My Kind of Town

by Don Chapman

Tuesday, April 24, 2001

Nothing to lose

>>Makiki Heights

"Where's Serena?" Sen. Donovan Matsuda-Yee-Dela Cruz-Bishop-Kamaka asked again. She certainly wasn't in the hillside hideaway he kept for her.

A related question was being asked in newsrooms across Honolulu. In fact, it appeared as a page one headline in the Star-Bulletin's afternoon edition, above a photo of Sen. Matsuda-Yee-Dela Cruz-Bishop-Kamaka's canary yellow Town Car lying on its roof halfway down the first base line at Cartwright Field, and a smaller photo of a naked, bleeding young woman being lifted from the car on a stretcher: "Where's Donovan?"

At the moment, he was taking his first illegal puff of the day.

>>Honolulu Soap Co.

Lily's private-line shama thrush phone chirped again.

"Hello ... oh, hi, Lance!" Trying to mask her hurt with an exclamation point.

"I have some really big news!" her youngest brother said, pausing dramatically. "I'm bringing Greg along for Laird's graduation."

"And how are you going to introduce him to Mom and Dad?"

"As my friend ... and the man I hope to marry."

"Oh boy."

"Listen, I had to share the good news. I'm on my way to meet Greg at the Capitol."

"You're introducing him to Mom already?"

"No. Well, maybe. We're actually going to the demonstration in support of the hate crime bill. Lily, this is my coming out party!"

Their parents described Lance as "artistic," which he was. He danced with the ballet and in local stage productions, supporting himself as a freelance window-dresser.

"I have to tell them sometime, Lily, don't I?"

"Mm. The 'don't ask, don't tell' policy has worked pretty well so far. Our parents are very comfortable in a state of denial, Lance. Just don't expect Dad to offer any champagne toasts."

"I don't care. No, well, maybe I do. That would be nice."

"Don't hold your breath."

"I can't live in secrecy any more. I want to marry Greg."

"All children keep secrets from their parents," Lily said, sounding exactly like a big sister. "And all parents keep secrets from their children. No family can function with total honesty between the generations. I mean, do you want to know about Mom and Dad's sex life?"

"I didn't think they had one."

"You prove my point."

"Don't change the subject, Lily. I've made up my mind. What I need to know is, will you support me?"

"Of course." In terms of family, Lily no longer had anything to lose. "Have fun at the rally. I'll look for you on the news."

Don Chapman is editor of MidWeek.
His serialized novel runs daily in the Star-Bulletin.
He can be emailed at

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