I was back at work, it had been a month since my attack. I wasn't ready for therapy. My mom begged for me to talk to someone. "Esme it will help." She stood stirring the sauce. I quietly pulled out the dishes, "Thanks for your concern, but I'm ok." Alice stood quietly, pouring the glasses of wine. "Esme it was a traumatic event. I just don't want you holding it all in." I looked at her, "Enough already. I'm not going. You tried this before. I'm not talking about it. He's been arrested, so back off." Alice stayed quiet. "You've gone through so much." I left the plates, and walked out of the kitchen. "Ez wait up." Alice hurried behind me.
I walked upstairs to my old room, and slammed the door shut behind me. I paced the room fuming. My knuckles were white as I gripped my head, pulling my hair. "Ez?" Alice spoke softly outside the door. "Baby girl it's just me. May I come in." I sighed, and that was her answer. She slipped in through the narrow opening, and shut the door behind her. The click echoed so loudly, I could swear people at the Space Needle could have heard it. "She just can't leave it the hell alone. I'm fine. What doesn't she get about that?" Alice walked over and sat on the edge of the bed. "She means well. Now before you bite my head off, listen. You are her only child. She couldn't protect you from Charles. She's watched you lose your husband, and daughter in the blink of an eye. Now this on top of it. She's just a worried mother. Esme you're not the only one affected by this." I looked at Alice, "I'm saying it once. I'm fine. I don't need therapy, because it never happened." Alice spoke softly, "Just because he used a condom," I looked at her, "I could be a bitter ex, just looking to hurt his reputation." Alice looked around the room. "Still the same." I just nodded. The conversation hadn't gone as Alice had hoped. Me 1, Alice 0
My dad came up and knocked on the door, "Girls dinner." I opened the door, "I will have wine for dinner." My dad sighed, "I heard the whole thing. If you choose to go that's fine. If you choose not to, that's fine also. I can't force you to do something you don't want to do. Your mother," my dad used air quotes, "suggesting" well it's not her place honestly. She shouldn't have kept harping on it either. Please don't drink, it won't get anywhere tonight except an escalated fight." I turned and looked at Alice. Quickly she put her hand up gesturing a, "I'm not going to say anything" in at me. My mom yelled up, "Dinner let's go." So I strode past my dad, and Alice followed behind.
We sat down at the table. Beef with peppers, onions, broccoli, water chestnuts, and carrots. My mom had also made rice to go along with dinner. I took some of each, and quietly and started to eat. "Babe this is delicious." My dad ate a little to fast enjoying his meal. "Thank you. It really is so easy to make." She looked smiled, but underneath she was like a hawk. She could see through the fine lines, and I was her prey. "I'd love to learn how to make it Elizabeth." Alice smiled, patting her mouth with a napkin. I rolled my eyes shoving a forkful in my mouth. "Esme slow down, or you'll choke." I took a swig of the wine. "Esme!" My mothers voice was stern, and her piercing blue eyes were on me. I dropped the fork on the plate, and chugged the rest of my wine. "I'm done." I shoved back from the table. She set down her fork, and looked at me, "Are we still being a child because I am clearly concerned about you. You're drinking and," I sat there gawking at her, "Are you off your fucking rocker lady? Seriously a glass of wine, and it's the cheap shit. Seriously get the hell off your horse. Well you only have a pony, but your ego has you thinking it's much more." My mother scowled at me, "I never raised you to speak to me like that." I laughed, "You're right, you didn't. You just don't know when to give it up. You're so far up my ass; your head may appear on my shoulder in the next minute or two." My dad nearly choked, and Alice's jaw dropped open.
I raised an eyebrow, and poured myself more wine. I leaned back in my chair, and surveyed the room. My mother sat there with her mouth gaping. My dad looked at Alice, who was slowly reconnecting her jaw, to her skull. "Now let's make this utterly clear." There was a slick, yet serious tone to my voice. "There will be no more, giving me a hard time. My choices I make, are mine; and mine alone. You have all rights to feel what you feel. I do appreciate your concern. However I will not be bullied, or alienated into speaking to someone about my attack. It happened almost ten years, and now a month ago. I'm a big girl, and I need to live my life. I've lost top much in these past months, then I care to discuss. So let's finish dinner, and have desert, and enjoy one another's company. If there's the slightest bit of tension, I will see myself out. I am quite capable of calling a cab, and retrieving my car tomorrow. Now are we clear?" Everyone nodded. I quietly finished my dinner, while a silent conversation using only eyes, and facial expressions was conducted around me.
Once we were all done, I cleared the table. I brought all the dishes out, and loaded the dishwasher. Alice cleared her throat gently, "I think you really hurt your mother in there." I looked at her, "So I'm supposed to feel bad. I asked her to leave it alone. I have Rosalie's number." Alice placed her small hand on top of mine, "Ez you need to talk about it. Otherwise it will just kill you. You blow up one day, and ultimately regret it. Your mom means well." I looked at Alice, "You enjoy sex. You love it. Can you fathom the idea, just for a minute not being in control? Shit I'm not talking like your bdsm boyfriends in books. I mean physically immobilized. Being beaten, and consciousness hanging on by a thread. Fear of what may happen if you say something. Yeah because talking about it, and being offered sympathy doesn't do it for me. Now he's gotten away with it." Alice was on the verge of tears, "Ez I didn't think of it like that. I just thought talking about it," She gulped for air. I sighed and hugged her, "It's just not something that I really can divulge. Your first time is supposed to be magical, and amazing. Mine was in his bedroom, and I had no choice." Alice had tears streaming, and she hugged me back, "I won't push it." I finally let out a sigh of relief. She now understood.
