The Stones-Part One

She was a sweet girl. The kind that would love anyone not even worthy. She was loving at some point, but in a dangerous manner. Which resulted in her being preyed upon in her younger years by some of the worst of vultures. An easy target once with her lack of understanding of the world; but now thats changed.

The world has become painfully real. She observes behavior for what it is. That is what is killing her inside now and she knows it. So many vultures in the world, that she aches for a rest. Moments where she could just close her eyes and catch up to the present, by facing a brutal past. She never felt like she had rest. And one night, her need for rest came, but in the strangest of forms.

“Come here.” A voice whispered.

But there was no one there at first. She kept ignoring these voices for months. Thought it was just her depression going through a cycle. Perhaps worsening then later improving. Until he appeared one terrifying day. A man without a face and bag of stones. He left her two stones with eyes painted upon them. She screamed, like any normal person would have.

“Go away! Go away!”

Her mother rushes towards her, shocked at what she is witnessing. Her daughter, cowered in the corner, as if death was upon her.

“Do you see it? That thing with the bag of stones? Do you..?!”

“There’s nothing here. It’s alright… it’s.. hunny!” She calls the father.

“Yes?! What is..”

“Call 911, grab my jacket…our daughter is in trouble! Quickly!”

“But mom, I don’t want to go anywhere. What are they going to do to me?”

“I will be right there with you. Nothing is going to happen to you. We just need to figure out what is going on hunny.”

The ambulance is flying to the hospital as if she has just been in an accident. Her mother is more nervous than she. The empty face man is staring at her in the corner of the ambulance. Just staring, freaking her out silently. She’s afraid to tell her mother how long they have had this secret staring contest. Sometimes she would wake up to him levitating above her.

She knows it must be scary for people who can’t see what she sees. It feels like she is nothing but a burden, with a broken mind. That her alive inside too.

“Almost there hunny. Hang tight.”

“He’s sitting there. He’s calm now.”

“Okay. Good.” Her mom responds, realizing her daughter might have a long term relationship with this thing.

Of course they order scans of her brain, to rule out any possible tumors or other abnormalities. It all comes back negative. The faceless man still finds corners to just sit and stare at her in the meantime. Smiling, still carrying his creepy stones.

Is he admiring me? She thinks. Does he hate me and want me to torture me? I’m so confused. Is this some kind of symbolic breakdown? Is he all the messed up people I have loved? What is he to me? 

All these IV’s are being started again admidst this chaotic mess inside her head. Everytime she is poked with a needle, the faceless man smiles. He seems to enjoy watching her suffer.

What a sick thing?!  She thinks.

Her mother and everyone in the room is looking upon her as if she is some kind of experiment gone wrong. It only adds to the stress, but she doesn’t blame them. This is like living in an alternate reality, only certain people have experienced. She doesn’t even think the devil deserves it, as she watches her tears fall, and the faceless man grin some more.

 

Miss Voiceless Part One

She runs frantically through the aisles, not noticing how frantic she appears to other people. He will probably be waiting for her when she gets back. A shame, since she hardly ever leaves the apartment. A fight will of course ensue; a raging battle, where all her fears come to life. She went to the store: a betrayal of trust in his delusional eyes. This made her stay at home mostly to avoid an argument. She tried everything to avoid an argument.

There was nothing normal about it. She clung to her pillow at night, silently crying, and hoping her would not hear a sound. He hated when she cried. He hated when she laughed, too!  He looked upon her as if she was auctioned off to him, and had no right to feelings. He wanted to control her, not love her. He wanted to brand her emotionally, to keep her in her place. Like a little doll who never spoke.

His words stayed with her most days. He’d leave to work and sometimes without ever saying goodbye. Other times, yelling at her before he left. She tried her best to keep things up, but he never paid attention. It was the one pair of pants she didn’t wash, the natural wearing of utensils, the way she cleaned up after his laziness, etc. Nothing done was seen and all he could see was the negative perception he wanted to.

This was an emotional death trap he started.  She felt never good enough as a result. She neglected herself as a result. She pondered all about his other options, because she felt like one. The opposite of real love; to treat someone as if they are replaceable. But deep down, he was the one truly hurting, but taking that pain out on her.

