Jennifer de Guzman is a writer and comics publishing professional living in the San Francisco Bay Area. She writes stories about sad girls, seawater, bottomless wells, airborne plagues, and horses. You can find links to some of them them in the Selected Works section or read them at her Scribd page.

Purchase my novel Half a Person
at Amazon!

Chi Roca has a dead girl’s voice in her head. Nearly ten years ago, her older sister Aria drowned, leaving their family shattered — and Chi has been keeping the secret of Aria’s continued presence in her mind ever since.

But Aria had secrets of her own, and as Chi has gotten older she has begun to ask questions. When Aria’s presence disappears on Chi’s sixteenth birthday, Chi decides to try to find the answers, placing herself in the same danger that led to her sister’s death.

Half a Person is a story of grief and the connections it both breaks and forges.

What Are Possible Impossiblities?

“The Poet ought rather to chuse Impossibilities, provided they have Resemblance to the Truth, than the Possible, which are Incredible with all their Possibility.”
- Henry Fielding, quoting Aristotle in The History of Tom Jones, a Foundling
Word Traveling

Faking It, Chapter Two, Part Three - Cabal


Jamie and I, like most teenage girls, were plotters. A joint operation on the Pellicci brothers resulted in success only for Jamie, in the sense that after a few months of dating, the younger Pellicci broke up with her over the phone.

That’s how these things go, I counseled her at the time. We were so young, of course our relationships weren’t going to be permanent.1

We were finally going to be together in the same school, though, so fall 1993 was going to be when we undertook our greatest plot of all. Like action heroes, we geared up for our mission. First, boots: I acquired a pair of ten-hole Doc Martens2; Jamie had an enviable pair of mid-calf jump boots. Then, armor: We had matching plaid flannel dresses from Contempo Casuals, mine burgundy, hers olive green. I had a German army shirt, one of thousands that had flooded the American apparel industry after the fall of the Berlin wall3, burgundy-and-black striped knee socks, and black cotton thigh-high stockings.

My crowning objêt, however, was a silver slip-dress that I had to beg my mother for. Paired with an old sweater that I stole from my brother Richard and cropped short, and with my hair done up in corkscrew buns this dress played a vital role in what was basically Björk cosplay. She thought its $40 price should have bought about three outfits, and I had already gotten those expensive boots. I could protest all I wanted that $40 for a pair of Docs was so cheap that I deserved the oxblood ones too for finding such a deal, to no avail. Forty dollars is forty dollars. I eventually got a job to pay for my expensive tastes, but it was so sucky and retail and short-lived that I’m not going to write about it.

Anyway, the point was that my loins were girded. Jamie and I had planned an all-out assault on what remained of the group of mods I had admired since freshman year. The principle target of this mission was a senior named Brian. He had dyed-black hair, a black leather jacket painted with art and the lyrics of a Cure song, and he was a musician or something, I wasn’t sure. Thanks to preliminary scouting, I knew where he and his friends ate lunch so one day Jamie and I just showed up and started hanging out, resplendent in our burgundy lipstick and battle-damaged stockings. Brian didn’t stand a chance.

Reader, I married him. Seriously. I don’t see much point in keeping this information secret. I’m not writing a novel here.

On the steps of my sister's house. No one stood a chance against us.

  1. Those who know me will recognize this as dramatic irony. So will you in about 30 seconds.
  2. I finally got rid of these boots a couple of years ago, and I regret it, just as I regret destroying all of my high school diaries.
  3. I still have this.

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