Seated at her desk alone in her room, Kaley Corine let out a deep sigh and moaned softly. She stared at the giant computer screen, the blank wall of white at her face as she contemplated the seriousness of the situation. Kaley Corine frowned, took a deep breath, looked away, and then turned back towards the screen. "No," she said. "No." Kaley Corine sighed again, this time a little louder. Slumping down, she became silent.
Minutes passed. She took another deep breath and puffed out her cheeks. Kaley shook her head, crossed her legs at the ankles, and swung them back and forth above the floor. She bit her bottom lip and blew out another raspberry, closed her mouth tight, sucked in and listened to the sound of her saliva as she sifted it through her teeth. Pulling her cheeks in-between her teeth, she popped her mouth, making an abrupt kissing sound and looked across the room at her large bulletin board. She pulled in her lower lip and replaced it with her tongue. Kaley Corine reached up and scratched at her nose.
She sunk into her chair, put her hands next to the keyboard, and teased the keys with her fingers. Still swinging her legs, she leaned back in the chair, sat just a little taller and began moving her head to music that was silent, dancing as she sat -- she smiled and looked across her long black desk.
Bright and yellow, a jumbo plastic cup caught her eye. She reached over and pulled it close for inspection. There were two pairs of scissors, one regular size and one smaller, but not child-sized. These were serious cutting instruments with sharp blades and points. There was a black plastic handled letter opener, a sterling silver shoe horn monogrammed with her father's initials, and a much newer candy cane handled magnifying glass she received from her mother-in-law. The remainder of the cup contained a triple zero paint brush that had seen better days, four neon hi-lighting pens that had never been used, five colored pencils -- three of the five needed sharpening, and one of which was broken in half.
Kayley Corine stopped when she realized her hands weren't sliding properly against the wood. She looked into her palms. "Bad marker," she mumbled, and continued. She held three number two pencils that were part of a gift, one of which had black ink on the bottom, all three unsharpened. Kayley Corine picked up the cup, moved around the remaining items and stared into the bottom, "Where'd that come from?"
She began again. The remaining contents included two fat black Sharpie markers, a black fine point marker without a cap which she tested and then threw into the garbage. There was a red felt tip marker, one black chopstick, wrapped with silver-leaf on the edge -- part of a set given to her by a friend more than fifteen years earlier, and a thermometer she'd searched the house for a few weeks earlier. There was a keyring, two mechanical pencils and a finally, a small black dongle. "I don't need this stuff," she said putting everything back into the cup and reading the UMSL logo on the side. She slid it all back into place before leaving the room to wash her hands.
Kayley Corine returned to her desk. This time she pulled her left leg up under her right, placed her hands on the keyboard and began typing, "I is for...." Her palms momentarily brushed across the desk as she realized there was more ink. Ink, once again, was on the palm of her hands, but she continued typing, "I.... I... I.... am so frustrated....what am I going to say about the letter 'I'?
She began singing rapidly and softly, "me, me, me, me..." She wrinkled her nose, looked outside at the rain, turned back and continued. "I have no idea what to write about today." A dog barked. That's when Kayley Corine left the house for dinner out with her husband.