Story Time is where I grab a writing prompt and get to work. An exercise in consistency and improving myself. All comments are welcome.
[WP] You are awakened by a knock on the door. You groggily stumble to open it. Standing before you is….yourself. Well, a battleworn, dirty-clothed version, but yourself just the same. The shock seeps into your waking consciousness and you croak out, “How did you find me?”
Heart Break Me pushes past me, barging through my door. “I’m quite literally you. You think I can’t find you when I want to?”
She stumbles into the kitchen, grabbing a bottle of whiskey and proceeding to down the entire thing. I closed the door and leaned my back against it, crossing my arms over my chest. “So. Where have you been, then? It’s been months.”
She places the almost empty bottle down on the island. “Well. You wanted me gone. So, I left. But, if you couldn’t tell, it wasn’t exactly smooth sailing for me. I’m still dealing with all of the…damage our Ex left behind. While you continue on, as if nothing happened. You’re welcome, by the way.”
I could feel my eyebrows raise. “I didn’t ask you to do that.”
She rolls her eyes. “You didn’t exactly stop me, either.” She turns abruptly and opens my fridge.
I sigh. “Of course I wanted you gone. Do you know how painful it was to deal with you? I’d gone my entire life without dealing with you. I thought I’d never have to deal with you. And then, our Ex broke my heart and the next day, you were chilling on my doorstep. What would you have done?”
She pulls out some cheesecake I’d made the night before and proceeds to eat it with her hands. After a moment, she looks up at me with cheesecake all over her mouth. “You think I asked for this? I’m literally a reaction, created by his choice. But let’s be real, if he hadn’t ended it, you would have. And I would have showed up anyway.”
She eats a couple more bites in the most barbaric fashion I’ve ever seen. I try not to barf. “Furthermore, how do you think this is going for me? You’re supposed to deal with me! Fix me up, take me to the gym, meditate with me, try a new hobby with me, something! I’ve been going around, over-venting to friends, drinking up a storm, eating all the junk food, crying, sleeping with random guys. I’ve even done *drugs*! Trying to get over this crap alone. I was never supposed to do it alone, I was supposed to do it with you. The happier, un-scarred, pre-love me. And then, when I show up, you treat me like I’m diseased, stuffing me in your closet with all the other Repressed yous. What did you think I was going to do? Stay locked away?”
She continues tearing into the cheesecake until it’s gone. She grabs some ice cream from the freezer and grabs a spoon to start tearing into that, too. I take a step forward. “You’re going to make yourself sick. And fat. We already need to lose the weight that In Love Me packed on us.”
She scoffs. “Oh yeah? And where’d that bitch go?”
I shrug. “Last I checked, she was at his place. Standing outside his window, yelling up at him that she still loves him. I have been trying to keep her in the closet, too, but she just doesn’t want to stay there. After the denial wore off, she’s just been extremely sad, and it’s really interfering with my vibes.”
She drops the ice cream on the island with a purposeful thud. “Interfering? With your vibes? What the hell are you talking about? You haven’t left this house in a long time. You sit here, replaying old memories, reliving old lies. You really think you’re better than us because you stay here, comfortable. At least me and In Love tried. At least we wanted to try and fix us. What have you done?” She walks over to me, getting all in my face menacingly.
I thought about that. Is she right? Have I been avoiding the outside world while my more emotional and damaged selves run rampant? Have I been lost? Have I lost control? I snap out of it and come back to reality. I take a good long look at her. She’s got mascara-colored tear streaks on her face. Her eyes look sunken, with dark circles under them. Her hair is a mess. She smells. She’s got this look in her eyes of complete despair and sorrow. How did I miss this? Why didn’t I help her?
I look at her, now with sudden passionate resolve. “You’re right. I have been hiding. I didn’t know I was, but I was. I allowed him to keep me trapped in this…place. I shoved both of you in the closet, thinking I was just going to move on, and that was wrong. So, I’m going to fix it.”
I take a deep sigh and stare straight into her eyes. “I am sorry. I am sorry I let things get out of control. I’m sorry I allowed myself to be trapped. I am sorry I didn’t speak louder when In Love was adamant that we could make it work. I’m sorry I didn’t help you when you showed up. I’m sorry I let you embarrass us. I can’t go back in time to fix it, but I can start today to fix it.”
I give her a big warm hug. At first, she resists, but then, she sags into my arms. We both cry. Really hard. When it seems we have cried all the moisture out of our bodies, I grab her hand and lead her to the bathroom. I bathe her. I wash her hair. I wipe her mascara-stained cheeks. I dress her.
“You can’t eat like you have no sense anymore. It is making you feel worse about yourself. We’ve gotta go to the gym instead. I know that sounds like some form of torture, but you will feel amazing after. And, maybe we can start losing the weight In Love us put on?”
Heart Break nods. She looks vulnerable, as if the anger and the fight left her entire body. She’s surrendering. “So. Go to Zumba. Even if it feels weird and you don’t do great, going will make you feel more like me.”
She leaves for the gym and I instantly feel better. I call In Love home. She stumbles in, looking crazy and deranged. “Why’d you call me home? I was just about to convince him that we’re perfect together! That we can make it work!”
She hasn’t been eating. Or sleeping. Or doing anything other than try to win him back. I sigh again. “Let’s sit down on the couch, In Love. We need to talk.”
We sit down and face each other, her expression one of frustration and annoyance. I look at her with complete compassion. “He’s never going to believe that. Not the way things are. You’ve tried so hard, and I love you for it. But it’s time to stop fighting. It’s time to make peace with the fact that he’s not in love with us anymore and he doesn’t want us. And I know it hurts. I know you don’t want to disappear. I know you liked being you. But unfortunately, this is the card we’ve been dealt. And you knew all along that it would come to this.”
She looks at me, first, in shock. Then, in rage. Finally, she settles on defeat. “But…we were good together. We were. I know we could have made it.”
I envelop her into a huge hug. “I know. And you know what? You’re right. You are so right. But it takes two. And he doesn’t agree. And that sucks. But you will get your time again. Maybe multiple times. Maybe in a different way. Most likely with someone else. But for now, you’ve got to fade out.”
She starts to cry. “But I don’t want to leave! I don’t want to give up! Why did he do this to us?”
“We will never know. And we have to be okay with that. Our only job now is to get Heart Break transitioned to Post Heart Break and fade out In Love. And me and Post Heart Break will take it from here. And maybe we will see you again sometime. And me and Post will try to do a better job of making sure you only come back for someone who is worthy. Wouldn’t you like someone who won’t break our hearts? Who is a better fit? So you don’t have to fight so much?”
She looks up at me tearily and nods slowly. “I’d like that a lot. Can you make sure he’s cute? And sweet. And romantic. And puts us first? And wants a future with us, too?”
I nod confidently. “Absolutely. I’ll do much better than that. I’ll make sure he’s way better than our Ex. Way better for us. So when it’s your time to come out, it will be worth it. And maybe you can stay forever the next time. We’re going to learn from this and get better.”
She smiles sadly. “That sounds nice. I think I’m ready to go now. I’m not scared anymore.”
And just like that, she fades away. Heart Break comes back. She’s looking happier, though you can still see what she’s gone through in her eyes. “How was your workout?” I ask.
She flops on the couch next to me. “It was a workout. But you were right. I feel better. You think we can do this? Get over him? Move on?”
I ponder her question carefully. “I didn’t think so when it first happened, but I think so now. We can do it. I have faith in us.”