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Not love, nowhere close.
I waited. I know it sounds pathetic and totally expected but wait I did. For what I have no idea – but I’m pretty sure it wasn’t for what I got.
I felt it. You know that feeling when something is awfully wrong. It’s an indescribable feeling – like some sort of instinct but not a good kind. It felt as if ice crystals crept across my bare shoulders and liked my neck. A chill filled my breath and I shuddered. Pulling me stiff arms tighter around my torso I hunched my shoulders. I didn’t know what I was thinking. I swore I wouldn’t come! Really, I did.
A hand slithered across my skin and my stomach churned with revulsion.
Go away, go away. The thought repeated in my mind.
“Annabel,” a male voice spoke and I could feel his breath on the nape of my neck.
I looked up, keeping my expression as cold as possible so that he would get the hint. As always his striking blue eyes held me – awestruck.
“Take your hand off me please.”
“Come on, Annabel. You knew I would be here. Don’t be like that. YOU came HERE.”
I stood up, brushing the snow off my faded purple dress. It was easier to face him when I stood at his height.
“I came to talk.”
“Then let’s talk,” his easy smiled irritated me. How could he be so casual when I was near emotional breakdown?
“No. We won’t talk about that. I have no time for your pitiable hints of attraction, and vulgar conversations you consider to be flirting.”
“Come now honey,” he took a step forward and I could feel his body heat. He took me by the shoulder and pulled me close. Pain shot up my back. “You know I love you, I would never hurt you.”
My body shook. D**n! Weak, that’s what I am. I could never truly face him, no matter how many times I convinced myself.
He rubbed the small of my back and I flinched. The bruise was still fresh from when he hit me last time. It was an ongoing pattern. Tears trickled down my flushed face and I tasted blood in my mouth realizing that I was biting my lip too hard.
He wiped the blood drop off my lip with his thumb and hugged me close. I didn’t resist. I didn’t dare. All I felt was self resentment. His touch repulsed me but his love was true. The wind jostled my untied hair. I was numb, even to the cold. Empty inside, I resigned myself to a life of torture and false hope. I smiled - because hey, isn’t that what life truly is?