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Ava, Chapter 30: Liz

Reply to Alsike

Posted to June 27, 2004

     I'm married and the world is my eggplant.  The world is my large ungainly purple fruit that can be fried in oil with salty, and if it's not thoroughly crispy it is floppy and mushy and disgusting.  Yes, eggplant is my life.  Sometimes it's crispy and yummy, sometimes it doesn't taste as good as I was expecting, and sometimes it's scary.   I'm terrified.

     My life wasn't meant to go like this.  I'm not supposed to be running away from the feds.  I should be at college, overworking myself, learning everything I could, all the new exciting things.  But, no, my life is frightening, I'm running, and nothing is like it's supposed to be.  Nothing.

     Isabel watches everyone, sitting apart, her eyes are sad and lonely.  I think she misses Jesse. Maria's really bad though, she doesn't fight with Michael, and she doesn't sleep with him either.  I was looking for her one night and her and Michael's room was entirely empty.  Isabel's door was slightly open and I pushed it and peered in.  Maria was curled up in Isabel's arms sobbing into her shoulder.  Her back was shuddering irregularly.  Isabel glanced up and met my eyes.  Then she bent her head and, stroking Maria's hair, started making soft noises in her ear.

     I shut the door.  Why Isabel?  Why could she cry on Isabel's shoulder and not mine?  Doesn't she see that I hate living like this as much as she does?  Does she think that Max and I are so happy?  She doesn't know that we haven't slept in the same room since our wedding night.

     She doesn't know about the flashes I got during my first time, she doesn't know that I screamed Tess when I came, and I pray that she will never guess why.  I felt like a whore for sleeping with Max, him and all his so earnest declarations of undying love and his claim that the flashes are pure truth and the sign of love.  I wish they weren't true.  I wish they weren't perfect honesty and truth and togetherness.  I wish I didn't know what her body felt like, smelled like, tasted like, but I do, and I will never forget the feeling of her bones in her shoulders, clenched in my hands.  I will never forget the sight of her eyes, so different from her usual collected confidence, wide in terror; I can still hear her short panicked screams and whimpers.  I hate the way he respects me, and the way he forced her against the wall, and how he takes time to kiss me softly, and that I can feel her supple unresisting mouth against my violent ravaging one.

     Sometimes I forget that it wasn't me, I feel a deep plunge of sickness in my stomach, and I get hot at the memory of forcing her down and thrusting, and giving her what she wanted, not wanted, deserved, but I don't want to believe that, I shouldn't, but sometimes I do.  I believe that I had a right to punish her for everything she did, but then I remember her crying whimpers and I want to scream with disgust at myself.  But I didn't do it, Max did, and that makes it even worse, because I gave myself to him by choice.  I made love to him and the entire time was one long flash of him making love to her and I was him.  But it wasn't making love.  I thought maybe she had seduced him, I blamed it all on her, but now I know, she didn't want what he was doing.  Why do I have to see it? to feel it? to be him?  I've been avoiding him since I saw it, since I raped her.  I can accuse myself of it, but I can't accuse Max.  I married him.  But god, I've heard her scream and whimper, she wouldn't have screamed except in pleasure if she was with me.  I would have spent time on her neck and her lips, her collarbones and between her breasts.  But she's gone and the bill is far too high to pay.

Continue to Chapter 31

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