Just Listen

You don't need to sit and watch some movie. You don't even need to read a diary or some journal. All you need to do is listen. Is that difficult? No? Good. This is my story. Just l i s t e n. -Alex Piper

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1. Chapter 1

I sit down at the table, across from my boyfriend, Ricky, after having gotten my drink from the barista. I smile and take a sip from the cup, not knowing that my smile was about to come right off my face.

"Alex, you better ease up on those latte things. I thought you were watching your weight?" I raise an eyebrow, and set the cup down on the table.

"It's straight, black coffee, Ricky. There's absolutely no calories in it." I pause. "And I am watching my weight." He doesn't say anything which is the worst he could do. Brings back too many memories. Like when- No! I am not going back there. I could see him pretending to look at me, but in reality? He's just looking over my shoulder at the preppy, perfect, slim, blonde, captain of the cheer leading team girl. Regina.

I shake my head and say, "I've had enough, Ricky. We're over." I start to stand up, but he grabs my wrist.

"Alex. Stop. You're not thinking clearly-" I yank my wrist out of his grip and cut him off by saying, "No. You're not thinking clearly. Is it because me, out of all people, is breaking up with you? Or is it because you were too busy staring at Regina?" By now I was already at the door, half the people in there, even Regina, were staring. "Don't look all innocent, Ricky. I saw you." I open the door and he starts to say my name, but once again, I cut him off.

"Don't," I begin, "deep down? You're glad it's over. You're just not glad that it happened in a public place. Well guess what? It did, and now? The, now single, jerk quarterback of the football team could date the preppy bitch cheer leading captain." I pause. "Just like the movies." I then walk out the open door, letting it close behind me.
I race home, ignoring the strange looks I get from strangers as I run past them. I get home, shutting the door behind me, and leaning back against. Then, and only then, did I allow myself to cry.
Once I regain myself, I walk into the kitchen, noticing a note on the island counter in cursive handwriting. My mom. I walk over to it, leaning my hip against the counter, picking it up and starting to read it.
"Alex, sweetie,
Your father and I went out for dinner. It's our anniversary, you know. Well, I just didn't want you to worry. There's homemade cookie dough ice cream in the freezer. Your favorite! Love,
Mom and Dad"
After reading the note, I set it back on the counter and turned towards the freezer, opening it, and pulling out the glass bowl of the homemade ice cream. I set it on the counter, grab a spoon, and plunge it into the ice cream, putting a spoonful in my mouth. I almost forgot how good my mom's homemade ice cream was. How it melted once it was in your mouth, the sweet, yet cold sensation filling your mouth. It's like-
Wait. What am I doing? I look down at the glass bowl of ice cream and immediately hate myself. I drop the spoon on the counter. I can't believe I just did that. "You're fat, Alex. F-A-T. Fat."
I continue to stare at the ice cream, as the voice continues, memories flooding back. I shake my head, snapping myself out of it before I break down and cry again. Instead? I run through my room and into the bathroom and shut the door, locking it. I then grab the green toothbrush, not the blue one, and kneel in front of the toilet. I kneel there, toothbrush in action, lurching forward each time something comes up until there is nothing left to come up. It doesn't hurt anymore. I've gotten to the point where if you asked me to throw up? I'd probably respond with, "Yeah. No problem." Might as well tattoo on my forehead, "Bulimic" or "Pro at purging". I shake my head, standing up, flushing the toilet, and putting the toothbrush back after washing it off. Grasping the sink, my back arched forward, I stare into the mirror, disgusted by what was staring back at me. I then stare at my collar bone, my hip bones, the gap between my legs. They are all clearly visible to the eyes. Yet to mine? I still see skin. No bones. Just fat. How could I have let it get this far?

"You're not good enough." The voice resounded in my head. Then I felt it again. The pain in my chest. I felt so alone. As I stare in the mirror, it's like my best friend, Ally, who killed herself, is standing right there beside me, rubbing my back in a comforting manner.
I stop staring in the mirror and lower my head, closing my eyes, one tear escaping. It's been four months since Ally's been gone and I still can't bear the emptiness that I feel ever since you left. I know you're looking down on me, willing me on. You don't want me to give up. I don't want me to either, but as I stand here? I can feel the strength you gave me, slowly slipping away. Yesterday, I sat in bed. My parents not knowing that I hadn't slept due to the joyous, yet nightmarish memories that started when you left.
I open my eyes, willing myself to look up and into the mirror. I do just that and I can hear myself saying, "I find it kinda funny, I find it kinda sad, the dreams in which I'm dying are the best I've ever had." but it doesn't quite sound like me.

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