Fueled by a narcissistic culture, he praised the weak and was disgusted by the strong. He embraced a misogynistic perspective without being aware of it. His echochamber of madness, affected everything and everyone around him. He influenced others, and to her she felt like it was the 1950’s again for women in some ways.

Although she did not mind some aspects of the 50’s culture, she felt some modern men ideally want a woman who: pays half the bills, takes care of any children, takes care of the house, and cooks. This perspective was unfair in her eyes.

Are most men like this deep down inside? Do some clean and cook alongside their partner? I think it’s rare in my own experiences, but I don’t know about anyone else’s experiences. All I know is teamwork is the best method. No one becomes exhausted that way. 

And that was the truth. He initially exhausted her. When she had a job, he wasn’t considerate. He didn’t care if she got any sleep, cleaned without his help, cooked a full meal and did dishes until midnight. He didn’t care she could lose everything if he couldn’t chip in once on awhile. It wasn’t about building something together, but rather what he could build out of her.

It disgusted her. The way he put so much effort into appearing a certain way. He cared so much about his car, his hair, his smile, his money, and his material possessions. He spoke ill of others who did not embrace his same sentiment. He treated people like dollar signs, not humans. Those who had less, made less money, or were in unfortunate situations, did not have his sympathy. He blamed the poor for being poor, and praised the rich for being rich.

She felt like one of them to him: a poor disappointment. She thought if she had more money, he might actually love her. The thought sometimes made her resent herself, then oftentimes him as well.

Even when I almost had it all, he didn’t even notice anything but himself. She thought.

Now more than ever she had seen the situation for what it was: dehumanizing. As she pulled off each petal of a flower, she imagined letting the past go. It had been months, and his insults still were part of her thought processes. She knew it wasn’t going to be as simple to rewire her brain, as it was to pull pedals off of flowers. But she was one of the ones who woke up, rather than lived in a slumber. And those kinds of people have stories to tell, and voices to be heard.

 

 

 

Miss Revived Part 6

The next day at work was gut wrenching.

“Suz! Get I go that pan cleaned up for me as soon as you can!” Her boss said while throwing it into the hours worth of a pile.

I hate my life right now. All I’ve been through and I end up back here, cleaning the filth of society or being a modernized servant. She thought.

“Do you think that’ll wash itself Suz?”

“No boss. I’m sorry.”

Am I a whiner right now? They all look at me oddly when I cannot focus upon mundane tasks because my brain is constantly thinking of philosophical questions without answers. 

Even when Suz thought she wasn’t moving fast enough, she was. The looks she received seemed to be mostly admiration, envy, or nothing deep at all. Suz seemed to think everyone wasn’t on her side until they proved otherwise though. A skeptic of most; a lover of a few worthwhile.

I can’t wait to get out of here. Anything is better than having my hands burning in hot filth dish water. She thinks.

“Good job today.” Her boss said with half the meaning behind it.

“Thanks.” Suz attempted to reply genuinely to the disingenuous tone.

The smell of fresh air ignited her senses like a match to a gas stove. She always would stroll into a nearby park, escaping the busy streets and reminiscing about the way the corn fields smelled. The sounds of birds chirping in the morning and the crickets at night. It all gave her a kind of peace, nothing or nobody could. The park was an escape, her drug compared to everyone else’s usually toxic choice.

“Suz! Suz!” A familiar voice yelled, disturbing her peace.

“I thought that was you!”

“Oh hello Ciera! It has been a long time! How are you?” Suz asked, hoping she wouldn’t ask her too much.

“Same old. Going to college. Parents paid up my apartment for a few months, so just catching up on studies. They seem to think I should have a 3.5 but this was their idea to send me here. I’m just going through the motions to appease them for now. Haha.” Ciera admits.

“Well I guess that’s better than not being in school.”

“I suppose. I’d rather be out working sometimes, but I know they’d give up on me if I dropped out. So feels like I have no choice.” Ciera said while looking depressed.

“You could trade lives with me? Haha! Want to wash dishes and try to go to college? I feel like a crane lifted me and kept dropping me up and down all day. I’ve change in my car, slept on benches, carried 10 hours of classes worth of books. And I don’t even have if it’ll be worth the investment? Haha! All I can do is hope. And hope sometimes isn’t enough.”

