Bugs is the mean spirited, vengeful, violent, misogynistic antagonist in “Girl with the Rose Tattoo.” But Bugs began like we all do, as a relatively blank slate for fate, and life’s experiences to inscribe. Fate made the first mark on his slate even before he was born by interfering with his development in the womb, and so guaranteed Robert would not a beautiful child at birth. His father, Edward Crawley, walked out of the birthing room as soon as his son was held up for him to see. Diana Crawley reacted differently.
“My poor boy,” she said. “That can be fixed. We’ll get your little problem fixed, and no one will ever know,” she cooed like any new mother would cradling her newborn son in her arms, holding him to her breast to suckle. His father was as cold as a fish toward him and his mother from that moment on. Robert was nothing more than an annoying spot in the middle of the carpet of Edward’s life, a constant reminder that his genes were somehow mixed in with the flawed, ugly creature Diana had expelled from her vagina.
As far as Edward was concerned, Diana’s use of recreational drugs and alcohol during the first ten weeks of her pregnancy was the cause of his sons deformity, at least that was what her physician had advised was a possibility. Robert was destined to be shunned by his father, and Diana lived a life without any form of intimacy, at least with her husband. That became a problem for Robert too.
Diana loved and protected her son, and she was the beginning and end of his universe. From the moment he breathed his first breaths, Robert Aloysius Crawley was marked for ridicule from others and there was little his mother could do to protect him. She could only pick him up, dust him off, give him a hug, and send him back into the hostile world that bent him into the twisted sociopathic individual he became. Considering the events that flow from his beginnings, the path he would follow through life was determined by fate, and the nasty piece of work he became should have come as no surprise.
That’s the teaser. [Robert “Bugs” Crawley is a work in progress]