Chapter 1 : Madelyn
Chapter 1 : Madelyn
Monday, July 12th, 2021
Monday mornings fucking suck.
I honestly can’t remember the last time I had a good Monday.
It’s currently 10:00 am and I’m already having to fight the urge to throw myself off of a bridge.
Okay, yeah. Maybe I’m being a little dramatic, but I swear to god the world is against me today.
Don’t get me wrong, I love my boyfriend to death, but sometimes I wonder how it’s even possible that he got into University.
This morning, the dumb ass thought it was okay to turn off my 8:00 am alarm, just to replace it with his own. It, of course, was set for an hour later than what I needed. Like honestly, what the hell was going through his head? Let’s be realistic. My guess would be nothing at all.
The whole point of his alarm was to make him get up and go to the gym, but I wouldn’t be the least bit surprised if I came home later to find him on the couch in the same spot I left him in.
It’s fair to say that things have been a little rough between us recently. Once again, I have to force myself to remember that if I wait just a little longer, things will get better. Our relationship was never one of those all-consuming romances you see in movies, but Noah was nice and that’s enough for me. He never left, even when everyone else did.
Despite these feelings however, his idiocy this morning led to me missing a meeting with a client. On top of that, my lack of coordination caused me to trip over essentially nothing, ripping my stockings in the process. I just wanted a coffee. Is that really too much to ask?
Walking towards my sole source of happiness at the moment, I grab the door handle leading into The Horizon, a small cafe near my house. I discovered it within a few days of moving to New York and have visited it on a daily basis ever since.
Opening the door, I am greeted by the wonderful smell of freshly baked goods and coffee grinds, filling the modern interior.
“Madelyn, is that you?” A familiar voice calls out from the supply closet in the back.
The owner, Jolene, has to be the most kindhearted woman I know, but probably the scariest as well. I can only be thankful I’m on her good side, because despite her old age, I wouldn’t put it past her to be able to make even the toughest men run away crying.
“Hey, Mrs. Sawyer.” I respond, making my way over to the sound of her voice. Peaking around the corner, I see her petite figure standing with her arms crossed and facing my direction.
“What did I tell you dear?” She says with slight warning in her tone.
“Hey, Jolene.” I quickly corrected, catching onto what she meant. For some unknown reason she was very adamant on me calling her by her first name. I’m not quite sure why, but either way my comment caused a bright smile to spread across her face. She hopped down from the foot stool she was standing on with a fresh bag of coffee beans clutched in her arms.
“What brings you here at this time of day?” Jolene asks me as I take the burlap sack, carrying it over to the counter.
I internally groan, being reminded of today’s events.
“Noah turned off my alarm, so I had to reschedule the meeting I had initially arranged for 9:00. I’m about to head home now to see him, but I am definitely going to need a coffee in me before that happens.”
I hear Jolene let out a disapproving sigh and I already know what’s about to leave her mouth before she even says it.
“Why do you stay with that boy? We both know he has the IQ of a rock and it’s not like he’s giving you any good di-”
“Jolene.” I interrupt, stopping her from what she was about to say. Just because she’s right, doesn’t mean it has to be said. It only served as a reminder of how touch deprived I am.
That’s another thing about Jolene. She is as blunt as blunt gets.
“He’s ni-” I start, feeling the need to defend him, but I get cut off.
“Let me guess. He’s nice to you?”
“Yes and he treats-”
“Treats you well? Sweetie, I hate to break it to you, but that’s just another way of saying he’s boring.”
I know she’s right, which is why I stop protesting, but Noah is all I’ve ever known. He’s safe. Every fucked up thing there is to know about me has already been revealed, so I can feel reassured that if he was going to leave me, he would have done it by now. No matter how much baggage I may carry, Noah wasn’t scared off by it.
It’s been a really hard year for me. It has almost been seven months since my dad disappeared, and there has been no sign of him since. The police looked into his file and reported back almost instantly, concluding it as a voluntary missing persons case. While it wasn’t untypical of men in my childhood town to randomly up and leave, I knew my dad wouldn’t go without good reason.
Most people think that he’s a heartless monster, which even I have to admit he kind of was, but at the same time, never once in my childhood did my father make me feel neglected or unsafe. Quite the opposite actually. He began to teach me self defense from the time I could walk.
I distinctly recall him telling me on my seventh birthday that he wouldn’t be around forever and that once he was gone, the only person I could rely on was myself. That day also happened to be the first time he taught me how to handle a gun. That was my present from him.
Does this say something about my father as a parent? Yes, yes, it does. He’s fucking crazy, but he was also my best friend. Because of this, I also knew that it would be damn near impossible to figure out where he went. No one found him unless he wanted them to. I can only hope he either slips up and reveals himself, or decides to come out of hiding.
With the help of my PI, we’ve been trying to track him for the last four months, but so far every dead end only leaves me more and more disappointed.
That’s why I stay with Noah. I have lost so much recently, and I’m sick of everything in my life changing. He is the only consistent thing as of right now, and I wasn’t prepared to lose that yet.
Not responding to her previous comment, Jolene continues.
