Addiction

Addiction

A Story by [email protected]!

Fear and despair pulsated through my body and shook the core of my being as I knocked on the door of my neighbor’s house, which had been engulfed by flames growing day by day for months now.  Mrs. Jane answered with her usual friendly smile and demeanor of blissful ignorance of the imminent danger in which she lived. “Hello Ami! How are you?” She asked.  Disheartened by her all too repetitive nonchalance, I pleaded “Mrs. Jane, I know I have been telling you this every day for a while now, but you really need to get out of your house! It’s too late to put the fire out!  Your house is going to crumble at any moment now!”.  At this she shrugged her shoulders and said, “Yes, I understand dear.  However, there is simply no time to deal with something that big at the moment.  I really need to get back to work now.  Thank you for stopping by!”  Dumbfounded, I grabbed her arm and in an uncontrollable voice said, “NO! You don’t understand, look at your house! It’s completely consumed by the flames!  You and your family will die if you don’t get out now!”.  Suddenly, she glared at me, her eyes ablaze, “Excuse me?  Do you think I am stupid, that I can’t deal with my own problems?  I SAID I would deal with it!   Now please go away, and keep your rude remarks to yourself.”  

                “I’m not trying to be rude to you!  I want you to be safe and happy and live your life! Can’t you see that? I’m honestly trying to help you! You are in serious danger!” I pleaded, an ocean of tears in my voice.

She then rolled her eyes and said in an icy tone, “Look, if you want me to be happy and live my life, then let me.  I am obviously trying to live right now, but you are making it difficult.”  The door slammed in my face.   I trudged back into my own yard with heavy feet, and the ocean which was in my voice a few seconds earlier began to leak out onto my cheeks.  A familiar arm wrapped around me and whispered in my ear, “You tried.  That’s all you can do.”

“She wouldn’t even listen to me” I sobbed as I turned and buried my head in his chest as he embraced me.

“I know, I know.  Its alright, we’ll keep trying.”, he crooned as he kissed my hair and caressed my back and arms.  I looked up at his face and saw that he was staring at the house; I could see the reflection of the fire in his eyes.  The gentle afternoon breeze caressed his silky black hair and flawless bronze skin.  The reflection of the flames engulfed his green irises.   “We’ll keep trying.”, he repeated, although never taking his thoughtful eyes off of the house.

I rested my head on his shoulder and with jittery lungs breathed in his scent. He smelled delicious, as always.  I pressed my lips to his collar bone and pulled him even closer to me.  He traced one hand up to the back of my neck and gently kissed my cheek.  “I love you.”, he whispered. “Let’s go take a walk, we need a break.” He released me yet kept hold of one hand as we began towards the sidewalk.

It was pointless to try to keep my mind off of my neighbor’s house, or any of the other houses on the block for that matter.  The entire neighborhood was aglow with hopelessly burning houses and ignorant people inside of them.  Only a few sporadic empty houses stood without flames, their inhabitants in the same frenzied state as we were in.   I sensed that the scenery unnerved Noah as it did me. 

Finally, we reached our destination, our temporary escape.  It was a large oak tree which sat beside an enchantingly beautiful pond.  The area was a bit secluded, so it was usually quiet.  He sat down and looked at me with open arms.  I nestled into his lap and wrapped my arms around him.  He looked out into the distance, as he always did while attempting to suppress his emotions.  This was usually done in an effort to keep me from worrying, in hope that some measure of peacefulness would seep into my mind.  “You don’t always have to be so strong.” I said softly, and kissed his jaw line.  He smiled and said, “Stop worrying about me.”

After a short pause I began to think aloud.  “There isn’t much else to talk about, is there?  So many of the people we know won’t leave their houses.  Why are they all so stubborn? Can’t they see the danger they’re in?” I pondered.  “No,” he answered, “they don’t believe us.  They are so blinded by the want, the need to stay in their houses.  They are slaves to their own desires.  They do not believe they will die.”, Noah said. 

