miércoles, 6 de mayo de 2015

Una pregunta en un día normal

A veces te sientes en el camino correcto, te sientes satisfecho, no sientes presión hacía el futuro, vives sin miedo, te sientes feliz de estar donde estás, en el aquí y en el ahora. Pero al día siguiente puedes sentir todo lo contrario, dudas tus decisiones, te preguntas si estás en el lugar correcto, si estás haciendo todo lo que puedes, si algún día te sentirás completo. Otros días estás en medio de los dos polos, donde nada más flotas, donde crees que nada te importa, donde dejas que las cosas sigan su curso naturalmente, donde no eres más que un elemento más de este mundo y no te importa ser esencial, es lo que es.
¿Acaso esto es un rasgo natural del ser humano? O tiene que ver con la edad. ¿Será por la generación a la que pertenezco? O tal vez es por dónde nací y crecí. O, finalmente, es porque soy yo, y tiene que ver conmigo misma.

- C.L.S.A

sábado, 26 de julio de 2014

Sometimes I highlight

Sometimes I read on my Kindle and sometimes (when I don't forget I’m actually on a device that can do this) I highlight some words that make a lot of sense to me. Today I thought I would share this... just because.

The Geography Of You And Me by Jennifer E. Smith

"The map was as good as a door swinging shut. And the geography of the thing—the geography of them—was completely and hopelessly wrong".

"That was the thing about books, she was realizing; they could take you somewhere else entirely, it was true. But it wasn’t the same thing as actually going there yourself".

If I Stay by Gayle Forman

"I don’t know if once you die you remember things that happened to you when you were alive. It makes a certain logical sense that you wouldn’t. That being dead will feel like before you were born, which is to say, a whole lot of nothingness".

Sisterhood Everlasting (Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants) by Ann Brashares

"She knew that when she got old it would be more fun to look back on a life of romance and adventure than a life of quiet habits. But looking back was easy. It was the doing that was painful".

"Because she was raw and uncertain, and she liked to keep all the messy parts of herself to herself".

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

"It’s a very difficult era in which to be a person, just a real, actual person, instead of a collection of personality traits selected from an endless automat of characters".

Forgive Me, Leonard Peacock by Matthew Quick

"How to Live Blindly in a Blind World 101".

"Did that ever happen to you? You think someone is really important and different, but then you get to know them and it ruins everything? Do you know what I’m talking about?”.

"Did you ever think about all of the nights you lived through and can’t remember at all? The ones that were so mundane your brain just didn’t bother to record them. Hundreds, maybe thousands of nights come and go without being preserved by our memory. Does that ever freak you out? Like maybe your mind recorded all the wrong nights?".

Going Bovine by Libba Bray

"Zero, my favorite number. As in zero expectations, zero disappointments".

Severed Heads, Broken Hearts by Robyn Schneider

"Oscar Wilde once said that to live is the rarest thing in the world, because most people just exist, and that’s all. I don’t know if he’s right, but I do know that I spent a long time existing, and now, I intend to live".

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

"I’m scared of everything. And I’m crazy. Like maybe you think I’m a little crazy, but I only ever let people see the tip of my crazy iceberg. Underneath this veneer of slightly crazy and socially inept, I’m a complete disaster".

"God, she wanted to tackle him and roll around in him like a cat in a field of daisies".

"Sometimes writing is running downhill, your fingers jerking behind you on the keyboard the way your legs do when they can’t quite keep up with gravity".

Invisibility by Andrea Cremer, David Levithan

"The lies we tell ourselves are the worst ones".

Every Day by David Levithan

"When no one else is around, we open ourselves to the quieter astonishments that enormity can offer".

Looking for Alaska by John Green

“You spend your whole life stuck in the labyrinth, thinking about how you’ll escape it one day, and how awesome it will be, and imagining that future keeps you going, but you never do it. You just use the future to escape the present".

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

"(Off topic, but: What a slut time is. She screws everybody.)".

"The dead are visible only in the terrible lidless eye of memory".

"We drank from paper Winnie-the-Pooh cups".

Beautiful Redemption (Book 4) (Beautiful Creatures) by Kami Garcia, Margaret Stohl

"There are lots of things we choose not to see. Doesn’t mean they aren’t there, even if we wish they weren’t".

Ender's Game (The Ender Quintet Book 1) by Orson Scott Card

"Perhaps it’s impossible to wear an identity without becoming what you pretend to be".

If only I could remember to highlight on my paperbacks. 


viernes, 11 de abril de 2014

While It Is Dark Outside (Chapter four and last one).

Chapter four: Lost and found. 

(To read chapter one, two and three, just scroll down).

"Jamie, Im so sorry" I say to her. I try to approach her, but she flinches, she can't look me in the eyes.
"I don't know what happened, I was dreaming, having a nightmare". Jamie doesn't even look up, she just turns and locks herself in the bathroom. I can hear her crying inside.

I just sit in the bed, completely shocked about what just happened. What the hell just happened? It all looked so real, it felt real, every part of it. The pain. I stare at my arms, trying to find a trace of an injury, but there is nothing, just muscle and skin. I clutch my hands into fists and hit the mattress with all the force that I have. It does not make me feel any better.

I thought I could escape it. Deal with it. Learn to live with my sickness. I had a routine. It worked, well, I thought it did. I guess you can't run away from something that is always there, haunting you, eating you alive.

I try to retrace my steps, I am more than confused, I don't know what is real and what is not. Am I even here right now? How could I know. Not being able to trust your own brain, for it to not be able to show you what you are trying to see, to not be able to trust your own memories, what you think is your life, what made you who you are. It all wells up into a excruciatingly pain that takes me full force. What am I supposed to do?

There is a click in the bathroom door. Light pours out and I focus on Jamie's face. Her eyes are puffy, her hair is a complete mess. There is a big rip in her t-shirt. Did I do that? How much did I hurt her? I can't figure our her expression. It feels like something I have seen before, and something that I don't wanna see ever again. Disappointment. Pain. Unhappiness. Me, hurting her.

"Jaime, has anything like this ever happened before?" I ask her. I am afraid to know the answer. She finally looks up and stares at me. She opens her mouth to say something, but she stops herself. She looks down again and stares at her hands. I get up.
"Jaime, look at me, have I hurt you before?"


"Tell me!" I yell at her.

"Yes. It's not the first time". She slowly walks to the edge of the bed and she sits.
"How many times before?" I ask.
"Too many".
"How bad?".
"Bad enough".

No. How? How could I forget it? How can I not know this? What the hell is going on?

"I need you to tell me everything, right now".

"What do you mean, no. This is my life we are talking about Jaime". I am angry, so angry. I don't know who I am, and what the hell I am doing here? She has the answers, and she won't tell me.

"Jaime, this is my life, I need to know WHAT THE HELL IS GOING ON!".

