Born to Die (Flash Fiction)

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  • Published: 15 Sep 2015
  • Updated: 14 Sep 2015
  • Status: Complete
She was only 24. I tried my best to steer her in the right direction, but there's only so much one man can do. Now, she will be beautiful forever.

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1. Born To Die

The last time I saw her, I was wishing her happy birthday. She coldly replied ‘It’s not my birthday’ - that's how much she'd tried to reinvent herself; she'd even changed her own birthday. She was nothing like the Jane I once knew from back home. I always get a bit teary when I remember those days…I guess I just became her manager out of necessity. I was the one constant in her life; I was always there through the ups and downs. People always think that we were married, but we weren’t. I was the only candidate for the job, as most guys either want to sleep with her or…that’s it. But I didn’t. It’s because I know the real her. Knew. She’s still just the girl that I used to play on the swings with. 

 

I remember the first time she got a bad review for one of her shows. She spent ages doing the whole crying, tantrums thing, and then went out partying with some models and took a load of drugs…leaving me holding her Blackberries, wishing the night away, as usual. I should have seen that as some kind of warning sign. Should have seen how easy it would be for her to stumble, again and again, until she slipped under. 

 

She never aged. She believed she could stay the same forever. I guess now she can.  

 

I wished her happy birthday. I’d got her a cake. And a gold ring. And other gifts from old friends and family back home. But she ordered me to put them away in a cupboard, and started talking on the phone to her stylist, asking…well, I say asking. Telling her to come round, right away. 

 

As she was about to leave, I told her I wanted to come. Launch parties for those kinds of clubs were always pretty crazy. But she said no; I didn’t look right. I should have been dressed properly. All the guilt, the shame…it all boils down to my clothes. She was right; I would never have got in. I should have tried harder. Thrown something on. But I was tired. We’d been arguing all day. I’d had to restrain her, to stop her from hitting her maid in anger. And I, in turn, had had to stop myself from hitting her. So selfish…but then, I was selfish too. I put my own feelings first. 

 

I never told her how beautiful she looked. The dress was custom made; she’d basically been sewn into it. And didn’t it show. It was part of her. She looked like a goddess. But I just took some paperwork upstairs and shouted down, telling her not to make too much noise when she got in. A door slam was her reply. 

 

I went to bed earlier than usual. And in bed, I was sweating. I was tossing and turning. I went to open the window, and as I did, I saw lights swimming up the driveway. Assuming it was her, I got back into bed. But then. That knock. I’ll always remember it. 

 

It’s so easy to die, isn’t it? It seemed like a normal night…well, as normal as nights are when you do the job I do. And then, within seconds, your whole life changes.

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