Luca: HelpMature

Word Count: 976


I didn’t know what was going on inside my head anymore. Truth be told, I wasn’t too sure what was going on outside my head anymore either.

“The only other person you cared about was Rayn, and look how that turned out.”

Part of me wanted to break everything, and everyone, around me. The rest of me was too sore, too tired to do anything more than shrug off the negro and shut myself in a stall where I could be left alone to dry heave in peace.

“The only other person you cared about was Rayn, and look how that turned out.”

He was right. I’d never cared for anyone other than myself or Rayn. I pressed my own gun up under my chin, using what little energy I had left to hold it there. Breathing hard, feeling sick, shaking. Desperate for it to end. Not ready to let go. Not brave enough to put an end to it all myself. If Joe did it, it’d be easy. I could just die.

If I did it, it’d be cheating, it’d be the easy way out and Joe was right about that, too, I didn’t deserve the easy way out. I deserved to live in this hell hole and suffer.

“The only other person you cared about was Rayn, and look how that turned out.”

“SHUT UP!” I screamed at the stall wall in front of me. “JUST FUCKING SHUT UP!” I wasn’t even sure what I was shouting at to shut up. My head, maybe. The memory of Joe’s face as he told me exactly what I was.

Silence. For once there was some silence. I wept with relief. I’m sure there was more to it than that, but I couldn’t tell you what else was in there with that relief to save my sorry ass.

“C-Cancer?” a nervous, English woman’s voice echoed uncomfortably off the restroom walls. I froze where I was. I knew she could see me sitting on the floor through the gaps, but maybe if I stayed really still she’d go away. Something in the back of my head was telling me she was one of the ones in army uniform. “Look, I know things are bad right now, but it’ll get better. Will you come out?”

“Fuck off,” I mumbled, wishing she would leave.

“Please come out.”

“No. You and everyone else are gonna be on Joe’s side. I don’t fucking blame you, I’d be on Joe’s side too if I was one of you.” I know what I’m like. When you’re high all the time, it’s easy to ignore the fact you’re a first class cunt and that the reason you only have one friend is because everyone else hates you and your friend is more fucked up than you are. Getting clean was throwing more and more things into the light that I’d rather leave in the dark where they belonged.

“You don’t know that. You don’t have to come out if you don’t want, I guess. We can talk like this.”

“I don’t wanna talk either. Talking’s for women, pussies and faggots.” It wasn’t like I was deliberately trying to piss her off, these were just the sorts of things that went on in my head, and it seemed like I had no control over what came out of my mouth anymore.

“Right,” I heard her take a deep breath. “I’ll talk then shall I?” Please don’t, I almost said. Please don’t. I didn’t wanna hear your story, I just wanted to be left alone. “Okay. Well, my brother was older than me. Four years older. I used to look up to him. One day, I found out he was taking drugs, that he was hooked – I only found out because he was stealing stuff from our parents,” she shifted, leaning back on a wall before carrying on. I stared at the flecked green panel in front of me, half listening. “It was bad. Turned out he’d been using for years before we caught him. Anyway, he couldn’t go to rehab. He tried, but he hated it there. In the end he went cold turkey same as you’re doing now, and we did it on our own, just me and him. My parents never even found out, ‘cause I made sure he didn’t get away with mum and dad’s savings.”

“What’s this got to do with me?” I asked, wiping my face. Had I been crying?

“Well… I know how to look after someone going through withdrawals. You look like shit, let’s face it, and if you carry on like this, you’ll end up dying.”

“That’d hardly be a loss to anyone here, would it?”

“I think it’d be a loss to Joe,” she said bluntly.

“You heard him out there, he hates my fucking guts. I hate my fucking guts.”

“He’s scared of losing you. Look, just let me help you out, for both your sakes. Yeah?”

Silence stretched out between us for a while. It felt like the room was stretching with it and pulling her further away from me each second I took to make a decision. I was scared. I was lonely, sick and scared and this stranger was offering to help me.

I reached up and unlocked the door, letting it swing open.

“Please help me,” I whispered the words like I was afraid somehow they’d reach her and she’d snatch back her offer, laughing at me. She looked up in shock, like she never expected me to open the door.

“C’mere,” she shuffled over so she was kneeling in front of me, wrapping her arms around me. Her hand smoothed down my hair and somehow that was all it took for me to break down into tears for the first time since this shit storm had taken over our lives. 

The End

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