In the Actual

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Religion and Spirituality  |  House: Booksie Classic
God's grace and forgiveness is abundant and powerful if we choose to look for it. Life is a blessed gift and we should not forget that in our daily lives. God often can use the trauma, pain and guilt in our lives to bring us closer to him if we are willing.

Submitted: February 19, 2012

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Submitted: February 19, 2012

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In the Actual

 

Boom, Boom, Boom, Boom.

The four on the floor bass drum rhythm of the current music track emanated with almost crushing intensity from the dance floor sound system.  A highly synthesized voice begged the same repetitive hypothetical question over the hypnotic tribal drum patterns in the mid-range frequencies….

-Don’t you wanna do it?-

-You know you wanna do it?-

Chastity Williams thought she knew the answer to that question. 

She was dancing with a slightly dangerous looking yet handsome guy she had just met a couple of hours ago.  This had been after her boyfriend named Chuck and she had the biggest blow up yet in their stormy relationship. Chuck had gotten pissed enough to leave her there at the club alone. 

‘So f--k him’ Chastity thought to herself.  She smiled at Danger Boy as she gyrated along with the rest of the crowd.

 

The argument with Chuck had started out innocently enough and then quickly escalated to the point of violent accusatory gestures and extremely explicit expletives. 

The long and the short of it was that she told him she was pregnant again and this time she wasn’t going to get another f--king abortion.  Chuck had called her a whore, a slut and a thousand other nasty names, which was funny to her because she had never slept around on him.

He had actually had the audacity to ask her how this could have happened.  So she had then launched into a very detailed description of the biological processes necessary for a woman to get pregnant.  Chuck hadn’t appreciated her witty narrative as much as she had.

Of course, she had known what buttons to push on him and had done so because…well, because she was pissed that she had wasted her time with a guy who was, so obviously full of shit that he squeaked like 10 pounds of shit in a five pound bag.

She had been scared for a moment, when she thought he was actually going to punch her in the stomach right there and then.  She had however managed to get through to him that, if he did that, life as he knew it was over.  And in the end, Chuck thought the better of it, most likely because Chuck loved himself more than anybody else. So he had proved to her tonight.

‘It’s over bitch’ were Chuck’s last words to her.  Inferring that it was his choice not hers to break up.  She had to laugh when she had heard that come out of his mouth and that was when he almost let loose on her. 

Luckily for her, security had come and suggested to Chuck that now would be an excellent time to call it an evening, or if he so desired he could be deposited out on the sidewalk where he could commence with an intensive inspection of the concrete with his face. 

So with Chuck having departed and no one to take her home, she had decided that she would enjoy one last night out on the town and then she would start taking care of herself and the baby. 

‘f--k Chuck, f--k life, f--k everything’ she thought to herself again. 

The DJ in the corner of the room began mixing into another track.The ethereal sound of small girl’s singing voice was heard suspended above a massively layered soundscape of synthesizers and samples.

‘hold me tight, don’t let me go’

‘I need you now, more than ever before’

Vicious white strobe lighting intertwined with an array of deep blue lasers that swept over the floor through the thick smoky air of the room giving Chastity a moment of vertigo.  She stumbled for a moment and then recovered quickly. 

“Are you OK?” asked Danger Boy as he put one of his hands on her ass to steady her. 

“Yeah, fine.” She said as she quickly moved back far enough out of reach of his probing hand. 

“You wanna get a drink?”  Danger Boy asked.

“Sure, I need to use the little girl’s room.  I’ll meet you over there” she said and pointed to the table where she had been sitting with Chuck.

“No prob, see you in a minute then” he said and walked toward the back where the bar was to get the drinks.

Chastity walked through the throngs of dancers to the ladies room.  Once inside the bathroom she was immediately overcome by the cloying odor of disinfectants mixed with a dozen different exotic perfumes. 

The nausea was overwhelming.  She quickly turned around and clawed open one of the doors of a stall and vomited in the toilet.  She stood arched over the toilet for a few seconds, with her heart pounding against her chest.  Then the smell and sight of her vomit floating in the toilet water caused her to retch again.  This time nothing came up except for a bitter taste of bile. 

