If I cried, would you laugh baby?

March 8, 2009
“Do you like games, Monday?” He asks. His voice is light and calm, like he’s asking the weather. Not like he has a carving scalpel positioned beneath the shell of my ear. The blade is silver and quick. I can see our reflection in the mirror. His face is level, and silently, I wonder how he does it.

I’m crying. “P-please…” I whimper. We’re past pretenses.

“Really, it’s a simple question love.” His moist lips come to rest at the junction where my neck meets my shoulder. Above the pulse. Can he feel the same things I can? My fear tainted blood? I feel his lips curl. He’s smiling.

I shake my head numbly. The sky is falling, and I’m just unfortunate enough to be standing in the way. And silently, so silently that a part of me thinks he can hear even my thoughts, I hope that it’s quick.

“Tsk, tsk.” He sighs disapprovingly against my skin, raising goose bumps. His breath is warm. Like he breathes fire. “You’re being very difficult, you know that?” He wonders aloud.

I try to swallow.

“You know what I want to do?” He continues leisurely, switching over to my other side. The scalpel remains erect against me, teeth winking in the shy light. My shoulders lift into a weak shrug but it’s stopped by the tight grip he has on them. The tips of his fingers are white.

“I think…we should play a game. I mean, come on, it hasn’t been that long has it baby? We can still have fun together.” His laugh comes out in a long breath that sounds more like a sigh than anything. I see the amusement in his eyes, like burning charcoal. We’ll play a game. My head lifts just a little bit taller as I look myself dead in the eyes. Light brown like mud, the same colour that I saw in the mirror that morning. They seem darker.

Yes, we’ll play a game.

“Let me explain the rules.” He says softly. I feel his spider-like hand coming down to reposition mine. The tape rubs raw against my scrapes and I bight my lip. He notices. “They’re very simple.”

There’s a long scraping noise as he pulls the tape to its appropriate length, tearing it with his teeth. In the corner of my eye, I see the open door letting in the filtering afternoon rays. The school kids would be getting out by now. And then I move a little too far to the left and feel a quick reminder to stay still. My body stiffens.

“Remember baby?” He coos, bringing my hands high up above my head. He deftly binds them to the dresser so that I’m facing him full on, like a soldier positioned in the front line. “We used to play like this all the time. Tell me, though?” He gives my hand a little condescending pat as he moves away, shaking his messy hair from his face. I used to love that.

I’m going to throw up. “What?” My voice sounds weak and skeletal. He’s softer when I answer him.

“Did you play these games with him too?” The voice is calm like a lake, but I’ve known him long enough. It’s the same tone I’ve heard so many times, I couldn’t even count them on all fingers. He’s angry.

“Ah!” The scalpel suddenly jerks against my skin. And he laughs and laughs and laughs.

“Sorry, baby. It was a slip.” I try to move away as his cool hands come to caress my face. They’re like ice and it disgusts me. My skin crawls. “You know I wouldn’t hurt you.” It’s just a whisper against my lips. He’s just a whisper against my lips, and god, I want to tear my skin out. I want him off.

“I’d never hurt you.” He promises and then steps away. His hand remains on my jaw though, holding me in place. “You will look at me.”

I nod my head.

“Let the games begin, then.” He smiles low and wide. Like a crocodile.





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