Getting Help

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Literary Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic
just a short story i have been working on in my creative writing class, this is just the opening bit. I plan on continuing it later.

Submitted: November 15, 2011

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Submitted: November 15, 2011

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Crash! The dish flies off the counter, set flying to the floor by the man. It lands and the shards ricochet to different corners of the kitchen.  

“God Joe, see what you do? You’re losing control of yourself!” screams the woman.

She is red in the face, holding back sobs and trembling from a mix of anger and sadness. The man glares at her, gripping a bottle in his hand, and teetering unsteadily on his feet.

“You don’t know what’s going on with me Karen! I’m fine.” His words are slurred, and too loud.

“You need help,” she replies, her eyes red and watery, “if you would just let me--“

“No I don’t! Just leave me alone” he cuts her off, throwing the bottle to the ground in his anger. Its contents spilling onto the floor as it shatters. The sharp smell of alcohol hits their noses, and the woman looks at him with renewed anger.

“You’re being destructive, and not only to yourself. Think of everyone else you’re hurting when you act like this!” She yells with an accusatory tone in her voice, livid at the man before her.

“You changed, you never used to drink. Now look at yourself! What happened?” Her voice cracks a little, showing the sadness underneath her anger.

“Don’t worry about me, just shut up and stay out of it! You don’t want to make me angry.” He comes closer, towering over her, and she can smell the alcohol on his breath.

“Joe, I don’t want to anger you, but you need to change. You need help!”

“No I don’t,” he replies, “I don’t need anything and I certainly don’t need you!”

He stops then, seeming worn out and the room falls into silence for a few moments. The woman looks like he had just slapped her, standing frozen. All at once, every ounce of fight seems to leave her. She slouches, looking defeated.

“Fine, if that’s what you really want, then I’ll just leave” she says, her voice breaking.

She sniffs as she reaches to her left hand, and takes off her ring.  

“You can have this back, I’ll go.” She tries to keep her voice steady, but one tear betrays her.

She holds the ring out to him, but when he doesn’t reach for it she lets it fall. It clatters on the tile floor, the space between them suddenly feeling like a void. He glances down at the ring then back at her. He does not bend to pick it up but grabs another beer from the fridge and walks to the living room. Her composure ends then, and she starts sobbing uncontrollably. Watching him go she wipes her eyes and turns in the opposite direction, walking out the door and away from him.


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