'You know you're worthless, right?'
I froze in the the middle of my room as I was about to leave to go do...something...dishes maybe - anything on an empty time slot - as my darker inner voice spoke.
'Block it out, block it out, block it out,' said the mantra of the lighter side of me, the fragment that was on my side when it came to merely existing, never thinking, never stopping. Just doing. Never remembering...remembering wasn't good.
But the side of me - the masochistic side that longed for pain, that whispered to me that pain would be a good thing, that it would help - was violently against both of us, and took every chance she got to try to tempt me to her way of thinking.
'Shut-up,' she snapped at my lighter side, before returning her attention back to me in a much softer, kinder voice, 'Please don't block me out honey. You know I'm just saying what you already know to be true. Why else would he leave you, hm? You're just not worth it. Come to think about it...he's probably found some nice, immortal, interesting vampire to be with right about now. Even with that crystal clear vampire memory of his, I doubt he ever thinks about you. Hmm... sad, isn't it? It was all for nothing.'
"Oh god..." I whispered, closing my eyes as my knees trembled, threatening to bring me down to the floor...down, down, down...as if I could go down any farther. "Please," I whimpered, speaking for the first time I could remember in...how long? Everything bled together. Bled. There was something important, significant even, about that. What was it? I thought I knew. I tried to remember...before stopping. Dangerous, dangerous activity. "Please...just stop. I don't...want to think. I don't want to remember. I don't...I don't..." I begged. Begged to myself. How pathetic. Was that what I was now? Well, I already knew the answer to that one. Not even the lighter side of me could deny it now.
'How dare you!' hissed the light in my mind to the darkness that was ruler of the confined space now. Slowly encroaching, enveloping everything. It had captured my heart, and was almost complete in it's total annihilation of my brain. I had to say though, the light in me was making a valiant effort. I think it still managed to covet a small, cob-web filled corner of my mind. 'What the hell is wrong with you?' she demanded to the darkness, fighting for me. For us? Or was this me? I didn't know anymore, I didn't know...'How can you enjoy this? How can you want this for us? Why can't you at least try to make this better for all of us? Why can't you just try to forget like the rest of us?'
'Well, Bella, look at this,' crooned the darkness to me with apparent delight, 'Do you hear this? Only full of questions, isn't she, the light inside us? But the darkness...oh yes, I hold answers. Just come to me. Just succumb. It'll be almost easy, sweetheart, I swear it...'
I had collapsed to me knees by this point, frantically breathing, doubled over as my arms wound themselves around me and I clutched myself in fear of slipping away into that darkness that so temptingly called to me. Why not give in? She said it'd be almost easy...And almost was better than anything else I had right now. Because what did I have? Who was I? What was I? What day was it again? Wait, giving in was the original question...yes, why didn't I?
'Charlie,' whispered the light from the corner of my mind. But even to me, in my semi-conscious state, it sounded feeble. One person? What was that and why did it matter? It didn't seem like a fair trade.
"Oh no," I muttered, slowly lifting myself up from my crouched over position of unbearable pain. "Stop, stop, stop it! Can't...keep thinking like this. Can't keep thinking. No. Must. Get. Up. Must. Do. Something. Anything."
'Shower,' whispered my light side enthusiastically. 'A nice safe shower will be fine.'
'Yeah, be safe, in the shower Bella,' sneered the blackness, and I stumbled again as I choked back a strangled dry sob and clung desperately to my door frame. I glanced quickly over my shoulder to my alarm clock to distract myself, even if it was merely for a moment. The clock was blinking 6:33 in the a.m. Hadn't I woken up at three something? Had it really been three hours that my mind's battle had taken place in? Time was an oddity to me, and it didn't matter, so long as it passed. As long as I was one second closer to an inevitable end. One that would no doubt be a relief.
'One that could'vebeen avoided," commented my mind slyly. 'Not anymore though.'
I shook my head slowly, clearing it of the traitor thoughts, before I used all of my willpower to shove both voices out of my mind. "Good-bye," I muttered, wanting to hold them both at bay for as long as I could.
'Hey, no, wait!' was all that the darkness could say before I pushed her away.
'Bella...' said the light before she, too, was gone.
And I had to wonder, with darkness and lightness gone, with both parts of me vanished, what was left?
What? What? What?
I turned on the scalding hot water of the shower and stepped in. Angry red patches burst out all over my skin as the burning steam hit it, but I only noticed it when I looked down. I really couldn't feel anything anymore, I thought, in something that maybe almost sounded like amazement. Anything except that occasional spasm of pain. But it doesn't last. Nothing lasts.
It seemed like my days (What was a day? Time. Just time. And time was an oddity. Wait, did, I already say that? It's all starting to blur again...) were filled with only two things. The first being nothing. The second being mantras. Every thought, every rare, painful, forced thought, was repeated. Because I couldn't function more than the basics without telling myself twice. Reminding myself twice, three times, four...Especially the thoughts that weren't painful. I liked to repeat those. Sometimes I could do it all day (Day? What is with this day concept again?) because the distraction was like a drug. Anything that distracted was something I could grasp on to. Even if it was routine. Even if it was repetitive. Even if...Wait, what was I thinking? I wasn't sure anymore. I wasn't sure of anything anymore. Not anything, not anything, not anymore. Not ever since -
I shut off the water and though the bathroom still steamed I was frigidly cold again. I was always cold. Always. Just like I could've been. Just like he -
"No!" I gasped to myself quietly, quietly to hide the pain. That's all I ever did. Hide, hide, hide. Hide behind emptiness, behind blissful blankness. Hiding the pain. Pain, pain, pain.
