Compartment 114
Compartment 114
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A Story by snapjack

After being dragged through Hell, Aida struggles to keep herself together. Only her desperate-for-attention mother takes care of her during the episodes. Aida turns to over the counter drugs for help.


“No!” I screamed to the top of my lungs, forcing out a sob. I tangled my fingers through my hair as the warm water spilled down my back. I had wedged myself in the closest corner of the shower and buried my head in the corner. Both tears and water flowed down my cheeks.

                “Aida, please!” My mother yelled, crying as well.

The mixture of conditioner and water made my body slippery, acting as another layer of skin. If only it numbed my ability to feel on the inside like it did on the outside.

Sets of hands reached for me, pleading for me to get out and cooperate. The water stopped running all of the sudden, allowing the remaining steam to suffocate me. I fought against their hands while yelling out the same question. Why is this happening to me?

                A random set of hands grabbed me around the waist and pulled me towards them while I fought against it. Finally, I gave in while still crying and screaming out how I hated everything. Mostly myself.  Two, frantic, manicured hands wrapped a towel around me. My vision was blurred though I started kicking again. I knew it was useless. I let out another sob and closed my eyes, allowing my body to realize how tired it really was.

                The large hands pulled my half-limp body from the bathroom, dragging my feet across the tile floor. When we got out of the door, another set of hands grabbed my ankles, lifting the lower half of my body. We headed to my bedroom down the hall. As if I woke up, I started to struggle against them, but I didn’t fight with as much force as I had had.

                They laid me on the bed and held me there by my shoulders. I half listened, with my eyes half open and crying.  There was so much cursing, yelling and crying. The noises were accompanied by the sound of frantic fingernails against plastic and pills crackling in a pill bottle.



                That time it had taken two days of sleeping and not eating to finally feel the urge to get up and want to pee. That’s how it felt every time I had an outburst or however you want to define it. To me it was my brain and heart coming to an agreement that I would be alone for the rest of my life. I would never have the future we dreamed on having. I would never have the late night talks we would have after we put James to sleep. Never again would I discuss family matters with my friends, talking about how Adam’s job was going and how our little James still stayed awake at night…teething.

Tears ran down my cheeks.

Every time I had an outburst, the doctor would come over, my mother would whisper to him outside of my door. My mother would greet him with a nice, but pathetic hello and would ask how his family was, clearly using my pain as her attempt at getting attention. He would simply reply that they were doing well and would then ask, how is she? My mother would reply a simple, “She’s been better”.

I always put in my two cents and simply stared at the ceiling. 

He came in my room, felt my forehead for a temperature. I continued to stare at the ceiling, barely recognizing his existence.

“How are you feeling, Aida?” He asked patiently, looking down at me. I didn’t reply. “What are you, now? Twenty-two?” He desperately trying to make small talk.

Yes, I thought to myself, but only to myself.

He gently picked up my wrist and checked my pulse rate while looking at his watch. When he was checking my pulse, I could tell that he was looking at my breathing to see if it was normal. I didn’t recoil as I would sometimes do. I had taken the nursing classes; I knew their techniques. I was one of them. I decided it wasn’t my path and Adam backed me all the way, pushing me to do whatever pleased me most. Another tear fell down my face.

He sighed and sat down next to me on the bed. “Aida, you’ve got your mother taking sleeping and depression pills. Everyone is worried that you will try to hurt yourself and so far, you’ve got me convinced as well.”

Who cared? Friends? Since when did they ever care about feelings? They were just more people to look at in everyday society. My mother was the one who always hated Adam for taking me away from her. She would always look at him with a smile that had more meaning than being friendly. During the first meal she cooked for us, Adam whispered in my ear, “Maybe I should have her test the food first.” He was always convinced she was going to kill him one day.

“Are you still having bad dreams at night?” He asked after waiting for a response that didn’t come.

I remained quiet, using the silence to be my sarcastic response. Allowing the silence to be my curse words to his idiocy.

I continued to look up, up to the sky that was just beyond the off-white ceiling. It was as if everyone just expected me to get over this. As if it will all just go away and I’ll jump up from bed and start singing songs from a children’s movie as I skipped around the house. That’s what they acted like at the funerals. You’ll be okay, they said. Everything will get back to normal again, they said. My mother’s milk will disappear and I’ll get a chance to be okay. I’ll simply take my ring off of my finger and put it in the trash, just like Katie did after she left Jake for Vini or Vincent or something.

The doctor looked down at his hands and then got up to leave the room. He was only a foot away from the door and then he turned back to look at me while holding the door. I responded to him by rolling over and staring at the pale blue wall. I heard the click of the door and I closed my eyes.


