Romeo and Tears of Blood

April 4, 2011
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I walked along the sand, the row of motor homes and trailers to my left. I had just picked up my copy of Romeo and Juliet. Since we were in the desert and no one was up yet, I figured it might be fun and more effective to act out the scene as I read aloud. It was somewhat of an alternate ending to the story. Juliet stood up to her father for a second time after he had been told by the still living but horribly wounded Tybalt that she had already married Romeo. The scene was about how Capulet and his wife were threatening to kill Romeo and send Juliet to prison. Her father had grabbed her and was trying to force her into a carriage on its way to the mad house where the evil spirits would be tortured out of her. When I had finished the scene, I had been trying to follow the footprints in the sand that seemed to fit the dialogue perfectly. I walked back over to the fire pit and almost screamed at the top of my lungs when I found a completely unfamiliar boy, just slightly older than I, lying across two chairs and staring at the still dark sky. I covered my mouth to stifle it, and he must’ve noticed because he looked at me with an oddly amused expression. His hair was almost bleach blond and his eyes were an unbelievable shade of the most gorgeous blue I had ever seen, like the water in angel cove. He was beautiful, which momentarily distracted me. “My name’s Justin, and… what were you doing over there?” I told him I was trying to act out the scene of Romeo and Juliet. Just then a much younger Benvilio, Mecutio, and the lovely Romeo walked out of a huge castle that seemed to have come out of nowhere. “Well, come on then Bella!” Mercutio called to me and Romeo and Benvolio gestured for me to join them. I hesitated a moment. For one thing I didn’t want to leave Justin, and for another, I couldn’t figure out why they’d call me Bella. It was my old screen name and I’d like to bring it back but that they would know it was strange. Anyway, I followed along and it felt almost as if the four of us had been best friends our whole lives. We walked until we came to a small building. Inside there was food and video games, and a barrel of the finest wine. “I nicked it from Capulet’s keep!” He said merrily. “I figured it’d be alright now you’re his son in law!” Romeo laughed along and so did I, Mecutio’s odd sense of humor was tremendously entertaining. I hugged Romeo tight, congratulating him on his good fortune, but I suppose it was more of that bloody dramatic irony. I loved Romeo like a brother, Benvolio too; however Romeo and I were so much closer. “Is ‘Bella’ coming back then?” I asked teasingly. “Well, since its Italian and so are we I figured it was well suited.” Romeo smiled.

Meanwhile Capulet was losing his head. He demanded he take his pick of wine for the night. Upon arrival in his winery Capulet immediately noticed the absence of the single barrel. “It was that Mercutio!” Tybalt shouted. “He, the prince’s man, is too close a friend of those Montagues!” He ran to the back of the wooden shed and pushed open a hidden door in the wall. “This must be how he got in and out!” Capulet was enraged by this and sent Tybalt to destroy the thief.

