Rachel Trezise（雷切尔·特雷齐斯）的第一部小说《金鱼缸内外》（In and Out of the Goldfish Bowl）发表于2001年，入围橘子文学奖。第二部著作是短篇小说集《鲜苹果》（Fresh Apples），荣获狄伦·托马斯文学奖。她的首部多幕剧《过山车》（Tonypandemonium）荣获2014年威尔士戏剧评论家最佳英语作品奖。本篇作品选自她2013年最新出版的短篇小说集《宇宙拿铁》（Cosmic Latte），这本书包含了11个和青春、犯罪、边缘人群有关的故事。
Holiday of A Lifetime
The floorboards on the other side of the veranda creaked. I stepped back, my guts in my mouth. A gypsy boy was slumped on the step in front of the door, his face partially hidden behind the sunflower leaves. He opened his eyes, surprised, and sat up straight, his dark hair clipped to the skull apart from three knotty rat tails hanging down to his waist, stiffened with grease. His skin was the colour of tea, except for a silver bruise on the inside of his calf, visible through a huge rip in his dirty blue jeans. ‘This isn’t your house,’ I told him, going tentatively for the pistol in my dress pocket.
The gypsy boy smiled at me, dimples in his cheeks like he’d been stabbed with the point of a compass. ‘Going to kill me now are, ye?’ he said. He talked so quickly it was hard to work out where one word ended and the other began. It was like he was singing a tune; no lyrics, just a tune, his voice undulating. ’There’s no gold in my teeth,’ I warned him. As I did I noticed the chinks of gold in his calm, brown eyes, like little shards of honeycomb submerged in milk chocolate. He wasn’t really a boy; more like sixteen or seventeen years of age, and something about the way he was looking at me made the pistol seem useless. My face was as hot and clammy as if I’d kept it against the radiator for a whole hour. I dropped the lighter into the depths of my pocket. ‘What’s he doing to my Auntie Marilyn in there?’ I asked him.
‘Me broddur?’ he said. I nodded though I didn’t know what he was asking.
‘Me broddur’s a horse trainer. He’s lookin’ at err knees. ‘Cause ‘err knees’re gone stiff like an ole Vanner’s. He can soothe ‘em so, make ‘em well again.’
‘That’s alright then,’ I said though I didn’t really understand.
‘Where’re yer friends, now?’ he asked me before lifting a plastic bottle of water to his mouth and drinking a lot of it down.
‘Haven’t got none,’ I said. I didn’t mean to say it. It jumped out like canoodling had with Rhodri and Gwynfor in Cenarth. I toed the scuffed wood of the veranda, conscious of my own bare shins, expecting the question to drift away. But the gypsy was watching me, waiting for an explanation. ‘I was Mary,’ I said.
The boy nodded. ‘You’ve a triangular face,’ he said. ‘Leadership qualities. They’ll come around alright, the redhead missing yous already.’ How did he know that Rhodri was a ginger? ‘How do you know he’s ginger?’ I asked him. He shrugged. He didn’t say anything about Osian. Osian didn’t miss me I realised and at that moment I hated Osian as much as I’d hated anything in my short life, my solar plexus throbbing with sheer fury. The gypsy boy looked at me, his demeanour mild and patient, the sun catching a silver ring on his middle finger and illuminating his dirty, knuckly fingers. A new feeling obliterated the hate, replacing it with an urgent supernatural need in some chasm between my legs. My fingers started to tremble. I retreated down the steps but hoped that he’d call me back. For some reason I wanted to touch his hair, to smooth my fingertips along the length of the rough, rope-like tendrils. I jumped the last step, showing off, and my feet stung as they hit the ground.
‘You’re not staying to see yer Aunt?’ he said.
‘Nah.’ The thought of his lovely eyes on my bare, bandy legs stopped me from going back, from turning even to peer at him one last time. There was no spit in my mouth, my tongue swollen and cracked. I ran to the main road, my legs numb, the soles of my feet burning with each new step. I stopped at the Pen-lan stream and took a gulp of the cold, fishy-tasting water. I hid Lynette’s cigarette lighter under a mossy rock. Closer to home I rubbed a few splodges of mud on my legs so that I could tell my mother I’d been playing rounders on the rugby pitch. But by the time I got to the kitchen, and to Lynette lighting a cigarette off the ring of the gas cooker, I was a different person; too old to play rounders. I went straight to the downstairs bathroom to wash the mud off my legs.