Breathe Lily. Just Breathe, I tell myself. It’s starting again, the angry words and open disgust. I don’t know what I did this time. I mean, I’m just coming in.
Chuks is a nice guy, he really is. But this temper. I’m just coming in from the salon. I know it’s late but there was nothing I could do. My hairdresser was busy so I had to wait, besides I had called to inform him that I’ll be finished later than I expected.
He’s sitting outside, I nearly do not even notice him there. Just sitting and staring. Fuck. Breathe. I force my mouth open as I mumble words I hope sounds like a greeting and he responds. He doesn’t even comment on how nice my hair looks. I leave him there and go in. I need to wash off the sweat and heat of the day.
As the first drops of water hit me I remember I didn’t bring a change of clothes. “No problem, I’ll just wear his” I think to myself as I proceed to shower and go to bed. The cold water cascading down my body is exactly what I need, that and a painkiller. I dry myself and take his shirt, the mustard one, I like that one and shorts I see lying around. I feel refreshed and decide to watch a movie before sleeping. He is still outside.
I’ve seen this movie before but I really just want something to put me to sleep. I reach for the headset to plug into the laptop but withdraw my hand ; I want to hear when he’s talking to me. I press play and lie back to enjoy the movie. The lead actor is calling his love interest because he’s been in an accident and as he’s struggling to form the words in describing where he is, the door opens and he walks in. Chuks I mean. With a scowl on his face, I wonder silently what he has to scowl about. I’m the one that has been ignored since I walked in.
He starts talking, his voice rising with every sentence. Why did I come back so late? Why did I leave him outside? Why am I using his laptop? Why am I ignoring him? I don’t reply because I know he doesn’t really want answers, I just keep staring at the screen even though I can no longer hear what’s being said.
I’m praying he tires himself out and just go to bed. It happens so fast. He drags the laptop away and slams it shut, just barely missing my hands.
I know he’ll never hit me but his action shakes me enough that I withdraw to a corner on the bed, shielding myself with a pillow. He’s still talking and the jabs are getting meaner, more direct, more hurtful. Tears start to form but I fight them. I’ve given him too much to give him my tears tonight so I stay calm and concentrate on fighting them back. I’m failing so I try to get into the bathroom before they fall, try to buy time to regain my composure.
The force with which I stand, coupled with the smashing headache I’m having pushes me to the ground before I can even stand upright.
He doesn’t let me fall, he catches me just in time and I can’t fight the tears anymore. I cry and shake and cry some more. He’s holding me, trying to comfort me but I just want to get to the bathroom.