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hs82150.jpgbuy prints of select halfsquatch photographs at etsy or dawanda. (prints of all photographs are available upon request) day 82

Devin said he wasn’t angry about the blurry photo of Rebeccca on front page of the Reporter that morning. He said he wasn’t angry, but Rebecca could tell he was. When she tried to hold his hand he shirked away.
It was mid-morning at the animal rights house. The activists had left for their daily protest across the road from the Sasquatch Circus, but Aaron stayed behind to discuss damage control with Rebecca and Devin.
“We need to get you out there, doing regular things, like a regular girl. We need to humanize you if this is going to work,” he said.

Aaron and Devin decided that Rebecca should go shopping.

She met Raylene and Nicole at the bookstore on Main Street. Rebecca perused the magazine section while she waited. She picked up a copy of Cosmopolitan and flipped through it. People were staring and pointing. She ticked off her answers to the How Sexy Are You? quiz in her head.

“Hey,” Raylene said.

Rebecca spun around to find Raylene and Nicole standing behind her. “Hey,” she said. The girls slunk back a step at the sight of Rebecca’s face. The hair had grown in. It was short — half an inch at most — and unlike the rest of the hair on her body, it was downy and sparse.

“So, uh, where do you want to go?” Raylene asked.

Rebecca shrugged. “I don’t know. Maybe the shoe store, I guess?”

“And we could walk down to Sportees after,” Nicole suggested. “I wanted to get one of those stretchy skirts with the ruffly bottom.”

“Sure, okay,” Rebecca said as she dug the cell phone Aaron had given her out of her purse. “I just have to make a quick call.”

Rebecca was in the dressing room trying on a stretchy skirt with a ruffly bottom to match the ones Raylene and Nicole were already wearing when Paula and Jeremy arrived at the shop.

“Hey, girls,” Paula said. “Cute skirts.”

“Yeah, super-cute,” Jeremy deadpanned. As soon as the tip that Rebecca was at the store came into the newsroom, both reporters were out the door.

Rebecca emerged from the dressing room. She tugged down the hem of the short pink skirt. “I don’t know.”

“Rebecca! Hi!” Paula pitched herself at Rebecca, cinching her in a tight hug.

Rebecca’s arms stayed stiff. “Hey.”

“I don’t know,” Jeremy interjected. “I like it. Might be better in black, though.”

“Yeah, I think so too,” Rebecca said.

Jeremy sorted through a rack of skirts. He found a black skirt with a ruffly hem and handed it to Rebecca. She retreated into the dressing room and tried it on. She felt a pinch of sympathy for the pink skirt that wasn’t right. She clipped it back on the hanger, hating that she’d already dismissed it. Maybe I should give it another chance. Maybe I could buy both. She pulled back the curtain and regarded herself in the mirror. “Yeah, this is much better,” she said of the black skirt. Everyone agreed.

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                                                                                                                                                          ©2008 pamela klaffke