Jaime starts laughing. It scares me. She look up at me, her eyes are weird. Bigger than usual. She is laughing loudly, not the sweet laugh that I remember. This one is deep and disturbing. Something is not right. Am I dreaming again? Is this real?

"Jaime stop, you are scaring me".

She continues laughing. The whole room shakes with the sound coming out of her mouth.
"Stop!" I hold my hand into my ears, trying to block it away, but the laugh is still here, penetrating my brain.

My heart is pounding in my chest. It feels like its going to explode and I am going to die. I fall into the floor and curl up into a ball. There is a drilling sound, I can't tell where it is coming from, but it hurts me. There is pain in my body, a lot of pain. I can't concentrate. I only feel pain, it is everywhere. It is taking over me.



A beeping sound wakes me up. I can not open my eyes. They feel heavy. I try concentrating in my breathing, I open my mouth, but it hurts. It's so dry.
Beep. Beep. Beep.

I slowly try to come back. I manage to open my eyes. But a light hurts them, so I close them again.
Beep. Beep. Beep.

I open them again. Things start to come into focus. There is a machine. I am in a bed. There are curtains around me. Something clicks in my brain. I am in a hospital. The beeping sound is my heart-rate.

What happened? Nothing makes sense.

Someone opens the curtains. A nurse.
"Mr. Reginton. I see you are awake. How are you feeling?" She asks.

I now see the rest of the room. There is a small table with a vase filled with flowers, but they are dead. There is a window on the right side. It is dark outside. Nighttime. The scariest of times.

"You gave us quite a scare there. You had a heart attack, had to go into surgery, but Dr. Wellington fixed you right up. You are gonna be in pain for a few weeks, and you'll need a lot of recovery time. But are going to be okey".

A heart attack? When did this happen? My arms itch. For the first time I look at them. Something is wrong. Very wrong. They are not the arms I remember. They have wrinkles and spots. They are... they are old.

I start to panic. I lift them and stare at them closely. They are not my arms! They are not! I swallow some saliva and try to speak.
"I... I..."

"Don't try to talk right now honey" The nurse says as she approaches me. "You should rest".
I will not rest, I need to look at myself.

"A... a.... mirror". I manage to say. The nurse stares at me in confusion.
"Please". She hesitates, but then she walks out of my vision, I hear the clicking of her shoes. For a moment I think she ignored me completely. But then I hear coming back.

She holds a small hand mirror.
"Here" she says, as she extends it towards me.

My whole body is shaking, so she helps me hold it. I close my eyes. And then I open them. An old man is staring back at me. A very old man. He has no hair. His eyes are swollen and his skin is almost transparent and full of wrinkles. I do not know him. Who is he? Who am I?

Everything comes crashing at once. My breathing is hard. The nurse tries to take to mirror out of my hand but I hold on to it with all that I have. This old man's eyes are panicked. He is scared. And in them I see a flicker of recognition. They seen familiar. They are my eyes. I am me. I am the old man.

I am lost, but at the same time, I am found. Nothing makes sense. But seeing my reflexion makes me almost remember something. I can't grasp it, but I can feel it. I've been sick, I've been lost inside myself. But now, now I know. This is me.

And I know that soon there will be nothing left of me. I will be gone again. And I hope, I really hope, that the next time that happens, soon, I will be gone forever.

The End. 

Hope it wasn't too depressing. 

sábado, 22 de febrero de 2014

While it is dark outside (Chapter Three)

Chapter three: damaged and incomplete. 

(To read chapter one, and two, just scroll down).

Chaos is everywhere. Jaime is looking at me, waiting for me to react, to do something. To help, to yell, to cry or to crawl into a ball and zone out. Something. Anything. But I just stand there. Taking it all in. Chaos. Chaos. Chaos.

"Thomas?". Her voice is distant.
"We have to help him" I say.
"The man, in that seat". I stare at him, he is unaware of everything around him, he is screaming as he tries to free himself of the pressure of the seatbelt, completely unaware that is he does that, he will fall.

I don't say anything else to Jaime. I just start running toward the plane. I stumble into a body, but I don't stay to look at it, I just continue running until I am in front of the crash. I look up.
"Sir!.... Sir!" I scream. "Stop that". He takes no notice of my voice, he just continues to struggle. "Sir!" I scream again. I look at the broken plane. I can make my way to him, climb trough the broken seats.

"SIR!" Jaime's voice is right behind me, "We are gonna help you, but you have to stay still".
The man hears her voice and stares at us terrified.
"Don't move!" I tell him.

I start to climb, adrenaline pumping my whole body. I'm not sure how I mange to do it. When I finally reach him I manage to stabilize my legs between two seats. I finally look at him closely. He is around 45 years old, he is a handsome man, in a very expensive suit. He sorts of reminds me of my father. The last time I saw him.

"It´s stuck" he says to me. His voice is rough. There is blood in his hands, but I can't figure out where it is coming from. I look at the seatbelt and notice that it is stuck in his own belt. "I can't breathe" he says to me "it's too tight". I have to get him out. Now.

"Ok" I say to him. "You have to try to hold on into this" I say to him and point the seat to his right. "And put your left foot here, so you don't fall when the seatbelt is no longer supporting you, ¿ok?".
"I don't think I can do it".
"Yes, you can" I say to him.
"No, I can't. I can't.... I can't feel my legs". He stares at me waiting for some sort of confort from my part, like "oh that's normal", "no, that doesn't mean anything", "I'm sure you will walk again". But I can't.

"Ok, then" I say to him. I asses the situation. I look around me and I see a pink scarf in the seat next to where I stand. I take it, move slowly and put it carefully behind his back.

"Jaime!" I scream.
"Yes" she screams back.
"Do you see a policeman, or firefighter, or anyone that could help us here?"
She looks around her. It isn't until this moment that I notice that something is missing in this hell. A sound. A very common, scary, but at the same time conforming, sound. A siren. An ambulance, the police, someone. There is only screaming.
"I don't see... I can´t, there is just... NO!" She screams.

I sight heavily. Ok.
"So, this is what we are going to do, the moment you are free, I'm going to pull you with this towards me, but I need you to help me, use all the strength you have in your arms so you can reach this seat, and then we will find a way to get you down. Are you in?" I ask.

He just nods. His breathing is slowing down. He is so pale. I can't wait any longer. I wrap the ends of the scarf around my hands.

"The seat belt is stuck to your belt" I say to the man. "Try to release the lock in your belt. Carefully" I say. With trembling hands the man stars to unbuckle his expensive accessory.
"There" he says with relief.
"Now, grab the seat with one arm, and with the other your gonna open the seatbelt. And I'm going to pull you toward me. At the count of three". He grabs the seat, his knuckles are white.

"One, two..." I steady myself for the next move, ready to pull him.
"Three" I say. The seat belt clicks, I pull with all my strength.