As quickly as it had come on, the nausea had passed and she felt better, well maybe not better, but at least she didn’t feel like puking any more.

After flushing the vomit away, she walked up to the front of the bathroom to where the sink basin and mirror was.  She appraised her profile in the mirror.  The baby growing inside of her was unnoticeable as of yet.

As she looked back into her own eyes, she noted how tired she looked.  It had been a long night.  Sleep and rest sounded like a reasonable plan to her. 

‘I’ll have one drink and then it’s time to go home.  Maybe I can get Danger Boy to give me a ride’ she thought to herself.

With that decided she headed back out into the club and made her way through the manic throng of writhing dancers. 

She saw Danger Boy talking to a goth looking brunette sitting at the table next to him.  The brunette had enough metal in her face to set off an airport metal detector from ten feet away.  Her arm was touching Danger Boy’s leg and they were both laughing.  Goth Chick leaned over and kissed him, then Danger Boy handed her Chastity’s drink sitting on the table.

Incredulous but not really surprised, Chastity walked up to the table. Goth Girl looked at her approaching, smiled and moved her arm farther up Danger Boy’s leg. 

Finally Danger Boy realized that Chastity was back at the table.

“Hey, babe.  I met a new friend, maybe we can all party together.” said Danger Boy. 

“First, I’m not your ‘babe’ and secondly, I’m happy to say, my self-esteem is surprisingly way too high for that scenario.  Sorry to ruin your little juvenile fantasy.” said Chastity.

“Hey, you don’t have to be a bitch about it” said Goth Girl.

“Excuse me, Miss Metal Face, but I think that is my drink” said Chastity. She grabbed the drink from Goth Girl’s hand and threw it in Danger Boy’s face.  “Now, you two have a good time tonight.”  Chastity walked away from the table and headed for the front door of the club. 

The security doorman who held the door was the same one who had suggested an early departure for Chuck. 

“You OK, miss?” he asked. 

“Yes… I mean no… I mean…… Thanks, I’m fine.”  Chastity replied. 

“Why don’t I walk you to your car?” said the doorman. 

“Ah well, I would take you up on that if I actually had brought my car.  My boyfriend…I mean my ex-boyfriend drove me here tonight.  He left me here.” She said. 

“Oh, that was that asshole who was bothering you earlier?” he asked. 

“Yeah” she replied. 

“Well, if you don’t mind me saying so, you are better off without that dude.”  He said. 

“I agree, but I am sorry to say it took me this long to figure it out.” She said. 

“You want me to call you a cab?” asked the doorman, reaching for the phone. 

“Nah, that’s OK.  I’ll just walk” she said and reached for the door handle. 

“You shouldn’t be walking alone this late at night. Why don’t I call you a cab?  If money is an issue, I’ll pay for it.  I have a daughter your age and I wouldn’t want her walking this neighborhood in the daytime, but especially at night.”  He said as he was dialing some numbers. 

“That’s very sweet of you, but I’ll just walk.  I can take care of myself.  Thanks anyway.”  She said.  Then she threw open the door and rushed outside onto the sidewalk. 

Outside the air was damp and slightly chilled. She shivered slightly.  She hadn’t planned on walking.  High heels and a short skirt were definitely not optimum walking attire. 

‘Oh, well’ she thought, ‘I may as well get started, forty-six blocks is a long way’

As she walked along, her footsteps echoed and reverberated in strange ways, making it seem as if she was being followed.  Several times she looked over her shoulder, looking to see if she could see anyone behind her. 

About fourteen blocks into her trek, a light misty rain began falling.  At first, the clean fragrance of the newly fallen rain had comforted her and masked the eerie echoes of her footsteps.  Soon, however, the rain had soaked through her clothing to her skin and she began shivering violently.  She realized that this had been a bad idea, but it was too far from the club to turn back.

