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165 Rite of Passage PART 1

For Thursday, June 13, Day 165 of the 2024 Story-a-Day Challenge

By Gerard DiLeoPublished about a month ago Updated about a month ago 2 min read
Why mow? (We know why.)

"Paulette," Teresa cried, "you're only 16!"

"What's age got to do with it, Mama?" Paulette cried back.

"Everything," Teresa answered. "Too young! You're not even finished growing. You won't be able to appreciate it the right way."

"How's the right way?" Paulette argued. "I don't know if I'll ever have a chance to do it again."

Teresa had never had luck in talking Paulette down. Now, with post-pubescent confidence, tempered by teenage impulsiveness, Paulette was Hell-bent on having her way.

"Sex, Paulette?"

"Yea, Mama, sex. I have the right."

"Says who?"

"It's God-given, Mama, that's who! You had sex."

"Paulette, I'm a grown woman."

"Yea," Paulette agreed. "Lucky you!"

Teresa stopped talking for a moment so that they could do a reset. She offered her daughter a cigarette.

"I'm tackling tobacco after sex. You get to have sex, drink, and smoke. I want to do all of those. Starting now!"

Teresa sighed. "How 'bout you do 'em in reverse, maybe?"

Judging that her mother sounded half serious, Paulette felt she was making headway. After all, sex was a God-given right. A rite of passage. Even without love. It was part of being human.

"So, who's the lucky guy?" Teresa tested her sarcastically.

"Hmm, don't know yet," Paulette thought out loud. "It won't be another 16-year-old, that's f'sure."

"Oh," Teresa answered, secretly thinking how her own sex life had been so disappointing.

"No, someone with experience. Lots of practice. Someone knowing what they're doing. Too bad I can't just get some porn star." She paused. "How about Mr. Kirkson next door?"

She envied Paulette's youth, because she herself had a secret lurid desire for Mr. Kirkson. He wasn't young, but he wasn't old. And he was pretty.

"No, Paulette!" Teresa said, coming to her senses. "You're 16. My God! Any other time and it'd be outrageous."

"This is this time."


"I'll die, then, never having intercourse? Is that fair? I've thought about it ever since the horrible news. I need to experience it. If everyone's gonna die when the comet hits, anyway, it's fair!"

Teresa offered her daughter a beer, surrendering. "To the comet," she toasted.

"To the fucking comet," Paulette responded, and they clinked bottles.


Rite of Passage PART 2 to follow, at

Continue on to the concluding epilogue, Part 3, at


For Thursday, June 13, Day 165 of the Story-a-Day Challenge

366 WORDS (without A/N)

Title-accompaniment photo was AI-generated (Artificial Incineration), but the trajectory was not.


There are currently three surviving Vocal writers still participating in the 2024 Story-a-Day Challenge:

• L.C. Schäfer, challenge originator

• Rachel Deeming

• Gerard DiLeo (some other guy)

Read them. Support them. And witness their struggle!


About the Creator

Gerard DiLeo

Retired, not tired. In Life Phase II: Living and writing from a decommissioned church in Hull, MA. (Phase I was New Orleans and everything that entails. Hippocampus, behave!

[email protected]

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Comments (4)

  • Dharrsheena Raja Segarranabout a month ago

    I'm 34 and I still can't talk to my parents about sex. It's just so awkward, lol

  • John Coxabout a month ago

    As the priors mentioned the story is intriguing and I’m looking forward to part two, but the most intriguing bit are the mower and mowerless pics. Is the bare chested Atlas Mr Kirkson?

  • Dana Crandellabout a month ago

    I followed the link from Part 2, and both are inriguing reads. Congratulations on #165!

  • Daria Voynovaabout a month ago

    This story seems quite intriguing, starting with the daughter's request and then with the comet being mentioned... I can't wait to see how it will unfold.

Gerard DiLeoWritten by Gerard DiLeo

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