Tybalt crashed through the door of the little shack we had been celebrating in, sword drawn. Benvolio was furious with the intrusion and demanded to know the reasoning. “Ask the cousin we now share.” Tybalt said slyly and smirked. Romeo went pale. I looked to him nervously, but figured he needed more comforting than I. “And anyway, the reason for my coming is a barrel of wine.” He slowly walked toward the wine on the table when Mercutio jumped in front of it. “Haven’t you ever heard the rule finders keeper losers weepers?” he laughed sarcastically, but at that Tybalt lashed out, stabbing poor Mercutio in the stomach. As Tybalt removed his sword Mercutio fell to his knees. His pupils began to melt and long steaks of blood leaked from his eyes. I screamed at the horrifying sight and embraced Romeo, hiding my face so that I wouldn’t have to watch. Romeo, however, had other plans. He pushed me away and drew his own sword. Benvolio and I were yelling to him, begging him to stop, but he and Tybalt brawled and Tybalt was badly wounded. He fell unconscious to the floor, we all thought he was dead. We dragged him over to the Capulet’s porch, hoping someone would find him, then we ran as fast as possible away from the place. “Oh, Bella!” Romeo cried. “He’s been my cousin less than a day and I’ve already killed him!” It was extremely awkward on my part, I wasn’t really sure what to do, so I did the only thing I thought would be appropriate. I stood him upright and slapped him across the face. “Romeo! That’s enough; come on now, this isn’t helping anything!” I shouted at him. “But what should become of my Juliet? Now that they know?” he asked teary eyed.
“How the hell am I supposed to know? All I know is that you just killed hers and now your own cousin, and your stupid bawling isn’t doing anything at all! I love you Romeo, you have been a brother to me for as long as I can remember, but now it’s time for you to grow up, alright? I can’t support you as a convict if you’re always… Justin!” I suddenly had a thought! Romeo had stopped crying but he was very confused. The three of us ran back to the castle from which they had first appeared, back to the desert where the motor homes and trailers had been parked, back to where I’d first found Justin. He was sitting exactly where I had found him. We told him we needed to hide because Romeo had just accidentally killed someone, and he suggested we go back to the shack and act like nothing had happened, like Mercutio had never even been there.

We did so, but little did we know that Tybalt had not actually been killed. He had passed out from the blood loss, but he was not dead. So when he awoke in Capulet’s doorstep he ran in frantically yelling that Romeo, the fiend, had stabbed him. Capulet and Tybalt ran to the shack we were hiding out in, swords drawn. Capulet ran for Romeo, catching him by the throat and holding him against the wall. As he did so, Tybalt chased Benvolio away. I cowered in a corner while I watched my best friend be stabbed in the stomach and thrown to the ground. Capulet kneeled over him and whispered something in his ear, and by the expression on his face, he had undoubtedly just been told that Juliet had killed herself while being held in the mad house. He then pulled the knife out of his own stomach and gently pushed the dagger into his heart. Tears were streaming down my face, however my vision of him was just then intercepted by Tybalt, who stood over me with his cutlass and Capulet followed closely behind. I shrank against the wall until I was sitting on the ground. That’s when they made their move. Capulet came first, thrusting his sword into my shoulder, then came Tybalt with a stab directly to my chest. I closed my eyes, I could feel the weapons piercing my skin and the blood soaking my dress, but I didn’t hurt. I was so surprised by this I opened my eyes… too soon. Tybalt and Capulet, both kneeled over me, wore the most horrifying look of sheer terror upon their faces. A drop of blood dribbled down Tybalt’s cheek. Before my eyes their pupils were melting, oozing with blood, and because both of their faces were turned down towards me, it came in large continuous drops landing on my white collar (the blood).

I didn’t scream for fear another Capulet might hear and attack again, but then it crossed my mind that they had killed me… or had they? I wasn’t in any pain, I felt perfectly normal, and so I pushed the bodies of the two away and stood. I walked towards the door but before I got there I was distracted by a large intricate mirror. I moved closer and closer until I was just inches away, because I couldn’t believe what I was seeing. Streaks of wet glistening crimson trailed down my face from my eyes. My pupils were empty, black. I took a quivering finger and wiped at the stream, smearing it. I didn’t believe it was real, but the red liquid on my fingers told me otherwise. I looked up slowly, cautiously, to Romeo, fearing what I may see. I rushed to his side and knelt beside him. The red striped his face as well. His eyes were closed, he was finally at peace with his Juliet, but the blood struck me with terror. I brushed my thumb over his stained cheek; the blood on him was as fresh as on me. I rose slowly, but turned quickly and dashed out the door to where I knew Benvolio would be. In front of the castle I found Justin and him together. I ran up to them and was screaming and crying. They just stared at me. I waved my arms and shouted, explaining exactly what happened, but they just turned away as if I wasn’t even there. Then it finally crossed my mind… The most terrifying thought I could imagine… and I uttered the most horrifying words… “I… I think I’m dead.”

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