I hear Jaime screaming. I look down, still holding the man. And I see something is missing, something very important. His legs. I am holding tightly to the upper body of the man. I stare at his face, searching for something. But he is pale. Not breathing. Gone. Like the rest of his body.

He was cut in two, how did I not notice that? How was he still alive, and breathing... and talking to me? The strength of my arms give up and I release what is left of him. I see him fall, the rest of his body following his other half.  How? How? How? I keep asking myself. How was he cut in two? How was he kept together? How?

I don't want to stay here any longer. Carefully, I start to climb back down. I don't trust my legs and arms to function the way they should. When I am in the ground, I see his body. Jaime is kneeling beside him. Her hands in her face.

I walk towards her.
"We should have waited for help" she says. "You should have waited for help. You killed him".

What? I feel something familiar rising inside of me. "You killed him" she says again.
Anger, that is what is building inside of me. I was trying to help the man. No one was coming. And he was cut in two. How was I supposed to know that?

She stands up. "We should have waited for help!" She screams at me. "It´s all your fault. You let him die!" She slaps me hard.
I feel so angry. Something is taking over me.
"You useless bastard! You are just like your father!" She says and she slaps me again. "You are a mistake! A mistake!"

My arms and hands jump right in front of me, towards her throat. They start choking her. But she is still spitting words filled with venom. I put more pressure and I close my eyes.

"Thomas" she chokes out. "Stop" she says. "I can´t.... breathe". Something hits me in the back. I open my eyes and I see her, below me, her head resting in the pillow. I recognize that pillow, how did we get here? Her lips are turning blue.

We are home. I am home. I release my grip and jump backwards. Jaime starts coughing, filling her lungs with air. I look around me. We are at our room. What just happened?

It hits me. It was dream, I was dreaming. It wasn't real. There was no plane crash. No severed man. It was dream. Except, expect the part where I chocked Jaime. Her hair is in her face, she is touching her throat, her breathing is slowing down.

I was chocking her. I almost killed her.
I. Almost. Killed. Her.

To be continued....


domingo, 2 de febrero de 2014

While It Is Dark Outside (Chapter Two)

Chapter two: laughs and dust. 

You never know how things are going to work out or how people are going to react. You may expect them to do something and then bam!, they surprise you by doing the opposite thing you expected. For example, Jaime and I love chinese food; we eat it at least twice a week. One day I ate the last egg roll, I didn’t even thought about it, I just grabbed it and moved it into my mouth. Jesus Christ, it would seem that that simple action started the apocalypse. Jaime started screaming at me. Why did I do it? Why didn’t I ask her if she wanted the last egg roll? Why did I just assume things? Why was I so selfish? Why didn’t I take her feelings in consideration?  The resulting effect of the egg roll incident was something I did not expect.

After that fight, Jaime moved out. Ok, yes, probably the egg roll wasn’t the real issue, but I guess that simple act brought her over the edge. We were separated for six months and then we found a way to each other again. And let me tell you it was better than the first time. I started being a more considerate man. And she stopped bitching about everything (well, no everything, but she did change significantly).

Here I was, standing in front of my boss. Who is known for being a short temper man. He just sat there, staring at me like I was crazy. I was expecting the blow, the screaming, the “GET OUT OFF MY OFFICE YOU ASSHOLE. YOU ARE FIRED”. Or something like that. But what happened next really surprised me. He started laughing. Really laughing. And I joined him. We laughed for at least 10 minutes. It was ridiculous, every time we tried to stop, we just started all over again. I felt like a little girl, giggling because her BFF farted in her sleep.

Our laughs started to fade away, until by boss stood up and pated me in the back. Actually patted me, like when a coach pats the back of his softball player when he hits a homerun. “You are crazy, Thomas”. He said to me. “I have to go, I have a meeting with the board. Stupid stuck up bunch of people”. He chuckled again. 
“Oh, man, I haven’t laughed like that in years”. He motioned me out of his office and closed the door.
I don’t know how, but I just entered the major leagues. My boss not only patted me in the back, but he talked to me like a friend, with curse words and all. So you see. You never know how things are going to roll out. It seems, that for me, today was my lucky day.

I am happy when I get home. I tell the story to Jaime. Again, laughing like a little girl as I recalled the event. She laughs a little, but when I finish the story she just stares blankly at the wall.

“What’s wrong” I ask.
“Aren’t you a little curious of why did your outrage happened?” she asks. Oh, man, here we go.
“I don’t know Jaime, it just did, does it really matter? I'm having a great day, please don't ruin it” I say, as I get up and walk to the kitchen for a glass of water.  
“It matters, Thomas” she says, still in the couch, her voice small. “That is just not normal behavior”.
“I was tired, that’s it”, I answer as I take a drink from my glass.
“So, you don’t want to talk about it” she says very softly, I can barely hear her.
“Huh?” I say. I did hear what she said; I just like to play stupid. Most men do this in this sort of situation.
“I said, so you don’t want to talk about it” she repeats. She is not going to let this go.
“Not really” I answer.
“Well I do”. Shit.

“Listen” I say, and I approach her carefully. I sit down next to her and I hold her hands. “I know it’s weird, and yes, it probably has something to do with my lack of sleep. But I don’t want to think about it too much. What’s the point? It’s not like I can do something about it.”

Before she can answer a big soaring sounds fills the room. In a matter of seconds it gets louder and louder. Jaime jumps from the couch and stares at me in confusion. She puts her hands in her ears and screams “WHAT IS GOING?” at the top of her lungs.

I don’t know what to do, so I also stand up. Before I can do something else, there is a loud crash. The windows in the condo fly into a million pieces. The world around me shifts and an invisible force throws me into the wall; knocking the air out of me. My ears are ringing, and I cannot move.

Dust blinds me, I try to ajust my world. What used to be the left wall of our apartment is now gone. Jaime is no longer there, next to the couch. I scream her name, but I can’t even hear my own voice. The air is filled with filth. I cough. The ringing starts to diminish. “Jamie” I scream again. I manage to sit up and rest my back into the wall. I stare into my arm. There is a big glass stuck into it. Blood is pouring out. I can’t stand up, so I start to crawl when I see her. She is spread across the floor. I move more quickly until I am by her side.

“Jaime, Jaime” I say, desperately. Her eyes are closed, but I see her chest moving. She is breathing. I place my hand in her hair and she opens her eyes. She looks disoriented. She finds my face and tries to speak. “Shh” I tell her.

I study her body in search for wounds. I see blood in my left hand and realize that it came from her head. She has a big open wound in the right side. Her hair soaked in blood. She lifts her hand and places it where the wound is. “Ouch” she says.

She tries to move. “No, no, don’t move, baby” I say to her and force her to stay in the ground. I hear screams coming from the outside.
“What happened?” she asks.
“I have no idea I say”. I look up trying to find a reason for this chaos. “I think something must have exploded”.
“I need to sit” she says.
“Ok, gently” I say and help her into a sitting position. She stares at her bloody hands and I can see her panicking.
“Don’t” I say to her. “You are fine, it’s just an external wound. You will be fine”.
She then sees the big glass in my arms. “Thomas, you are bleeding” she says.
“I know”. 

