Crystal Meth

August 15, 2011
I breathed in, staring back at the stranger in front of me. Her eyes, beautifully covered with a silver shadow. Her hair, effortlessly tasseled to perfection. Her nails, carefully filed and manicured. Her shoulders, rolled back in confidence. I exhaled with lousy satisfaction. “Perfect.” I whispered as I watched the stranger mouth the word in precise synchronization.

I then take a look at my surroundings. I was closed in by four nasty puke-yellow walls with five tin stalls lined together at the corner. Scribbles of curses and passionate oaths to lovers covered the bricks, the tile, the glass… Signs of adolescence were clearly stated.

A girl rushes in, invading my private thoughts with her intensity. She slams her books down on the tile with what seemed like rage. The action made me jump. She grasped the sink with her hands until her knuckles and fingertips turned white. I could plainly see from where I stood that she was shaking. I don’t know why but, I was confused. Not amused, not worried. Confused.

She was breathing heavy. Tears formed underneath her glasses. She shook her head back and forth, I could hardly catch what was printed on her forehead, Crystal-Meth.

The recognition was quick. Her name was Crystal Metheni, but had the notorious nickname of Crystal-Meth. Her hair was short, cut like a boys. Her pants weren’t long enough. Her shoes too gaudy. She was picked on, bullied. She was a nobody.

Crystal ripped sheets of brown paper towels from the dispenser with enough anger to break it. She ran the wad underneath the faucet and scrubbed the letters off her head. She looked to be hurting herself, causing a long streak of red from the force she willingly applied. She threw down the wad with a scream of agony. It hit the linoleum with an inferior thud.

She looked up then. Like she had just realized she was not alone. She turned her head to look at me. The act was strong, fierce, hostile. Her eyes, that were the strangest but most beautiful color, were pleading. They were expectant. They were desperate. My stomach wrenched with guilt. I could see she was slowly slipping away, cutting the strings that held her to this world one at a time, one after the other.. Could this be the final string? I felt a new kind of pain. One that squeezes your lungs until you have to gasp for air. One that stings your nose and makes your eyes water almost painfully. I wanted to help her. To speak to her. To be her friend when no one else would. I wanted to wrap my arms around her, pat her back, and tell her to keep holding on. I acted without thought. I took a step closer , I raised my hand with pity and with comfort. Her face was a mixture of hope and confusion. It reflected mine.

But then I stopped. I thought of others and what they would say. I thought of my reputation and the “perfect” girl I barely knew. My hand dropped quickly and suddenly; a dead weight. I tore my eyes away from the girl who looked up to me with anticipation. I fidgeted with my shirt and ran my fingers through my hair. I dabbed at my eyes and straightened my posture. I left and I didn’t look back.

I never saw Crystal Metheni again.

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This article has 9 comments. Post your own now!

immortal1290 said...
Aug. 22, 2011 at 11:36 am
This was really great. I loved that it was realistic and beautiful at the same time. Also, you portrayed the characters and their emotions perfectly. I felt like I could relate to them.
ambnyc This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Aug. 20, 2011 at 1:16 am

You switch tenses, past to present, several times throughout. Pick one tense and stay with it.

Interesting story!

dark_armor1This teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. said...
Aug. 19, 2011 at 11:31 am
wow this piece was extremely touching. you have a natural talen that reaches peoples soul. job well done!
Readqueenz7 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Aug. 18, 2011 at 11:20 pm
Wow. This was really beautiful. I loved how you didn't tie it up with ribbons and bows, all the true feelings, even if they're sad/scary to admit, are there. I really connected to this and feel that it speaks to a lot of what it means to be a teenager. Beautiful
mimirocks124 said...
Aug. 18, 2011 at 6:12 pm
this a sad, sad story. it was beautifully written
Garnet77 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Aug. 18, 2011 at 9:37 am
True??? Wow. I love how you captured the moment in this story, but it's kind of sad to think about. Great job though :)
paige14 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Aug. 17, 2011 at 10:05 pm
Wow...this is great. It's awful that it's true. That anyone would have to go through that. It kinda reminds be of the song "How To Save a Life" by The Fray. All about what's right and what's easy and what could be that final string. THis story is truly wonderful (and I teared up a little bit)
shadowrider said...
Aug. 17, 2011 at 8:28 pm
This is a great story, but I wish it wasn't true. The description was amazing. I hope next time you're able to do what's write and not what's easy.
CarrieAnn13 said...
Aug. 17, 2011 at 7:56 pm
This is a great story!  I love the personnification of chrystal meth and the descriptions were amazing.  Excellent work!
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