Extract from my current project
| Taking a minute to grab a drink and my breathe I step on to the balcony. The music is slightly muted but I can still feel the boom boom of the bass pounding through the double doors. There's a couple to my left making out in the corner, looks like it's getting a little hot and heavy so I turn my back on them, feeling like I'm intruding. The cool breeze feels so good on my face and neck. I sip my blue lagoon cocktail, it's sweet and fruity taste quenches my thirst. This is my favourite drink! The balcony doors open but I'm too involved in my own thoughts and the gorgeous view of the river to care about who's coming outside. I feel arms slip around my waist and a warm breath on my neck. I smile thinking James wanted some alone time too.
I turn myself around and say, 'I'm glad you decided to join me-' I'm not staring at James. It's Leighton my friend Jenny’s boyfriend. He's smiling at me and tries to kiss me.
'Woah!' I push him away, 'what are you doing?'
He smiles at me again, 'c'mon no one is around and I just want a kiss.' I try to push him away, he's built like a lock on a rugby team. He runs his hands down my sides and stops at the hem of my skirt. I try and step back but he's got me cornered.
'Leighton no! Why would you do this to Jenny?' I must have looked horrified because he took at step back and let go of me. I raise both hands to his chest and push him backwards. 'There's no way I'm doing this. You two have just had a baby and she's one of my closest friends.' He takes a step forward and tries to kiss me again. 'Leighton no!' Shouting this time.
'You're scaring me now go away and let's pretend this never happened ok.'
'Just one kiss please? I won't say anything and no one will ever know', his hand slipping under my skirt and rubbing my thigh. Fear shot through me, would he press the issue? Would he ignore my rejection? My heart is pounding so fast I think it may explode out of my chest in that moment.
'Beth? You out here?' Relieve washes over me as I recognise James voice.
'James' I shriek pushing past Leighton. Throwing my arms around him and shaking so hard I can hardly stand up. Concern coming over his face, 'Everything OK here?' Smiling meekly I nod my head and bury my face into his chest to try and fight away the tears. Leighton mumbles something I didn't hear and quickly goes back inside to the party. James must have felt me shaking because his arms enveloped me and he gently kisses my head telling me it's OK.
After dodging the question all night when we were leaving I tell James what happened and I see his jaw tense and his eyes go grey. He stands up and starts looking around. He spots his target, quickly and quietly he descends on his prey. Grabbing Leighton out of his seat,
'A word please' James pushes him outside onto the balcony. I open the door to hear James telling Leighton if he ever touches me again James would kill him. Shocked I take a step onto the balcony and Leighton pushes past me, his mouth is bleeding. James slowly turns around, puts his arms around me and looks into my eyes. 'He'll never try that again baby' I nestle into his chest and we stand there for a moment. I know as long as I have James I am safe and no one could hurt us. I was 18 and naive. I thought we would be together forever me and my protector.
Fast forward a few years and we are no longer together and I'm with Russ. He's tall, has milk chocolate coloured eyes, black hair which he wears short on the back and sides and slightly longer on top. He looks Hispanic, tanned and toned. He's very attentive but I can't stop thinking about James. Russ looks like he could do some damage but he isn't a fighter. Which is what makes this relationship so hard. He doesn't defend me, he hates to fight with anyone except me. He has a short temper and a very low opinion of me. Why I allowed him to erode my self confidence to pretty much nothing I will never understand. If I wore make up I was a slut. If I wore tight fitted clothes I was a slut. I couldn't have blonde hair because only slutty girls had blonde hair.
I thought I was in love and I was trying to get over James and Russ was it. We started out as equals but as time went on I began to see a change in him. He had female friends who treated me like a second class citizen. To the point where I worked up the nerve to tell one of them, who had been sending really naughty messages to Russ, to stay away from him as he has a girlfriend and I didn't appreciate her attitude. Russ flew into such a rage and screamed at me and hurled abuse at me for daring to speak to his friend like that and should I ever think of doing that again I would be very sorry. That was the first time he gave me a fat lip and told me I fell over... Things only got worse from there.
Russ became more outgoing and with that he got more nasty and violent with me. It was 5 years of absolute hell, people always say why did you stay? You think you're in love with that person and they make you think you'd never find anyone better than them because you're such a monster and you drive people to hate you and hurt you. I eventually realised it wasn't my problem he had the problems and he was the one who was a monster. That day I left him I never looked back. The scars are still there though, I have trust issues and don't like confrontation in case I am slapped for daring to challenge an opinion.
Those memories blind side me as I'm looking at James. I always hoped we'd see each other again, here we are and I am exhilarated at the thought of him being in my bed again, his lips touching mine, our bodies becoming one again. I'm pulled from my thoughts when I am pulled into a tight hug from James. Looking up at his face, getting lost in those ocean blue eyes and I know nothing can touch us. He kisses me gently, my whole body starts to tingle from head to toe.
Woken by the buzzing of the phone on the night stand, "hello?" Beth says still half asleep. "Hello ma'am is this Beth Taylor?"? Beth asks who this is as it's her friend Joan's cellophane. The voice on the other end of the line says he found Joan collapsed out side her apartment complex. Beth already getting dressed, tells the man to call if the ambulance arrives before she does. Scribbling a quick note for James about the situation and where shes going, Beth grabs her keys and bag and goes to her car. Pulling up to the complex there's not lights or crowd outside. Beth pulls her phone out to call Joan's cell only to find the number was restricted so she dials her number and hear her phone ringing faintly. "Joan?" Beth calls but gets no reply. A shadow appears from behind the bushes that mark the complex boundaries. "Beth? Is that you?" A man walks out from the bushes it sounds like the same voice that called to tell her about Joan. Cautiously Beth steps toward him and asks where Joan is what's happened, the man says his name is Bryan and that Joan is in her apartment because she didn't want to go to the hospital and just wanted to go back up to her apartment. "Why do you have Joan's cell?" "So I could let you know she is ok and is upstairs, let's go see her." Bryan says with an urgency that took Beth by surprise.