I have to act. “We have to stabilize these wounds” I say to her. “I need the first aid kit”.
“It’s in the bathroom” She says. I have recovered some of my strength, so I manage to get up. I walk slowly into the bathroom. My hip hurts with every step that I take. My breathing is extremely loud. I find the kit and make my way back to Jaime. She is staring at the floor, her eyes lost.

“Here” I say. “Let’s get this cleaned up.” I open the kit and examine her wound. Thank god, it actually is only superficial. I pour some alcohol into a cotton. “I’m sorry, this is going to hurt”. She just nods. I start cleaning the wound. She flinches. I know this is hurting her more that she is letting me know. When I finish, I cover the wound with a bandage. When I am done, she sighs in relief.

“Now you” she says. I stare at the glass. “You do it” I tell her. She just nods. She preps a bandage and the alcohol.
“One, two…” she says.
“No, no, don’t count” I tell her. “Just do it”.

She stares at my wound and quickly takes the glass out. I am surprised that it doesn’t hurt that much. But then she immediately pours alcohol in it and I start screaming. She holds my arm, as I try to escape the pain. She cleans the wound and starts to bandage it. My whole arm feels like it’s in fire. When she is done, she looks exhausted.

“Thanks” I tell her.
“We should go outside, see what is going on” I say. I help her on her feet. Her face indicates she is in pain, but she doesn’t say anything. We slowly walk toward the left side of the apartment, where the screaming seems to be coming from. Everything is a mess. The wall is completely gone.

I am not prepared for what I see next. Right outside of our beautiful condo is and airplane. Or what it used to be an airplane. There are people running on the streets. The top of the plane is gone. And I can see the interior. There are people hanging from the seats. Most of them are motionless, parts of their bodies gone, probably dead. There is this guy, squirming in his seat, upside down, trying to free himself.

Could all of this really be happening? My heart is pounding in my chest. I look at Jaime. Her face is blank.

“We have to do something” she says. 

To be continued...
Things don't always go the way you think they will... right?


lunes, 13 de enero de 2014

While It Is Dark Outside (Chapter One)

One: down-down-down.

It is a cold, but sweet night. Jaime is sleeping by my side, her hair falls in front of her face, caressing her plump cheeks, making her features undistinguishable. This, sometimes, scares the crap out of me. It makes me feel confused and lonely. To have this thing, breathing and alive, beside me, that I can’t recognize. Like she can wake at any moment, faceless, a creature of the night, and jump right into my aorta. Bite and tear my skin and leave me to bleed to death. But then, she moves, her face reappears, and I remember who she is and why I love her.

I haven’t been able to sleep through the entire night as long as I remember. Even as a little boy, nightmares would wake me up, or the “meow” of a street cat would rip me of my dreams. Or I would stay up reading under the covers so my parents would not find out I was awake. My mom would make a big drama out of my sleeping patterns. She took me to see a lot of doctors. No one could ever find out what was wrong with me. They prescribed me sleeping pills and anti anxiety drugs. Nothing really worked. At one point of my life, the medical bills where pilling up, so, my mom gave up and decided I could live with my sleeping disorder. That is wasn’t a life and death kind of situation. And it wasn’t, I indeed could live with it. I was functional, to a point. But it wasn’t always easy.

This I do a lot. Reflect on my past, present and future. My issues with life and people. Nighttime is the perfect moment to submerge yourself into your own darkness and ponder upon it. Hell, what else am I supposed to do? Sure, I read, watch TV, eat my sixth meal of the day or work out. But there is only too much you can do with that much free time in your hands.

Sometimes I feel like a vampire. And believe me when I say this. If vampires truly do exist, I pity them. An eternity of this? No, thank you. Sometimes, I really feel like I’m losing my mind. But then, the morning arrives and I feel safe and complete again. This is every day. Imagine that. Yes, you can pity me. I pity myself.

Many people say that freedom is a state of mind, well, I have something to add. Be careful, because when you free your mind completely, you can lose yourself in it and never come back. 

Jamie stirs beside me, which means it is time for me to get up before I wake her. She hates to lose her “beauty sleep”, what girl doesn’t? I carefully remove myself of our bed and walk to the bathroom to splash my face with water. I look at my reflection closely in the mirror. This lost eyes that stare right back at me, and the blackness that surrounds them, will never go away. I carry them with pride, like a war wound, as if I am a survivor. But the truth is that no one really cares if you have sleeping issues. We live in a time where everyone is an “insomniac”, or whatever, but I really doubt that. I mean most people sleep at least 4 to 5 hours a day, and they dare to call themselves “insomniac”. Dude, try sleeping one hour a day, maybe two if you are lucky. And throw in there a 15 minute nap. Yes, it can be done. You can survive this; I am a clear example of it. I am a survivor. 

The sun gently rises and I start to make breakfast for my girl and I, she will be up in about half an hour. I know this because timing things is something I do a lot; obviously, this is another effect of my lack of sleep and free time. Eggs and bacon, and coffee, of course I can’t forget the black liquid that saves my life most days. I guess after all this years of a very close relationship we can call ourselves best friends. Not Jaime and me; coffee and yours truly.

I hear the shower running. Jaime is up; I think it may be a good day for morning shower sex. So I leave the kitchen and join her, making her come before we even manage to speak a word. As she dries herself, she looks up to me and smiles. I love this girl, we don’t even have to talk to make each other happy. 

It’s time to work, work, work. Yes, I am one of those millions of fools who hate their jobs, but do not have the gut to quit. First of all, it’s because of the money. It’s very good money. I can afford a beautiful condo downtown because of this stupid ass job. And second of all, I am really good at my job. Really good. I have managed to upscale myself in my career very easily with my charm (yes, I can be very charming) and my way with words. I can convince, almost, anyone about, almost, anything. 

My boss calls me into his office and starts talking about the new guy. He wants me to state my opinion about him. Is he good? Will he make it here? Bla, bla, bla. I’m not really paying attention. What really caught my eye is this framed picture of his wife and kids he has on his desk. I have spent so many hours just staring at this picture while my boss talks out of his ass. 

He has a very good looking family. All of them are very neat. Clean. Blonde. With fake smiles plastered in their faces. Sometimes this faces sooth me. They make me feel like someday I may achieve something and be able to have that fake family. It makes me feel like a normal guy. I imagine myself 50 years old, with a hot wife (that is secretly cheating on me) and my “perfect” teen children (who secretly do drugs and sleep around with everyone so they can establish themselves as teen royalty). And me, very well dressed, with perfect grey hair, coming home after cheating on my wife and kissing her in the mouth good night without any regret. Isn’t that your normal family? It may be twisted, but it’s something to look forward to. I aspire to that normal, but very dysfunctional, life.

