Freedom

She slumps in to the chair, cursing her luck. “Fuck! The lights are out”, opens her bag and takes out her cigarette pack. Her hands are shaking, she looks down at them and wonders how it is getting worse and lets out a shaky laugh. With fumbling hands she lights a cigarette and takes a long puff to calm down herself.

There is absolute silence around her, like stillness in the air. She closes her eyes; they hurt even though its pitch black in her apartment, the electricity has been cut off. She reminds herself to go pay the bills tomorrow. A long sigh escapes her lips as she continues to smoke with trembling hands.

She tries to recollect the events that have led to this but can’t seem to put the pieces together, it’s like too many scenes are playing in her head at once, driving her crazy. Insane. She knows she needs to calm down to function but she can’t. As the cigarette runs out she blindly reaches for the pack to take another one.

She exhales slowly, trying to relax her body but another attack of violent cough hits her and the cigarette falls to the ground from her fingers. She was 35, alone and dying. Never had she imagined her life would collapse like this around her. Words in her head are so loud today, drowning her, reaching out and pulling her inside in an absolute abyss of darkness, she wants to fight but she is tired. Oh so tired, she wants to let go and sleep now. Sleep peacefully but life wouldn’t even allow her the freedom of death.

She curls up in to ball on the carpet which has thickened with layers of dust, from the corner of her eyes she can see the burnt corners of carpet and closes her eyes, a fresh wave of memories have hit her again. With her eyes closed, she can see it all with absolute clarity that day, he is back in her head and he is screaming and she is screaming back at him, there are tears and anger and hatred. So much hatred, she sees him walking out and a silent plea escapes her lips “Don’t” but he was gone. He was gone and it was all her fucking fault. She was so angry that day, so angry that she had tried to burn down the carpet because it was the first thing they had bought together. She remembered, oh the agony. The anger, followed by fear, heartbreak and tears and her attempt to quickly save whatever was left of their memory together.

It was an ugly carpet, deformed, dusted, burnt from edges but she kept it. Despite how many times she had been told to get rid of it, she didn’t. People didn’t get it, it reminded her of them together, him but most of all, and it reminded her of her. The tattered piece, ugly, incomplete, rough around the edges and never to be loved.

Another cough and her body convulsed, bringing her back to present. She opens her eyes and tries to stand up but she has no energy left in her body and she can already feel another memory taking over her back, this time it’s her mom. A wretched sob escapes her lips mixed with laughter, she knows she is dying, oh how she would love to die with a happy memory but is there any? She desperately waits but nothing.

She feels her lungs filling up with smoke and her eyes stinging, she couldn’t care less though. She knows it the cigarette she dropped; she can see the carpet dissolving into the flames, her mind tells her to move. To save herself but her heart tells her otherwise. The fire will burn the memory forever, that’s what she needs. It’s getting difficult to breathe and she can hear someone screaming and knocking at the door, her eyes are closed and a smile spreads over her face. Her torment is over, it’s time. She knows she will be okay as she feels the heat envelope her.

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