In Encore Edie Annabel Lyons explores how the “able” view the “disabled”. Main character, Edie Snow rascals between feeling pity for her cousin Merry and being embarrassed by her.
‘The summer when I was ten, just before we all went camping together, Mom sat me down with books and explained Merry’s condition in generic terms—the chromosomes, the double helix, all that, Merry had a snarl in her genetic code. A tangle of black wool was how I pictured it, a snarl you could never comb straight no matter how hard you tried. That was why we had to be kind to her, Mom explained, and never be sarcastic, and always share. And I was ashamed: because it was her and not me, because she would never get better, because I pitied her and was afraid for her, of what the world would do to someone like her if people like me didn’t take care of her. I was afraid of people like me.’ [p. 34]
‘Merry wants to hold my hand as we walk down the hall… [T]here’s no one around…I let her just this once…“I love you, Edie,” she says.Oh, for god’s sake. “I love you, too,” I say. “Let’s not say that anymore, though, okay?”“Aw,” a voice says.We’re walking past the art room…I realize, too late, that two girls are still in there… Their voices pursue me down the hall.“Are they gay?” I hear the shorter one ask the taller one. “That’s cool.”“No, they’re from the special class… The special kids are so in touch with their emotions.”…“I can’t walk Merry home,” I tell Mom.” [p. 38 – 40]