But sometimes, sometimes that stupid frame and stupid picture makes me so angry. Why are they smiling? It’s fake. Like everything in this messed up world. Fake, fake, fake. The anger starts to build up on me; I take several short breaths to contain it. Mostly I can, but today, something inside of me is firing up. Burning. 

Before I know what I’m doing, I’m standing up. My boss looks at me puzzled and says: "Are you ok?, we are not done yet" And for some bizarre reason that brings me over the edge. I take his stupid frame and I throw it trough the crack in the window. I see it fall down-down-down, 24 floors. I can’t hear when it finally crashes at the bottom. For a moment I hope it fell right into someone’s head and left him bleeding with a terrifying open wound. 

I turn and see my boss staring at me, mouth wide open. Shit. What did I just do? I give him my best apologetic smile. "Sorry. It had a bee". 

To be continued...


sábado, 11 de enero de 2014

Millcient’s fault

One: rape, secondary characters and pointy sticks.

I wish I was smarter. Oh, God, I really, really wish I was smarter, especially on a day like this. Nothing is going the way I wanted it to go. How could I predict this outcome? It does not make sense. It's crazy. My brain is working as fast as it can trying to find a way out of this situation that I managed to get myself into.

Why did I have to be so stubborn and, again, stupid? I am hiding behind a big tree, but they will find me, and then I will be dead. Damn it. Breathe, just breathe.

All I can do is think back to where it all started. The day I saw Millie for the first time. 

You would think that a girl with the name Millicent would be a well behaved, A+, polo shirt and skirt girl. But oh no, Millie was a fire starter, D-, ripped jeans and combat boots girl.

I knew she was trouble, but you know how girls always say that they love bad boys and they always choose the wrong ones; well, I guess I might be a girl in that department because I sort of like bad girls, specially because I am not a bad boy. I am a nerd who tries a LOT to be cool, so sometimes I might look cool, but at the end of the day I am nerdish and probably will never really fit into a specific category of a teenager.

I was hanging out in the woods when I heard footsteps right behind me, I tensed my grip on the branch I was using just a few seconds before as a “pretend sword”. I usually hang alone in the woods because no one wants to hang there, probably because its a creepy place and 10 years ago a girl got raped and killed there. I like the woods because I like trees and silence, and usually when I am there I try to forget that an innocent girl was beaten to death, because it’s not a nice thing to remember.

So of course I was surprised when I heard that someone else was there with me. I almost peed myself when I cautiously turned, and made a weird strike-swing with the branch, and saw cute girl, with the small flaw of wearing a lot of eyeliner, standing there and staring at me. I recognized her face from school.

I didn’t know her name, because I was a senior and she was a junior, and she always hanged with the “wrong crowd”.

“What the hell!” I screamed at her. “You should know better that to sneak on people, I could have killed you”.
“What, you? Kill me, with a branch? Pleaaase” she said with a clear tone of sarcasm in her voice. “So, what are you doing at the woods all by yourself?”
“Me?” I answered with a question, a really stupid one since she was clearly talking to me, the only person around for miles.
She just rolled her eyes.
“I just like to hang here, its quiet, and nice.”
“Aren’t you scared that you are going to get killed?, I mean they never found the killer of that poor girl” she said with a cryptic voice.
“Neh” I answered truthfully “that was a looong time ago”.
“Yeah, you are right” she said. She started walking in my direction, and without my permission, or any indication of what she was going to do, she kissed me. And when I mean she kissed me, I mean she really kissed me, with all the heat of her body and soul.

In that moment I could not think, or move, or breathe, it was all too weird and incredible. And then she just stopped kissing me and moved away. I just stood there watching like a moron with my mouth still opened.

“That was good” she said.
“Yes” I answered, and finally awkwardly moved.
“You are Josh, right?”
“How do you know my name?”
“I just do, I’m Millie, Millicent, well it was nice meeting you, see ya’ ”

And with that, the girl turned around and left me with a wet mouth, a boner and a branch-sword in my hand. Millicent. That firecracker, tease of a girl.

That kept on happening. I would encounter Millie out in the woods and we would kiss and talk, but mostly kiss. When we would meet on school grounds she would barley look at me, she passed me by in the corridors surrounded by her heavy eyeliner group of friends and she would crack a small, a barley visible smile if she “accidently” brushed her shoulder against mine. But that was it.

One day I decided to confront her about this situation. We were kissing and we stopped for a second to catch our breaths. That was when I took my chance.

“Millie, so why do you ignore me in school?”
“What do you mean?” she said while she placed her sweaty hand on top of mine.
“You know what I mean”.
“I though we were on the same page”
“And what page is that?” I asked, afraid of the answer, because I kind of already knew what she was going to say.
“The page where we are just secondary characters in our stories, we meet up here, we learn about our hormones, we explore our mouths and bodies but we don’t have anything serious, we soon will just be a memory for the other. I will be that girl you used to fuck in the woods and you will be the guy that had a boner every time I kissed him”.

I swallowed. That was way too much information for just one conversation. Did she say fuck? Was she going to let me have sex with her? When? And how could she know about my private parts getting overly excited?, I mean sure, she noticed a couple of times, but not everyone one of them. Did she?

“So” Millie said interrupting my train of thought, “We are on the same page, right?”
“Yes, yes” I said. And quickly started kissing her again, because:
1. I wanted to end this embarrassing moment .
2. I was extra horny because she said she would have sex with me.

And she did let me, that very same day I had sex for the second time in my life, while being surrounded by crunching leaves, pointy sticks, countless bugs and, probably, the ghost of a raped and murdered girl.

After having sex with Millicent I realized that I was not okay with the page she wanted us to be at. I didn’t want to be a secondary character in her story, because she was clearly not one in mine. So that is how I started my plan, which I called ‘The plan were I get Millie to fall in love with me’.

I must admit it was an ill-advised plan, especially since now I am hiding in the woods, waiting for a terrible outcome of my well-being. Anyway, back to the plan. If I was going to win the love of my dear girl I need to be everything she wanted a man (her man) to be.

Two: split personalities and wishes.

The worst thing about not getting what you want is... actually, not getting what you want. Have you ever wanted something so much that the more it drifts away the more you hold on to it? My relationship with the infamous Millicent was exactly like that. The more I tried, the more I felt like I was losing her. At some moment I knew that I was probably holding on too tight and that she was hating me for it, but I couldn't stop myself, I was a man (well, boy) with a plan, a purpose, a goal, and I just couldn't give up. I tried almost everything, I wanted to become the guy she wanted.

