In the Garden [Prompt #69: Bitter]

quinta-feira, 4 de fevereiro de 2010

Title: In the Garden
Rating: PG13
Status of the list: 3/100
Prompt used: #69 - Bitter
Author's note: I wrote this a while ago, when I was in the midst of an emotional thunderstorm and needed an outlet. This piece is overly emotional by definition and really sappy in some parts, but it was good for a catharsis.


In the Garden

It’s a beautiful day, when every weather forecast predicted rain. The sun is shining and the clouds that you saw yesterday are now more seldom by the hour. You grin as you climb up the stairs to the white porch, and the small woman on the phone by the door greets you with a nod.

(is she really busy organizing things, or is she on the phone with a friend, telling her how rude the bridesmaids are, how drunk the best man was this morning, or how unsufferable the mother of the bride is?)

You nod, forcing your awkward side to stay inside your chest instead of crawling out of your every pore.

Are they

Yeah, go on in. the woman nods and as you buy time to thank her, you try desperately to remember her name. It’s something with a V. Vanessa. Virginia. Valerie. You can’t remember.


You push the door and walk into the house, closing the door behind you and leaning against it for a moment before you continue.

(You’re not supposed to be here. You’re supposed to be the one upstairs, being pampered, prepared, laughed with, instead of laughed at.)

Your aunt appears around the corner, her blonde hair tucked in a generous amount of hair pins and rolls.

Is Sandra out there?

(Sandra. You would have never gotten there.)

Yeah, I think she

Good, I need to talk to her.

Your aunt approaches the door and you straighten your back immediately, your skin missing the warmth of the wood. Your aunt opens the door and goes out, closing it behind herself.

The stairs are in front of you. First step, second, third. You end up running just so you don’t have to face the long walk up, the thoughts of despair and pain that you’re sure it would bring. The room is the first on the left, and you can already feel the lavender scent that seeps from the bride’s closet, where the dress lies.

They’re all bundled around her and as you walk in, she runs to you, her robe half undone and a wide smile on her face.

(you wish you could die. right then, so you wouldn’t have to face it all. the pride and joy of the parents, her smile as she sees him in the altar, the happy roar that follows the kiss. but she’ll never know, and you’ll never tell, and that’s all it’s always going to be.)

Abbie, you’re here! Amy and Jenna and Sarah were just telling me

Come and sit, Jess!

They were just telling me I should wear my hair up, but I want your opinion and

You’re beautiful either way, really. But let’s see

Come on, Jess, sit down!

Jessica obeys Sarah, one of her bridesmaids, and sits on the chair again. She’s beautiful, luminous, certain of a future so bright she can’t even look at it with bare eyes. You stand behind her, your dress still in its case in your arm, hanging like a dead cat. There’s no comparison. She’s the pretty one, you’re the strange cousin who will never get married for reasons no one will ever know.

(How would she react if she knew, really? Would it break it up? Would it make everything alright?)

You hold her hair up and then down, and all the bridesmaids stare at you. You hold it up again.

I say down. You have such great hair.

Her phone rings, and you recognize the custom ringtone. It’s him, of course, and she laughs like a child. She’s not supposed to talk to him before the wedding, it’s bad luck. Sarah takes the phone and throws it at you.

That’s a job for the maid of honor.

You can hear the resentment in her voice as you hold the metal phone in your hand. She was supposed to be the maid of honor, but to everyone’s surprise, Jess chose you over her. You’ll never know why.

You open the cap and put the phone to your ear. You try not to react as he speaks.

Hey sweetheart, I’m

It’s Abbie.



Hi, Abigail.

(Why does he have to be the only one to call you Abigail? Your own name becomes unbearable to you.)

She can’t talk. You know that.

I need to see you. I was going to ask her.


Come downstairs. The garden is free. We can talk.


Please, Abigail.

(You hear it in his voice, you hear the years and the youth and the promises whispered in your ear. You’re mine, you’re going to be mine forever, we’ll marry and have babies and)

Please come meet me. She has the rest of them to help her.



Jess is staring at you when you hang up, a curious expression in her face. You shrug it off.

He says he needs some help with ties or something. I’m going to go meet him.

But you have to

The girls are here to help you, sweetheart. My hair and makeup are done, I just need to get in the dress before the ceremony.

But you promised

I know, I’m sorry.

You lean against her and place a kiss on her forehead. You feel like Judas. She smiles and you turn around to leave the room.

He’s in the garden, waiting for you. He’s still wearing his jeans and t-shirt, no signs of the tuxedo he’ll have to wear for the wedding, or of the grease he’ll oint his hair with to try and tame it.

(He’s still the kid, the boy who knew too much, who loved too much, who felt too much.)

He turns around as you enter, and you look to see if there’s really no one around. He smiles and you feel the need to hold yourself up against something. You don’t, you can only look away and pretend you’re not affected in the least by his voice or his presence.

Thanks for meeting me, I’m

You’re getting married.

Yes, I am. Quite soon, actually.

And not to me, which is the strangest thing.




I’m sorry.

(You caved and allowed your heart to speak through your mouth. What a wrong, wrong thing to do)

What did you want to talk about?



No. Yes. Us.

There’s no us.

There was.

But there’s not anymore. You’re marrying my cousin.

I’m well aware of that.

Alright then.

(There’s a pause, a pause too long for you to bear and for him to stand quietly. There’s no right thing to say. You two have hurt each other so much, so deeply, and yet loved each other so fiercely, with such strength, that it becomes impossible not to believe you’re linked forever.)

