Jan 27, 2013

Chapter 3, Part 2

The chapters are starting to get longer. Chapter 3 is about four "parts."  Most of these are still rough drafts, but before I put them up I'm at least trying to make them coherent. Let me know what you think! Chapter 3, Part 2:

Everything was stone. Greta walked from her building to the metro unfeeling and unnoticing. Everything went grey scale. With each step she couldn’t remember the last. Had she just bumped in to someone? Had a bird been singing? All she could see was the tunnel in front of her disappearing just as quickly behind her.

Greta couldn’t remember why she was sad. Was she even sad? She didn’t particularly feel anything save a need. A need to be somewhere, anywhere but here. Surrounded by all these people smiling and laughing and crying and frowning. How were they doing that? Her face felt so foreign. Everything felt foreign.  

 She thought maybe she was compartmentalizing. She did that, sometimes. Prided herself on shoving her love, her grief, her canker sores, down in to her pinky toe where she didn’t have to think about them. But when one removes something from a space, the space remains. The space is felt. Empty, dead weight that sits inside the body. It’s worse than anything compartmentalized because it has no origin and no end, it’s a dreadful filler until the person is willing to accept why it’s there. If they ever can. If they ever know. Empty, dead weight.

Greta sludged through the metro doors with the rest of the rabble, clutching her stomach. It hurt, but she was fine. She made her way to an opening in the moss of crowd. With one hand on a pole and the other her stomach, she was fine. Phantom pains or hunger pains, they meant nothing. There was nothing left to hurt her.

“Excuse me, excuse me are you alright?”

“She’s definitely breathing. Probably just another drunk.” Déjà vu. Greta shook her head, trying to dump the women’s voices and accompanying memories out of her head.

“Well that’s great for her, isn’t it? Has a whole bench when the place is so packed.”

“She probably…”

“Yeah, whatever.” The two girls walked away, revealing the object of their conversation. A woman, catawampus on the bench who was indeed taking up the whole thing. Greta blinked.

The woman wore a coat with fur trimming. She had black leather gloves and was clutching her brand name purse. Her eyes were almost entirely white by the fog that covered them. She was the same woman Greta has rescued earlier and she hadn’t moved an inch.

Not only frozen in time, she was frozen. She looked cold and lifeless, much worse than the morning. Her skin looked like paper. Her eyes white. Her finger nails grey. A thin stream of drool trailed from her mouth. Sure she was breathing, but for how much longer?

This really wasn’t something Greta wanted to deal with now. Why was the woman her responsibility? She had rescued her once today, that should be enough.

An automated voice enveloped the bus, interrupting the insect buzz for a few seconds. Greta’s stop was next. She peered down at the woman, frozen and sick looking. She should go to a hospital. By the looks of her she probably had insurance. If Greta had seen her walking on the street she would have assumed the woman came from a big family with old money. Honestly, Greta probably wouldn’t have seen the woman on the street, she wore the kind of clothes that alluded to blackened town cars. The woman wasn’t riding in a town car, though. Here the woman was. Dirty and rotten and lying on a metro bench. What does that mean? Greta would take the down and out rich woman to the hospital? Maybe pay for her bills and patiently sit with her like she was some prodigal daughter? Greta didn’t even do that with her own father.

The doors opened. Eyes forward, Greta pushed her way to them. She stepped on to the cool, concrete metro station and tried to forget the woman on the train.


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