I am about to list the different personalities I tried on to achieve her love: 
1. The romantic: "Oh, Millie, your eyes shine like the moon". "Oh, Millie, your hair is softer than threads made my magic fairies". "Oh, Millie, your perfect round breasts move beautifully when your are on top of me". 
2. The best friend: "So tell me, how was your day?". "Are you still mad at your parents after they grounded you when they found your bong?". "Is Stephanie still dating Paul?". "Do you need help for your math homework?".
3. The bastard: "Just sit down, shut up and take off your shirt". "You better apologize for that, now". "That was a stupid thing to say". "Geez, don't be such a girl, just blow me and let's go".
4. The indifferent dude: "Aha". "Yeah". "Sure." "Whatever." 
5. The admiring fan: "You look amazing today". "That thing you did with your tongue was un-fucking-belivable." "You should wear your hair down more often, you look very hot".

Yes, I know, how lame. Why couldn't I just be myself? Well, my real self wasn't that much interesting, and to be totally honest I was very good at playing different roles, sometimes I even thought I could become the person I was playing. But in the end, none of them worked. 

After 3 months of our regular meetings on the forest for sex and my ongoing staged charades, Millie have had enough.

"Im done, Josh" she said while she put one her black shirt. 
"What do you mean?" I asked stupidly. 
"With you, I mean what the hell! Do you have like split personalities?, one day your are sweet and the next you are a douche-bag and the next week you are caring and involved. I just don't get you."

I was stunned, I really thought this would work. I mean, I thought that I would get a reaction from her with one of my "personalities" as she called them, and then I would choose that and stick to it until she fell in love with me. But the thing was that she just acted the same, the unattached, just here for sex Millicent. I felt betrayed, well, cheated, because I wasn't done with my experiment, I had to find out what she liked to achieve what I wanted. I had to. 

"I.... I", I wasn't able to finish the sentence because Millie was done getting dressed and just like that she left. I could hear the leaves crushing as she walked away from me, I could hear the intensity of my breathing as I tried, and failed, to say something, call after her. Apologize. Just stop her. I wanted her here with me.

And then I just sat there in the woods waiting for Millie to come back, it wasn't until it started to get dark that I realized that she probably wasn't coming back, but I still didn't leave. It was getting cold so I took the blanket we used to fuck on and I made a little cocoon for myself.

The night animals started to come out and make creepy noises, I couldn't see ahead of me, the only light came from the moon and stars. I wanted to move, but I couldn't, I was strangely comfortable.
A crack noise made me jump. I suddenly felt like I was being watched by someone or something. Goosebumps spread all over my arms and spine. And it was at that moment that I realized that it was probably not a good idea to be at the forest at night, I was about to get up and leave when a sweet girlish voice came from behind me.

I quickly stood up and turned. Right there in front of me was girl. She looked around 15 or 16, she had blonde hair, blue eyes and she was the palest person I had ever laid my eyes on.
"Hi" I answered back.
She moved her head slightly to the right and she analyzed me.
"What are you doing here?" she asked, as she took some steps toward me. Her big blue eyes looked scared.
"I don't know, just hanging I guess." I took a step back, it wasn't a conscious thing to do I just didn't want my personal space invaded by the pale girl. She looked a little offended.
"I'm Cara".
"Nice to meet you, Josh."
"Nice to meet you, Cara."

Her shoulders relaxed. "Are you lost?" she asked.
"I don't think so, I mean, I'm sure I can make my way back just fine."
"The forest is a dangerous place, you shouldn't be here alone at night."
"Well, then you also shouldn't be here alone." I said to her while I picked up the blanket that had fallen to the ground and wrapped it around myself again.
"Yeah." She answered in a patronizing kind of way.
"The truth is, I am waiting for someone."
"For who?", she asked, her eyes opened up a little bit more, like she was again taking an interest in me.
"A girl."
"A girl?"
"Yes, Millie"
"Are you just going to repeat everything I say?" I asked, slightly irritated.
"Sorry" she said, staring at her hands embarrassed. "So, do you love this girl?".
"I do" I said, surprising myself a little by how quickly I answered.
"That is nice. Does she love you back?".
I took a deep breath. There it was, the big question. Do the girl you love loves you back?
"I don't think she does" I said. She looked sad when I said this. She sighted.
"I know how that feels". She started to walk around me, while staring at her feet.
"I could help you, you know". She said after a while.

"Really?, how?"
"I could grant you a wish".
"A wish, what are you, a genie?" I answered sarcastically. All of this seemed ridiculous. What was I doing talking in the middle of the forest, at the middle of the night, to this creepy bambi-eyes girl?
She laughed, "A genie?, nah, Im just a ghost."

I gulped, a ghost? The goosebumps came back. A GHOST? This was freaking me out. She looked at me and must have seen the terror in my eyes because she smiled, a sweet calming smile.
"Don't freak out, Im not and evil ghost".
"Are you playing with me?" I asked. "I mean, this just cant be true, either I fell asleep and I'm dreaming or you are just fucking with me."
"I'm not" she said, reassuringly. She then approached me, she extended her hand to me. "Here, touch me."
"What?" I asked, freaking out.
"Touch me." She said calmly.
I moved my hand slowly into hers. Puff. Nothing. My hand didn't find hers, it just went trough like air. No. This can't be. I did it again. The same thing happened. She was here, but she was not there. I couldn't touch her. She was a ghost, alright.

"See" she said as she looked right into my eyes.
My mouth felt dry, "So you are a ghost" I said.
"I think we just established that", she answered as she backed away from me.
"So do you want your wish or what?"

Wait a minute, I needed to think. I was pretty sure that if this was really happening I shouldn't be accepting wishes, o whatever, from a ghost. She probably was the ghost of the girl that was raped and murdered, it all sounded extra creepy to me. I was trying to remember the name of the dead-raped girl, was it Cara? I really had no idea. I should take more notice in the gossip of our town. Was it possible that this poor lost soul was willingly trying to help me in my love life?

And then Millie crossed my mind. I had tried everything and nothing had worked. I wanted Millicent to love me. And here, right in front of me, I had the possibility of making that happen. Sure, I mean, it was being offered by a girl, who was a ghost, but still.

"Ok". I said "I want a wish."

Three: getting what you want. 

"You have to say it out loud".
"Ok, just give me a second." I think about what I am about to say, I mean I don't want to screw up, if I get it wrong then I don't think I´ll have a second chance.
"Im ready."
"Go ahead. Say it".
I licked my lips, they tasted salty. "I want Millicent to love me."
Cara closed her eyes, and a second later she opened them again.
"Just like that?" I asked surprised.
"How can I know it's true."
"Well, you will know soon enough."
Can all of this really be happening?, I mean really. Cara and I just stand there awkwardly, I don't know what's the next move. Should I leave, make small talk, ask her how she died, ask her is she was murdered and most important: who killed her? While I am mulling this over, she moves.
"Well, thats my cue. Good bye, Josh". She turned to leave.
"Wait" I yelled.
"Yes?" she asked turing again to face me.
"That is it?"
"Yeah, you only get one wish, don't over do it".
"No. What I meant is, will I ever see you again?" I ask.
"We will see. Bye."

