Fire burns powerfully yet elegantly, it burns through the wood, making the wood less and less significant. Just like the woman watching it. She rocked back and forth in a dimly lit room. The only light was of the furious fire under her chimney. Back and forth, she rocked as her face paled slowly.
In her hands were items she couldn't stop from consuming her every thought. As she stared at the wood, she thought that she was just like the wood. Slowly being burned by the fire. Willingly being burned by the powerful fire. Once the wood stood strong. Once it was not wood, it was a strong tree, powerful and mighty. But now, it had been reduced to ashes, and it slowly became more and more piteous.
Suddenly she began laughing. Uncontrollable laughter left her lips as they stretched out. Tears ran down her face, vivid black tears filled with her make-up. As she laughed and cried, she began bashing the edge of her chair.
Then her laughter stopped. She was completely silent. Then she began crying uncontrollably, her black teardrops stained the photos in her hands. Her tears stained the envelope that the photos were within. She wiped them off carefully, treasuring every tear and sobbing even more furiously.
Once again, she became silent. She left the envelope on a vintage table next to her, the mahogany of the table complimenting the beige of the paper. She trudged into the bathroom, her eyes soaked but not another tear spilling. She grabbed a make-up wipe and carefully rubbed her stained face. Slowly, all the disgusting black strewn over her face disappeared leaving behind clear, bright skin. She is still a youth in her prime and a beauty too. However, what is beauty worth when you have no love?
She stared at this face of hers, a face that has lost everything. At least you are alive. She told herself. At least you live. So, with newfound composure she returned to her chair. Rocking comfortably whilst flipping through the photos.
Creaking could be heard from behind her, the old doors and floors of her beautiful home giving away that her husband had returned. He strode into the living area, he always is confident no matter what the scenario may be. He saw the blacks of her hair, the back of the rocking chair as it swayed. He gently approached her and gazed at the contents of her hand. Then his entire being froze. After a simple second of being frozen he sighed, the kind of sigh that one gives when they're tired. Her heart cracked for a second, but her face softened and her lips curved up.
Looking at her smile, he was confused, what kind of reaction was this? She rose, slowly like the sun rising in the morn. Her soft movements continued to the fire, and she flung the photos into the consuming flames. The photos of her husband and another woman amidst the act. Then, before he could see her tears, she slowly left the living room, into a guest bedroom in her beautiful home. He gazed at the back he was so used to seeing, always leaving him behind.
Three more months passed, and the distance between them increased. Then, she got a new envelope. Once again, she found herself on the chair, rocking by the fire. Thinking how nice it would be if she too could burn her existence away like the wood and become ash.
This time when her husband entered the room she turned and showed him the photos as if she were giving him flowers made of diamonds.
The same sigh echoed through the room and her mind and her entire being. Her fragile heart cracked even more. Yet, her face bore the same peaceful smile, as if she were getting married today. Yet, her crescent eyes opened and he saw the pain in them. Deep wells of heartbreak and betrayal. His heart shattered for her but this was the only way he could keep her.
Two weeks passed and it was their wedding anniversary. They always celebrated this day with lunch. She couldn't get in contact with him so she went to his office. Her husband is the CEO of a tech business, to put it lightly. The biggest tech business in the world currently. But she never cared for that since her own family owned this business before he did. Before he took it from them. She didn't mind that either, they were never good to her.
She walked to his office, and she got looks of ridicule from all the workers. Why were they giving her such looks? The closer she got to his office the worse she felt. It was as if she was a character in a horror movie, getting closer and closer to what she knows will be the death of her, but continued to go forwards.
Slowly, she approached the destination. She heard a soft voice coming from the office, the voice of a woman. Her ears perked up, as she got closer to the door. The voices became clearer, lewd sounds emanating from the office. Her husband and this woman's voice mixing as the moaned.
Her heart finally shattered and imploded into dust. A feeling of disgust rising from her chest. How could a man be so heartless as to kiss and make love with another woman on her wedding anniversary? Disgust filled her body, making her want to vomit and cry. She left the office area, her mind muddled but her composure retained. The staff watched her leave as if she had just seen nothing and felt pity for this woman, for she had never done anything wrong.
Inside her car, she pulls open a drawer. Inside the drawer was a plank of rubber that could be lifted, and when lifted a piece of paper would be revealed. A piece of paper that would change her life forever.