When I recovered from it, I didn’t feel like I was myself. I felt as if I were in a trance. My days blurred together and I vaguely remembered what I had done just minutes before. My skin hurt when I put on clothes. My face burned when I pulled my shirt over my head. The mornings were worse. Feeling groggy, I would walk into the kitchen and fix coffee, sit down and not really drink it as I looked out of the window. I watched as the birds would fly by or look for worms in the ground.  

There would be a few times I thought about ending it all. I had heard in stories passed from person to person where teenagers and adults killed themselves by overdosing or cutting, even drowning or suffocating themselves somehow. I never really asked how to do something like that. Pain was never my strong point in life.  

My mother kissed me on the forehead with her reading glasses still on, looking up from a book. I had wanted her to leave the house by saying everything was better, but she refused to go. That night, I slowly walked up the stairs and into my bedroom, shutting the door softly. I took in everything that was in the master bedroom. The pale blue walls of the room made it seem calmer than it really was. I looked at the nightstand next to the bed with a picture frame placed face down with our wedding picture in it. Adam cut his dark hair the day before the wedding to look more “sophisticated” as he put it. In my mind, I saw his dark eyes shining back at me with his smile beaming.

I felt the burning sensation in my nose rise up to my eyes and I looked over at the dark colored bookshelf with picture albums of every happy memory that I haven’t been able to look at. The smaller one picture album held James in its square arms.

I swallowed and pressed my back to the door. Next I looked at the dresser. Its dark wood held many drawers, but one in particular. The larger drawer held contents that I was interested in. The only way I could choose to be happy was in that drawer. It my only choice. I swallowed again, pushing back the ebony colored hair that streamed over my shoulders.

I looked around the room again, gulping back a sob. It was as if the room was talking, whispering to me. It held what once was my happiness, now was my dread. It mocked me by revealing everything that reminded me of what had happened.

“I can’t…” I pleaded. “I can’t take this. I-…” Stopping in mid-sentence, I pushed myself from the door as my finger pushed in the button on the handle. I felt like I was on a mission as I slowly walked towards the drawer. Words streamed through my head, clogging my thoughts. It was mostly nonsense, but when I reached the drawer it all made sense. It was as if the drawer was calling my name, rewarding me with the silence and peace that I begged for.

I stopped in front of it and my hand began to shake as I pulled the Celtic knot towards me. I closed my eyes and took a deep breath.

But can you really do this? Would you really want to leave behind your life? A voice inside my head asked and I opened my eyes. My nose started to sting again.

“Yes,” I muttered. It was the clearest thought that I had had since…

Do you not care about what you have?

 “I can’t make it on my own,” I whispered as tears began to flow once more, causing my head to pound and my eyes to burn.

What would he have said to you if he were here now? What would Adam have said to you right now?

I covered my ears and squeezed my eyes shut. “No,” I replied as I ran my fingers through my hair shaking my head. It wasn’t the same. He would have told me to not be ridiculous, but he would have done the same. How can someone loose both a child and a spouse and manage to want to continue living?

I opened my eyes and looked down at the drawer that was still open, awaiting my answer. The pill bottles were there staring back at me. The drawer was filled with them. Zoloft, Valium, Ambien and Celexa . Since my mother was an ex-nurse, she seemed to find the good stuff. My hand reached for the Ambien and put it closer to my face to study it. There was a good amount still in the small bottle. Just enough.

Seeing the pills reminded me of the many visits to see James’s doctors for shots that he cried over. My breathing started to get heavier as my fingers felt like trying to grip the bottle. I didn’t give him too many shots because I didn’t believe in newborns getting five shots at one time. Only two or three per visit is all newborns need. I closed my eyes again, pulling the bottle close to my chest.

“Help me,” I pleaded under my breath.

Just then I heard my mother scream and I let the pills fall to the floor. The scream only last a few seconds and was gone. Then pure silence filled the house. She was downstairs, right underneath me. I stared at the door in horror and curiosity as my heart fluttered. I backed up to the bed and walked backwards around it. I was headed backwards towards the window as I heard soft footsteps come up the stairs. I quickly turned around to look at the window when I saw a man my height staring back at me in my room. Without thinking, I screamed out. That’s when darkness met me.  

© 2010 snapjack

Author's Note

Original photo can be found here:

Photographer: Anneliese Hilton

Comments are totally welcome! Thanks for reading!

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Pills and shots remonds me of my life...I am diabetic.
Very descriptive and wonderful imagery....
You write a very good story.

Posted 13 Years Ago

1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

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Added on June 1, 2010
Last Updated on December 31, 2010
Tags: aida, agreement, snapjack, ivory, short, story, inner, body, help, meeting, darkness, doctor, Zoloft, Valium, Ambien, Celexa, mom, mother, adam, james




All original photos that I have used can be located in my blog on here, named: ALL USED PHOTOS.... Any const.. more..

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A Chapter by snapjack