Excerpt from Manuscript, Teddy #1

A peek into the life of Teddy Finch, a troubled and immature teenage boy who embarks on a misguided affair with an older woman after his mom commits suicide. For an piece from the POV of Teddy’s younger sister Charlotte AKA Charlie, click HERE. I hope you like it! As with all my other fiction, there is some mature content ahead.–

I met Candace when I went on a date with her daughter Daphne back in 9th grade. Daphne was boring, she was like most girls, all she wanted to talk about was her hair, her clothes, etc. She was cute but she seemed like a little bit of a flake, I got tired of having a one-way conversation with her pretty quickly. We went to a movie and all I could think about was her mom. It was kind of like that song “Stacy’s Mom,” Candace Tucker really had it going on, I couldn’t stop staring at her when she drove me and Daphne to the movie. She brought her two-year-old daughter Molly for the ride because her husband Greg was working late again and she didn’t have a babysitter. Molly was asleep in her car seat the whole time, she was a cute kid. Very laid-back for a two-year-old, my little sister Charlie had tantrums until she was like seven. I kind of got the impression that Candace was flirting with me the first time I met her.

She was standing in the messy living room wearing a Nightwish shirt with the sleeves cut off. She wasn’t wearing any bra. I told her I liked Nightwish, but my favorite band at the moment was Tool. Candace touched my arm and said “Wow, somebody’s got good taste in music.” On the way to the movie Candace and I kept joking back and forth, and I found out we had a lot in common. Daphne looked pretty sulky and uncomfortable, I remember feeling a little bad for her that I was hitting it off so well with her mom. When we got to the movie theater downtown Candace gave us a little money for snacks and asked us to buy her some Goobers. “Not that shit with raisins. Raisinets. I’d like some chocolate-covered peanuts, okay honey? What’s your name again?”
“Teddy. And I totally get what you’re saying about raisins, I hate the fucking things. I mean, why do that to grapes?”
Candace laughed and stuck the $20 in my jeans pockets. “Teddy. Great name. You know, you don’t meet many Teddys.”
“Mom, come on, we’re going to be late!” Daphne whined.
“Shut up, Daphne. I’m going, I’ve got to get Molly to bed anyway. She’s probably going to want to watch Madagascar again before bed. Kill me now.”
“I like Madagascar. Wait, is it the first one or the second one?”
“Neither, hopefully. Have fun, Teddy. I can tell Daphne is desperate to get rid of me.”
The date with Daphne was mediocre, but Daphne’s mother certainly was not. I started to fantasize about her all the time. I’ve always had a thing for older women. I don’t know, I guess I just find high school girls too immature. I was fifteen when I met Candace, and she was thirty-four. I started looking for an excuse to see her again. I sent her a message on Facebook, and she asked me not to do that anymore, her husband Greg kept tabs on her account, he was real possessive. She said she really liked me though and she’d like to meet me some place pretty private. We started meeting at this little sandwich shop downtown, a few blocks away from the movie theater where Daphne and I had our first and only date.

Candace started confiding in me. I could tell she was real lonely, she really needed someone to talk to. She told me how bad her relationship with Greg was. She thought he was cheating on her, and their sex life wasn’t very good. I was like ‘Whoa, this is weird.’ Good weird, I guess. I hadn’t had anybody confide in me that way before. I was very attracted to her, I’ve got a thing for redheads. I’ve also got a thing for big breasts, but hell, what guy doesn’t? I started to really care about Candace. I wanted to help her. Then she told me about some other things, like how Greg sometimes hit her and how she had been sexually abused by her uncle when she was little. Things were starting to get a little too weird for me. One day we were sitting in the sandwich shop talking about movies and music and stuff when Candace leaned forward to wipe mustard of my face and then she kissed me on the lips. She even slipped me a little bit of tongue. I looked around to see if anybody was looking. Nobody was even in the shop, except for a woman at the counter reading a magazine. I had a hard-on under the table. Candace said “Teddy, I think you’re a very attractive young man. I think you’re great to be around, I haven’t had this much fun in years.” I wanted to lean forward and kiss her again, but I couldn’t stand up.
“Have you ever kissed anyone before, Teddy?”
I had, but it was during a game of spin-the-bottle when I was twelve. Jodie Parker. Nobody else wanted to kiss her because she was fat and had glasses, but she was pretty nice and I guess she was the only girl I really considered a friend. I was actually pretty excited when I got her because I thought she would cut me some slack if I was a really bad kisser. She even let me touch her chest a little and I could tell she actually enjoyed kissing me, even though I was real awkward and had braces.
“Yeah, but it was never like this.”
“Well, you’re really good at it.”
I didn’t know if she was lying or not. I guess she had no reason to lie, but I just felt like I was an awkward, nervous kisser.
Several months later my mom committed suicide. It was the absolute worst day of my life. She had Bipolar Disorder, and she’d been depressed for a while. She spent some time in a psych ward when I was seven, Charlie was too young to remember. Charlie found her body, and as if things weren’t bad enough, she did it on Charlie’s 12th birthday. I loved my mom, but I wanted to fucking kill her, even though she was already dead. I don’t believe in God or anything like that, I couldn’t deal with the fact she was just gone. Just like that, I didn’t even get the chance to say goodbye. How could she be so fucking selfish? For a little while I thought about killing myself too. I’d take one of Dad’s guns out into the woods behind our house and blow my brains out. But I couldn’t deal with Dad or Charlie finding my body. I didn’t want to put them through what Mom put us through. Right after Mom died I started doing illegal shit, shit I wouldn’t normally do in a million years. Me and my friends Gordo and Noah and Gordo’s cousin Biff (Seriously, the guy’s name is Biff, just like that asshole in Back to the Future) started breaking into houses and stealing shit we thought we could sell. I liked the adrenaline rush it gave me.. I was a good thief, nobody ever caught us; not even Noah, who has no idea what he’s doing. I felt a little bad about all the stealing, especially when kids lived in the house we were robbing, but not as bad as you might think. We were stealing from rich families, families with more than their fair share of stuff. Biff owned a beat-up white van and we’d load the rich people’s stuff in the back. I was also giving a lot of the money to Candace. She said she needed help paying bills, but then I realized she was spending most of it on cocaine. I said “You’re going to kill yourself, Candace.” And she said, “So what?” Hearing her talk like that made me really mad.