After ten more blocks she took refuge under a covered alcove from the rain which had gone from light and misty to steady and driving.  Her ankles were raw from the wet shoe leather straps that had chafed angry red marks into her skin.

 A couple of blocks ago, she had realized two very important things.  Her cell phone was dead (damn, she was always forgetting to charge that stupid phone), and she was totally cashless.  The worst part of it was that she hadn’t seen a passing vehicle or another person since she had left the club.  It was like walking in a ghost town. 

‘How can I…..?  Maybe I should?....Maybe it’s best for me to…’

Her thoughts were racing in a thousand different directions at once.  All of a sudden she felt overwhelmed and burst into tears that mixed with the drops of rain on her face.

Her thoughts were interrupted by the noise of vehicle speeding up the street from the direction of the club. She stepped out from the alcove to try to flag it down. 

The vehicle screeched to a stop in front of her, bathing the whole street in an artificial halogen glare.  As the driver’s door opened she intuitively knew that it was Chuck. 

“Hey, I know you are pissed and you have every right to be.  I acted like an asshole tonight.  But I can’t leave you out here alone in the cold and rain. Let me at least run you home.  OK?” said Chuck after getting out of the car. 

“Sure.” Chastity said.  She probably wouldn’t have refused a ride from serial killer at this point.  Her feet were killing her and she was cold and tired. 

 

They had been driving along for a few minutes when Chastity first noticed the gun setting between Chuck’s legs on the seat. 

‘Oh shit’ she thought as her adrenaline surged. 

Almost as if he could read her mind, he turned to her. 

“Ah, so you finally noticed it?” said Chuck. 

“What the f--k are you doing?” she asked. 

“I’m doing what’s best for us, baby” he replied calmly. 

“Look, I’ll get the abortion, whatever you want… just let me go home, OK?” she said. 

“Well, Chastity, it’s like this.  I can’t trust you anymore to make sensible decisions, so I am going to have to take matters in my own hands.  You just sit still and this will all be over soon.” said Chuck. 

He picked up the gun with his right hand and drove with his left.

Chastity felt panic threatening to overwhelm her.  The nausea came again.  She doubled over and retched repeatedly, but nothing came up. 

“Don’t puke in my car, bitch!” said Chuck as reached over with his right hand that held the gun to push her back in her seat. 

Chastity grabbed his right wrist with both hands and slammed his hand down on the dashboard as hard as she could.  The gun went off, making a deafeningly loud boom in the close quarters of the car. 

Chuck lost his grip on the gun and it clattered along the dash. Chastity then took that opportunity to release Chuck’s wrist and sent one of her fists directly into Chuck’s eye. 

He screamed with pain and threw both of his hands to his face, releasing the wheel. His actions caused the car to veer sharply to the left.

Chastity saw that the car was headed directly for a telephone pole on the side of the road.  She tried to correct by pulling sharply on the steering wheel but there was no time.

The car hit the telephone pole still going about forty-five miles an hour. 

Darkness.

 

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Floating up.That’s what it felt like to Chastity.  She couldn’t remember anything about how she had gotten here. Her mind was a blank.  There was only floating, faster and faster to…

‘to where?’ she thought.

‘The Actual’ she heard a voice say.  She couldn’t be sure if it was audible or in her mind. 

Peaceful. Floating. Peaceful.

Then…

Chastity found herself not floating anymore, but walking on a pathway made of crystalline structures.  Deep clear white clean light emanated from the pathway evenly dissipating any shadows.

To her, the light seemed to have an almost fluid like quality.  She moved her arm through the light and felt a slight resistance like how it feels to move your arm underwater, but it was comforting in the way that a mother’s womb must feel to an unborn child.

“Hi.” said a voice from behind, startling her.

Chastity turned to find a beautiful woman standing on the path.  The woman smiled at her. 

“Glad we could finally meet face to face.” said the woman.  “I’ve been waiting for you.”

“I sorry, but I can’t remember who you are.  I can’t remember anything I’m afraid.” said Chastity. 

