Deborah Way is the 1995 Editors’ Prize winner in fiction. Her winning story, “You Think I Care,” appeared in TMR 19.1 and was her first published story.
Mar 01 1996
You Think I Care
Annie sees the man before he sees her. She’s on her way to Eric’s. A four-point-seven-mile walk. Her mom and dad, as she was leaving, stopped their Saturday-in-November yardwork and gave her the ritual I-spy. She had Marlboros in her pocket and a joint snuggled in her sock, but there were leaves to rake and chrysanthemums to pinch, and her mom and dad are never quite so KGB in daylight, and today, especially, you could tell they wanted to trust her — it’s the kind of red-cheeked, blue-sky autumn day that makes them want to believe in their daughter’s goodness. In the end, they let her go with just a “Be home in time for dinner,” and “Be careful on Lawton Pond Road.” Annie nobbed. Whatever. She’s fifteen and in love, and today’s the day she and Eric are going to do it.