The bride is on fire

Written in response to: Start your story with a character saying “Listen, …”... view prompt

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Crime Romance People of Color

“Listen…”, he felt the wind glide around and whisper, “listen to her saying thank you…”

It felt strange for the fact that his wife was in the car with her, and in a couple of minutes, probably sinking down the sea.

He watched the waves kiss his feet and roll back in the ocean. the sand crumpled and formed again, but he was too busy to watch the blue, his eyes darted along the rocky coastline far than to be imagined, where he looked at his old pal, the sun. Now a deep, yolky yellow, trying to hide away from the world. He felt it and smiled. The feeling of grief and confusion, mishaps that happen…but lead the world, too. The sun settled below the horizon, blanking out and announcing its failure against the opponent, dark. He squeezed himself out of the black hoodie, the only place that was left for him to feel safe, but now he needed none. What have I done? His heart didn’t pound in the chest this time. He was calm now, memories had drowned down, in the fierce ocean. today was moving day, and he had to do the night shift, his wedding holidays were over. And so are duty days, he thought. His boss must have fired him by now, to spend the night at the beach rather than shifting boxes to get paid for the life he lived.

The sand and water played along as he noticed there wasn’t a single soul nearby. Was he supposed to be afraid? Of what? He laughed. The murderers whom he was, one of them now or the ghosts who could never be scarier than his wife? Her rotting face and the foul smell of burnt flesh made him puke, look what you made me, he sighed.

The night grew darker and so did the sea. The waves roared and splashed as if protesting against the woman’s body, Or his brutality? He closed his eyes, and the ocean screams grew dimmer until they whispered in his ears, “memories…”

She was looking angelic, ravishing, youthful… he didn’t know what to say. The beauty was covered in a shower of white and bright gold, her curly hair swirled around in a braided bun picked with flowers. As she walked down the aisle, he knew his life would never be the same. Her innocently wide eyes were decorated with a sky crystal eye shade, and the dress was a charm but wait… she suddenly stopped. In a moment, she turned and then he saw it, the flickering red in the pearly white. Stunned, he watched her bride screaming in agony as her dress caught fire and the people trying to blow it out, only ending up making matters worse. She pushed the crowd and her high pitched shrills ran chills down his spine, he couldn’t move. He couldn’t do anything, except of just trying to lure his drowning heart. He suddenly awakened and pulled himself out of the dilemma, then blindly rushed towards her. To the fountain! The crowd shouted. Too late. As she reached the water fountain, the dress tangled in her heels and she dropped, the veil caught fire and the burning net hid her perfectly carved face. He stopped, that was not the sight he had prepared for. He closed his eyes, collapsed. Why couldn’t he let thing be as they were planned? Maybe he was falling for her, again…

The ocean’s furious waves banged the shore as if trying to bring him back, and succeeded. In an instant, he was back in the car. Wild memories were put a saddle on, controlled. The car door was swung wide open and his bare feet were buried in the sand. One hand on the steering, he blankly stared at the demonic sight, a dark blue and black. It seemed as the ocean and the sky had joined hands, no boundaries marked. The sun gone, leaving no traces behind. Just like her wife, Emily. She was such a mess, a beautiful mess. The scattered hair on her face, the always half eaten, smeared lipstick, and the loose, torn pants she loved to wear, all tangled into an alluring personality. He uttered a long sigh, remembering how he used to twirl her bronze curls around his finger as they talked.

oh! memories on the loose again! He shook his head vigorously as if shaking all the thoughts off. It’s over, he said… “but not as you wanted”, a voice from the inside replied. “Come on!”, the wind begged as it blew his hair, “she is calling you” …

And there again, he was pulled into his memories again, again…

“Life is like the ocean waves”, she used to nudge him as he would smoke, “going up and sometimes down…”, she would lightly shove away the smoke from her face, “it is perfectly alright, just don’t worry. Your mom will be okay, you will be okay”, and he would smile weakly, trying hard not to let her know… but how disappointed was she when he was exposed one day… he remembered, second by second!