“That’s definitely deep Suz. I’m sorry I forgot how much you’ve been the recently, with the hospital and all? I don’t want to upset you by mentioning it but I was worried. Look if you ever need anything, like a night out.. it’s on me. Well, my parents really. Haha! That sounds horrible but I sometimes forget how well I have it. It’d definitely make me feel less selfish to do something nice for someone else. Plus, I can tell you need it more than me.”

“I truthfully don’t know what I need. I don’t think anyone can give me what I need either. I just want to get to a point where I can give and give. It’s so much better for those in this world who have more to give. They have a choice; give or be self absorbed. It is actually quite a powerful one. I hope I can get there someday and be a positive influence. I don’t think anyone can help me but myself Ciera. But, thank you. If anything I need quiet nights. I have a world to compete with. And I’ve taken some steps backwards then forwards, then backwards again.”

“Gotta make up for lost time. I understand. Been there. My parents helped me so much out of troubles, I can’t imagine facing the world without them.” Ciera admits.

“We all have to eventually. We all become similar in the end. All that is known disappears and we must stand alone with what strength we have left. Your parents just want to see you stand, not lie down. Take it as a good thing. Some of us have felt like we walked through life alone since the day we were born.” Suz says with a strange accepting-like tone.

“Never thought of it that way. You really do put things into perspective. What I’ve always adored about you as a friend. You’re a rare friend Suz. Thank for that. I have to run to class or I’d stay.”

“It’s okay. I need to walk off work stress and study myself. I hope I run into you again.”

“I’m sure we will. Bye Suz. I’ve missed your face.”

“Yours as well. Bye.”

 

 

Miss Revived Part 5

“Well we’re done with the park and it’s getting late. What now? Should we find a random pub? Have a couple for old times sake? You really haven’t had a couple in peace. Our first excursion wasn’t the best, thanks to your old friend. Heh.” Cheryl said with a concerned voice.

They enter a local pub around the corner. Mostly full of middle aged workers, having one after a long day. It felt out of place but in a good way to Suz. She wanted to challenge her overwhelming fear of uncomfortable situations.

“You look like you need to talk, so shoot!”

“Truthfully Cheryl, I don’t think people understand me right now. I felt like I was under a microscope for years now by someone. I didn’t leave the house. You know why. You know my situation after situation the past few years was like. Like an A&E crime show episode. Except I statistically should be dead. I’m like the survivor who shouldn’t exist. There aren’t many of us to this degree. I don’t expect people to not think I am crazy. I act like an agoraphobic, bipolar,  empty vessel right now.” Suz admits with shame in her voice.

“But you are aware and awake somehow. You are fighting internally for your own identity back. Maybe I know more about it than you think, thanks to my mother. I’m sure just like she did, you still hear his voice and everything he said to demean you over and over. Like a drunk at a jukebox, playing the same song over and over. Except, it’s in your head and no one even hears it or knows. And if you told them, you’d be labeled schizo by ignorant people who aren’t psychiatrists. I know. It’s a common issue after extremely controlling relationships actually.”

“It feels like someone beat words into my head to the point where I could only think about myself in the manipulated way they wanted me to. All for control. All because of either fear or envy. Why not just love? Why is love not good enough for some people Cheryl?”

“Suz, I don’t know. But I do know it’s something inside of themselves that desires more. The ego drives a lot of beings in this world. That’s why it seems so dark. I feel humanity has to reconnect with certain things to salvage their empathy for not just one another but this physical planet and everything upon it. You bring that kind of light to this world. Even when you feel dark. That’s intense for those who are halfway there from your kind of transcendence.”

“You outdid your last compliment. I need to hang around you more. I’m really not used to this at all. Being complemented, being able to socialize, get into the car without the feeling of wrongdoing. I wish I could embrace it all better and not seem unappreciative. But I’ve forgotten what it feels like to receive real help and love. I want to remember right now, but I know time is the only thing that can help.”

“Indeed it is. You have to reconnect with yourself. Stop worrying about everyone else. You’ve done that enough to lift others up, but what have you done for yourself Suz? I say you draw a bath when you get home. Watch something you like for a change. Do something for yourself. One day at a time.”

“Sounds good to me. I don’t remember the last time I did anything for myself. You’re right but I still feel selfish.”

“Rid of the shame. Your heart will beat better without it. And go watch some Gabor Mate. Find anything or any voice that contradicts his annoying, looming one inside your head. Think of it like reprogramming. I’ll see you tomorrow or the next day. Soon. Take care of yourself tonight, Suz.”

