I slip into the stairwell of the derelict hotel and begin to climb the five flights of stairs. My footsteps are steady, but my mind weaves erratically. I don’t want to think, but my mind won’t behave. At the first landing, I pause and breathe. I do not want to stop again.
When I reach the second landing, I think of my mother as a pretty teenager. Grandmother Rue looked up from her snap peas to study the boy dating her daughter and spit in the bushes. “Nothing but trouble.”