Difficult (Chapter 23)
The Captain pulls his hand back quickly, “Is everything alright?”
I take a small quick step back from him. The distance helps. I try to keep it small as shame also floods me. I don’t want him to see the panic which floods me, it’s too pathetic. Nothing even happened damn it!
I give him my best fake smile. I’m okay, I’m okay, I’m okay… I repeat my mantra in my head like the more times I say it the more true it becomes.
He examines me, frowning. He has noticed my stiffness, witnessing the terror in my eyes. The Captain’s open sunny demeanor is long gone and replaced with narrow eyes and tight lips. I’ve known him only a short while, but such a serious mannerisms coming from him feels off. So counter to the man I met last night that he seems like a different person.
I need out of here before I say something embarrassing. His probing eyes aren’t welcome.
“Uh, I just didn’t sleep too well. Stress and all.” I mumble as I hug the blanket and take yet another small step back towards safety. “I’m going to just uh… take a shower and then I’ll come straight to the dining room”
I turn and walk out of the courtyard as fast as I can. Thank goodness he doesn’t try to stop me or say anything. Small miracles.
I do as I said. I go to my room and shower, thinking about the encounter rather than the act of bathing itself. I may or may not have put shampoo in my hair twice.
I want to hide in my room from embarrassment. I’m sure he wasn’t trying anything. I don’t think he was. I just… I just need to be away from that cornered feeling.
After taking a longer than needed shower and even longer to get myself dressed, I decide It can’t wait any longer and I wander towards the dining room.
I can see the pale light of the morning shining through the glassy stones of the building as I walk through the painting-lined hallway. As my light grey dress softly swishes along the rug adorned floor, in my head I am replaying the talk I want to have with Giddean.
Long after the dinner last night I lay in bed thinking over my options. I sincerely doubt that Giddean will help me find a way back to earth. Kidnapping women is what his society does- what it needs to continue. So if I am going to make any progress with that it will have to come from elsewhere.
But, I can ask Giddean for equality, an equal say in decisions affecting my life. I want a say in the rest of my life. I want a say in when we have children, if we have children, how many we have. I want to have independence. I want to work, have my own money, my own hobbies. Yes I realize some of these things will take time, I’ve been here less than a week, but I feel restless.
All of my wants, goals, and purposes in life were suddenly ripped from me. I was going to become assistant director at the museum, then a few years later I was going to become director. Somewhere along the way I was going to find a nice man who supported me in my job and did his fair share of the chores, together we would have two kids who we would send to their grandparents for a few weeks every summer. We would have a small townhouse in the suburbs with a good train connection into the city. We would find a babysitter for the rare occasion we would go to swanky bars and complain about the lack of available childcare.
Maybe it would have worked out, maybe it wouldn’t. Maybe my husband would hate the suburbs or get a good job in North Dakota forcing us to choose between his dream job and mine in the city. Maybe we wouldn’t be able to have kids.
Even if it didn’t work out, these plans were mine and to have them taken away makes everything feel pointless. I know the Pinns have given me a new life purpose, producing alien babies, but I refuse for this to be my purpose. That would be truly giving in to them. No, Giddean will understand and allow me a say in my life and in return I will support his continued relationship with the Captain. If they are truly in love each other, who am I to come between them?
I keep replaying my arguments in my head. I don’t know him well, but I have no reason to believe that Giddean isn’t reasonable and this gives me some hope. I feel certain I can convince him. A small smile of determination makes it way to my face as I continue to walk down the hall. Crap this house is large, who needs all these rooms?
As I am about to turn into another hallway that leads towards the kitchen I hear raised voices coming from further down the hall where Giddean . Curious I decide to walk just a little further towards the voices.
As I walk closer the voices become clearer. The door is open so I stand just down the hall listening in on
“…take her out, show her around a little! I don’t see the problem, you helped with Julia.” Growls out an exasperated Giddean.
“I can’t- shit I can’t. How can you ask me this?” another male voice roars.
“You want to be rid of my mother, right? Take care of Ivy and you can stay here.”
“Its not-she’s- it’s...difficult”
Fuck this. I’m tired of not defending myself from these demented aliens who think they have a right to take me from my home and then call me difficult.
I swiftly walk the remaining two steps and walk through the door frame. In the office, behind the desk stands Giddean leaning on his arms with his hands on his overrun desk, a surprised look across his face. A tall man with the same black glossy hair stands before the desk, he turns towards me. It’s the man who took me to the garden and gave me food at Linda’s house the night I met Giddean. He too looks shocked that I am standing there.
Why he is calling me difficult, I don’t know. He doesn’t know me, but frankly I don’t care anymore.