“I will.”

That night Suz ran a bath, polished her nails, watched all the things people around her didn’t show interest in. She was self indulgent. Noticing every scar upon her body, remembering what happened while washing it away.

How could I have let this body suffer so much?! All those who came before me to bring me to this  moment of time. I owe myself and them more. She thought.

 

 

 

Miss Revived Part One

She had the hair like the sun, eyes like the trees, and a mouth pink like a rose. She never carried herself right, beaten down by the world, the minute she left the hillside. The green pastures, the star filled nights, the crickets almost on the clock every single night provided a comfort she now longed for. Busy city streets, busy lights, and busy faces everywhere. No time to slow down. No time to speed up. No time for anything but work and sleep. That’s how she always felt. Life was always a struggle. Never a blessing. Always a fight, without the encore.

And recognition was rare in busy city life. So many people, they all seemed to blend into a vortex of nothingness together. To create one force of nothingness. Some convincing themselves it is something, while they poured that dirty regulars coffee for the 18th billionth time. Some realizing how little their existence meant, carrying themselves with at least a kind of admirable humility. Some wallowing in their own misery, clearly taking it out on everyone else.

The way she saw it was you had three choices to be; ignorant, intelligent, or angry. There was no other choice when doing mundane jobs. It was, play one of those parts or starve.

Deep down she knew it was time to evolve. Time to break away from the role partially. Time to think about some way out of the cycle of work without passion. She was done listening and ready to go out and fight down life again.

For awhile she spent time being purposely mundane, blending in, and going along with the motions of the majority. No one cared. She didn’t mind at the time, but the hole in her chest cut deeper as each day of meaningless existence passed on.

One night, she made a big mistake. She calls it an accident to this day, but the truth remains inside of her; like a haunting vessel at sea, it provokes her thought processes. Every dryer, every tub, every story like hers still subtly struck.a nerve. A tub, a plugged in phone dumped into it, and a complex without power was the scene. Crying parents, her lifeless-like body lifted from the water, while her burned wrists looked like some kind of sacrifice was the scene. She, of course, doesn’t remember anything but waking up in the hospital.

They thought she did it on purpose, so she had to say it was an accident.

Why am I still here? I wasn’t supposed to live?! Now I’ll have twice the bull crap if I admit to anything. Yup! Total accident! Geez. I really screwed this up. Can I go back? Undo this? Nope, haha! Of course not! She thought.

The nurse was intuitive, knew something was off about the situation but her hands were tied without proof. The cellphone accident was plausible as well, so it was written up as a mistake on reports.

I guess this is my second chance at life created out of death. 

The thought was strangely comforting. Perhaps she needed to look death in the eye to be back to life.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Miss Magic Part XII

“Stephen’s apartment is on Broad Street. I can check the mailboxes find his apartment number. You just keep a look out for anyone.”

“Will do. Better you than me, I am a clutz. I’d probably get caught.” Olivia admits.

Stephen’s apartment sat on a corner, of course it wasn’t the greatest complex. Neither was the neighborhood. Kid’s toys almost lying in the street from parents who didn’t pick them up. Perhaps, let alone supervise their children.

The mailboxes were mostly broken so it was easy to find his. Nothing looked like it was maintained for over a decade. Both doors almost fell off the frame when Jackie went in.

“It’s not very nice in there Olivia. He shouldn’t even pay rent until it’s fixed up really, really that bad.”

“Geez maybe we should have left a tenant’s rights booklet.”

“I think the money will be helpful for now. We could help him again, you know?” Jackie suggests.

“Indeed. He’ll definitely need more help in the future.”

“We have to find another casino and do it right this time. Go in with a plan, know the layout, scout it out beforehand, and really watch our own butts! We may not get lucky again if we’re caught.”

“Exactly. I was thinking about the same thing. I feel guilty in a way, but we are helping other people who need it and taking from a greedy casino. So is what we’re doing still morally wrong?”

“Don’t think of such things so much Olivia. It will tear up your insides like they’re being put through a meat grinder. Let’s just focus on doing good in our own community, then move onto bigger things. Hopefully no one will question us, until we have done so much, we’ll be like some kind of vigilantes in a good way.” Jackie says with childlike enthusiasm.

