The Evolution Series :: LOVE ME CRAZY :: Part 9 (of 10)
Flashbacks to the way things were...
Most drafts of LOVE ME CRAZY fleshed Cassidy out through flashbacks showing her relationship with her mom when she was growing up. Quinn would often say something or do something that triggered Cassidy's flashbacks. She'd remember an event where her mom stifled her growing love for art or pushed her mathematic skills beyond the norm, making her resent her mom and her skills. Quinn was the constant after these memories—the one who brought her back to the present and assured her she was fine and in control of her own life.
It was suggested that all the flashbacks should get cut. I left a few in, but in the end, those ended up chopped-suey too. I would've loved to have left them in, as I think it gives Cassidy a foundation for her resentment and trust issues, and reasoning for her strength.
All in all, I cut five flashbacks showing Cassidy at different ages. Here's my favorite, cut from the Gentlemen's Quarters and indigo scene...
“You don't have to stay.” I glance up the stairs. “The silk is up there. I can find it if you want to leave.”
“I'm fine.” He slides a curtain open. Dust motes suspend in the air until he slings the second curtain open, causing dust to roll in waves.
We both cough and swat at the air, backing away from the window.
“Maybe you should leave the curtains alone,” I say after several sneezes.
“I think you're right.” He threads his fingers through mine and leads me under an arch. “Wait here. I'll find some towels.”
I shake my hands, willing them to warm, then rub my arms pointlessly. Water dribbles down my back, sending chills dancing across my skin. Several blankets hang off the arm of a leather couch under the windows. Grabbing the top one, I wrap it around my shoulders. At the end of the sofa is a side table. I lean closer, spotting something shiny below the glass top.
“Relics found in the field,” Quinn says as he tosses a stack of white towels on the couch. He grabs the top one and runs it over his head. His back muscles flex. When the cords move, they roll like struck chimes.
“Cassidy, pay attention.” Mommy stills my kicking leg.
“I can't see.” I slide from my seat and drape my arms over the wall. Mommy tugs my dress but I want to stand and watch the orchestra.
“Sit down,” she calls.
“Look, bells.” The drummer rolls a stick with a cotton ball glued to the end across shiny tubes. I can make one of those and play Mommy's wind chimes on the balcony. I clap my hands. I can't wait to show Starla. We can be an orchestra, her on the pots and pans and me playing the bells.
“Pay attention, Cassidy. Close your eyes. You should be focusing on counting measures, note length and syncopated rhythm.” She pulls me into my seat.
“But I want to play bells.”
“Chimes. Those are chimes.” She points at my eyes and whispers, “Close your eyes.”
I do and every time the chimes tinkle, they sound like fairies dancing. I want to dance. I want to twirl like the ballerinas on stage. Ohhh, and hold a wand with cotton balls stuck to the end. I squeal and Mommy pinches my leg.
“Music is math, Cassidy. Numbers through sound.” She taps my knee to the beat. “Hear it?”
Not really. “I hear chimes.”
Quinn dabs the droplets on my face with the towel and I blink until he's in focus.
I'd loved going to the ballet, but after I left home, I never went back. One, because the tickets cost a fortune and two, because Mom made me go. I never do anything I enjoyed as a kid if Mom once played a role.
I push the towel away and turn toward the display, squeezing my eyes shut. I shake my head and stare at the circular objects under the glass. I point at the collection before Quinn asks me what's wrong and dances around on fucking gold because I have to admit he's right and I do avoid my past. “Your dad was a collector?” My voice shakes. “What are those?”
Next week... cut scenes. Think Fruit Ninja with words...