“You’re twenty three years old. You should be going out to clubs and meeting new people. Let yourself live a little. Before you know it, you’ll be old like me, wishing you would have just loosened up more while you still could.”
I smiled a little at that. I wish I could have argued with what she was saying, but the truth is I would be lying if I said I had a good social life. I used to go out with my friends a lot, but since moving here, I haven’t been able to meet any new people yet. Noah doesn’t really like to go out much, and he prefers that I stay home with him. I don’t need a repeat of previous events.
The last time I went out to a club without him was back when we still lived in Denver. When I came home that night, he scolded me for dressing like a whore and then refused to sleep in the same bed as me for over a week. I cried so hard that night, but he eventually came to his senses and apologized.
I know it doesn’t make what he said okay, but at this point, I can’t even remember what my life was like without him. For that reason, I chose to let it go.
Deciding it was about time to head home, I grabbed a takeout cup and poured myself a large coffee, knowing I was likely going to need it. I went to dig into my purse to grab some cash, but Jolene stopped me with a glare.
“Don’t even think about it.” She says to me.
Not wanting to argue, I grabbed a five-dollar bill and sneaked it into her tip jar before she could protest. With a smile on my face, I moved around the counter, kissing Jolene on the cheek, managing to remove the pout that she wore only seconds ago. I turn towards the door, clutching the sling of my purse in one hand and a fresh cup of coffee in the other.
“Bye, Jolene.” I say cheerfully.
“Have fun with V.” She responds, referring to Noah, the V being short for Vanilla.
I shake my head at her comment, before closing the glass door behind me.
Getting into my small black car, I buckled in my seat belt and switched on the radio. It was a quick five minute drive home. After a short period of time, I find myself parked in my driveway and twisting my body around to grab my purse and coffee from the passenger’s seat. Getting out, I shut the door with my foot before walking up to the front porch. I open the already unlocked front door.
You remember earlier when I said that Mondays sucked? Yeah, well, the scene unfolding before me was the fucking cherry on top.
“What the hell, Noah!” I yelled, slamming the front door behind me and dropping my purse to the floor.
I had accepted the fact that today was simply a bad day and that I needed to sleep it off, however the last thing I expected was to come home to find my boyfriend of two years fucking what I would picture to be the human version of Barbie.
That’s the problem about men. I swear to god half of them only know how to think with their dicks. I would rather him just break up with me, instead of putting me in a position where I had to see this.
“Baby?” Noah said, startled, throwing the bitch off of his lap. “What are you doing home already?”
I just stood there silently in disbelief as Noah scrambled to find his pants and the girl slipped on his shirt. I could feel the anger building up inside of me and in that moment, I wondered how hard it would be to get away with murder.
“Madelyn!” I subconsciously heard someone call in the background.
I mean it can’t be that hard. Maybe watching all of those episodes of Dateline wouldn’t go to waste after all.
“Madelyn?” I hear again, snapping me out of my unrealistic, but slightly wishful thoughts.
“Some asshole turned off my alarm and caused me to miss my meeting this morning.” I say accusingly. “You want to tell me why I walked into my own house to find you with another girl?”
“Listen sweetheart, you can’t blame him for finding someone to fulfill the needs that you can’t meet.” The girl said with a smirk on her face. Gosh. Her voice is whiny, high pitched, and just about as fake as her boobs.
Directing my attention to her, I catch her looking me up and down with a disgusted look.
“At least I don’t rely on sleeping with already taken people to feel good about myself.”
Her smirk was replaced with a glare.
Bitch, try me.
It was true my sex life with Noah was pretty non-existent, but it’s not my fault that he doesn’t know how to make a girl finish. At this point I can’t tell whether there’s something wrong with me, or if it’s just the fact that the guy has no technique. I’m guessing it’s the latter of the two. I don’t get why this girl over here thinks she’s accomplished something by sleeping with him.
While I’m hurt and angry, if she wants Noah, she can have him. I refuse to waste any more of my time fighting for someone who doesn’t want me.
“Baby, please don’t be mad. I can fix this.” Noah pleaded, clearly sensing the waves of anger radiating off of me right now. I felt weird. In previous conflicts, I would typically just shut down, however in this moment, I knew I was done submitting to Noah and all of his bullshit. As of right now, my body was filled with bottled up emotion, and its containment was about to explode, leaving me pissed off and fed up in its wake.
“Don’t call me baby! You lost that privilege the second I walked through this door!”
“Mads, come on. Don’t be like that.”
“Be like what exactly? Pissed off that my boyfriend cheated on me? It’s okay if you lost interest in me, but you should have just ended things.”
“Come on, you don’t have to be-” Noah started but I cut him off, not interested in hearing what he has to say anymore.
“How long have you been seeing her?”
“This is the first time.” Noah said with desperation in his voice, while Blondie said, “Six months.” at the same time.
I slightly tilt my head back in an attempt to prevent my tears from falling down my face. It didn’t take me long to do the math in my head. That was right about the time my dad went missing. I guess my baggage ended up driving him away after all. Wait, does that mean she moved to New York with us then? This is so fucked up. I take a deep breath, forcing my tears back down. He doesn’t deserve them.
