H A Y E S
Mabel Baker is a beautiful tragedy, there’s no doubt about it. I think deep down she has always been so corrupted, so fucking angry that sooner or later she was eventually going to explode like the ticking time-bomb she is. I think deep down she was never good to begin with, and sue me for thinking this but I like that. I like the corruption, I like how she thought no one was watching her completely destroy her room like a roaring hurricane. I like the rage that boils inside of her every time one little thing sets her off.
Once upon a time I used to be seeking for peace, but now, now I guess I’m seeking someone who is just as chaotic, and broken as me.
Everyone used to worship the ground Mable Baker walked on, they adored the petite brunette that lives on Elenor Pike in a large white house with red doors. I loathed her, the good girl who made perfect grades at the University of West Virginia, the happy girl who had the perfect relationship with the Mayor’s son. They were golden.
She was golden, and now she’s painted black with bleeding knuckles and split lips and so many fucking sharp edges. Now she’s a handful of storms with angry winds and cold rain and raging thunder.
I guess I hated her so much all because she was good, while I’m bad, I’ve always been bad. She saw the good in everything, she looked at the world like it was something special with a beautiful smile on her face. Now she intrigues me, now she sees what I see. Now she’s just about as bad as I am, but somehow a bit better. Mabel Baker got to see the good in the world, the good in society, and people, while I didn’t get to see a single thing other than judgement and expectations and complete, and total reality.
I guess Mabel Baker who lives on Elenor Pike got to live a better childhood than I had, maybe that’s why she was so good, so golden until she became broken. Only on the worst days do I wish for normality. Only on the worst days do I wish that I could somehow overcome this raging darkness inside of me, and become as happy, and as perfect as Mabel Baker was. But instead my childhood was filled with an angry, disappointed father and a crying mother and so much fucking drawing. I drew all the damn time as a little boy, sometimes I drew on paper, other times I drew on my arms, but instead of using pencils I used razors. I used scissors, needles, broken glass, anything with a sharp edge. I was a little boy who wanted to be dead, I want to be dead.
Because how can you live if you can’t dream?
Some days I want to climb to the top of the tallest building in Seeder Grove, and see if I can fly. Some days I want to lay on the cold floor of my bathroom with a stomach full of pills, and see how many sheep it will take for me to fall asleep. Some days I want to grab the sharpest razor in my desk drawer, and turn my wrist into a replica of ‘Starry Night’.
And today is one of those days. It’s one of those days where I want to fly, or sleep, or paint. But no matter what I do I’ll stop breathing, and that’s the thing I want the most, so it shouldn’t matter what I do to lead up to it. It shouldn’t matter what I do to lead up to my death, to my escape. But the last time I had attempted I woke up in the hospital, woke up wondering why I was alive in the first place, after all I was supposed to be dead. I remember that day, my mom was sobbing uncontrollably in one of the uncomfortable hospital chairs, my father was nowhere to be found. He never cared about me to begin with, he never wanted me.
I was always a mistake to him.
My brothers were there, I put them through the same hell I put my mom through. They were so scared, I could see it on all three of their young faces, while I laid in that hospital bed feeling completely hollow. Just about as hollow as my stomach was without those bottle of pills. But none of them would have understood, not my brothers, not my mom, not my father.
My family wouldn’t understand why I sit here, at the top of one of the buildings on the college campus. My family wouldn’t understand why I sit at the edge with my legs dangling in thin air. No one would understand why I want to die. My father wouldn’t give a fuck anyway if I were gone, he loves my siblings, not me. Hell, I don’t even love myself, sometimes I don’t even know what the fuck that word means. Sometimes I don’t even know what the fuck I’m here for.
The concrete below has never looked so inviting.
There’s people down on the ground below, standing in front of the building with their gazes fixed upwards, towards me. I can’t help but think that soon I will be down there, on the ground, bleeding out onto the concrete. Maybe my death will be quick, maybe I won’t feel the impact of my body hitting the cold, cracked cement. I feel like hell, and so does Mabel Baker, but she doesn’t know the kind of hell I feel.
“Hey.” A familiar feminine voice breathes out from behind me.
I don’t look over my shoulder at the girl, I just continue to stare down at the ground below, kicking my feet. The grin that spreads across my face is somewhere between psychotic, and dead. It scares me.
“What are you doing?” The person grows nearer.
I glance over my shoulder, the terrifying smile still plastered on my face when I look at Mabel. I already feel dead, and I haven’t even jumped yet. I’m not sure why she’s even up here, she doesn’t even know my name, so why the fuck does she care?
