Purgatory (failed attempt)

He watched her as she descended deep into the fiery pits of hell. She seemed to be lingering there, enjoying the perks. He wondered if she even wanted to be lifted out of the her sad, pathetic existence.

She once told him: "You do realize I am not who I was, or maybe who I am. Something like that. I feel that I am becoming someone else, maybe even a better person."

The next day, she was back there, sucking on the heat and sweat of the flaming abyss that is her life. He wondered if maybe it was all a joke, or maybe she was high at the time. He could no longer detect any seriousness in her voice. She was floating on by as if her existence was in another parallel universe, completely disconnected from the one in which he was living. He retraced the conversation, racking his brain to see if she meant it as a hint. Maybe she wanted to be rescued. He took a sip of his iced water and then shook his head.

"I know that men love the notion of a damsel in distress, but really, it is so cliche," she once told him.

She was not one to play the victim. If she wanted something, she would say it out loud, something he has painstakingly witnessed many times before. Her pursuits were often hurtful to him, and he wished she would be more discrete about it, for his sake, but she never was. The fire that was consuming him alive has now become a dull ache. It felt like an old wound that would only be aggravated by someone hitting him there again. She made sure that the pain never stopped. He often wondered whether she knew how much she tortured him. He had the inclination to believe that she did. Maybe she enjoyed it.

He still hanged on to her despite everything, and often people would ask him why, and he would say, "I don't really know", but he knew. It was those rare moments of clarity; she would get really quite and then just utter a sentence or two. Those sentences were a tiny window into the person inside, the one he knew before. Those moments, for which he lived, continued to inject him with false hope.

Yet, it was time to move on, he reluctantly decided as much.

"I think I am going to leave now," he told her suddenly.
"When will you come back?"
"I am not coming back."

There were silence.

"You finally grew some balls, huh?" she was trying to provoke him, "no more rescue attempts or interventions or whatever? I can live with that."
"You just do what you want. It has always been that way," he mumbled.
He turned around, but before he could walk away, she spoke again.
"What do you want?" she asked. Her voice was the same one she used during those moments of clarity.
He cursed himself.
"I don't want anything. I just think it will be better that way. Each of us can just move on," he explained without turning to face her.
"You want me to be the damsel, so you can be the knight."
"I just can't be a witness to your slow suicide anymore."

Months passed and he began to move on with his life. Things seemed better and life wasn't bleak anymore. He could breathe easier as he slowly forgot the years of agony.

He almost didn't hear the knock on the door.

"This will not be teary-eyed or emotional or whatever the hell they taught you in school," she said as soon as he opened the door.

He remained silent.

"I have been sober for months, and as prim and proper as a British child during the Victorian age."

He said nothing.

"I don't know what I should say or what you want me to say," she blurted out, tapping her foot nervously, "but I think I should apologize, right? I am sorry for being a jerk. It wasn't fair for me to do that. You were good to me, always, and I just ruined it all."

Still, he didn't say a word.

"I guess I came all that way for nothing," she said as she turned around to leave.

He caught her wrist, "wait." She turned to face him, and he let go of her wrist.

"What do you want?" he asked.

I hate this story and I am not going to finish it. It started with some kind of idea about purgatory, but got lost in the way and then I got stuck, and honestly, it just sucks.

Yet, I am still hitting the publish button.

I like to torture people, apparently.


Popular Posts