The Lie

I said I would have a story up soon and I didn’t lie.  I’m feeling more myself today, for the first time in over a week.  This story was written for Chuck’s challenge over at terribleminds where the prompt was to write a 1,000 word story full of action.  This story definitely reflects the dark spaces my mind has found itself in over the past week, but it was screaming to be told.   My small warning for those it could offend: It is dark and there is some swearing and other things.

Note: I made a few edits to the last paragraph as it was pointed out in the comments that it was a bit unclear.  I agreed.  I thought the same thing before posting it and I should have made the changes; you know, actually followed my instincts rather than letting it go. 🙂

Coming in at 1,001 words I give you:

The Lie

My shoes pound on the pavement as I run, oblivious of my gasping breath echoing in the air. It’s after midnight and darkness envelops me, holding me in its deathly embrace. I wish for death. I long for it. I’m running, hoping to find a way to end it all, hoping to find someone who will do it for me.

The images of only moments ago haunt me.

“Please, Ian. We belong together. I love you!” I’m crying, begging for things to be like they always used to be. I don’t understand why he wants it to be over and I asked to see him tonight so I could understand, maybe help him realize or even remember that he loves me too.

I’m running harder, trying to escape the memory, but it won’t let go; continues its dark litany inside my head.

We’re parked in the driveway of my house but I can’t bring myself to open the door, somehow knowing this will be the last time. I look at him and lean over, silently asking with my eyes for acceptance, approval. I lean into him and lay my lips on his, expecting for him to turn me away, but he doesn’t. I continue and feel him respond. He grabs me and we are tearing at each other, drowning in emotion. He leans back and tells me he loves me, finally, and my heart soars. Everything is okay. We’re going to be okay.

I don’t know how long I’ve been running or even where I am. I don’t even care. I look at the empty street and wish for the bright light of day and cars speeding by. I see myself stepping into them, letting it all float away in dark steel and shattered glass.

My face is wet and I realize I’m crying just as I did when he said the words. Said he wanted me back and that everything would be okay. He said it. Made me believe he meant it.

For such a small space, we manage to remove just enough clothing and finally, unbearably, he’s inside me and I cry out “I love you”, my tears falling on his neck, his shirt, combining with sweat and the sticky moist air we’ve created. We reach our peak only moments apart and freeze. I’m staring into his eyes, trying to see what I’m feeling reflected there, but suddenly I feel something else. I see it in his eyes, know what he’s going to say before it comes out of his mouth as he’s still inside me, spent. “Carrie, this wasn’t a good idea. I don’t know what I was thinking, but it doesn’t change anything.”

I see two men walking on the other side of the street. My heart speeds up, thumping in my ears. I’m scared, but hopeful. I’m scared they’ll cross the street. I want them to cross the street. I’m daring them, screaming in the silent recesses of my mind. They pass, glancing briefly sideways at what must be the manic girl running up the street. Isn’t it supposed to be scary for a girl to be alone in the middle of the night, walking the streets? Maybe that’s the problem. Maybe I should be walking.

I slow my pace to a walk. It allows me to wrap my arms around myself, huddling into the pain that tears at my heart. Tears well in my eyes but they hover, resisting gravity and the chance to spill down my face, following the caked lines from tears already spilled. My breath is hitching, coming out as small cries that I hate myself for making. They sound so weak. I’m weak. How could I possibly think that someone would love me?

I stare at him in horror, realizing he only said words he thought I would want to hear. Only wanted to fuck me, what, one last time? Did he think that by lying to me it would make it easier? I don’t know, but the anger builds in me as I stare into his now cold eyes. Before I know it, my hand hits his face hard and words are wrenched out of my mouth, words I don’t plan to say. “You son of a bitch!”

I hear footsteps behind me and my heart picks up speed, beating in time to them as they drift closer. Is it finally happening? Am I going to be mugged? Kidnapped? Killed on the street like the dog I am? I decide to keep walking, even slow my pace slightly, hoping it will be over before I can change my mind.

My voice echoes in the car and I kick my legs and punch out as hard as I can to get out from under him and out of the car. I open the door and fall out, stickers and rocks digging into my palms. I stand up and slam the door as hard as I can. I turn and start walking. I hear the window rolling down, hear him calling after me, but I ignore him. I feel used, dirty. How could this be happening. How could I love someone who would use me like that? Before I know it, I’m running, trying to outrun the pain and the demonic thoughts that threaten to take control.

It’s taking too long. The footsteps should have caught me by now. I finally stop and turn. Nothing. An empty sidewalk, an empty street, the light turning from yellow to red, so quiet I actually hear it clicking. Relief floods my being along with disappointment. Nothing seems to be going my way.

I look around, realize where I am and make my way slowly, inevitably toward safety, warmth. And even though I know its a lie, I knock on the door and wait for it to open. Wait for the loving arms that will reinforce the lie that everything is okay.

I fall into those arms, let them surround me, knowing I’ll never feel loved again.

10 thoughts on “The Lie

    • I appreciate the feedback. I looked over that last bit and wasn’t entirely sure about it when I posted it. Perhaps I should tweak it a bit just to be more clear.

      I write from a place of personal experience. While I fictionalize it in many ways, there are bits of reality in almost everything I write.

      I’m happy I was able to convey “tense and edgy” as that was exactly what I was going for. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • I know what you mean on all levels. Endings are the hardest for me, with everything I write. They almost never stay the same in revision.

        And my life is threaded through my stories, too.

        And, yes, the tense and edgy came through perfectly!


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