Estimated reading time — 5 minutes
“I will not cry.”
That was my silent mantra as I sat, staring straight ahead, doing my best to show no reaction in response to the bitter hatred pouring from their mouths.
This can’t be right. I must be in the wrong place, or wrong time, or something. How can the people who are supposed to love me more than anyone else treat me like this? Do they feel any remorse, any regret, as to what they say and do?
Do they have any idea how much their actions and their “thoughtless rambling” hurts me?
Clearly they don’t.
I blink rapidly, fighting back the little pinpricks of the powerful waterfall behind my eyes as he starts introducing more foul language into his rant about me, about my looks, and my grades.
“God,” I pray silently, turning my gaze slightly upward, “What is the purpose of this, to better myself? You are aware that I strive for improvement daily. So why must I sit here in misery and listen to this?”
Despair and relief poured over me as he dismissed me to my room. I got up, trying not to look too eager, and exited the kitchen.
In my room, I ran into the bathroom and locked the door. I flicked on the lights and fell to my knees in the centre of the cold, tiled floor.
I kneeled; my clenched fists pressing into my thighs, as I felt the brunt of their verbal beating take its toll.
I heard the echoes of their shouts in my head: worthless girl, useless child, brainless creature; the list of insults and obscenities swirled like a whirlpool in my mind.
Minutes passed, and the barrier that was my eyes could no longer hold back the rainstorm that my sadness had brought on.
I looked down at my fists, small, and now leaking thin streams of blood from where my nails had broken through the skin.
The tears started falling, slowly at first, leaving sticky, wet trails down the sides of my cheeks. More and more tears escaped, covering my face in a thin sheet of moisture.
I no longer cared whether or not I held myself together; I no longer held onto the small string of hope that promised a change in my parents.
I no longer believed in God.
I felt my chest heave, and a thunderous, racking sob forced its way out of my body.
I felt my hands fly to my face, my body doubling over in a painful sadness that I had never felt before, probably painting my face red with blood.
Sobs shook my body, and I felt drops of tears and blood dripping down the sides of my hands, absorbing into my shirtsleeves.
I couldn’t see anything through my fingers, so I didn’t notice when the lights flickered and went out in the bathroom.
I didn’t notice when the black fog filled the room to the brim.
I didn’t notice the being behind me until he spoke.
“Sadness is such a powerful emotion, is it not?”
Fear instantly replaced the sorrow in my body. I parted my fingers in front of my eyes, trying to see something, but what met my eyes was blackness.
I didn’t respond to the being, with a deep, silky voice, faintly colored with a European accent.
“Of course it is,” he said, “Look at the effect it has on you.” He paused, and I heard him take a step to my left. “You poor girl, how cruel it was of God to force you into a harsh reality such as this.” He took another step forward.
“You know,” he said, his voice getting louder, yet softer, almost like purring, as he crouched down next to my ear. I could feel his breath, warm and sickly-sweet smelling, against the side of my face. “I can help you escape it all. I can give you everything that you have ever wanted and more. Every answer to every question, all the happiness, freedom, and respect that you deserve, it can be yours. You want that, don’t you?”
I heard the faint sound of fabric rustling, and I felt the brush of his cool, slender fingers against my cheek.
“All you have to do is say ‘yes’.”
I thought to myself, no, I don’t want that. There’s something wrong with this whole situation. This can’t be happening. This being is filling my head with sweet murmurs, empty promises and false hope.
But then again, what if this being, whose words were teeming with my exact thoughts and desires, was speaking the truth? Could it be true? Could this being truly hold everything I’d ever wanted, everything I’d ever needed?
This being knew what I wanted, and they were willing to give it to me.
Inside my head, I was having a fight with myself: my brain telling me to turn him down, and my gut telling me otherwise.
“Yes,” I whispered, my throat still feeling hoarse from the onslaught of tears I had felt moments ago. “That is what I want.”
I heard the sound of fabric shuffling once again as the being moved directly in front of me.
My fingers were still pressed against the front of my face, obscuring my vision. He gently pulled my fingers free from my visage and dropped them, palms down on my thighs. But even so, with nothing blocking my line of sight, I still couldn’t see anything.
In the darkness, even though I couldn’t see a thing, I knew when the he leaned his face close to mine, close enough for the tip of his nose to rest against mine, close enough for him to lower his voice to what was barely a whisper, and still be heard clearly.
“I will make you happier than you could ever imagine,” he says. “You would have never tasted pure, true elation until now, sweet girl.” He pauses, taking my hands in his. I inhale sharply at the contact, the bittersweet flavor of his breath filling my mouth. “But you see, to provide you with my services, I require something, something small, from you; an eye for an eye, if you will.” His voice, it was barely audible, but I still heard the deep, inky tones which it possessed, sending chills over my body.
When I didn’t respond, he continued speaking.
“It’s such a small thing I desire to give you a lifetime full of joy. Surely you would do me this one small favor in return for my gift, won’t you?” I could hear the smile, wide and unhidden, in his voice.
It was because of that smile that I hesitated, and because of my hesitation, he released my hands and took my face in his palms, transmitting waves of fear and adrenaline through my veins.
I heard myself say, “What do you need me to do?”
I couldn’t see it, but I knew he was smiling, wider than he was before.
“I need you to trust me,” he said.
I felt him slide the fingers of his left hand to my right temple, brushing my hair behind my ear, and letting his fingertips fall again to linger against my temple. I felt warmth approach me as he leaned close to my left ear. I heard him laugh, a very breathy, gravelly laugh, and I heard him whisper, in an almost growl-like tone,
“I need you to trust me with your soul.”
I instantly regretted everything that had transpired in the minutes past.
A searing, unbearable pain was tearing through my head from where his fingers were touching my skin.
I didn’t cry out or scream; I wouldn’t let myself give him the satisfaction of doing so.
The edges of the room were starting to blur to a color that was darker than black. I felt myself go limp, losing all control of myself.
Just before my life force, my human soul, exited my body and was consumed by him, I caught a glimpse of two, poisonous maroon eyes, set in a pale, inhumanly handsome face framed with long, black hair, hovering in the darkness in front of me.
I felt my head droop forward, my forehead falling against his chest, as darkness consumed darkness, his arms tightened around my petite frame in a deathly embrace, and the sound of his triumphant laughter echoed through the shadows of the room.
Credit To – Sabrina S.
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