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Being a degenerate is okay these days
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"I don't pity you." A bit more than a little white lie, in this case.

Raina hugged herself tighter, digging her nails into her arm and steadfastly refusing to look at Johnny. Her throat felt tight and she didn't know why. What did she have to be upset about? It wasn't like Johnny was wrong about ninety-nine percent of what he'd just said. He bought into it, at least, and so did most everyone who knew him.

"It doesn't matter what I think of you, you know. All that- all of that shit you just said? I've never said that to you." Raina gritted her teeth, willed her voice to remain steady. "You wanna get all defensive and pissed off because someone thinks you're worthless? Have a look in the fucking mirror, Johnny."

So what if she had started thinking that right along with him? She'd never outright said it, and that was as good as those feelings not existing at all. Principles only mattered if you made a stand for them.

She should have left it there, let her point stand and the two of them roll on home in angry silence, but the floodgates had been opened now. "You can do all that, you know. Go see Darren in Texas and help out with whatever he's doing, apply to college, abandon society altogether and go live in a fucking hut in the woods and just stare at birds all day. You can do whatever the hell you want, but you don't want to. You're seventeen years old! You'll probably live for another sixty years at least if you don't get hooked on meth or whatever they pass around down in the trailer park, and you already don't care about anything!"

Raina's breath hitched and she had to stop, biting the inside of her cheek. She was not going to cry. She was already wasting her breath, she was not going to waste her tears on Johnny Ray McKay too.

"Maybe- maybe I'm just pissed because I wanted to believe in you. Maybe I still want to think you can make it."
"Art enriches the community, Steve, no less than a pulsing fire hose, or a fireman beating down a blazing door. So what if we're drawing a nude man? So what if all we ever draw is a nude man, or the same nude man over and over in all sorts of provocative positions? Context, not content! Process, not subject! Don't be so gauche, Steve, it's beneath you."
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Two Breaths Walking · Memories from the Past