I wanted to break up this story into two parts to keep you reading, and wanting for more. I hope it was successful. If you have been wondering why there are parenthesis in the title, it is supposed to add double meaning to it, so the one title could be “Chemical Reactions” and the other could be “I react”. See what I did there? I absolutely love to play with titles. Anyways, this is the rest of the story that I want to transform into a book. Obviously this four page story will have to be expanded and I really want to start off with a firm foundation about her life, a firm foundation of Sly’s life, and then unite them and write their story together, maybe from their own perspectives? I don’t have everything worked out in my head yet, as things are still mulling around, hence why I haven’t started writing the book yet. I really need to get to writing an outline for this. But, here is the rest, as promised.
When she turned three things started to get rough. Sly and I tried to keep ourselves together for the sake of Autumn, but young love, once it starts tearing apart at the seams, is hard to stitch back together, no matter how much lust you have for one another. He affections didn’t cut it anymore, and neither did her giggles. We were fighting more because the city life was becoming a stench I couldn’t rid myself of. No matter how much scrubbing, cleaning, or hoping, I felt dirty. I was terrified someone was going to hurt my little girl like they hurt me. Sly thought I was crazy. We were thousands of miles away from her disgusting pig of a father, so the fear that was gripping my soul should be gone. But it wasn’t. Broken words hung in the air between us, forming a barrier. We no longer heard what the other was saying above the screaming in the room. One day, after things started to get violent, I took some money I had been hiding away in a tin can, stormed out of the house, and never looked back.
Autumn and I ended up settling in Neveah. It was the first time in my whole life I was accepted into a community of human beings who seemed to have a soul, who seemed to care about more than the “hellos” and “how are yous”. I worked hard as a waitress, saving up enough money that the two of us could live in a little cottage that was up for rent near Spider Web Way. It was just the right size for the two of us; this was the right place for us. Life was perfect.
A few years later on my way home from work I noticed something unusual happening near the dock. I thought I had heard little screams for help, but couldn’t see anything until I inched nearer to where they were coming from. As I got closer, the screams pierced my soul, dug their fingernails into my brain and I rushed faster than a bolt of lightning to save the child floating, choking, dying on the surface of the water. I jumped in the water, pushed her up on the dock, climbed out and checked her little wrists for a pulse. She was thready, but alive. This was my moment to give back, to save the little girl I couldn’t, that day I was trapped under his arms in the alleyway. Ambulances arrived, feet shuffled to surround me as I performed CPR until she began breathing again, until her lungs were clear, my mind numb. When I found out that the little girl I had saved near the dock was the mayor’s daughter, I was praised in every newspaper and news article as a hero. I could not describe the wonderful sense of overwhelming relief I felt knowing that my life mattered for something. If all of the things I had been through had not lead me to here, who would have been at the dock to save the little girl? Autumn and I spent months becoming best friends with the mayor, his wife, and his little girl, Jasmine. I became famous in the city of Neveah for the life I so selflessly saved. So why couldn’t I save my own daughter, my own flesh and blood?
One day on my way home from the super market I saw him. I could tell by those storm-cloud eyes, his sausage fingers, his stench. I tried to hold my head high, but the devastating grief I felt was insurmountable. I rushed home, slammed the door, and cried every tear I had ever hidden. I had made sure he didn’t see me on my way home, so he didn’t know where I lived. I was convinced everything was going to be all right. It had to be. That night I tucked Autumn in her princess bed, showered her in kisses, and wished her every good charm I could muster. That was the last time I saw her. Police searched far and wide for her, but she was gone forever. I know he did it. I know he saw my face on the news and took her from me so his sins would not be found out. There was nothing I could do.
How? How could I save the mayor’s daughter and not my own flesh and blood? My life was extremely fucked up. That was until Sly found me again. Our story (actually, her story) made national news. Apparently one day he was sitting in a local coffee shop and saw my face on the top story of the evening. He rushed out as soon as he could, showering me in kisses, touching me in all the right places. Our brokenness completed each other. His half of a heart fit perfectly into my half. I had never felt so complete being so broken, being so torn, being so hurt that I was numb. I couldn’t think. When they laid an empty casket full of her little dolls into the damp, brown earth I blanked out. I don’t remember anything after that and I haven’t been able to go back to that site since. I’ll never be whole again. He took my whole life from me.
I’m not sure I could ever forget the first time Sly introduced me to drugs. I had felt bad, really bad, about losing Autumn that night. He told me that the little white powder he held in his hand would solve all of my problems, make the angels weep at my beauty, and I believed him. We sat underneath the stars and the dancing trees that night, holding hands as we injected heaven into our arms for the first time together.
Since then, self-medicating has always been my goal, and tonight, will be the last night I ever see anyone’s face again. Tonight, I’m self-medicating for the last time, getting higher than the stars and seeing God’s face personally. You would think He and I are friends by now, but we aren’t. I’m pretty sure He knows how I feel about Him by now.
For the last time I unzip my pouch, pour all of the remaining heroin I own on the top of my spoon, and slplishhhh, fliickk! in goes the needle. In goes heaven, the stars, the whole fucking universe. This is the last time. Tomorrow I will be sober, tomorrow I will love again, tomorrow I will smell the flowers and see the sky. Tomorrow. Tomorrow. Tomorrow. I drift off into insanity. There’s only a little vodka left, I’m chugging it gone, gulpgulpgulp. At some point Sly enters the tent, says he brought me some good stuff tonight. We’re fucking. He’s on top, in and out. I’m crying out in pleasure. The world has never felt this good. I feel like Atlas. I feel like Aphrodite.
“One last time, baby. You’re so beautiful.” he says, as Sly slips me a little blue pill. It’s E. “Why not?” I think to myself, and swallow it, and the last of the Jack Daniels he brought with him in one fell swoop. Tonight is the best night of my life.
Suddenly I can’t see straight, the world starts spinning, my heart rate slows, and I feel as though I can’t speak. Sly asks me what’s wrong but I don’t think anything is, I’m in heaven. I see white. I see nothing. I am nothing. I am damaged goods. Tonight. Tonight is the night.