|Better Living (standard:Psychological fiction, 1853 words)|
|Author: Robert Fale||Added: Jan 19 2010||Views/Reads: 1728/956||Story vote: 0.00 (0 votes)|
|After leaving a difficult man for an ordinary life, a woman finds life too ordinary to bear.|
Better Living 1 She had been able to think of nothing more common to the present. Simple duties, like washing the dishes or sweeping the yard, became sessions of uninterrupted thought, in which her mind would run through the moments of uncertainty she had suffered, just thinking about the things her ex-husband had said, the look in his eyes. Amel Day was once a quiet and beautiful man, and he loved the world like a drunk loved his friends or a dog loved its master, but after the damage had been done to him he found something awful inside. And often he would look upon her as if he had tasted something bad. Grail knew he would do crass things to destroy her, knew how carnal her once cherished loved one had become, but had no idea how much it would hurt. 2 Two years had gone by since he had cut her face and cracked her spine. Ordinarily, time would heal nothing - not open skin nor shattered self - but in her respect it had done so. All cuts were repaired, all cracks were now invisible. She had remarried and was raising a daughter. She had a dog and a rose garden and a brand new Lexus. The nuclear life for her nuclear family. She did the same things, over and over; cleaned the house like a Good Housekeeping slave, raised her child while her plain, brand new husband drove to his plain job for a reasonable sum of money. Grail was bored, her days were repetitive, and soon she would be aged towards natural death. Bleak? In her words: ‘Nuclear families don't know bleak from shit!' There would always be a part of her that was also a part of Amel Day. He had been in love with her, and told her so every morning. It was the kind of fiction romance every girl dreams of. To her, what had happened after the depression was irrelevant. Only those moments of bliss between them, the unpredictability of being young and foolish, were relevant. So why couldn't she think of anything other than his eyes, when those shards of hatred were ripping into him, and cutting her? ‘Another part of me,' she said, drying the dishes, ‘another part of me belongs to you.' Amel always took too much. 3 Grail cleared away the night's meal. No one had eaten anything, not even Grace, her one year old girl. It was said that something was going around, making people sick, making people thin and tired, but Grail had not been hungry for some time. It was in the moment her mind had clicked into a rhythm of the past that she had lost interest in everything else. She shouldn't have been thinking about Amel Day at all, but she was. And still he took, this time her appetite. After clearing away the last of supper she walked into the spacious living room of her cul-de-sac bungalow and sat beside her handsome and boring husband. He took her into his arms, watching a cop show on TV without glancing at her. She scratched his ear. He liked it when she did that. He looked at her. They kissed. She said I love you. He said it back. The baby slept. The dog chewed on a bone. The Lexus cooled in the driveway. Nuclear exploded. 4 Maybe the toll across to living through chemistry was too costly, but she considered it more than once. Thinking about Amel was becoming so troublesome, and now she wasn't even sleeping bedside her boring husband in their plush and soft, nuclear bed. When he asked why she was so tired every morning she would say that their dog had barked her awake several times, but it was the past, misremembering her ex-husband, a man she had loved without condition, keeping her up. She tried hard to remember him as a comfort, a sexual excitement, a friend to all beyond the barriers she put up against society. But each time she saw him in her mind she re-experienced the hate he had held for her in the end. She imagined the foul words he would say. The spitting on sidewalks. The hissing at total strangers. Inside, Grail believed him to be a good man at heart. She couldn't accept that he was just a bastard. Not the man she had married. Click here to read the rest of this story (132 more lines)
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