“Well hurry up will you?” Starry said jokingly as she crossed her arms momentarily faking indignation. “I’ll be back in a moment I just need to take my meds. It will only take a few seconds.” I said from the stairs as I already started my descent after only making it halfway up. I had gotten home just a few moments ago from an interview that ended in ‘There have been a number of applicants but I guess we’ll call you if we have an additional opening.’ “Come on I’ve been working on this for sooo long!” She called from outside the spareroom’s door. For the past two weeks she apparently had this great idea and forbade me from stepping foot into there or even opening the door. It was supposed to be a birthday present and a perfect one at that or at least that is what she kept saying with an excited sparkle to her eyes. This year Starry was hell bent on giving me the best birthday ever, I guess to take away from the fact that I had yet to find a job or even sell one of my pieces.
Grabbing a drink from the fridge and my medication from the cabinet I paused for a moment. Looking at the bottle of pills they seemed to mock me as they returned my stares with blank indifference. What would happen if I stopped taking them? I wondered to myself before the voice of doubt in the back of my mind answered. She’d leave you.
No she wouldn’t, I thought back and I swear I heard it cackle at me. They’re the only reason why she stayed. Do you think she’d really still be here if she knew how you could really be without being subdued? It questioned as it began to begin its process of poking holes into my self-worth. That’s not true I thought back to it furiously as I felt the muscles in my face tightening into a frown. I know it’s true and you know it’s true. Fudge if you really don’t think it’s true go ask her. See what she would do then. Go on. It taunted me with every word as it whispered in my ear.
She wouldn’t care, Starry loves me. I said to myself with a note of finality as I picked up the bottle of pills resignedly again with a disappointed sigh having just inadvertently talked myself into another day of taking them again, another day where they controlled my life. But the voice wasn’t done and what it said stopped me. She’s already on her way out with this relationship. You saw how she was talking to that guy. What did she say his name was again? Oh that’s right, Leaf. This would just be probably the last thing that pushes her over the edge before she is done with you. And then where you will be? Probably back at your Aunt’s house? Perhaps maybe after a spell at that institute that your parents sent you numerous times. Just the word brought back memories of a time that I had fought to forget. But the voice didn’t pay any attention as I shut my eyes while I tried to keep them out. No it didn’t notice that I had dropped the pill bottle as I reached my hands up toward my head, pressing them onto my skull with as much pressure as I could in attempts to shut it up. The sound of them hitting the floor seemed to echo beyond the kitchen and into the whole downstairs as they spilled their contents and rolled away.
Face it Starry is already looking at other options; she’s been done with you for a while now. The only reason why she hasn’t already kicked you out is because she is probably feeling sorry for you. She doesn’t love you anymore and she probably never did in the first place anyway. So go ahead stop taking your medication. You’ve already lost her what else more do you have to lose? Maybe it was right. After all I did catch Starry and that guy together. The way they were looking at each other as they flirted and he sung to her before she realized I was even there felt like a swift kick to the head as my heart dropped out. And then the way she acted as she introduced us. It was right, completely right. I'm just a...
“Sanguinello?” I heard Starry say my name from behind me, as I blinked I realized that I was still holding the bottle of pills in my head in the same spot that I had been the whole time. Looking at them as I turned it around in my hand listening to them clatter around in their container, the cold realization hit me that I had experienced another hallucination. Without a word I just put them back in the cabinet without taking a single one and walked back through the living room heading towards the stairs where Starry where was waiting for me at the top of them.
“Ok, ok close your eyes.” She said excitedly so I obliged and I heard the door creak as it was opened. Feeling her warm soft hand grab mine and lead me forward I heard Starry exclaim. “Ok! Open them!” As I opened them I saw both of our easels had been brought up along with all of our supplies. Freshly papered walls lined the room and now the floor was boarded with smooth wooden planks. Stepping into the room it now looked more like an art studio than just a spare room. “Do you like it?” Starry asked as she watched for my reaction breathlessly. But all I could think at that moment that it all seemed like a waste, my schooling, this room, everything.
“It’s great! Hopefully with a room like this I can create some stellar things instead of what I have been painting.” I replied trying my hardest to keep any sarcasm out of my voice. “The world just isn’t ready for a taste you yet. But you are the best artist that I know and one day everyone will want a paint done by you.” Starry replied trying her best to be soothing which was quite a stretch after I had just basically stomped all over her well intentioned gift. “It’s great, really great, Thank you love.” I said as I pulled her to me. Kissing her I pushed away all my thoughts and doubts while I whispered “I don’t think anyone else could have made this into a room that I’d like and find a perfect as you did.”
As time wore on it felt like the world around me was crumbling and there was nothing I could do about it. Day in and day out I spent my time either looking for a job or lounging around the apartment. I wasn’t picky I would have taken anything but after filling out applications and never getting any call backs I was beginning to feel like I’d be spending the rest of my life mooching off of Starry. And I won’t lie but living like this made me feel like less of a man. It was no wonder she had probably falling all over that Leaf character.
“Did you remember to take you medication?” Starry asked while she was quickly trying to finish getting ready so she could get out the door and to the gallery on time. Like almost every weekend she was working during the day and then at night too at their galas.“Yes, I’ve been taking them every day since before we even met so I’d think I am more than capable of remember to take my medication.” I replied irritated from the couch. “I know it’s just that you’ve been well…” She started to say but then I cut her off as I grew more and more frustrated.
“Just because I might have some problems doesn’t mean I can’t have an off day or two. I mean what do you expect? None of my paintings are selling I can’t even get a job at a fast food place to help pay with the rent or any of our other bills. So yes I might be couch surfing again today and maybe I will tomorrow too.” I gruffly said not even trying to hide any traces of anger or irritation in my voice.
