Messed Up

February 7, 2008
By Kiersten Lauen, Congers, NY

“I messed up, huh?” He muttered under his breath.

“Yeah…you messed up”. I finished, looking up at him when I did. He was staring at the floor, his cigarette burning away in his shaking hand.

“Now what?” He asked me, in a voice I had never heard from him before. He was scared. He was nervous. He was sorry. I heard it all in those two words.

“Now….” I started “Now we…” I couldn’t come up with the words. I didn’t know what to do.

We sat there for a while, Ryan and me. We sat there and didn’t say anything. I watched the second hand tick away and he watched the cigarette ashes fall to the floor. As much as I wanted to say something, the words just wouldn’t come. I felt helpless. I wanted to stand up and scream my lungs out, or cry hysterically and fall to the floor, but I couldn’t do anything. I sat there and watched Ryan. I watched him cry and I watched him punch a hole in the wall and I watched him curse everything that moved. I watched him fall to pieces.

At three in the morning, he put his jacket on and lit another cigarette. He took a drag and then smashed it into the carpet. He looked at me for the first time in hours and motioned to the door with his hand. I followed him down the stairs to the car parked on the side of the road.

He got in the drivers seat and I sat myself in the passenger seat. We said nothing. He started the car and we were on our way.

I fell asleep and was awakened by the sound of Ryan screaming. I opened my eyes and found myself parked on the side of the road, alone in his car. I looked to my left and saw him screaming, sitting down in the middle of the deserted road.

I got out and walked to him.


He didn’t say anything back.

“Don’t play like this Ryan, you’re scaring the s*** outta me. Get up”. I reached down to grab his hand. But he wouldn’t move. “What are you, five years old? Get up Ryan”.

He gave me the blank stare that I hated so much. He stared up at me with that empty stare.

“I messed up. I messed everything up”. He shook his head side to side and started screaming again. I couldn’t understand what he was saying, he was too upset.

“Ryan, get your a** off the middle of the road and come and sit with me in the car”. I started to make my way back.

“Why did I do it Mollie?” He stopped me in my tracks. This was one question I was not prepared for. I walked back to him and sat down next to him in the middle of the road.

I sighed. “I don’t know babe…”

We sat there for a while, Ryan and me. We didn’t say anything. We sat in the middle of the deserted road and didn’t say anything. I stared at the stars and he stared at his shoelaces. We sat there and we didn’t say anything at all.

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