“They’re not themselves anymore, suppressing their souls beneath their needs.  All of their cares are gone, their minds deteriorating beneath their skulls. It’s tragic, truly tragic…”

“Shh…”, he whispered.  It was then that I realized how close his face was to mine.  His lips touched mine, and I forgot how to think momentarily.  His large arms surrounded me as his fingers traced over my back.  I felt light headed and dizzy, as if the entire world had halted on its axis.  He was so warm and beautiful, breathtaking in the most literal sense of the word.  He stopped kissing me, but stayed close to me.   “I thought we came here to take a break.”, he reminded me gently, his voice smiling.  I smiled at the look on his face and relaxed in his arms. 

We then sat in silence, and all the while my mind was again slipping into the all too familiar pit of chaos that consumed my loved ones.  “I think we should go back now. I can’t stop worrying about them.” I said urgently.  He looked at me with empathy and nodded.  We rose up and began making our way back to the hell hole that was our neighborhood.

With each step we took, the tension inside me rose at a terrifying rate.  My mind reeled with thoughts about my neighbors.  What if it had already happened? What if we were too late? What if the house had come crashing down and the entire family lay strewn about, lifeless beneath piles of flame-infected ruble?  A rainstorm of tears then fell from my eyes.  At my first attempt at running Noah threw his inescapable arms around me and pulled me toward him.  “Please, don’t cry.”, he whispered in an earnestly soft tone, which would have made me melt at any other time.  However, my tears were nearly inexorable.  “I’ve tried so hard already.  She’ll never listen! It’s completely hopeless.  I would not be surprised if we found her dead when we go back.  It’s been such a long…”

He interrupted my quivering, fast speaking lips with his own.  He pulled away and pleaded again, “Please, don’t cry.  There is no word in existence that could describe what that does to me.”  I then tried to control myself, for his sake.  Despite this, the attempt was futile.  I was a bundle of nerves, and underneath his façade of control, he was too. 

We resumed walking, and Noah kept his arm around me.  He frequently stroked my hair and kissed my head, all the while keeping me beneath my breaking point.  We soon reached the house and what I saw crushed my spirit into all the hopelessness of my nightmares.  There where the house once stood lay a mountain of ashen shambles.  I whirled around to face Noah and met his expression of candid despair.  The sight of this had smashed his impermeable façade. He looked down into my eyes with heart wrenching sorrow, which made me sick to my stomach and dizzy.  Very, very dizzy, in fact. 

I tried with all my strength to wring words of comfort out of my lungs; I could never see him like this.  His big, soft heart shredded to pieces.  It took a monster of the worst kind to do that to such an angel.  I loathed the fire from the very core of my existence.  Was that a tear falling from those beautiful emerald eyes? I studied his broken expression and fell apart.  All of the blood drained from my face, and my world began to spin; all of the colors ran together as if paint on ruined canvas.  They mixed until they blended into black, and I was falling…

I awoke minutes later, and I was in Noah’s arms: my personal sanctuary, my stronghold.  I studied his eyes, and to my relief his brokenness was gone.  He smiled down at me and said, “Your begging paid off.”  Just then, I saw that beside Noah was a familiar face.  It was a face that I had known in all my years of childhood, a face that had seen me grow up, a face that represented joy.

Mrs. Jane asked, in a tone that suited her former self (prior to the ever-growing flames) “How are you feeling, dear?”

“Infinitely better now! You listened to me!” I beamed as relief flooded my heart, and saturated my bones.  I felt my cheeks warm, and my eyes danced with joy.  Noah helped me in sitting up, and I embraced Mrs. Jane.  “I’m so glad you are safe!” I cried in triumph.

“I know,”, she said, “thank you.”

All three of us stood up and began to walk, began knocking on the doors of houses with flames creeping up their walls.  As we walked, we walked with confidence and a sense of purpose.  Noah intertwined his warm fingers with mine and kissed my hand, and on we walked: hand in hand, heart in heart, and soul in soul.          

 

© 2008 [email protected]!


Author's Note

He@ther!
Its rough, so feel free to give constructive criticism:) And by the way, the fire represents any kind of addiction:)

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Featured Review

There is only constructive criticism here. I like this story for its balance . I t flows well and it's easy to understand. Burning down the house is somewhat trite, but also not uncommon as a shared experience. The most real dialog is the foolish neighbor. Noah is unrealistic, too much of a Jesus figure. And as such you are a naught Catholic School girl like the Mary of the Apocryphal Ascension Gospels, who Christ enjoyed kissing leisurely. The protagonist reminds me of friends of mine in theater, melodramatic and over the top with "oceans of tears". So you might want to tone down the excesses or craft them more precisely than these sweeping epic emotions.
The quality of the write is excellent for form and grammar. Keep up the good work. Once you settle in to something more personal or honest, more "human", I'm sure your writing will come to astound us. You have the basics in hand and heart and soul.

