“The War Within”
Just as she arrived, mere inches from me and in an instant, she was whisked away.
I can still feel it, though. That spark. That connection.
Her compassionate eyes staring, nearly weeping. Her body awkwardly shifted, not knowing what to do. The words drew her closer to me.
I don’t care what she thinks of my past. I just want her to think of my future.
I know they are connected. I can feel it. I’ve seen it…
This is why we are connected, right?
I pace around the room. I was getting taken care of in the medical room when she came to me. When I felt that familiar blur dizzily taking over me, I knew I’d see her face. And there she was. So brilliantly bold, but a sorrow hung over her.
At first, she was flustered by my appearance, as I wasn’t wearing a shirt or jacket. After a moment, though, she looked back at me and walked a little closer. I don’t know if she was just acting embarrassed because she felt like she had to or if she actually was. Either way, there was one thing I did know. As she walked closer to me—her face steady, her curiosity hungry—all she cared about was hearing what I had to say. To listen to my side of the story.
The first one to actually listen.
With such determined eyes, she hung on my every word, searching for the truth and accepting the very thing inside myself that I’ve been trying to throw out. The light. That light that lives so vibrantly in her stare. Her eyes are a safe haven ready to sweep me in, and I can’t look away. A piece of me has been reborn because of her. I can sense the world around me now. I can feel everything I could possibly imagine through the glow in her eyes. Every inch of her gives me a sensation I never thought I could experience.
Is it normal to feel this way? For someone to make me feel so alive?
I finally told someone. I told her. The painful truth I have pushed down since that horrifying day when everything changed—when my family became strangers. When I uttered those words, the knots in my body, and the lump permanently lodged in my throat, vanished. It’s as though her listening to my plight and her caring about what I say without an ulterior motive, she took them from me. She took away the pain, and all in one moment.
Well, some of the pain…
There is still a constant ball of fire burning through my body, singing every nerve of my being before settling into my chest at night. I can’t stop it, and I’m afraid of what I might have to do to extinguish it.
I hear the voices outside my room. There’s another attack going on with the rebels. We found their ship, and plans have been underway all night. I look away and try to overhear without going outside and asking for myself, but I can’t keep my thoughts straight.
I can imagine her now. I can see her like I’ve never seen anything else. The curl of her lashes as she looks up at me. The freckles that sprinkle her skin like clusters of tiny stars. Her rosy mouth. Her infectious smile.
I can’t help but wonder what it would feel like to brush my hand along her cheek. To slide my arms around her waist and wrap her up in me—to feel her warmth against me. She traces her hands along my sides and up my back as she comes in for a tight embrace. Her fingers dance along the nape of my neck. The starlight shimmers on the strands of her hair as the threads of brown blow lightly against the night’s brisk wind. This is what it’s like to feel alive. That’s all I’ve ever wanted…
I shake my head. No. That’s not right. None of this is right.
She’s inside me like a virus.
I don’t know if I want the cure.
Maybe I do.
Maybe it would be better if I got rid of this feeling…
Or maybe I should let her tame the flames inside…
My hands clutch my throbbing head. Black beads of sweat line my peripheral vision. Droplets leak from my hair, landing on the bridge of my nose.
Why is it all so confusing? Why can’t I finish what my grandfather started? Why do I have to choose between these warring worlds fighting with searing words and flashing images day and night?
Why did she have to show up in the middle of everything? She spreads light into cracks inside me—into the part of me that I never wanted opened. Maybe that’s where I belong after all…
Maybe the light is…
I’m here for a reason—I’m on this ship because of what I did. I can’t move past that. But, every day I see his face. My father. What did I do? What have I done? What do I do now?
How am I supposed to choose when a monster swallowed me whole and now I want to be spit back out? I can’t go on like this.
I can’t take it anymore.
I turn around and thrust my fist into the wall. My body falls into the cold metal. My bare flesh sticks to the wall, falling against my fist. My other hand balls up and starts hitting the wall as I scream. Over and over and over.
Make it all go away. I don’t want these thoughts. I don’t want these feelings.
Then I think of her.
My fist falls apart. My fingers spread apart, dropping slowly down the wall, squeaking as they make their way to my side. I lift my body upright with my other arm, pushing against the metal wall.
Something about her holds my future. Something about her can make the pain go away. She’s the key to the lock I cannot open.
I don’t know what my destiny is, but I want to ignore everything and follow where she leads me.
That’s all I want to do.
I need Rey. I need her to breathe the light inside me before all of it runs out.
Before the darkness falls.
Find each chapter of ‘The Madness that Binds Us’ here.