Hard Pill

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Status: In Progress  |  Genre: Flash Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic

This story is about a woman who falls for who she thinks is her dream man, but later reveals himself as an evil man who strips away her worth. He manipulates, charms, and wriggles his way into her life, all in an attempt to strip away her worth. This story is still under development and I welcome all comments and advise.

HARD PILL  

 

It felt like a hard pill; it stuck to the back of my throat, I swirled the saliva around my mouth, trying to create a moist coat for this pill. One, two, three... gulp. I could feel it all day. I felt myself drained, and somehow in pain, although I could not recall where my body ached. It just felt like a general pain, like a headache. I felt myself drag the corners of my regatta shoes against the ground, small fragments of thread loosened as my toes rubbed against the concrete. I could see the lilac Nike sock that I put on this morning peeping out from the front of my runner. The lump in my throat grew larger, thicker as I thought of him. I pushed it down; I could not let myself go there. When I finally looked up from my shoe, I found myself at the driver side of my car, keys in hand, ready to leave. The walk back seemed shorter, then again, it always feels that way I thought to myself. My hand reached for the ignition, the cracks in my knuckles still wept. A combination of blood and clear solution simmered out of the scratches. Dragging my knuckles horizontally across my black leggings, I forced myself to start the car and drive. I always hated driving alone, nothing to distract you but radio stations discussing the number of positive cases of Covid-19, or whether Brexit will go ahead or not. Nevertheless, this was better than being alone in my own thoughts, especially today. The lump in my throat throbbed, reminding myself to talk about him, to let it out. The voices on my radio faded, as I thought of his bodyweight on mine and how heavy he was. He did not look that heavy, his arms were long, but covered in muscles. I noticed his veins swelling as they streamed down his arms; I was shocked by his strength. His hands like shovels, as they scooped me up and slammed me down. They wrapped perfectly around my neck. His knees pointy as they dug into my side and upper thighs, forcing me to hold still, like a knife twisting and turning inside my thighs, no passion just pain. My hand scratched the side of my face; blood trickled from my eyebrow down to my left nostril, I quickly maintained my focus onto the road, extending my arm for the three-day-old river rock water that sat in the cupholder. I tried once more to gulp down the lump in my throat, but it was stubborn and did not want to leave.  

As I yielded at the cross-roads of Boley, I saw Martha O’Leary walking her Pomeranian pup. Her perfectly volumed hair bounced on her shoulders as she strutted up the left side of the road. A cotton cardigan lay across her shoulders, her white satin blouse showed off her chest and emphasized the roundness of her breasts. She had only buttoned to the fourth button on her blouse; some would say she did this on purpose. The black salsa jeans hugged her thighs and bottom, complimenting her figure. I examined her walk, how she swayed from hip to hip, chest out, head up she flaunted her beauty and her perfect figure. Martha was always known for her fashion and beauty, but this came at a price. I accelerated, pushing the car into third gear, raising my chipped nails, I waved and nodded my head to acknowledge Martha, trying not to stare any longer. I freewheeled down the town towards the Inna dart of pain stormed through my upper thighs, my foot slammed on the breaks, my hands clenched my lower stomach as the car conked out. The lump in my throat once more grew thicker. I clutched my car forward onto the double yellow lines, not caring for the rules of the road I turned the key and sat in silence. The pain stabbed, again and again, each time faster and more aggressive. Trickles of sweat swam across my forehead and down my temple, my throat burned and what felt like a gallon of bile shot up my throat, I had not eaten yet, I did not have time. The flashing lights that hung above my car reflected onto my dashboard, the lights danced and swirled ‘the happiest time of the year' I mumbled, not for me. I saw Jack and his boys skipping through the double doors of the pub; they looked like they had a few too many already. I could nearly smell the Jack Daniels from my car. I remembered Martha and how she used to go to this pub every Sunday night, she dressed up in her best clothes, she once told me that she starts getting ready by four o clock and would aim to be in the pub by eight. She was the eye candy of Camolin, a small village filled with randy old men who were desperate for female attention. Martha enjoyed these men; she found pleasure in their sloppy, drunken compliments and cheesy chat-up lines. She dressed up every Sunday for these men; she never took them home; in fact, Martha hardly ever kissed them. She had no intention of being with these men; they were simply a confidence boost and reassured her that she had not lost her looks. saw these men myself, the way they looked at her and rubbed her leg. As soon as they became physical, Martha would gulp down her gin and tonic and leave for her taxi. One night, Martha had left after Josh Higgins slapped her bum and told her all the things, he would do to her. She laughed it off, but her smile faded as she gathered her purse and fled for the double doors. I heard him myself, the way he spoke about her, saying she was nothing but a tease, and it was women like her that ask for something to be done to them. The rest nodded to agree and slurped down the last mouthful of their pints before poking a fag in-between their lips and striking their matches. I had not thought of that moment for a while; I never passed much notice on their comments until now. I thought of Martha and how these men saw nothing of her but a body count. It led me to wonder do all men think like that and was I the one asking for it with him.  