And she was gone. Drifting away into the heart of the forest. My new ghost-sort of genie-pale-girl friend. I shivered and started my way back home. Hoping I wouldn't encounter another ghost.

The next morning I woke up in a haze. Knowing that what happened the night before hadn't been a dream. My muddy shoes, the wrinkled blanket, my still salty lips and my good memory were proof that I was indeed late at night in the forest with Cara.

I proceeded to perform my morning rituals and make my way to school. I wandered the halls looking for her, I need to know if it had worked. And then I saw her, walking beside Stephanie giggling about something, I wished I knew what. She let her eyes wander into the crowded halls and then then she saw me. Her eyes lighted up. She started running towards me. When she finally met up with me she jumped and embraced me screaming in a high pitchy voice "Baaabbbbbyyyyyyy". And she proceeded to kiss me eagerly in front of everyone.

"I missed you" she said, again, her voice a few decibels higher than her normal voice.
"I dreamt of you all night, and when I woke up I thought of you all morning, and here you are".
She started pinching my cheeks like a crazy aunt meeting her nephew for the first time.

In all the haze and shock all I managed to say is "Millicent". A flash of confusion crossed her face.
"Millicent?" she asked, "Are you mad at me baby boo?, why are you saying my name like that?"
"Im not mad" I said. In fact I am the opposite of mad, I am ecstatic. It had worked! Millie loved me!
"You are acting weird" she said "Are you breaking up with me? Oh my God!"
People started to turn and look at our direction because of the unnecessary drama she was creating.
"No, no, baby" I said tentatively. "Everything is fine". She looked unsure.
"Look at me" I said. "I love you".
She smiled. "Oh, Joshy, I love you too." We kissed. It felt fucking awesome.

And so the roller-coaster of Joshua and Millicent as an official loving couple began. I feel happy. Millie wanted to be with me. We spend almost every waking hour together. We kissed a lot, and we made love a lot (you see, when you love someone, and that someone loves you back, you don't just fuck, you make love), we laughed together and talked. It was great... until it wasn't.

I slowly started to get tired. She was the girl I felt in love with, but she wasn't. She was suddenly very girlish and clingy, and dramatic, and in a lot of moments, kind of annoying. I started to get suffocated. Everywhere I turned, there she was. Craving for my attention and if I didn't give it to her, she became this love-hungry-psychotic-gremblin creature.

One day it was too much for me to handle.
"I can't fucking breathe!" I yelled at her on a Monday afternoon after she wants to lie on top of me while we each read our favorite book, A Tale of Two Cities. She said it will bring us much closer.
I pushed her to get of. That was the wrong move. She immediately looked extremely sad. Then she started crying.

"You (sniff) don't (sniff) looooove me anymore (sniff)".
I had little patience for that kind off drama that day. "I do love you, but you are suffocating me, Millie, you need to realize that".
"Nooooo you don't (sniff). You hate me (sniff)". I needed to move, stand up.
"Jesus fucking Christ, stop it". She stared at me blankly, her puffy eyes searching mine for some sort of confront that I couldn't give in that moment.
"I can't do this anymore. I just can't." I said.
"What are you talking about?" she asked.
"You... you... are broken. I'm done. We are done."
She was silent for a couple of minutes. The words "you are broken" lingering in the air. For a moment I wished I could take them back. But I didn't, she was broken, and it was not my job to fix her.

"We are done?"
"Why?" she asked, sniffing and drying her tears on her sweatshirt.
I was silent and waited. She stopped looking at me anymore. She was breathing heavily.
"Im sorry." I managed to say.

She dashed herself off my bed and without saying another word she left the room. And right there I knew the worst thing about getting what you want was actually getting what you want and then realizing it may not be what you wanted at all. I may have been trying to fill a hole inside of myself with Millicent. But I couldn't think about it anymore. It was done. The girl loved me, and I couldn't love her back the way she wanted me to. I knew taking that wish from Cara had been a mistake.

Four: keep your shit together.

The next weeks I felt like a new man, reformed, fresh and strangely happy. I sometimes missed Millie, but not really. I barley saw her at school, and when I did she always staring at me with her puffy eyes and quivering top lip, that look always made me turn the other way. Ick. Clingy girl.

One day I came home to find a letter from, none other than Millicent. I pondered whether to open it, I could just throw it in the trash and forget it ever existed. But the memory of the Millie I used to love, the before-making-wishes-with-a-ghost Millicent, flashed in front of me and I decided to give it a chance.

I opened the envelope to find a wrinkled paper:

Dear Josh;
I now that we are over. I know that you don't love me anymore. I get that. I am slowly trying to fix that part of me that is broken, and I now know how. But to do that, I need closure, to finish our chapter. You owe me that. So let's meet at our old place in the forest. After that, I will leave you alone.
Today, at 5:00pm


Something inside of me told me that I should not go. Why should I summit myself to her drama all over again?, and in the middle of nowhere where I wouldn't be able to hide. To talk to her again would be to face my broken parts and the shitty things that I did all over again. But she was right. I owed her that. I mean, a ghost made her fall in love with me by my request.

I made my way into the forest, walking slowly, making time. I was close to my destination when I heard a loud thrust that made me jump. I couldn't identify where it came from, but it was like nothing I have ever heard before.

I quickened my pace into our fucking place, actually finding conforming that I would be seeing Millicent in a few moments. I saw the clearing of the forest that it was our place and smiled. Where was Millie? I turned behind me and scanned the forest for any sign of her. And that is where I saw the floating feet. Her combat boots just hanging there, not touching the ground.

I felt like I had just crossed to border from sane to crazy in just a few seconds. Hanging from the biggest tree was Millicent. With a rope around her neck. Her eyes were opened and it seemed like someone just popped them out of their usual place. There was blood in her mouth, her tongue caught between those lips I used to kiss. She was slowly spinning form side to side. For the first time I noticed the cuts in her arms. Have they always been there?

As soon as I hit the ground, my knees buckled under me I realized I was not breathing. The air started to quickly fill me, just as the adrenaline did. I crawled my way away from her body. Scary sobs were escaping my mouth. My vision was blurry from my tears.

I crawled and crawled, and then managed to get up and started running. I ran until my legs were hurting and my lungs were screaming for air. I stopped and hugged a tree. Everything I ate in the day came pouring out of my mouth.

I don't know how much time passed until I was able to breathe normally again. I couldn't stop seeing her face, her beautiful face, in that moment, deformed by death. Why, Millie? Why would you do that?

"Hello", a familiar voice said behind me. I jumped and fell into the floor. I closed my eyes. I was scared as hell.
"Josh? Are you ok? Its Cara", she said.
I started screaming and crying more and more. She waited patiently until I was done.

