Outside River Run

Sylvia Savinelli on Travis Quinn

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“Explain yourself, young lady,” my mother used to say when I’d get myself in trouble.


I never understood how to do that. Or even who that “myself” was she was talking about. Justine is the kind of person who knows exactly who that person is, although you wouldn’t think that would be the case. Most of the time I would go along with whatever “myself” thought or wanted to do. Occasionally, I would register an objection, but it was pointless. I wasn’t in charge. I was mostly along for the ride. I’ve never mentioned this to anyone. It was the kind of shameful secret you tell only to a shrink.


But things gradually changed. “Myself” kept getting beaten up until she finally said, “Okay, you think you’re so smart—you handle it.” It wasn’t so much a question of being smart as being less stupid.


So here’s the thing about Jared and his sudden appearance in my life after all those years. One of the reasons why there was never any real hope of resurrecting our relationship was that it was me, not him, who had changed. I was no longer the same person who had once fallen in love with him, the bad-boy Jared Luddin whom I'd loved despite knowing he wasn’t very good for me. Older and wiser, I had it in me to say no—not because I was afraid he would regain his memories and personality, but because, sadly, he struck me as an imposter.