Jonathan stares out the window of the second story apartment he shares with his mother and younger brother, Joe. He’s reading a book. Well, he was before the staring began.
He’s eight and a half years old and has never had a seriously sexual thought in his life. He’s looking down at some nice young women his mother calls whores as they pace around in moderately revealing clothes at the street corner below. They’ve always seemed like very friendly people. His father used to be friends with a lot of women like them. He’d take them to the house sometimes when the family wasn’t home and Jonathan’s mother would get very angry when she found out from the old neighbor lady. The divorce wasn’t very nice. Jonathan, Joe and their mother had moved from a very decent old house to an apartment complex in the worst part of the city. They could have tried for the house, but there were lots of lawyers involved and most of them were not at the service of Jonathan’s mother.
Jonathan likes to pretend he has superpowers. A few months back he heard one of the women on the corner in a car with a man. They were very loud. It sounded like he was hurting her. Jonathan likes to imagine he can hurt the bad men who come pick up the women. He stares at them as hard as he can and he pictures them in pain. Sometimes, he imagines them breaking like toys. He doesn’t like when men hurt women. He knows that’s bad.
Sometimes, he thinks he can really do things with his mind. His mom tells him that’s silly. They're Catholics, and that means they don’t believe in magic. Just miracles. But she also calls him her miracle. So maybe he can do miracles, he thinks. Just little ones. He swears he made the cat lose its fur. His mom says that was just allergies. He says he made his favorite action figure float but no one else was there for that. He does all kinds of little things like that.
He’s still staring down at the pretty girls in their pretty dresses. A black car pulls up. A man smoking a cigarette leans his head out and stops the vehicle. Jonathan focuses his attention on the man. He looks like his dad but a little younger and with red hair instead of black and gray like his father’s. This resemblance makes the boy angry and he doesn’t know why. He hasn’t seen his father in a long time now. Some months his mother gets a check. Some months she doesn’t. The boys in school say he’s still friends with the same women.
He’s not sure what they’re trying to say but part of him kind of is. He’s looking at the man now as he flashes a wad of cash. Jonathan's face gets red and he feels like he’s going to explode. People aren’t supposed to be bad like that. Energy keeps building up inside the boy until it’s too much, but it’s not Jonathon’s head that explodes. The man’s blood and brain matter spray all over the interior of his nice car and onto the sidewalk. Now it’s not just his hair that’s red. The women below are screaming. Jonathan goes back to reading. He’s done with the game for today.
Written by Gomez Capulet