Appalling Stories 2, sequel to Appalling Stories: 13 Tales of Social Injustice, will be released in December of 2018. What follows is a sneak peek at the short story Her Bodies, Her Choice.
Hey, it’s me. Don’t turn it off! Just…just hear me out.
My notes are written on legal pads and spiral notebooks. I did everything offline. I’ll let you know where I hid the original copies at the end of this video, but don’t just click to the end, okay? Watch the whole thing first. Do this for me. I know you hate me and think I’m a bitch and I don’t blame you, but please. Please. I can’t trust my parents. They’re probably part of this.
It sounds crazy and over-dramatic like…like in a movie, but the only reason you’re watching this is because I’m dead. It means they got me. My former friends and colleagues. If you’d seen my phone…I had writers from The Atlantic to The New York Times who’d take my calls on the first ring. Me. Not even 27 years old and people with bylines in The Daily Beast and The New Yorker knew my name. I was kind of a big shot. But one of them ratted me out for bringing them the story of the century. The millennium. Probably all of them did.
So yeah, I’m dead. It scares the hell out of me, but—
You know what? Forget it. I don’t know if you’re happy I’m dead or what. Maybe you are. I broke your heart, after all. I regret that. Not ending the engagement. Just hurting you. You didn’t deserve that. But I saw your wedding pictures on Instagram like two years after we split up, so I guess you weren’t too, well, broken up about it. She’s pretty. You two look happy.
I guess if you hadn’t broken things off with me for taking care of our little…indiscretion, I’d’ve split up with you. It makes sense now, but back then I just felt hurt. With a degree in Women’s Studies from Vassar, pretty much the only option I had after graduation was VP of HR at a Nestle subsidiary while you saved the world one hedge fund at a time. But not long after you proposed, my senior adviser introduced me to some friends of hers, who introduced me to some friends of theirs, and, well, I could either follow your plan for us, or my plan for me.
So I went with me. The abortion and your throwing me out of your life over it was just the icing on the cake. But it launched me into my new career.
I started as an intern. Paying my dues. It sucked because I had to keep asking my parents for money to afford rent and food, but I learned a lot that first year. At Planned Parenthood you can’t claim that sexism in the workplace is keeping you from earning a living wage. I think they were monitoring me. Seeing how committed I was, how hard I’d work. After burning my bridges with you I had nothing else to do, so I threw myself into it.
Stay tuned for more information on Appalling Stories 2: More Appalling Tales of Social Injustice!