His Eyes

By , Lawrence, KS
He walked through the chipped front door of our cheap run down apartment. His baby blue button up shirt was stained and spattered with blood. He stopped and took a long meaningless look at me, turned around and headed to the bathroom. The floor creaked underneath him. I avoided eye contact with him at all times. I was huddled up on the end of the couch with my knees to my chest and a worn out maroon blanket wrapped around me watching some soap opera not even paying the slightest bit of attention to him or the television. I could hear the running water of the sink in the bathroom. He had been breathing hard when he crept in, as if he had been running. I didn’t want to ask. I didn’t want to even think about it, but I knew.
I was staring blankly at the wall behind the TV. A dark and deep crack stared back at me. A cockroach was making his way up the wall, and into the crack. I wondered when I had let my life become like this. I felt stuck and alone. With nobody to talk to. I took a deep breath in and the faint smell of pasta from Monday’s dinner still lingered in the air. The light above me flickered. I placed my feet down and stretched out. The carpet was rough and unwelcoming, a green puke color. I pulled my knees back up to my chest. I was careful with every move I made, sure not to let him hear me. The water continued to run and I looked over my shoulder, I could hear him grunting and throwing things around. The shower went on and the sink off. I heard him step in. I had a chance.
I slowly got up off the couch and tip toed to the bedroom, right across the hallway from the bathroom. I slipped through the door and slid open the dresser drawer quietly as I could as to not let it squeak. I heard him close the shampoo bottle with a click, and I snapped my head up. There were sirens outside in the background, not unusual to me at all, but this time they made me wonder. I turned back to the drawer and started pulling neatly folded clothes out and tossing them onto the bed one by one, and then in heaps. I had to be quick. I went to the closet in the corner and pulled my grandma’s old carpet bag out from the top shelf and it fell, along with boxes, hangers and blankets all landing on me making a earsplitting crash. I flinched, stopped to listen but the shower continued. I kicked them away, picked up the bag and walked it over to the bed. I crammed clothes into the bag as fast as I could. I had limited time. My heart was beating quickly and I began to feel the adrenaline running through me. The shower stopped and my spine shivered. I froze.
I heard him step out of the shower and onto the creaky, black and white checkered tile that floored our bathroom. I couldn’t move. I was leaned over the bag with an oversized purple button up cardigan in my right hand and a short waist high black skirt bundled up in the other. The bathroom door flew open and steam rolled out. He didn’t see me at first, but I sure saw him. Half of his body was covered with a towel the other half was tan, and glistening with water. His hair was wild. I could smell his cheap axe body wash flowing off of him. He stepped past the threshold of our bedroom and stopped. I immediately dropped the clothes to my feet and snapped up only to meet his eyes. Neither of us said anything. I took a tiny step backwards, but he only stood and stared with those beautiful green eyes. I took another step back slower than before, waiting for him to say something, but I heard nothing. He continued to stare with hatred in his eyes. He didn’t have to say anything I could see it in his eyes.
He sprinted forward to the side table on his side of the bed and I leaped back. He grabbed it out and held it up with one hand sturdy and unscared, the palm sized pistol stared at me with its empty barrel. I stumbled back against the wall and slid down on the floor trembling. No words were spoken. The eye contact said everything. Unsure of what to do I sat on the floor breathing in short fast breathes. He stood still, not moving, gun pointed toward my face. I opened my mouth as if to say something. Nothing came out. He carefully moved around the bed towards me, hand still up, gun still sitting between his fingers and his palm, eyes still on mine. I scrambled to get up and run, but I knew the consequences. So I backed into the corner, straight into the lamp. I had an idea. I slowly wrapped my hands around the lamp stand and steadied my stance, I had to be careful in order to pull this off. Before he could think I swung it from around me and into the side of his head he spun and the gun flew out of his hands right onto my purple cardigan. I leaped onto the bed and reached down and snatched it up.
Now I was in control. Placed shakily in both hands, I pointed the gun toward him. He was lying on the floor the plush red towel still wrapped around him, hair still wet from his shower and a trail of blood seeping down his chin coming from his mouth. His lip quivered. My knees were sunk into the soft mattress on the bed and my heart was thumping. He laid there as if to never get up. I bundled up the courage, swallowed the tears that were now streaming down my face, closed my eyes, and shot the gun.
I sat with my knees beneath me and lowered the gun to the bed. As I opened my eyes, his eyes were still.





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