I took a deep breath. And I gasped again, startled. That hurt. Breathing hurt. Wow...I found it almost comical. Wait, it was funny! Why? I didn't know. But breathing hurt! It hurt! It really did.
And I let out a laugh.
In the small, confined space, much like my mind, I heard a sound echo deafeningly. I frowned. What was that sound? I had just laughed, but this wasn't what I was hearing.
It seemed to me like what I was hearing was the cry of the desperate. It actually sent a spasm of fear through me at it's echo. Like the mighty beasts of the world, this sound howled, and I could hear torture in the small, quick, reverberating note. It was manic. It was insane. It wasn't a laugh. It was pitiful. It wasn't me. It wasn't me. It couldn't be me. Could it?
I turned slowly to look in the mirror. It was completely fogged up, but I reached out a hand to wipe it clean. My hand moved slowly across the smooth, reflective surface, and I felt something strange happening. As my hand wiped an area clear of fog, it seemed like my eyes were becoming sharper, more attuned to the world. Or were they merely being defogged as well? Little droplets, little beads of water were still left over from my hand's work. Residue. But I could see. And I wished to god that I couldn't.
This girl...this thing...it wasn't me. It wasn't. It wasn't.
She looked back at me, and I could've been looking at a corpse for all the difference it made. My eyes slowly raked from my feet upward. My body was thin...terribly thin. Sickly, anorexic thin. When had I last eaten? I didn't know. My ribs were showing, and my skin was so sallow, so sick, so disgusting. And then my eyes finally landed on my face. I swallowed, and I saw the girl's throat contract briefly. Her face, my face, was so thin, the cheek bones very prominent, but not in a beautiful way. It was cheeks sunken in thinness.
My hair was not in good shape. Even damp, I could see it was tattered and torn, from all the nights (Every. Single. Night.) when I woke, screaming, clawing at my hair.
And my eyes...I couldn't recognize them. The last time I looked at them...how many days, months, years, centuries had it been?...when I had last looked in a mirror I could've sworn I'd seen some kind of life in them, some kind of joy. My brow crinkled in confusion as the alien word ran through my mind. Joy? Joy? Joy? Joy? What was that? And who felt it?
It was too much. Bile rose in my throat as I looked upon this fuck of a girl. This barren wasteland in her eyes. This breathing corpse, who was much less beautiful than one. I couldn't take it. I dropped to my knees after turning around and knelt in front of the porcelain bowl and threw up. Threw up after looking at my own reflection.
Was this why I was so thin? I wondered. And wondered again, back to when the last time a morsel passed my lips. I drew up blank, but I didn't have much time to dwell on it.
My stomach was heaving. I was gagging, trying to get some food substance to come up. That one last scrap of hope that I wasn't dead, that I wasn't empty. That I was...something. Anything. Even some vile, disgusting creature that couldn't even look at herself without making sick.
No food substance crossed my mouth, but putrid, yellow, disgusting, burning, itching, clawing it's way up through my throat - bile - finally shoved it's way out of me. Away from me. Away from me. Away...just like...h- No stop! Just like everyone. That was safe. Much safer. Be safe...
More burning yellow liquid that tore my throat and burned it, shredding it, and made me feel clammy and hot at the same time fell from my lips, and then finally, mercifully, I was done.
I slumped against the cold tile. Cold, cold, cold...I couldn't take it anymore.
I needed some release. I needed something. I needed, I needed, I needed...
I knew who I needed.
And I knew I couldn't have him. Because he didn't love me.
"Oh god..." I whispered again, and I felt something scratching itself up from inside my throat. At first I thought it was bile, but then I realized it was something much different. It was my release. If only briefly. If only for one glorified moment...
And I screamed. Screamed so loudly, just me, a sound that echoed again. Echo, echo, echo...Scream. Scream. Scream. And I did. I screamed until I could taste blood from the torn tissues in my throat, as I finally let the floodgate out. I thought about him. How he was probably happy. How I wanted him to be. How it made me miserable to still love him so much, to still love, to still love, to still not be loved...I couldn't hate him. I could just hate myself. And that would have to do for now. And then I let myself become limp, and I couldn't even cry, as much as I wanted to. There wasn't that much in me. There was nothing in me. Nothing, nothing, nothing...Not even sickness. Not anymore.
I didn't know how I long laid there, or how long I was listening. But there was only silence. Charlie didn't come running, as I thought maybe he would. No, he wouldn't. He would think it was just me waking up from my nightmare again. Again, again, again. There was no difference, I thought, between screams of pain.
I was alone. But this time, I couldn't bring myself to repeat it.