Then one night she invited me up to a hotel. I told my dad I had a sleepover scheduled. A sleepover, like I was eleven. But Dad bought it. He was drunk. I was drunk too, to be honest. When I met Candace in the hotel room she was wearing a slinky blue nightgown. We drank champagne together and my hand was shaking like crazy I was so nervous. Then she got on the bed. She called me over there and I said “I’ve never really done this before.” She took my glasses off and kissed me. I mean, really kissed me. I thought it couldn’t get any better than that kiss, then it did. She was so sexy and sweet. I won’t say anything about the sex except that it was amazing. I actually said ‘I love you’ at one point, I don’t know why. She seemed pretty into it, I know I was. It was a hundred times better than I imagined it being. After all my fantasies you would expect the actual thing to be a letdown, but it definitely wasn’t. I couldn’t wait to tell my friends. I got up, got dressed, and kissed her cheek while she slept. She was beautiful. Then I took a taxi home and did my homework in bed. Let me tell you, it’s hard to concentrate on algebraic equations after doing that. I felt okay for the first time in ages. I couldn’t wait to see Candace again and tell her that I was absolutely crazy about her.
A month later I got the worst phone call of my life. It was Candace, and she was crying; it was hard to make out what she was saying at first. Then I made out the words “I’m pregnant.”
“Shit. Maybe it’s Greg’s.”
“Greg and I haven’t had sex for nearly a year, you fucking idiot. It’s yours.”
I went to the upstairs toilet and threw up.  I was a mess, I was crying like a baby and shaking. “What are we going to do?”
“You’re not going to do anything. I’m going to get an abortion.”
“Good. Get an abortion. Problem solved.” But then I realized I didn’t want to abort our baby. Maybe something good could come out of this, I was going to be a dad. But I couldn’t say anything, I felt like I was choking. Candace let out a hoarse, strangulated sob and hung up. There was a knock on the bathroom door. It was Charlie.
“Teddy, are you okay?”
“Leave me alone!” There were condoms in my underwear drawer. I had bought them when Candace and I started seriously seeing each other in case we took things to the next level. Why the fuck didn’t I use them? How could I have been so fucking stupid? I banged on the bathroom wall and screamed. Charlie beat on the door again. “Teddy, what the hell’s wrong?”
“Go away!” I shouted. “Fuck off!”
I sank to the floor and cried. I tried to think about how my mom would have handled this. She would have slapped me and told me to ‘take responsibility.’ ‘Be a man.’ I had been a man when I had sex with her in that hotel room, hadn’t I? I couldn’t go back to being a little boy whenever it suited me. I went to my room, grabbed my cell phone, and started dialing Candace’s number. I felt like I was on the edge of something important, I was just too scared to jump. But I was going to be a man and try to make the right decision, even if I was basically shitting myself. The right decision was to tell Candace I wanted her to keep the baby, and I wanted her to leave her POS husband who abused her. There was nothing more important than having a kid and I needed to man up and rise to the occasion. Even if what I really wanted to do was throw up.


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