Where are you going?

Upstairs. Jessie needs to get ready and I



Stay with me.

(His request is oh so pleasurable to you, but you know you can’t. Still, you want to.)

I can’t.

Why not? It’s not like we’re doing anything or

It hurts.


It hurts too much, Sebastian.

I know. It hurts me too.

Then why are you marrying her?

(Time stops. You count your own intakes of breath, they’re the only way you have to keep track of time, of reality. They ground you, like a rock that drags you to be bottom of a lake. You’re tied by the air that you breathe, and you can’t leave the place you’re in.)


(He speaks and you stop breathing. God, why do you put yourself through this?)

I didn’t mean

Yes, you did.

Yes, I did.

You stop counting your breaths when you realize he’s walking towards you. There’s a pause, right before he reaches you, and you stop breathing for a moment. And then it happens. His lips touch yours and your tongues entwine instantly. There was never a halfway with the two of you, you went from slapping each other’s faces to a full-blown make out session.

He’s there and he’s kissing you like he used to when you were seventeen, and suddenly, for just a minute, your world makes sense again. His hands come up to your back, to your neck, to your breasts, and you allow it, you let him feel you and taste you and lick you while you kiss him with fervor. There was never a halfway. There was only passion, raw and primal passion, the kind that doesn’t let you breathe.

You kiss and kiss and kiss and you’re not sure of how much time has passed. All that you know is that you’re still in the same place, that his tongue still tastes like chocolate and tobacco, and that his arms around you still feel like home.

He’s getting married, and that thoughts sets your emotions free in the heat of the moment, and you’re crying and kissing him and feeling his hands on you and

I love you.

You can’t believe your ears. It hurts more than it should. It’s like someone just wrapped a finger around your aorta and pulled your heart out. You kiss him again and he kisses back, and you realize that the salt you have on your face isn’t just from your tears, but belongs to him as well. He’s crying too.

I love you.

It’s your turn to say it.

I love you and I miss you and

God, I missed your mouth and your taste and your eyes

I love you. I never stopped loving you, even when you

I want you so badly that I can barely

We can’t do this, we’re not allowed, I'm not capable of

God, I missed your mouth.

You’re both crying so hard that none of your sentences make sense. The kiss subsides and you stay still, your foreheads touching, while you sob like children, like you used to. He was never afraid of emotions, and the day you realized that was the day you started loving him. You must have been about ten years old, then.

It takes a minute. You know you have to do it. You lean in and kiss him once, softly, tenderly, lovingly.

You’re the love of my life, but you belong to her now.

He looks up at you and then to the side.

I'm yours. I was never hers.

You nod. You need to leave. If you stay one more minute, you know what he’s going to say and you don’t want to hear it. You’d say yes. You turn around and start to walk away.


Your entire name again, and you’re sold. You turn around once more.

Why didn’t we work, Abigail?

You shrug. You’ve been asking yourself the same question for years. And of course, you know the answer.

We loved each other too much.

Is there such a thing?


You smile as you say it, and he smiles too.

It burns.

You walk away.


They’re up there. The grass is green and the chairs are white, and everything around you is pure beauty. Everyone’s happy, everyone has a smile on their faces, and you stand at the altar behind her, ready to assist her every move. None of it makes sense, but his eyes when he looks at her, his eyes are also looking at you, and you know she’ll never have him all to herself.


Everyone’s dancing and singing and having fun on the dance floor. You’re sitting, and you see him. coming up to you. He wants a dance. You say no, but you get up anyway. He takes your hand and pulls you to the dance floor, and as a slow begins, you two get closer together. Jess is dancing with Sebastian’s best friend. You look each other in the eye and you’re suddenly afraid that everyone might see the power that the two of you generate.

It’s done.

He says, and you look away.

We had it good, Sebastian.

I know we did, Abigail.

And now I’m leaving.

He stiffens, and you force him to keep moving.


Nowhere. Everywhere.


You’ll be alright, Sebastian.

You don’t tell him the truth. You don’t tell him that you’re doing what you’re doing because you can’t bear the thought of your cousin bearing his children.




Because I love you, and you love someone else.

You say it naturally, as natural as that is. It’s natural for you to love each other. It has always been.

I told you. I love you.

You married her. I’m not going to make her unhappy.

God, Abigail.

You force him to look you in the eye and you smile sweetly.

This dance will be the last time you see me. Tell me everything you want to say.

He takes a deep breath and looks straight at your eyes. You get lost for a moment, in the green and golden dephths of his gaze.

I want to say that no matter what you feel from now on, you are loved. You are loved like no one else has ever been.

He pulls you closer to him and speaks in your ear. You can hear him smile through the words.

My heart. It's yours, Abigail.

I love you too, Sebastian.

You leave him on the dance floor, and as your fingers part, you feel the rush of love you felt the first time you kissed.


The river isn’t too far away from the party, but you know a part secluded enough that no one will ever see. You walk in slowly, sit on the margin and smile. The sun is up and the air is cold, and as you lay down you think of the kisses stolen in the nights you spent here as children.

You let the water cover your face and smile one last time, before you breathe with your mouth open. And then everything is light again.

2 comentários:

Joana disse...

I'm sobbing like a baby. Oh,Lu,this is the most wonderful thing you ever write, from the ones you saw. My heart is racing and i just a handful full of words made this to me so far.
Thanks,so much!

5 de fevereiro de 2010 às 15:35
Feb Store disse...


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2 de novembro de 2011 às 17:07

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