I tell him just that.
“Madelyn, please. You don’t need to be so dramatic. I love you, baby, you know this.”
Before I could respond though, Barbie herself cut in.
“As entertaining as this is, I have somewhere to be, so I’m going to head out.”
Avoiding my gaze, she walks into my room before returning with a red bra, her panties, and a pair of heels in hand. I am starting to feel nauseous now. He fucked her in the same bed I’ve slept in countless times?
She looks back at Noah and winks at him before walking shamelessly out the door.
Noah and I are left in an awkward silence, neither of us knowing what to say next.
I was the one to break the silence. “We’re done.” Is all I say, moving from my spot at the front door for the first time since I came in.
“What, no!” Noah cried out, but I chose to ignore his hysterics. Walking towards what used to be our bedroom, he follows behind me. I see the white bed sheets that I had left this morning neatly tucked into their corners, now in a heap on the floor. I think I’m going to be sick.
Once again pushing down my emotions, I open my closet doors, managing to drown out the sobs coming from the man behind me. The audacity of this guy. First he cheats on me and now he thinks he has the right to cry over me when I say I’m leaving. The worst part of this situation is that if I didn’t come home early, this would have continued behind my back for god knows how much longer.
Ignoring his continuous yet meaningless pleas, I grab my lavender coloured duffel bag from the top rack of my closet. I stuff it with as many clothes as I can, not caring that I’m making a mess. Noah can clean it up. While I know that I’ll need to come back soon to grab the rest of my things, this should be enough to suffice for the next few days.
“Where are you going to go?” Noah asks, finally slowing his pathetic cries. “It’s not like you have any family here.”
“Yeah, and who’s fault is that exactly?” I snapped back.
When Noah and I first met, I was halfway through my Bachelor of Fine Arts in Photography, while he was working for a police department in town. We bumped into each other at a bar and one thing led to another, which ended with me waking up in his bed the next morning. The sex was mediocre, but he made me smile like no one else ever had. At the time, that was enough for me.
After grabbing a few items from my bathroom, I zipped up my bag and headed for the front door.
“Where are you going?” He asks, but I ignore him. The sooner I can leave the better.
“Are you listening to me?”
“I said, where are you going?”
“Stop!” Noah suddenly demands, anger now lacing his tone. “You don’t get to leave after everything I’ve done for you. You have nothing without me. No family. No friends. You are nothing without me.” His tears are now completely gone and have instead been replaced by rage.
Gosh, how did I let myself become so blind that I only just realized how manipulative he is? I seriously needed to get out of here. While trying to move towards the front door, he positions his large frame in front of me, blocking my path and my only way out of the house.
“Get the fuck out of my way, Noah.” I yelled, attempting to maneuver myself around him, but ultimately having no luck.
When I go to try again, he grabs me and shoves so that my back is against the front door, using his heavy mass to keep me pinned.
“You’re overreacting over nothing.” He says lowly, as if he thinks his softer tone will somehow calm me. “She means nothing to me. You’re the one that I want. I love you.”
I stopped trying to release myself from his grip at his words. That’s another thing about Noah. Things were great with him, until it wasn’t. At first he was so sweet and would always find a way to make me laugh, even when I didn’t think it was possible. He was the first guy I was ever serious about. However, he also knew how to make me feel worthless and was the one who taught me just how painful words can be.
I’m so fucking sick and tired of getting hurt.
While Noah most certainly isn’t my first boyfriend, even in the past my heart has always been more invested in the relationship than my partner’s.
I misinterpreted his toxic and manipulative behaviors as him being protective and loving. It’s crazy how in a matter of an hour, I went from defending Noah to Jolene, to packing my bags in hopes of never seeing him again. I’m done letting others push me around and break me down into nothing.
That’s why the second Noah’s grip on my waist loosened, I twisted my body slightly to create a small gap between us, before driving my knee up to connect with his crotch. Damn. That actually felt really good.
Noah doubles over in pain, but I’m not finished yet. Not giving him a chance to recover from the first blow, I swing my right fist, heading directly towards the side of his jaw.
“You fucking bitch.” Noah chokes out, dropping to his knees.
Trying my best to ignore the strong feeling of pain jolting through my hand, I tighten my grip on the sling of my duffel bag, and run out the door. Spotting my car in the same place I left it, I put my key into the ignition, but I have to try a few times before it actually runs.
On the third attempt, I hear the familiar hum of the engine starting up. Not wasting another second, I pull out onto the road, catching the slightest glimpse of Noah, before turning the corner.
“Holy shit.” I breathe out loud, physically feeling my heart pounding in my chest.
I can’t believe I just did that. A large smile spreads across my features, my hands slightly shaking from the adrenaline still rushing through my body.
I feel like this is one of those life changing moments that is either going to lead to something really great, or really horrible.
I have no clue where I’m going, or how the hell I’m going to be able to afford to live on my own, but at this moment I decide none of that matters.
After all, anything is better than staying with that asshole.
- End of Chapter 1 -
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