Break the cycle

Written in response to: Write about somebody breaking a cycle.... view prompt


Drama Sad Inspirational

An ear-piercing shatter nearly makes you drop the whiskey bottle in your hand. You land on a pile of broken glass, wiping away blood oozing from your index. You instinctively flinch, expecting a belt from your dad for breaking something. But you remember he's not here anymore. You are numb to thick shards impaling your flesh as you swig half of your Jacks. As Dad always said, it's better to feel nothing than to feel anything. You stumble around, arms flinging like a vertigo patient, cutting your arms to ribbons in a sea of glass.

You see a withered picture around the broken bits. On it is a tacky potted plant strewn 80's apartment bringing back unpleasant memories in your mind. A hulking 6-foot man in a black blazer and tie make your stomach flip, his thick cigar sticking out the side of his mouth making you tremble. He stares at you with dead charcoal eyes you thought had sunken into a coffin beneath Anfield cemetery long ago. But now they are back, glaring at you with the same look that haunts your nightmares.

You watched all old family pictures burned in a log fire outside your house years ago. You searched every inch of your dad's old house after the funeral, ensuring these painful memories burned away. But you missed one, locked in your loft for years. You empty the safe, finding no other photographs besides this. A young boy in a brown striped church suit frowns from the picture, his face sick and glum. A sizeable hairy hand is over his shoulder. The paleness of the child makes you gulp your throat-burning medicine. Your nostrils tingle, blood bubbling as the sweet caramel of Jack's stirs a warm concoction in your stomach.

You squish, stump, crumple the old photograph beneath you, setting off your noisy Pitbull. Its barks stir a heart-pounding fury in you. Logic and reason melt away as you throw the picture to the ground.

'Shut the hell up!' you stomp your body weight into the loft boards. You hear its high-pitched whimpers fade down the stairs, taking another swig of your sweet apple whiskey. The liquid blurs guilt, letting you float on clouds with care in the world. Dad always loved Daniels. He used to smack the back of your hands red raw if you went near his stashes. Your heart races remembering the heavy belt buckle knocking against your knuckles, bruising your skin plum purple.

Your temper is a short fuse ready to blow. You smash four phone screens in one week and turn your barking dog's bed upside down on matchdays. You act impulsively, burying your face into your palms, portraying remorse and hoping it justifies your actions.

Hot tears stream down your beard, realising you're just like him. A sweaty disgrace concealing your untrimmed hobo beard behind closed blinds and sprayed windows. You are sickened seeing yourself in Dad's old barber mirror. A 6-foot man cries behind steam glasses, pulling patches of hazel curls from a greasy scalp. A large pot belly hung over pizza-stained Adidas shorts and dried whiskey stains covering an Animaniacs shirt. Everything about you screams failure, and you wonder why you are alone.

You clutch the bottle's tip, wishing you had the strength to drop it. But you can't. Its curved form sticks to your palm, becoming a poisonous extension of you. Your tastebuds crave its soothing essence, your free ticket out of reality.

You remember Dad's scowls turning into snorting laughs after drinks. You longed for a way out, for temporary freedom. It worked for a time. Dulling your demons, melting away doubts, making you act like a fool without care or doubt. But it corrupted you. You backhanded your little brother, shoving him into the fridge after he used your Gameboy. You became a different person, kicking chairs, flipping tables, talking back to Dad and getting in his face. Your childhood is a blur of punches, kicks, and sharp bites in Liverpool pubs. You sponged off the government, throwing yourself into car hoods for insurance money. There is nothing you wouldn't do to fund bad habits.

You remember Dad's final days. His barber shop was in ruins. Chairs busted, snapped wood scattered across tiles. You still hear his animalistic grunts and growls perverting your dreams. Bits of dried blood covered his white beard as he gasped for a final breath, gripping your hand tightly. You felt the splattering red droplets run down your face, staining your school uniform as his eyes laid still forever.

You fall to your knees, choking on years of repressed pain. You see the same lifeless glow of Dad's eyes in your pupils, fractured across multiple shards. Blotching bruises cover the side of your hands, with numerous stitches around your wrists. Your hands are evil, pounding walls, snapping doors, slamming floors, smashing beer bottles across bricks to shut your dog up. Your Bulldog whines under the kitchen table, tail tucked between its legs as you search for whiskey stashes, reaching ceilings.

You are poison, a walking monstrosity like your father destroying everyone around you. You look at your deteriorating form, seeing dad staring back. His drunken legacy lives on in you, the terror he installed spreading fear into your dog. You hide in the confines of your house, snarling at shop workers, snatching stolen goods without them noticing. You are a waste.

You grip your glass friend, hugging it tightly. An image of Dad's blood-soaked chest fills your thoughts, the leathery texture of his skin as he looked like a zombie lying in his coffin. Is that the fate you want? You bite your tongue, tipping the green liquid over fibreglass. Your venomous crutch absorbs away. You tear off your whiskey-coated shirt, picking up the bottle and smashing it against a loft support beam. You feel the weight of the toxic cycle fading away as the addictive venom leaves your system. You pick up a scrap paper piece highlighting Dad's piercing eyes. You crumple it into a ball.

The end.

June 24, 2022 11:34

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