She is a mystery.
Jesse and I sit on two stools beside the island in the center of Pamela’s kitchen, Jenna sits across from us. Her eyes hide a sadness that neither I nor Jesse are able to understand. Her beauty lights up the kitchen as Pamela’s voice fills the emptiness.
“So, are you boys ready to start school again?” She asks, casually placing a tray of chocolate chip cookies, her specialty, on the island between the three of us. I stare from the tray up to Jenna who appears to not have heard her mother speaking for the last ten minutes.
“Yeah! Senior year is going to be awesome!” Jesse responds, clearly unaware of Jenna’s silence, but still aware of Pamela’s cleavage that shows slightly from her silk tank top. She is definitely a good looking older woman and I easily can understand why Jenna herself is so attractive.
“How about you, Michael? I understand that you’re going to play soccer again?” She asks me now trying to stay on a light note, I’m guessing that she noticed her daughter’s silence.
“Yeah, wouldn’t think of doing anything else.” I say half paying attention, somehow unable to take my eyes off of Jenna. She is playing with one of her braids; her perfectly shaped fingers slowly, but rhythmically interlace themselves through the small tendril of hair under the elastic. “What about you Jenna?” I venture. “Are you going to do any sports?”
Her dark green eyes slowly move upwards and stare at me. Their intensity catch me by surprise and I feel an even greater need to figure out her great pain that she is hiding within. Her cheek bones are taught against her olive skin and her rosy lips rest emotionless in a line. A gentle scar runs down the side of her left cheek. I catch a swift movement of her hands as she stops playing with her hair and wonder whether I should have asked her anything. “No.” Her voice is hoarse, almost silent as she finally answers.
Pamela appears to not notice her daughter’s reply and quickly asks, “Why don’t you boys make Jenna feel at home in your high school? She is starting on Monday with you guys so it would be a great help if you could help us out with that.”
I say sure to Pamela and watch Jenna, waiting for her response. If I expected her to jump up with joy I would have been greatly disappointed because Jenna simply stares at her happy go lucky mom and then slowly stares at us and quietly gets up and walks up the stairs beside the kitchen that I assume is her room.
We sit in silence for a few minutes before I nudge Jesse, who is scoffing down the cookies, completely oblivious to what has just happened. While Jesse coughs loudly, I excuse us from Pamela’s house. I sit on my driveway and watch the now orange sky as Jesse sits beside me.
“I wonder what happened.” I say simply, not glancing away from the sky.
“Hm?” Jesse responds, cleaning the crumbs away from his face. “What do you mean?”
I finally stare at him and like always, wonder what’s going on in his mind. “Didn’t you see how quiet she was?”
He tilts his head to the side thinking. “Maybe, but she could just be shy.”
I shake my head no and lean back on my hands. “Nah, she wouldn’t have been so quiet and she would have at least smiled or something.”
“You think too much.” Jesse says simply and he too leans back on his hands. “All I know is that she is a babe.”
I laugh and stare up at the Toronto sky. “Yeah, but she is hiding something.”
Jesse nods this time and stares up the sky as well. “That Jenna Louise is a mystery.”