I didn’t forget about her, but I left her hanging…so unlike myself. I’m loyal to a fault, really. I used to wait on the other line for thirty minutes before realizing I’d been shelved for a later date.

Now I’ve done it to Sydra Parramore. I’ve left her somewhere in 1948 being evaluated by a psychiatrist to see if insanity was a good enough reason to shoot a man. I left her hanging on the walls in abandoned war barracks, chasing the heels of Marilyn, wondering if she’ll ever be quite as charming…or quite as used and abused.

I’ve been busy with other projects…good projects, but it’s no excuse. She has only few people to count on.

I found her hiding in the corners of my mind around a year ago when listening to a sultry remake…southern and sad…of Michael Jackson’s Billie Jean, by The Civil Wars. She was sultry herself, love-starved in all the ways that make people hideous. Murder hung around her, and the shadow of her better, prettier if not birthmarked across her face, sister. She smelled like honeysuckle that’d sat in a smoky bar, dragged in on the bottom of a soldier’s shoe. I gave her the surname “Parramore”…French for something like an illicit lover on the side; a weekend lover. It’s not really what she was at the core…and now I’ve done it to her myself.

A certain scent in the air brought her back to me, and I knew I was no better than my secondary characters. It made me know her more, my slighting her. She’s now back in my head, at the tip of my tongue, and soon to live comfortably back on the pages. I’ll try not to force her to the outskirts of my priorities, though, maybe it’s the process this time…welcome back, Ms. Parramore. I smell your perfume, hear your thoughts…I’m going to give you a voice…and you’re the main event, second to none. Set that cigarette down and clear that pretty throat. Here we go.

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