Short Stories

Bro… ken…

Broken

THE ROOM’S layout is typical of a young girl—woman, which it should be. With shades of pale-pink and royal purple. There are some abstract art pictures over the wallpaper and also, the “Heroes Corner” with delicious men in the pictures. Men, any sane woman would want. Then, there’s the teddy-bears and nice bedding. The desk against the wall at the window, with a few sheets of paper covered with poems. And a love letter from a stranger.

However, her true love is on the table, in a picture, both of them, together. They look so happy and free, in that picture…

The door flings open, she storms in at full speed. “I don’t want to hear it!” she yells, drowning out the whispering voice. Suddenly, she sees only white in front of her while wondering what is happening…

“I just want to tell you what’s going on,” Wes desperately pleaded to explain.

Teresa didn’t give him a chance; she walked to her bed, plopping herself down, laying over half of it, not caring.

Wes could only stare at her; he knew it would happen…still he needed to get through to her.

She turned and looked at him with teary red, light-blue eyes. The white makeup around her eyes, started to run. Her cheeks went all red and she was sobbing again. Her beautiful blue dress had suffered as well; it was drenched in red stripes and white spots—of the kind that would never come out.

Wes wanted to move closer, but didn’t think it is a good idea.

“Why are you still here? I don’t want to see you again! Or, hear what you think we should do! I know what you want to say, so give me one reason why I should make this easier for you?” she asked, exhausted.

Teresa cannot move around easily at times, as if something was draining her strength…other times, she moved so clumsy.

Wes couldn’t understand how she could do that, one moment she seemed as deadly as a cobra and then as gentle as a lamb. One of the many reasons why he was so crazy about her. “I want you to listen to me carefully…I have to tell you…” Wes tried again.

Unexpectedly, she jumped off the bed and grabbed her favorite teddy bear, the one from their first year’s anniversary together. She flung it, making any boy jealous of the force she generated.

“What? Wow!” he called out, dodging at the same time.

This causes her to miss, hitting the white wall.

The bear remained suspended, hanging there in mid-air, and she wondered what was going on? The silence in her room she appreciated now. There was far too much she needed to plan still. But she couldn’t clearly hear what song was playing on the radio. She needed to concentrate hard. Then she turned to the radio, getting closer to the speaker, standing on the floor.

At that moment, the black box of the radio started to sink into the white floor. She couldn’t seem to remember, did she change the color of her room again?

Wes stretched his arms out, palms open to her, hoping she’d believe he just wanted to tell her the truth, “Please listen to me, I must tell you something—”

“I know you must have a different girl, one who’s going to the prom with you! This is also the reason why I’ve not seen you in the last few days! I don’t want to hear what you’ve got to say!” she shouted, while she’s once again, forced re-fit her prom dress. Finding a new date and changing her dress at the same time. She pressed her palms against her ears and spun around so quickly that she fell. When she opened her eyes, she saw that she was on the white floor, soft material in cushion shapes around her.

“I don’t have another girl…” Wes said softly, knowing she didn’t care. He saw she was in pain, seeing her expression.

Suddenly, blood runs from her nose. She screams, but no sound comes from her mouth, she pounds the floor with both her fisted hands…

“What’s wrong, did you hurt yourself?” he asks, kneeling by her.

“I do not want to hear it! You’re just lying to me, I cannot trust you! What is going on?” The questions seem to echo through her mind, as silence fills the white room.

Then, she faints again.

Wes stayed right there with her.

Teresa seemed to be lying quietly and peacefully on the floor.

“If only you could rest. If only you will listen, then you’d understand,” Wes whispers in her ear.

~~***~~

THE SUN rises and then sets again, She doesn’t talk to Wes…Time passes.

“Wes, where are you?” she cries out in terror.

“I’m here with you, I’m not far away. We just have to talk,” he said softly.

Teresa jumps off the bed and stops before she walks into the door. She looks past the door and sees something that makes her smile briefly. “I just want to get out of this white nightgown, you should get out of the room for a moment…” she said, blushing, “Wait—suddenly, I can’t get out of the dress, can you help me?” she moves to the cupboard, taking out a white shirt, white shorts and white socks, which will fit perfectly with the white sneakers…

Wes walks closer to help her.

Unexpectedly, Teresa turns around, moving to the window, opening it. “The sun will shine nice today. Would you come with me to the lake?” she asked happily, turning to get ready, hop-scotching toward him.

Wes waits while she passes him, before he says anything, “If that’s what you want to do? But before we go, we have to talk about something,” he says, looking worried.

