Key

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Other  |  House: Booksie Classic
When her boyfriend leaves Quinn with a key and a promise to come back looking for it, she tries hard to live without him. Although it is hard to live without him, Quinn distracts herself by cutting. But just when she wants to forget him and recover, something happens.

Submitted: November 21, 2010

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Submitted: November 21, 2010

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It is stringed with a bit of blue yarn. The yarn is worn, faded, and the key is tarnished, as if the owner fingered it too much. The key is nestled on her collar among her other jewelry, yet it attracts every eye. It’s an old key, whose origins are unknown. Perhaps it opened a garden shed door. Or maybe it was a key to a secret box hidden under a loose floorboard. She only knows the key in its present form; as the only piece she has left of him.
 
She remembers the day as clearly as if it were yesterday. The weather had fit her mood perfectly – dark and gloomy. She had cried, tears rolling freely down her face. She pressed herself against his back for the last time – memorizing his smile, his laugh, his voice, everything. The noisy bustling of the people surrounding them seemed far away to the girl – in another world. In this world, there was only her and him, together, looking into each other’s eyes.
After many hugs and whispered promises, he reluctantly let her go. The PA system announced his flight, and seconds before crossing the security checkpoint, he took out a key stringed on a piece of bright blue yarn. He pressed it into her hand, whispering, “It’s the key to my heart. Take care of it and keep it safe – I’m leaving it with you. I promise you, one day, I’ll come back looking for it.”
With that, he walked through the security check and into the terminal. She watched his retreating back, and then looked down at the key in her hand, remembering every piece of him.
That was the last time she ever saw him.
 
Now, years later, she looks down at herself and realizes that the key wasn’t the only trinket she had to remind herself of him. Her wrists and arms were marred with scars – short ones, long ones; some faded, some fading away, others clearly fresh and new.
After he had left, she had cried herself to sleep every night, wishing for the day he would be back. She endured more emotional pain than anybody thought possible – on any given day, her eyes would be puffy and red, with dark circles around them because of lack of sleep.
Her life was purposeless; she was like a small lost girl wandering aimlessly about on the streets.
And then it came to her, a silver lining on a storm cloud that didn’t stop raining. She had been home alone, shaving her legs. Suddenly her razor slipped, and a couple drops of blood oozed out. At first she was eager to get a paper towel to press against the cut, but then she gazed at the scratch with fascination. The other pain that had been so prominent in her life just then was insignificant to this new pain. She was amazed at how such little physical pain was capable of blocking so much emotional pain.
And she started cutting.
 
But as she sat in the treatment facility, talking of her scars and vowing never to hurt herself physically again, she realized that a boy isn’t worth so much pain over. Even THE boy.
She sits in the bright and cheery room, but her emotions differ. She fingers the key on the blue yarn, remembering all the memories they had shared together. There were happy memories, sad memories, memories that she regretted. But all of them had one similarity – these memories had caused her pain, grief, and so much more in the past few years.
She knew then that this chapter of her life had ended, that she should turn the page and move on. He was no longer part of his life, nor had he been for a long time. Her face etched with resignation, not happy about her fate, yet knowing that he was gone. She had tried to hold onto fading memories, not realizing that they were slipping out of her grasp until now. It was time for a new chapter to start; to meet new people, to find a new guy, to see new places. And she knew the perfect way to start.
She slipped the blue yarn off her neck. The necklace now was extremely worn. In fact, she was surprised that it hadn’t broken yet. The yarn was even more faded and shabby than before. The key still hung there, precariously, seeming ready to fall off any second. Now that she gazed at the key, she realized bitterly that the key’s situation is much like hers merely a month ago. The yarn was barely holding the key, just like she had barely been holding onto life.
She stroked the necklace one more time and pressed it gently to her lips. Then she dropped it into the trash can. The trash can had been empty, so when the key hit the bottom, a musical sound rang out. It seemed as if the key were singing about its life, the sorrows it had seen its owner endure. She felt bittersweet, but knew that it was the best way for her to move on.
Just then somebody stuck his head in the door.
“Hey Quinn, do you still have that key?”


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