“Donaire! What is this?”, she shockingly held the packs in her hand as he stammered, “I… I... don’t know…”. “You are on drugs!”, she screamed, “you are on freaking drugs!”, she screamed as he looked at her, simply looked at her in an awe, how can someone be equally pretty while being angry? And then she left. Left to be gone for several weeks. He tried hard to find her knowing that she won’t be found until he did what she had said, to leave drugs… choose between one. Did he try to hang himself one day? Yes, he did. In the despair of failing everything, all the time. He did because the only thing he thought he had, was now nothing.

And how he got seizures and attacks, and how she returned one day. All at once, in a shock to see him shattered, torn apart. And he himself, traumatized to see her changed… from the pink glosses to black lipsticks, from mini skirts to torn pants, from peachy colors, to omber and black! “I am not what I was”, she spoke lightly when they stood in front of each other, “ I betrayed you, but returned hoping that you will forgive me”, she cried but why did they feel do fake? No, he shook his head, it’s just wrong stuff in his head. He gave her a home and she, comfort. Slowly pushing him away from drugs and he, going back to life, finally realized the world needed him, at least some one thought he was useful enough!

They went on to become closer as he came to know that she had to join clubs, she had to be a model she hated, just enough to pay his hospital bills, her mother’s treatments and so on. And she too, came to know how his life flipped as she had left, owing she would never do that again….at least what he thought she had.

The wind blew hard, as he was brought back again. Looking at the roaring waves, he closed his eyes and thought, did he do it right? Was it the good decision he made? Was he the good guy? But he had just thrown her in the sea…

“listen”, the wind whispered in his ears again, “she is thanking you, why mourn when she is already gone?”, and slowly he was, again back to the past…

Three days after the wedding… of whom? A burnt bride… the day he never thought would be in a hospital, at the main burn unit. He sat beside her wife, who looked like the devil from the hell. Puking, he put his hands on his face, unable to see the vicious sight of her eyes, half gouged out, her teeth peeping out of the burnt cheek holes… she signaled him as he astonished, slowly stood up and walked towards her. she had finally moved, after three freaking days…

He, as she said, handed her a notepad with a small pen as she scribbled down words he tried hard to understand, as now she had lost everything… her senses to see, to speak, to feel….

She wrote as he watched in horror,

“I’m sorry but it was all a spam. I was never in love with you, I was just a paid counsellor, to heal you… business… is good…”

He uttered a long sigh…relieving on the fact that the time he longed for, finally came…

“I can’t live like that… throw me away, kill me. I can’t live like this anymore…”

“As you wish, madame”, he smiled suddenly, so cruelly he was astonished on what his heart said next, “Serves you right.”.

 At least she could hear… and that was what he wanted. In the cold night, amidst the freezing fog, he held her in his arms and carried her to the rocky coastline, down below… the sea growled… angry to see him throwing a newly wed lady… refusing to accept but he had to, anyways. “My dear lady”, he whispered lightly in her ears before handling her to the land of blue, “I knew this a long, long time ago. I knew you were a therapist and the heart wrenching feelings were all paid… you underestimated the young man, my lady. And I decided to take revenge, the night I proposed you, was the same night I had come to know who you really were, and so I hired, a rich and feeling less youngster like you, to flicker a candle in my bride’s gown as she would walk down the aisle so that, my dear lady, I would have … a burning bride…!”. He tossed her like a pebble, which created a loud splash, as he lit up a cigar rete… walked back to his car… the smoke blurring his face… he sighed, knowing the fact that

maybe, he might have to make friends with drugs… again…

Feelings and emotions… control the body, always!

November 08, 2021 16:41

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2 comments

Sadia Sadiq
14:44 Nov 10, 2021

A deep story, well written!

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Syeda Fatima
16:43 Nov 08, 2021

yes... I have come after a loooooong break... itz ok, right?....

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