“I want to see if I can fly.” The words fly passed my lips, but my brain can’t seem to fully comprehend them.
God, do you see me down here? Do you see me readying myself to come meet you?
“The sickest thing is,” My father pauses. “You look just like your mother.”
I want to lock every childhood memory of mine into a large empty house. I want to light a match. I want to burn the house to the ground, and then I want to jump. Mabel grips my shoulder tightly in her bandaged hand, and I find myself whipping around to look at her. She shouldn’t be up here, she should just let me jump.
“Come on,” Mabel pleads, taking another daring step closer to where I sit at the very edge of the building. “Come away from the ledge.”
I shake my head.
She takes yet another large step towards me.
My heart hammers against my weakening rib cage.
“No one gets it,” I rasp, staring down at the cement a few stories below. “I feel like shit, and no one understands.”
Mabel’s quiet, her pale arms falling limp at her sides like she’s at a complete loss. She has no idea what the hell to say to me, she doesn’t know how the fuck to respond because I’m a fucking loss cause. Mabel Baker who lives in a white house on Elenor Pike should just let me jump.
There’s a small bud of silence that blooms into a wild flower of tension in the few minutes she stares at me.
I don’t know why she hasn’t turned, and left me to jump to my death yet. It’s not like anyone would care, no one even knows my fucking name in this small, shitty town.
“Then help me get it,” she blurts out loudly, and the look in her eyes tells me she can’t believe what she has just said. “Help me understand.”
I swallow the cotton that has been forced into my throat.
“Stoned,” my voice is gravel– rough, and dark. “I need to be stoned.”
She blinks once– twice, like she can’t fully comprehend my words just yet. But then I can see the gears turning in her head, working fast, and steady. The expression on her pretty little face lets me know she has fully processed my demand, her head nodding vigorously, a silent ‘yes’.
“Alright.” She clears her throat, holding her bandaged hand out to me. “Lets go get you stoned.”
I can see the slightest stain of blood on the white bandages from where I had witnessed her wreak havoc over her bedroom, from where she had punched a hollow hole into her rose-gold bedroom wall. Seeing that crimson blood stain on her white bandaged knuckles sparks something inside of me, something that makes me curious, something that makes me want to stick around for just a bit longer.
Mabel Baker is a complete, and total puzzle and I want to sit down with as much patience that I can muster and put all the pieces together in order to reveal the real image– the ticking time-bomb she tries to lock away from the rest of Seeder Grove.
I take her hand, and allow her to help me to my feet.
“So what’s your name?” Mabel speaks over the heavy metal music that comes from her shitty truck radio.
I rest my arm on the open window of her truck, staring ahead at the dusty dashboard. People stared at me like a was weak when I had finally came down from the top of that building, the building I should have jumped off of. I could see it on all of their faces when Mabel pulled me towards the parking lot where we had jumped in her truck. They looked at me like I was disgusting.
Maybe I am, and maybe I’ll be the topic of everyone’s gossip by the end of the week.
“Save the questions for when I’m stoned out of my mind.” I respond, playing with the metal piercing in my nose.
I honestly don’t even remember getting it the other night. Then again I was high on acid, and completely wasted to the point where I couldn’t even remember my own name. The joy of alcohol, and drugs.
Everything that ever took place in the basement of Amir’s house is always so damn vague to me, since every single time I never come out sober. Amir’s is the one, and only place that holds my release– that holds my happiness. In the basement there’s nothing but naked women and drugs and booze and free tattoos and damaged kids.
Anyone, and everyone who goes down in that basement comes out more fucked up than when they came.
“I can’t even know your name?” She glances in my direction with her wide hazel eyes.
“What’s the point if I’m going to be dead soon?”
Mabel sighs loudly, turns up the radio just a bit louder to drown at the depression in the truck with screaming song lyrics. I catch her glancing over at me every couple of seconds out of the corner of my eye as we turn down Elenor Pike, her bandaged hand gripping the beat up steering wheel like it’s a vise.
“Is your name Bruce?” She chuckles. “I bet it’s Bruce.”
For the first time in weeks a smile stretches across my face, shaking my head in silent laughter. This girl is unbelievable, just two seconds ago I told her I wanted to be dead, then she finds the simplest way to make me smile. Then again it could just be my bipolar disorder. Did I even take my fucking meds this morning?
“Yes,” I laugh. “It’s me, Bruce. Bruce Wayne.”