I walked away and never contacted her again. That was nineteen years ago.”

This desperation was a nightmare that I’d wake up from any moment was all I could think right then.

“You left her. How could you leave her?” Beulah said in a whisper.

Portia took the remaining items from the box. A hospital bracelet, photos and a few letters. “Pamela still sent me letters with photos over the years. I never responded. But I kept them. You’re welcome to read them.”

Beulah stared down at the items in her hand, and I wanted to grab her and run. We should have gone to California. We should have left.

Beulah shook her head, and then backed away as if Portia were dangerous.

“I can’t. I can’t be here.” She shook her head again and started to leave.

“He’s your first cousin. I didn’t want to tell you, but y’all forced my hand by doing whatever it was you did. I’m not sorry for what I did. I’d have never been the mother Pam was. Never. Heidi had a better life with her.”

Beulah stopped, and without looking back she replied. “I agree. She escaped life with a monster, and got to live with an angel instead. You’re a horrible, horrible woman.”

Then Beulah walked away.

I watched her go.

“You can’t love her that way. It’s incest. Disgusting.”

I was too broken to respond.

I followed her, my entire body and mind numb knowing that the small joy I had was gone. Any hope I had was gone.

“Beulah,” I called out and she paused. “We can run away.”

She faced me then. Tears streaming down her face. “You can’t run from this. It’s ours to face,” she let out a short sob. “Goodbye, Jasper.”

My soul went with her as she turned and left.

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