"Are you crying because of Millie?" At the sound of her name my heart jumped, and I stared right into Cara's eyes.
"Did you see her?" I asked.
"Oh yes", said Cara. "I was her. I helped her. She really wanted to go. I told her that death was peaceful. That life was so much more painful than death". She said all of this as if she was just talking about making a sandwich, not caring at all what her words were doing to me.

"YOU DID WHAT?" I screamed. Something inside of me ignited. The fucking dead girl had helped MY, MY Millie kill herself?

"It was the right thing to do Joshy, don't be mad at her". Her voice shocked me and I felt like I was burning, or breaking into a million pieces and I could not do anything to stop it. I was afraid to turn my head because something inside of me knew I was going to see her again. But she would not be the same Millie I remembered. She would be a dead Millie. A ghost Millie.

"Millie is reeeeally nice", Cara said. "I have wanted a friend for such a long time. At first I considered having you as a friend. But I realized that I don't like men. Men are evil and vicious and bad things always happen when you are around them".

"Turn around Joshy, I want you to see me". Millie said. I couldn't turn. So I gathered as much air as I could and I started running.

I don't know for how long I ran, minutes, hours. Now I am at a place I can't recognize. I can't run anymore, I am scared shitless. And I am hiding behind a tree. It is stupid to think that two ghosts can't catch up with me. They will. And I am almost sure I will die. I realize now that it was all Millicent's fault. She didn't love me back, so I had to make her love me back and all this mess started with her. Yes. She was guilty.

Ok. maybe not all that guilty, I mean, I was an ass. I treated like shit after she fell in love with me. Just like she treated me before, when the roles where reversed. Damn it. I can hear them now. Are they serious? Are they fucking singing?

They are. They are humming a song I can't identify. Millie was always a good singer and Cara's sweet voice blends perfectly with hers. But this is not a nice thing to hear, it is extremely scary. They must think this is very funny. They know what they are doing. I can't just wait here for them to find me and do... whatever the hell they planned to do. I must act.

Five: we were all going direct to heaven, we were all going direct the other way.

I come out of my hiding place, my legs made of jell-O. They are a few feet away from me. I can see Millie clearly. She looks beautiful, death suits her. They turn to look at me and start walking (or are they floating... whatever) to me.

"There you are" Millie says. "Why did you run?, we just wanted to talk to you. Make you understand, not hurt you".
"Well, I don't exactly believe that Millie" I answer, my voice strong.
"Well, Mills" Cara says to Millie, who apparently now has a new nickname, "I don't think we should lie to him. We may want to hurt him, just a little bit".

Millie stares blankly at Cara. "No, we don't" she says with determination.
"What do you mean?" Cara says, her voice tense.
"I don't want to hurt him Cara, I love him".
"No you don't". Cara snaps.
"But I do".
"You don't. I made you love him. It's not real. He hurt you. He manipulated you. He broke you". Cara says, her teeth clenched.
I am following the conversation as if my life depends on it, which I guess it does.

"I loved him from the beginning, before your magic tricks, or whatever that was. I just was too stubborn to accept it. All you did was open my defenses. Let me feel what I wanted to feel, to not be afraid. You made me vulnerable. And I thank you for that, because even though it was the worst time of my life, it was also the best time of my life".

"It was the best of times, it was the worst of times" I whisper. I can't help quoting Dickens. Millie and I were both big fans of A Tale of Two Cities, it was one of the few things we actually had in common, we used to quiz each other about who knew the novel best. I was our thing.

Millie smiled. "Yes. It was." she says.
"Shut it, human" Cara screams at me. "What the hell do you think you are doing, Millicent? I thought we had an agreement".
"I'm sorry Cara, I think you are confused. To me this whole thing was supposed to be a goodbye to Josh. To explain to him why I did what I did. I didn't realize our deal meant we were supposed to hurt him". Millie says patiently.

"I... I... I don't understand" Cara says. "Why would you forgive him? HE DID THIS TO YOU! MEN ARE EVIL. ALL THEY DO IS TAKE. THEY RAPE AND KILL AND DESTROY."

A horrible shrill comes out of Cara's mouth. I cover my ears. She starts to reap chunks of her hair. She scratches her pale face and a black substance starts pouring out. Her eyes turn to me, red and black, full of hate and horror. Another terrifying screams comes out of her and she charges. I see her coming and I think. This is it. This is what I deserve. Here is where I die.

And in a second Millie is standing in front of me. Cara crashes into her. A blue light blinds me. I close my eyes and fall into my back. I am to afraid to open them. I hears thrusts and more screams. Scratching sounds that pierce right into my bones. And then there is just the sound of a very frail whimpering. I open my eyes.

Millie is sitting on the ground, holding Cara in her arms. She is crying and Millie is gently caressing her deformed face as she were a small baby that is falling asleep. I am at an awe, I want to do something, but my body is not responding.

"Let go Cara, let go" Millie whispers to her. Cara stares into Millie's eyes afraid. "It's ok, it's time. There is nothing you can do now. I understand. I am here. You are not alone. You have to let go". And with that, a very faint smile forms into Cara's lips and in a blink of an eye, she is gone.

Millie stays still for a couple of seconds, and then she turns to me.

"Hey" she says.
I have to clear my throat. "Hi" I say back.
"That girl had some big issues" she says, trying to calm the ambiance. I don't think its possible after what I witnessed.
"Yeah" I say.
Millie stands up, walks toward me and then kneels in front of me.

"I wanted you to find me. Because I wanted to explain. For some people... for me, life was too much. It always was, even before I met you, and I just couldn't do it anymore. Ok?

I stare at her. "No, Millie, it is not ok. You should have talked to me. You just don't give up like that. You just don't".
She smiles at me. "Sh, Josh, sh. I made my choice, it's done. I can go now."
"I did this to you, I did it. Oh my God, Millicent, I'm so sorry".
"Yes" she says. "Im not gonna deny you played and important part in this. You broke my heart. But the rest of me was already broken, and you could not fix it. Ever. It was matter of time. That first day we met at the forest, I was planning to hang myself. You just delayed the inevitable and after that put a few more logs into the fire that was already burning".

"No. No. No. There is must be something I can do, anything" I say, tears escaping my eyes.
"Good bye, Josh". She stands up to leave.
"Millie" I scream at her. She turns. "Don't worry, Josh. We will meet again, maybe sooner than what you expect".
And then, Millicent is gone. Not a trace of her to be seen.

It was the stupidest of plans. And now I have to deal with the consequences of my actions. I know now I saw she was broken. I always knew. And I didn't do anything. I was scared, so I fled, I put on my defenses and I pushed her over the cliff. I was only taking care of myself, being selfish, unaware that my decisions and actions can affect others in ways I could not have ever imagined. I am left here. Broken. Aware. Alive.

"It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of light, it was the season of darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to heaven, we were all going direct the other way"-- Charles Dickens.