I felt dirty, slutty; I needed a shower. My breath still smelled of Aldi vodka and Tesco lemonade. My teeth felt like they were covered in shavings, the plaque wrapped around them, causing my breath to stink. I normally enjoy going home, but as I stepped up the concrete steps and placed the key into my red door, a feeling of emptiness strook through my body. I had never felt scared or lonely in my home until him. This was always my safe space, a place where I could eat my own weight in chocolate whilst lying in my knickers watching Desperate HousewivesThe house felt cold and bare, the pizza we bought from apache was still there, the pepperoni slices hung off the edges of the pizza, it clung to the air, I gagged. Bypassing the kitchen, I stepped towards the shower; I unclothed myself this time. I stood hunched over in front of the white mirror in my room. Without realizing I covered my breasts; the bruising began to show. Your fingerprints indented in my upper thighs and lower stomach, ‘that explains the pain’ I whimpered. My breasts were raw, red, oozing, covered in teeth marks. My wrists were tender, three rings of redness wrapped around my wrist; it felt like a carpet burn. My cold hands soothed the burn for a few seconds. Curled up, arms wrapped around my knees, I lay naked on my silk sheets. The lump in my throat thumped the side of my neck, forcing me to cry. I thought of you, how you spent months trying to lure me in, texting, face-timing. Telling me how I was the one that you had never felt like this before. I told you I wanted to wait; you respected it for a while. You had it planned all along, a romantic night of pizza and wine which later led to vodka and your place. You drove my car and told me you had a surprise for me, I felt safe with you, walking through your narrow hallway, lit up by one standing lamp as I joked that you had once again forgotten to buy a bulb for the ceiling. You led me towards your room, rose petals on the bed, the Aldi vodka and lemonade sitting patiently on the chipped bedstand. I turned to yoand tried to explain that we had only been seeing each other a month. You seemed kind as you told me it was fine to go sit down in the kitchen that you would follow me in. Vodka and lemonade were placed at my fingertips, ‘cheers to us’ he said. A strange tang lingered on my tongue; it became numb. My neck shivered as I reached to tell you I needed to go home. I had only taken a mouthful. My body paralyzed you thought I did not know what was going on, you flung me onto your bed, helpless, terrified, I gave in. No passion, just pain. I slipped in and out of consciousness; each time I woke, I wished I would go back to sleep. My wrists and ankles tied to ensure that I was not going to escape, the sweat dripped from your brow onto my right breast, your teeth sank into my skin, your incisors were sharp and deadly. My lungs felt punctured from your weight, they pushed back into my ribcage, making it hard to gasp for air. You flipped and turned me, round and round again. Weak, vulnerable, you gripped my legs as you forced yourself onto me, you never once kissed my mouth. You made it clear what your intentions were, the mixture of cologne and sweat stung my nostrils, a burning sensation tingled from my thighs to my throatIt felt like blood, a warm trickling stream slowly sailed down my left thigh. The palm of your hands pushed against my forearm as you pushed yourself off my body. Then it all went black.  