“I know.” said the woman.  

“Can you tell me your name?  Then maybe I might remember who you are.” asked Chastity. 

“Don’t worry about that.  Names aren’t very important here.” said the woman. 

“Where is here?” asked Chastity. 

“You don’t have a lot of time right now.” the woman replied.“You have to go soon.  Later you will understand.  I just wanted to tell you not worry yourself about me.  I am safe and I love you very much.  We will meet again.  Take care of my sister.  I believe in you.  Please don’t give up.”

The woman turned and started walking away from Chastity.  Chastity tried to follow but she found herself sinking into the pathway and away from the comforting waves of light. 

 

Falling.  Faster.  

 

Light bent around a kaleidoscope of images from Chastity’s memory, blurring faster and faster.  The feeling of vertigo had returned. It was so intense that she thought she might scream.  Maybe she did before she passed into the enveloping darkness. 

 

 

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A feeling of pressure on her chest awakened her to consciousness with a start.  She opened her eyes and stared up at a man who knelt over her. He had his arms straight with his hands clasped together; he kept pushing down on her chest repeatedly.  It hurt like hell.  She wanted to get his attention but he had his head turned and was talking to someone she couldn’t see.

“What about the guy?” said the man above her.

“He didn’t make it.” said a voice she couldn’t see.

“OK, tell them to prep for a severe car crash trauma. Woman in late teens, early twenties with multiple lacerations to the arms and face, severe head trauma….”  He looked down because he thought he felt the victim moving under his hands.  Her eyes were open and blinking.  She was trying to say something to him. 

“She just opened her eyes and is responsive.  Let’s get her stabilized stat and get on the road, she’s lost a lot of blood.” The EMT said.  He looked down at her. “Can you hear me?” he asked.

Chastity nodded and tried to speak but she couldn’t seem to move her mouth.

“Don’t say anything, just relax and we will take care of you.  You’ve been in a car accident and we need to get you to the hospital right away. We are going to lift you onto a stretcher and you are going to feel some pretty intense pain.  I can’t give you any morphine right now because you have lost too much blood.  Do you understand?”

She nodded. 

The waves of pain were coming faster now. The feeling of nausea had returned.  Her vision was greying out and she felt intense cold throughout her whole body as if her very life was draining out on the asphalt, which she supposed it was. 

Just before greyness was about to turn to blackness, Chastity heard a faint voice. 

‘the baby, don’t forget’ the voice said.

‘baby?’  Chastity thought. ‘Whose baby?’

‘don’t forget, take care of my sister’ said the voice stronger this time. 

Suddenly, Chastity’s memory of the night’s events came rushing back to her with full force.  She remembered the fight with Chuck, Danger Boy, Miss Metal Face, the car accident and…

The EMT was finishing trying to secure Chastity to the stretcher for transport when she suddenly grabbed onto his wrist with such force that he was startled for a minute. 

“It’s OK, don’t worry.  Please don’t move.  You’re going to be fine.” said the EMT.

Chastity shook her head back and forth and used her hand to motion him to come closer.  The EMT understood and brought his face down next to hers so he could hear what she was trying to say. 

She mustered her remaining strength to speak. 

“Pregnant. Baby.  Please.” was all that she could manage.

“You’re pregnant?  Is that what you’re trying to tell me?” asked the EMT. 

Chastity nodded and felt the darkness threatening to overtake her consciousness one more time. 

“Call them and tell them that woman coming in from the car accident is pregnant.  We’re going to really have to push it to get her there in time.” said the EMT.

The last thing Chastity remembered before passing out was sensation of pain when the EMT’s lifted her into the ambulance and a faint but understandable voice. 

‘don’t worry, everything is going to be fine’ said the voice. 

The EMT looked down at Chastity and he could have sworn that he saw a ghost of a smile on her face.  When he looked at her vitals he was amazed to see that she had stabilized.

“You must have someone pretty special looking out for both of you up there.” said the EMT and prayed a silent prayer of thanks while the ambulance sped through the streets of the city.


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