“I just want to get something out of the closet I can wear outside in the hot sun. You do know its summer and we could possibly go for a swim, but even better; what about a picnic! I haven’t been in forever—such a long time. I really—can’t remember how long ago, I last was on a picnic,” she wondered aloud, “Was the last one not when Wes took me?” It seemed like she couldn’t remember so well, not even when last she was last in a swimming pool. She flips around again, walking to the closet, opens the door and sticks her entire head inside. She looks, but sees that everything inside at a glance seems so similar…

Wes can only keep watching her.

At the moment, she doesn’t feel so comfortable in her own skin anymore. “You must go, so I can get myself ready. We don’t want my mom and dad to get the wrong idea, now do we? That will surely cause, us not see much of each other, and they’d not allow you to come visit me. You’ve not been here in a while. I’d hate for something like that to keep us apart…although we’ve been together, I cannot just go blabbing it out at them, can I? I’ll call you when I’m finished.”

Wes shakes his head in seeming confusion and heads toward the door.

Teresa pauses and looks at the clock. Shockingly, she sees, half the day has passed.

“Is that the time, I did not know that it was lunch already? Wes, we have to make sure that we take an umbrella with us, the clouds coming in looks ominous. If not, I’m going to burn badly…whether those clouds bring rain, I still don’t want to be soaked,” she said, looking out through the window at the white clouds, rolling in on them.

“We can do it, but just wait with your plans, we need to talk. There’s something very important, that we have to talk about!”

With this unknown shock pulsing through her, Teresa stumbles past Wes and drops onto her bed. He wasn’t quick enough to catch her—she wasn’t upset with him, she couldn’t hardly even catch herself…Fortunately, her white bed; could do it safely.

“I FEEL drunk; everything is turning so fast, what is going on? I know that something is wrong, but what is it? Why can’t I stop all this spinning? Why do I get tired so quickly? Why is my room turning so often?” Teresa screams in pain.

The bed, on which she lies, slowly drops away into the white and then she finds herself on the pillowed floor again. She’ still on her back and just stares at the white ceiling.

Before she could understand what was happening, the closet disappears along with her table, with all her letters from Wes. It all is now moving away from her; she desperately reaches out to save the letters, but it doesn’t work—the table is moving too fast for her.

“What can I do to help? Why don’t you answer me? What’s wrong, are you hurt? What is it?” Wes asks while sounding terrified.

“Help me Wes, I’m going away and don’t understand how! I’m really scared and everything around me is becoming darker! The room just keeps on turning, and I’m trying my hardest to stop it! It just doesn’t work! I’m struggling to get off the bed and my legs aren’t working either! I’m feeling nauseous, but how? I’ve not eaten today, how is it possible! My headache also doesn’t want to go away and it causes my nose to bleed!” Teresa shouts, her intense anxiety just keeps on growing

Tears roll down Wes’s cheeks and he crouches by her side. Her head and legs start jerking, there doesn’t seem to be any rest for her. “Teresa—Teresa you must fight against it! That’s all you need to do. I am here for you and I will help as far as I can, but then you also need to help. I can’t do everything alone! I’ll stay here as long as you need me…” Wes tries once more, passionately helping the best he could.

~~***~~

A MAN in a white coat and two others peer through the small window at the young woman in the white pillowed room.

“Doctor, how long do you think it will take before Teresa can leave here?” her soul-wrenched mother want to know.

“It will all depend on her…What’s currently going on with her. No one will probably ever know. This is the best place I can treat your daughter, overcoming the accident…Dealing with the young man’s death. Accepting it and processing what happened,” he soothed with great sympathy.

“Doctor?” Teresa’s father asks, “I know that you have more than one patient who you’ve treated here, but she’s our only child. Wes’s death—lost us one child already, he was part of the family—we really don’t want to lose Teresa too. You have to help us, you have to help her, please!”

The doctor looked at both parents, then tears welled in his eyes. “If you think I have a tough job helping her. I can only guess at how you all must feel? But it doesn’t even come close to what she has to deal with, endure and handle. She’s been here barely a week and it will solely depend on her, as to how long we’re going to struggle, reaching through to her. Please, just keep holding on—for her sake,” he said.

They remained silent as tears drenched their cheeks.

“What we do know is he died in her arms and her blue dress became drenched in blood and tears.” He stared at them, seeing their pain. “I believe she’s living in the time when Wes was still alive. If she moves on, she’ll have to accept his death,” he tried to explain, “She’s alone in the room and in a straight-jacket, because she tried hurting herself and others. It is very hard to know when I’ll reach her.”

AS A GROUP, they turn, and walked down the long white corridor…

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