Twisting Fate: Ch. 1

Thursday, May 30, 2019



The story starts like this:

I’m sitting on the worn, leather couch in the back of the dimly-lit LuLo, the bar owned and operated by the closest thing I have to a friend. Six empty shot-glasses, a scotch, and a half-empty martini glass are scattered about on the table in front of me, all of them mine. The guy I’m sitting with has his hand up my skirt, and I don’t even know his name.

“Hey,” he says, and I can feel his breath hot on my ear. It smells bittersweet, like tequila. “Wanna get out of here?”

Yes,” I slur, and kiss his lips.

He smiles and helps me up. We both walk clumsily toward the door, his arm around my waist, pressing into my hipbone; my weight leaning into his for steadiness. I wave to my friend Ben, the bartender, as we pass by, and he shakes his head and scowls. I guess he doesn’t approve. Oh well.

Outside, the street is wet and the air smells fresh. It must have rained. I take a deep breath and look up. Most nights, you can see the stars. Tonight, I only see dark angry clouds, streaked with lightening. I shiver and stumble on the sidewalk. The guy- I think I’ll call him Sweet Breath - grabs my arm tight to steady me. I giggle.

“What’s so funny?” he asks.

“Sorry,” I say. “You’re sweet.”

Another giggle. Sweet Breath smiles and pulls me against him. As we round the corner of the building, he presses me up against the brick wall and smashes his lips against mine.

I don’t remember the rest.

***

Across town, in a room without windows, a girl with blonde hair and blue eyes is drinking warm tea from her favorite mug, the one painted red and decorated with hearts. She likes to cover the hearts with her fingers to feel the warmth. The only hearts she’s known have been cold.

She picks up a pen, and stares at the blank page in front of her. How do you say goodbye when you know you won’t be missed? As the walls shake around her, she sets the pen down, and takes a sip of her tea.

Maybe she won’t say goodbye at all.

***

I dream of fire and water that falls from the sky in equal destruction, catching a photo that flutters from a two-story window. The image of a family once complete flickers with flames being smacked by the storm. By the time the rain smothers the flames, all that’s left is the image of a lonely little girl with faceless hands gripping each of her shoulders.

I gasp and wake with the ruined photo in my mind, and the sound of the rain smacking into the windows. I sit up as I wait for my eyes to adjust and realize two things: I’m naked, wrapped only in a blanket, lying down in the backseat of a stranger’s unmoving, empty car. When a clap of thunder shakes the car, I also realize the storm wasn’t just a dream. Instinctively, I tuck my knees into my chest as my heart begins to race. I shake my long bangs away from my chestnut eyes, and feel a bug or something stinging the back of my head. I swat at my bushy, black curls, gasping when instead of a bug, my hands come into contact with blood. My head is bleeding. A crack of lightening lights the entire backseat, and a tiny squeak escapes my mouth. 

Where am I? I think. Does he live in his car? Why do I do this to myself? 

I feel sick, though I can’t tell whether it’s worry or the residue of a drink-too-many. When I feel the bile rise in my throat, I roll to the edge of the seat and hurl onto the floor.

Gripping the edge of the seat, I push myself up to sit, keeping the blanket wrapped around my shoulders. A quick look around tells me nothing. The windows are streaked with rain, their views containing only blurry darkness. I grab the half-empty water bottle I see in the front cupholder, and swallow a swig to rinse my mouth out. Swishing the water in my mouth, I catch my reflection in the rearview mirror. My face looks paler than usual, my eyes red and rimmed with dark, sleepless circles.

I need to stop doing this.

I swallow as my heart begins beating so fast I can barely breathe. I grasp at my chest as I let myself sink back onto the seat. I can feel the cool leather against my skin.

Then everything goes black.


***

The girl across town sees only beauty in the rain.

As the storm rages on outside, she stands and watches the rain pound against the mud outside. It’s the happiest sight she’s seen in a long time. 

Lightening streaks through the darkness, followed by a quake of thunder. She looks down at her bloodied fingernails, and the little bits of torn flesh on the palms of her hands.

In the storm, she finds her escape.

You Might Also Like

0 comments

Featured Post

Intermission