100 Themes 010 - Breathe Again

I couldn't think of this in any way but the most violent. It's not very long; it IS only a vignette, though.


His weight crushed down on me, arm pressing in under my chin. I opened my mouth, tried to draw a breath, but there was just nothing to pull in. I could feel the cold cobbles, wetness soaking into my shirt and pressing a pattern into my back.

He was crying. How strange, a part of me thought.

“Why did you have to do it? Why? God, why?” He was almost whining, and if we’d been in the middle of one of our many arguments I would have needled him for it. Is it any wonder I found comfort and safety in his brother’s arms?

I could feel something fuzzy and black growing at the back of my brain. My hands were still moving, autonomously scrabbling at his thick arm, but the rest of me was detached, in a warmer place than that rain-slicked Cardiff night. I was going to die, and suddenly it was a relief. An end to the nights spent in not speaking, watching crap TV, an end to the comments about my weight, to the nights he came home drunk. An end to his brother’s child, our child, the weight of biological guilt.

A foot lashed out from the right side of my blackening vision, and then his weight was off me. I could breath again, and it hurt. I gasped in agony. A stranger, no, it was George, was leaning over me. He’d saved me from his own brother. I curled up on the street and let the tears flow.