We wrapped up desert, and I just needed to go home. "Are you ok to drive?" My dad asked. "It was a glass of wine. I'm ok. I will call you when I get in." He smiled, and hugged me, "Sorry about earlier. Your mom gets a bit worked up since everything. She's been reading a lot online about PTSD." I looked at him, "If, or when I'm ready I have someone to talk with. Right now there's nothing to talk about. Please tell her I'm going to be ok." He smiled and kissed my forehead, "I will, and be careful." I smiled, "Always am." I quietly left the house, pulling the door shut behind me. The clicking of the heals on my boots, were the only noise outside with me. I unlocked the doors, and climbed in shutting the door. I set my left overs, and desert on the passengers side floor. I exhaled, and looked at the house. I didn't say anything to my mom, nor did she make an attempt with me. I didn't care if she was hurt, she needed to feel this to my point. Alice knocked on the drivers side window. "Hey I'm heading out now as well. Your place?" I shrugged, "Your choice." She smiled, "See you at home honey." She winked at me, gave a small wave; and disappeared into her car. The porch light shut off, and that was my cue to leave.
Something fluttered in my chest. I'm not quite sure what happened. It was the simplest of words, "See you at home honey." God was I that starved for love. I wasn't quite sure. Being brought up with a tight knit Christian mother, well I suppressed a lot of who I was. She was accepting of anyone. I never really knew where I fit in. I seemed to just be a people pleaser. Sadly that's why I was hurt by Charles. He said he loved me, and the bullshit of, "Esme if you love me." That's what happened. So many hand jobs, then he pushed it farther. Then I wasn't good enough. That's when my cousin was better. Shit he'd never pass up on a blow job, but I couldn't take him as deep. She probably could have swallowed the son of a bitch whole. I often wondered if I googled Anaconda if she’d show up. The title would read, “Woman swallows man whole while giving a blow job.” I smirked at the thought of the headline.
We were back at my house. I pulled in behind Alice. She hopped out of her Porsche, with her purse in hand. I killed the engine, and retrieved my bags off my passengers seat. She stood grinning, waiting for me to hop out. I grabbed my keys from the ignition, opening the door and sliding out. I bumped it shut with my hip. I was very aware of Alice’s eyes on my body, watching how it moved. The twinkle in her eye, was caught in her smile as she locked eyes with me. “You ok?” I smiled walking over to her. She nodded, and walked with me. She was close to me. That fury of butterflies resurfaced again. I slipped my key in the lock. Click, and I pushed the door open. I motioned for Alice to step in ahead of me. She walked over, setting her purse down, and hung up her coat. I shut the door, making my way over and dumping my stuff. I hung my coat on the hook beside the one that was Scotts. “He’d be proud of you.” I smiled, “Just need to move on right.” Alice frowned at my remark. I walked past her into the kitchen.
I rummaged through the fridge, and ended up with a peach yogurt. “Girl you need to eat. Yogurt will only do so much.” I sighed, rolling my eyes, “Don’t start Alice. I don’t need,” She placed one of her delicate fingers against my lips, “What you need is to relax.” She slowly held my face in between her small, gentle hands. I looked at her. She smiled, and stood up on her tippy toes. A soft kiss was placed against my lips. My eyes shut, as I drank in the moment, and the emotions that came with it. I dropped the yogurt, my hands moving to hold her close to me. I returned the kiss. She pushed me back against the refrigerator, her hands moving to my hair. After several minutes, and heavy breathing, her soft lips separated from mine. “I’m so sorry. I shouldn’t have done that.” She quickly turned away from me, and I caught her wrist. “Relax ok.” She turned back looking at me, “I just felt this impulse.” I nodded, “Don’t worry. I’ve felt butterflies tonight twice when you looked at me. She smiled, “I never expected you to return the kiss. Esme I’ve loved you forever. I never pushed it because I just assumed.” I nodded, “My mom is a religious woman, who is ok with everyone else being who they are. When it comes to her own daughter, and I quote, “I’d know if my own daughter were bi-sexual.” Alice’s eyes showed the pain she felt hearing that. “Why weren’t you yourself with me. You’ve hid so many secrets from me.” I looked at her, “I needed to stay quiet, because I had to pretend to be something I wasn't.” Alice looked at me, and held my hands, “Be yourself with me. I need the real Esme. I want the real Esme. I want to love the real Esme.” I smiled, and leaned in kissing her once again. She smiled, and returned the kiss. She gently broke free, and picked up the yogurt, and put it back in the fridge. “Come relax with me beautiful.” She took my hand, and led me to the couch.