I gasp as his voice scares the shit out of me. But I find the light and flick it on. I want to say thanks, and I almost do, but I close the door instead and see myself in the long mirror on the back of it. I barely recognise myself. My hair is a crazy mess, and my face has a yellowish tinge. My eyes are still blue, but they look so different like they’ve lost their shine. Is that even possible? The whites of my eyes look yellow, and then there are the scars. I unbutton the shirt to look them over. I think back to how I got them and hear a blood-curdling noise and cover my ears from the sound.
Brad flings the door open. His eyes are so white against the darkness of the room behind him. It’s then that I realise the sound is coming from me. I’m shaking, but I can no longer see the broken image of myself. Instead, Brad fills the frame. In a split second, he is by my side,
‘Hey, hey. Come on. It’s okay, sweetheart, it’s okay.’ He doesn’t step any closer, and his hand remains outstretched. I’m not sure what I should do. My eyes are spilling over with tears, and I have no idea how to stop them.
How to stop feeling.
I just don’t want to feel anymore. I don’t want to be here anymore. I remember so much. Too much. I want to forget. I need to forget. Please, please, let me forget. Brad takes a step closer, and I move to the side to stay out of his reach.
‘Sweetheart, I’m not going to hurt you. I want to help you. Let me help you?’
I have nowhere else to go. I’m trapped, and I don’t know what I should do. Just then, there’s a knock on the bedroom door, and I hear someone shout from the other side.
‘Brad! Everything okay in there?’
‘Yeah, buddy, just some bad dreams, that’s all,’ he says from the bathroom doorway, looking at me. His eyes lock with mine, and for a fleeting moment, I want to take his hand. But then I remember what he is. I curl my fingers into a fist and keep them at my sides. Whoever was at the door must have left because I don’t hear anything else. All I hear now is his breathing and mine. He takes another step, and I hold my breath, waiting for whatever comes next. He takes another, and I’m flat against the wall now. I screw my eyes closed and wait. I feel him tug on the front of my shirt—he’s so gentle. I open my eyes. I look down, and he has buttoned the shirt back up to the top. So he can no longer see my body. And I don’t blame him. I’m repulsive.
This book is for adults 18+ only. It contains sexual content and violence.