'That is enough' I thought to myself, as I opened my eyes, I remembered I was at home. A sudden urge of anger rained over me; I felt betrayed, dirty. I ran for the bathroom rampaging through my soaps I threw them all in, nine different soaps sat at the base of my shower. I spun the dial to the highest temperature I wanted to scald my body, to wash away his filth. I scrubbed and scrubbed; each nail was drenched in dove and attacked by a nail scrubber, an exfoliator glove was placed on both hands as I scrapped away his scent. My skin raw, burning I did not care I was not getting out until every inch of my body was clean. The water turned to ice; I had been in it far too long. As I opened the shower doors, I fumbled through the fog from the shower and tried to blindly reach for a towel. Wiping the mirror with the palm of my hand, I drew a circle around my reflection, I thought of this circle that I drew, and I compared it to him. His a circle; he will go around and around again, repeating history, repeating what he has done to me. A circle has no end, and neither does he. I can hear my phone buzzing from the other room; it is him. Ten missed calls later; he left a message that read 'wow you got very drunk last night, I slept on the couch... Don't worry, nothing happened'. I began questioning myself, did this happen? Was it just the drink? Did I really say yes to him sleeping with me? Everything was blurry; I found myself blaming my actions. I know how I can get with drink, but I still believed in timing. The marks on my body were my only evidence, but how was I supposed to stand in front of him again, look him in his eyes and tell him that he had done this. That I never asked for this! My throat clenched, I could feel my neck swell, the tightness wrapped around my neck as my chest gasped for air, ‘just breathe’ I thought. The remote thought of seeing him again had me reaching for my inhaler. It took four puffs to clear my throat; anger still rained through my body. My head divided into two. I wanted to slap him, report him, show him how it feels to be betrayed, another part of me trembling with fear as I thought of seeing him again.  

He came from a very well-respected family. A family of doctors and lawyers. He was a doctor himself; he worked in the pediatric department in Crumlin. 'A real catch' my mother bragged, as I told her I was seeing him. He was well-spoken, polite, and a true gentleman, or so I thought. His job explains how he had access to different drugs. He lived in an old farmhouse outside Enniscorthy, a beautiful cottage with stone walls and green ivy branches that crawled through the windows in the winter months. His stove was almost the size of a room itself; he uses to tuck his head into his neck as he walked under the chimney breast to stack timber onto the open fire. It even had a black iron bar to show where they use to hang their pots. It was a cosy place, very homely and inviting, a rather safe place. I would never have imagined anything sinister happening in his cottage. I wondered if I was the first, but I did not believe I was. He knew what to do; he was quick; it was like he had done this several times before. Then again, I thought would he of done this to me if I had of gave in and slept with him. A bundle of thoughts rampaged my head, I thought of how I would approach this if I should just ignore him and never speak of it to anyone and get on with myself. There was one thought that kept repeating in my mind, what if he does it again? Not to me but someone else. What if he becomes more violent? And needs more to reach satisfaction. Seconds passed, I found myself dressing in baggy tracksuits and a puma jacket. My hair was swirled up into a high bun that sat on the top of my head; I could feel the drips of water seeping down the back of my neck. I grabbed my runners and keys and slammed the red door shut. A moment of rational raged through my body, focusing on the road I couldn’t recall my journey into Enniscorthy, what should have been a twenty-five-minute drive, felt like 5 minutes. I was lost in time, but I couldn’t distract myself, I knew I would have turned back. The speed bumps chucked my car forward as I pulled into the Garda Station. Unaware of my sloppy appearance, I stumbled through the glass doors and demanded to press charges. ‘i want a ban garda, I have something to show you’ I trembled. My lips dry, I tried to lick them to open my mouth and get the words out, I could feel my thumbnail digging into my palm as I tried to hold my hands steady to write a statement. I caught a glimpse of myself in the window; I looked like I had been dragged in from the streets, I could smell the different scents of soap off my skin. A mixture of mango and passionfruit shower gel-filled the interview room; I couldn't help but tap the ground with the ball of my foot to ease the tension in my hands. I stared at my foot, how it tapped, tapped, tapped. With each tap I inhaled and exhaled, it reminded me to breathe. The interview door squeaked open a slim ban garda walked through the door. Her smile sympathetic and soft, she stared at me with her blue eyes, she removed her hat and peeled back her coat. This somehow made me feel more comfortable. 'I have seen the photos, you're very brave' she exclaimed. She went on to explain that my urine tested positive for a sleeping drug that is given to patients with insomnia, ‘it's a medical drug, it would have had to have been prescribed to someone’, she looked up under her glasses and asked, ‘are you familiar with this drug’. ‘No’ I whispered. I could feel the lump in my throat harden, my eyes scalding as my vision became blurry from the tears forming. 'All we need now is a name' she placed a ballpoint pen in my hand and a sheet of paper that she had written some notes on, I slid the pen between my index and middle finger and began to write 'Brendan RyanRamsgrange. I read the sentence aloud; I peered up at her as she grabbed my hand and explained that I had done the right thing. The lump in my throat stopped thumping, as it slid down my neck, and I finally felt relief.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Submitted: February 17, 2021

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