Bruised

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Flash Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic
A brief look into the thoughts of a woman trapped in an abusive relationship which she thinks is the safest place for her.

Submitted: May 20, 2016

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Submitted: May 20, 2016

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The sky flashes blue as lightening streaks across the darkened sky, soon followed by the distant grumble of thunder. I let out a soft groan myself as my hands grip the window sill and I struggle to pull it open. It’s raining outside and I love the smell but the damn window is so hard to open these days. Maybe I’m just getting weaker.

I manage to crack it open a bit and decide that it’s enough, the smell will leak in. My focus shifts to the knife laying on my desk to my right which I pick up and inspect closely. It’s not the sharpest blade in the house but that works to my benefit. You can’t feel as much pain with a well sharpened knife.

With the small knife in my hand I lower myself down to the cold, dusty floor, placing my back against the wall right under the window. The cool air drifting down calms me as I press the tip of the knife on the middle of my inner forearm. Pulling down horizontally, I watch a pink line trail behind the blade just before little beads of red dot the line. They pool together, making a miniature red river along the hollow groove I sculpted into myself.

Euphoria courses through my veins in a way no drug has ever done and I tilt my head back against the wall to embrace the stinging on my arm. Soon it’ll fade and I’ll need to go back for another slice, but for now I just focus on the present sensation.

My moment is interrupted by a heavy hand coming down on my head. I peel my tired eyes open and blink them into focus to find a tall, dark omen standing before me. My boyfriend, Oscar.

He shakes his head at me as if I’ve done something naughty before he takes the knife out of my hand, placing it back onto my desk. My head droops forward, forehead coming to rest onto my knees as the tears I tried so hard to keep back finally fall free. I can’t look at Oscar anymore, I don’t want to see the disappointment in his eyes. He scoops me up into his arms and I let myself melt into him like the broken bird I am. My head now rests on his warm chest as he carries me back into my bed… our bed.

After he lays me down facing the wall, Oscar curls himself around me and encases me in his strong arms. I fold myself up, with my knees pushed up as far as they can go and my own hands gripping onto Oscar’s. It isn’t long before his snoring starts again, but I just can’t sleep. My face is sticky with my tears and my stomach has a knot in it that refuses to go away.

My fingers trace along Oscar’s arm to kill time, following the lines of his tattoos I love so much. I’ve always wanted to decorate my body with tattoos, even drawing them out with pen on my skin. I never had the money. The markings I do have on my body come free, courtesy of Oscar himself. The purple and blue marks surrounding my neck are some of his finest work.

I was packing my clothing into a duffle-bag, trying to get everything done before Oscar came back from his cousin’s house one night. I was done with it all, with the money problems, the cheating, the abuse. Headlights beamed through the window as I zipped the bag up. Oscar walked in, throwing his keys down, then looked at me confusingly.

“Where are you going?” He asked when I tried to push past him in the hall.

Without stopping, I said, “I’m leaving you.”

I heard him chuckle from behind me, “No you’re not.”

When I reached for the front door, his arm shot out and he held it shut. I knew I was not going to leave with him in the house, but I had to argue for it anyways. Our talking turned to yelling and before I knew it Oscar took a swing at me. I clawed at his face so he back-handed me then grabbed my arms to shake some sense into me.

“You’re not leaving!”

“I will!” I fought back, trying to push him off of me.

He caught me by the arm again then glared at the burn mark on my shoulder. Julien, our dealer, gave it to me with his cigarette when I asked for more time to pay off our debt.

“Who did this to you?” Oscar demanded.

His grip on my arm tightened as I looked away.

“Who did this?!”

I winced and squirmed before giving up the answer, “Julien!”

Oscar swore then tossed me aside before leaving the house in a fury. I could have left then… but I didn’t. I stayed on the floor for hours until Oscar came back and told me everything was taken care of, no details. He took me to bed the same way he had just done.

I now turn over so that I’m facing his chest before I shift closer and his arms tighten around me, forming a hug. My face starts getting warm with tears again as the knot in my stomach eases away and I feel a tingle in my chest. How can I feel so safe in the arms of a man who beat me black and blue?

My finger traces the mark on my arm I gave myself. It’s already healing over and soon it will scar over the same way my other cuts and the burn on my shoulder had. The only scarless wounds I’ve received were from Oscar and I know that, as long as I stay with him, he is the only one who can get away with hurting me.

 

-end-


© Copyright 2017 Patricia Vox. All rights reserved.

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