Posted 12 Years Ago


5 of 5 people found this review constructive.




Reviews

yes i think you used the idea of a house burning or rather a whole neighborhood on fire,i know what addiction would mean ,its like some whole houses falling ans smashing on people,and they just will not listen i know its very heart breaking ,and you do tell in some wonderful and romantic but strict and strong way ,come out or you will all be burnt,nice really ,i liked it a lot

Posted 12 Years Ago


like the way you have related observations of addiction with honest insight. It's sad that some won't listen after trying to help them over and over; it's exhausting at times. Free will can be something that can bless us or curse us; we are all given a choice. I can relate to this story well. Nicely written *Lana*

Posted 12 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

i love it soo detaied... keep writing!!!!! your really good at it... p.s. what didn you think of bracking dawn? i loved it!

Posted 12 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Hi, Heather -

I like the use of the burning houses to illustrate the crisis nature of addiction. I think it's very effective. And with significant addiction in my family of origin, I recognize that fire, believe me.

With no disrespect intended toward the earlier reviewer, I disagree that your protagonist is a naughty Catholic school girl. I also encourage you to seek a stronger understanding of the mechanics of punctuation around quotation marks, in particular.

I look forward to reading through all of your posted pieces.

Sincerely,
Midsummer

Posted 12 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Dear me, addiction can really kill you in ways that you might not believe...
I loved the representation of fire in the story and how Mrs. Jane was stubborn and stead fast to it, unaware of what was really going on.
However, I thought the part where Ami faints and wakes up was a bit choppy, and Noah seemed too much like Edward...Just perfect.
Anyway, I liked it!

Posted 12 Years Ago


hhmmm i think you should elaborate more on what the fire means in the story and why noah and the girl can see them while others can't. that was the only thing that confused me in the story but other than that it was a well thought out storyline. you could probably give the girl some features like you did with noah, just so the reader can have a picture of what the narrator looks like. other than those few details that was all that was a bit off from the story, overall enjoyable read. well done heather :D

Posted 12 Years Ago


Very imaginative. Not as rough as you might think. This would make a great book.

Posted 12 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

I liked how you used the representation, it was unique. Good, but a bit rough around the edges. I dont honestly like love stories, and I didnt quite understand why it had to be kinda a love story. It could have been darker, with more detail, but all in all, a good written piece.

Posted 12 Years Ago


It is late so i have yet to read the whole thing, sorry lazy time, but wow...really really loved the introduction. It was just so well written. Look forward to finishing it, i know lame that I didn't read it all!

Posted 12 Years Ago


You've captured an interesting paradox here. What should you do if a person deadset on a course of destruction, at least as far as you can see, refuses your help? Do you leave them be, or do you go against that person's wishes? Your dialogue sounded so believable.

"We then sat in silence, and all the while my mind was again slipping into the all too familiar pit of chaos that consumed my loved ones. "
Wow! I had to read this line quite a few times for it to seep into my consciousness, the sheer irony of the romantic encounter while the woman's house was burning with her in it.
You've given Noah godlike features, but he is also sensual -- perhaps the father/son duality of Christianity? This would suggest that the narrator would be the Holy Spirit, completing the Trinity.
But your ending left me with one burning question (no pun intended) -- what happened to the woman in the house? Did she represent all of us, turning away from God and his compassion, who doesn't intervene, but offers His compassion, if only we would choose to take it? When we feel we know more than God, but our true direction is on the path of our own destruction?

Truly an insightful piece.



Posted 12 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.


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Added on June 5, 2008
Last Updated on June 5, 2008

Author

He@ther!
[email protected]!

About
My name is Heather, I'm twenty, future author and english teacher, highly analytical, The Vampire Diaries, A Tale of Two Cities, both classic and modern literature, the Victorian era, Coco Chanel, ext.. more..

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