“I agree. It’s not like I can just sit there and do nothing, knowing what I can do now either.”

“Let’s figure out a game plan tonight, don’t rush it too much where it is stupid though. Let’s hope we can devise a good plan by the end of tonight with some more Ben and Jerry’s, Netflix running in the background, and the occasional off topic conversation I bring up. Haha!” Jackie exclaimed.

“I can get along with that idea!”

“So who do we help next? I kind of picked Stephen. You should decide the next person. We can at least discuss that before we get to the store.”

“What about Urma? I mean she’s behind in her taxes, what if we just go pay them for her? Is there a way? What if I said I was a relative from out of state, just trying to take care of my families finances that went haywire? Believable, right?”

“I mean you look quite young for trying to clean up your families mess, but we can think up your occupation, and I am sure they won’t even get that far to ask that question. Geez Olivia, you worry too much sometimes. It is best to be prepared for the worst, but at the same time you can’t always combat bad things from happening. Bad things do happen to good planners. You ever plan a trip out precisely and every little detail you planned seems to go the opposite way as planned. Your coffee lid falls off, your car breaks down, your tire pops, the parking is full, the event was cancelled, and your friend never showed up, right? Do you fret or not? Or do you think well this is just crap and try to make the most out of the crap? Jackie asks in a joking, but at the same time serious matter. The thing that make her different from the others.

“I am guessing I have to say make the most out of crap, because what choice is there really? Wallow in it? Haha. No thanks!” Olivia admits.

“Anyways, we were originally talking about Urma. We should probably get back onto that subject. We’ll just say you are a pharmacist if they ask, if that makes you feel better having an in depth plan. I’ll find out where we need to pay her taxes beforehand, make some phone calls. But know this; I get it Olivia. You are the one with the powers, so if anyone gets caught it will most definitely be you. I don’t blame you for at times, breaking mentally down in a way and being human. I truthfully would be ecstatic to have my powers as well as scared.”

They talk on and off topic all night. Finding all the casinos statewide, the best to devise and plan for and the least. It was ambitious. It was not going to take just one night of planning either, which they both realized. There had to be trust built as well between them. The kind where one would take a bullet for the other without hesitation. They were serious at times and joked to ease the stress of planning. They were the perfect team: honest, loyal, and strong for each other when they needed it. A friendship one could hope for their whole life and never have the chance to obtain.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Miss Magic IX

“I truthfully don’t want to offend anyone, but I don’t believe in angels  Olivia. I think that man was just a  second chance giving kind of person. A rarity in this world. Few can forgive, let alone give someone an opportunity out of it. ”

“True. I guess I didn’t think of it that way. I think of things in a symbolic way. I suppose I could have said he was like an angel.” Olivia explains.

“True. He was like an angel to us. He could have called the police. Who knows what could have happened?! They could have taken you away. Poke you with a bunch of needles. You do realize Olivia, what you have is desirable by those with power or money? You do realize what your ability could do in the wrong hands? Especially now?” Jackie asks with concern.

“I never thought of it that way until now truthfully. It was fun Jackie but I do realize it’s going to come with some not so fun parts. Like dealing with power tripping people.” Olivia admits.

“We have to look out for trouble. Me even knowing about this puts me in danger really.”

“Sorry I involved you in this. I had no one…” 0livia pleads.

“Stop! I’m happy you came to me. Although it comes with risk, you and I actually have a chance to make a difference now. We have a yet to be created purpose. Before this, I was just going through the motions in life. Olivia, this is pretty freaking awesome! Think about it! You’re like some kind of superhero.” Jackie says with the upmost enthusiasm, while raising her arms halfway to her sides like she always does when childlike excited about something.

“Thanks for being the coolest friend I’ve ever had.”

“No problem. You see I think we both can adapt to this situation quite well.” Jackie admits.

“Agreed. I can’t have my own back either all the time.”

“I think we need a night to recover. No more gambling for awhile, haha. Perhaps we should just sit around tonight and find out what you can do.” Jackie chuckles.

“Agreed. I’m exhausted. This whole night has been overwhelming.”

They drive back to Jackie’s apartment, grab some Ben n Jerry’s, a movie, and a new deck of cards. They contemplate possible future moral dilemmas and discuss ways to help others. The specific people they plan to help and the forgotten. They make plans to conquer the pain they see in the eyes of others.