“Fine, whatever do what you want if it makes you happy. I have to go. I’m late as it is already and we really need this extra cash. I’ll see you when I get home tonight, maybe pick up some Tahitian food from that place you like? Light the fireplace and eat dinner on the balcony then relax on the lounge chairs or maybe in the hot tub together.” Starry suggested briefly as she dropped down to give me a kiss goodbye but hesitated before doing so and in that hesitation I turned away so her lips only brushed barely my cheek. Her soft breath was warm against my ear as she sighed before whispering “I love you Sanguinello.”
My eyes followed her as she left, quietly closing the door behind her before focusing on the blank tv screen as I let my mind wonder. Sifting through memories like sand trickling through my fingers bits and pieces surfaced. From the first moment that Starry and I actually started talking. I had been so nervous that day like practically every day that I had tried to talk to her before.
In a time of loneliness I fell into your strong open arms. And in those arms you loved me well. You hid me in your calm.
But things just seemed to fall in place that day and before I knew it I was sitting right next to her talking easily to her like I had already known her for a life time. And soon we started spending all of our time together. I don’t think that there was ever a happier time in my life until I met her. Being with her made me feel like I could be loved, that I was worthy enough for someone to actually care about me.
And in that charm we headed south knowing nothing of my demons
But now it didn’t even matter it just felt like everything it was all over. I couldn’t stop obsessing about that guy and her ever since I stopped taking my medication. I had hated having to depend on those blasted pills every day. But without them my mind wandered aimlessly as it tossed and turned through a sea of emotions, one quickly blending in to another. Happiness quickly giving out to anger in the snap of a finger to a point I couldn’t pin point why exactly I was angry but I was there fighting internally with myself to not go in a full rage. I always feared that I would hurt her if I went into one and that was something that I could never forgive myself if it had ever happened.
There were devils in the winds that night, walking fire among the hills. And many voices called me out to the cliffs. But you held me safe, you wrestled me still.
But when my friends came for a visit it happened again like it did those other times and I was still on my medication, taking them daily out of fear that it would happened again when it does. Like having the rug taken out from under me I found myself back in a dark place that I haven’t graced for years. But being with Starry almost could make it all go away. Almost.
Wiping the black blood from my mouth speeding into nowhere
Her touch could be calming, it could be exciting but most of all it could take my mind away from everything else. I could barely look her in the eyes as she cleaned me up that night they brought me back. All I could remember was feeling the wet coldness from the damp cloth as she cleaned my face while I laid in bed before I drifted away.
It starts in Penzance where the winds are born and follows the track of this train. And just like this love coming back for you it will come back for me again.
When was I going to learn though? I will never be normal, I will never be ok. There will be only just periods of where I’ll seem fine but I’m actually not because deep inside me it is always fighting to get it out and taking that stuff, those pills only make it slumber for a while before it seems like they have no effect on it at all.
"What a beautiful town!" I shouted out. Oh, but what a terrifying view..
But still I try and still I fail. I know somewhere in the back of my mind there I’m telling myself that I need to call my Aunt Fina but there is a larger part that just wants this to be over with already. But that’s just another struggle only this time that larger part is winning and it feels like there is nothing I can do to stop it from taking over tonight.
You know I wrestled with my bruised hours just to lie there next to you. And again my mind shifts and it feels like I’m lying on the couch looking up at her again. The cuts on my face had started to heal and it’s slowly beginning to feel like that fight had never happened as I try to bury it away with every other painful memories that I had. I was determined to be better for her after that, to be happy for her. And I was. My love, come stop me I am haunted and possessed. And with my darkest hour yet to come. It's only you, only you can stop me
Not knowing what I was doing I find myself dialing Starry’s cellphone gripping the phone with a shaky hand as I dialed like it could slip away any moment as I tried not succumb to anymore memories, even though I know she won’t pick up since she is at work. But still I beg and plead with her to. “Please pick up Starry, please pick up. I need you now. Please baby pick up.” Save me from myself please. Despairingly I tossed the phone on the couch after the third time. I just need to go outside clear my head and get through this. It’s nothing you haven’t been through before. I tried to assure myself as I opened the door to the balcony to get some fresh air as I tried to not to think of the last time this had happened I was institutionalized for the umpteenth time in my life and I really didn’t want to go back there. Come back to Penzance where the winds are born Just follow the tracks of this trains. And just like this love calling out for you. It is calling me out again...
Watching the cars zip by me below as their lights formed trails of lines, it seemed like time and everything was moving faster than it really was. The pain still gripped my chest as it felt like it was still attempting to implode. My breathing was still fast and short and even though deep down I knew I was technically breathing just fine I still felt as if I couldn’t breathe at all. There was a part of me that wanted nothing more than to curl up into a small ball and wait till it past again but an even larger part wanted it and everything else to be over with, to make it all just finally stop.
Almost mindlessly I hoisted myself over the rails, holding on to them as I continued to watch the cars and their lights go again by in an almost mesmerizing way. Ledges of buildings were not entirely safe for feet whether they be bare or sneaker clad I found out quickly as my left foot slipped out from behind me making me grip the cold glass railing even tighter to avoid falling
A nervous laugh escaped my lips as the ground with its cars seemed to rush up at me and I felt dizzy. For a moment I felt more than panicky and in my mind’s eye I saw Starry’s face surface momentarily before it was lost in a sea of what plagued me my whole entire life.
With one hand on the rail I reached with my other to grab the necklace that hung around my neck and pulled it off with barely a tug, it was the only time I was not bothered by its loose clasp. I dropped it behind me, not even hearing the small ping of the ring hitting the balcony tile through the sounds of the city at night and then I just let go.
I let go and I never felt as free as I did in that moment.
Song- Patrick Wolf's Penzance