Slowly, she read the contents of the paper, over and over. Then, she gradually rose from her seat and opened the car door. Refusing to let another tear fall for the man who never loved her. Placing the paper into her handbag, she once again went into the building. Walking into the company as if she owned, as if she was the true CEO of this company.
Her eyes swept pass a mural, ten people on that mural, all of whom she loved. All of whom who loved her whole-heartedly. Her friend Richard, who wiped her tears when she cried, who made jokes and faces so that she would smile. He died in a fire a while ago; she lost her closest friend that day.
Next to him, her sister. The only family member to ever show her affection, the only one that would support her and listen to her dreams. She committed suicide after her husband left her, her company fell apart and her baby died. The grief took her life. The list continued, 5 people, 5 events, all of which took away those she loved. Now she had one best friend, Susanna. Thus, she treasured this friend more than anything. For after today, she needed someone she could depend on. Someone that is not her husband.
She approached the door faster this time and simply flung it open. The sight before her being one she would remember at her last breath. Her husband kissed the woman whose face she had never seen, in all the photos she saw a back. The woman who broke her marriage and pushed her to the brink. The woman who was moaning and being pleasured by her husband right now. The woman she considered her best friend.
"Susanna?" She glared at the adulterous pair, the two people she should have been able to trust most. Her husband and best friend. Susanna screamed and tripped off her husband. Pulling back together her clothing, her face beet red like a child getting caught. Her husband simply glared back, almost challenging her. Her gaze rests on them both for a second longer, the remnants of her heart swallowed by the black hole of depression.
"Why?" She asked, colder than the Arctic winds during a blizzard. Her expression showing no change. A chill settled through the room.
Susanna, suddenly feeling a surge of courage looked at her innocently. "I love him, I love him so much, Alisha. More than you, more than anyone. And more than he loves me." Susanna's eyes switch over to his, as she looked at him with love. He continued to stare at his wife, wanting to see what she would do.
Seeing her husband's lack of voice, she grimly grinned. Her eyes filled with self-mockery, she gazed at them both. Her eyes rose to the roof for a second as she regained any remaining composure. A small nod came from her, her eyes glistening as she looked at the pair. Pulling the paper from her purse, she walked to his desk and left it.
Then, she turned to both of them, smiling pleasantly. "I hope you both live on together happily, may you have many kids. I wish you well. Good bye and please refrain from contacting me; I'm afraid I might vomit." She turned on her heals and left them. Feeling less burdened but also feeling everything else at once. Everything being pain, disgust, anger, self-pity, and hatred. Fiery tears began falling from her eyes in hot trails; her sobs could be heard by the many people she went past.
Somehow, she faltered to her car, her vision blurred she tried to fumble into her purse for her keys. Suddenly, she heard harsh footsteps getting closer to her. She turned to see a blur of black coming at her. Startled, she dropped her keys and quickly evaded the blur. Running, trying to run, that was all she could remember before she felt a sharp pain at her neck and lost all consciousness.
Darkness. Struggling. The veil over Alisha's eyes was undone. Her eyelashes fluttered as they adjusted to the dim lighting around her. Upon gaining sight, her eyes widened in shock. "Bryan?!" Her husband stood in front of her like an emperor looking down at a slug.
Confusion flashed through her eyes, rightfully so. She heard a click, and drew her gaze to his right hand. A feeling of horror oozed into her as she stared at the gun. She gulped and raised her eyes to line in with his.
A single word, barely a whisper, left her lips but this word would haunt him forever.
His pupils darkened slightly, his eyes filled with anger, and he looked like a serial killer as he looked at her. "In the last 4 years, what hasn't happened to you?" A small laugh left her lips, even being at death's door did not stop her self-mockery. She recalled all the events that happened since they married. All the pain, frustration and fury. Fear crept into her bones with his next words.
"Ever wonder why they happened to those around you, mi amor?" She stared at him, her eyes glassy with tears.
"No…" She whispered, "Please, no."
"Yes." He snarled at her, his face distorting as his true feelings showed.
"First, I took your family's business, their riches and their homes. Then, I burned down Richard's home, and with it Richard. Then all of your many friends, slowly they all came into my grasp. Moreover, the police helped. Finally, I took your best friend and made her 'the other woman' for you to see and lose forever. All so that you could never leave me." He spat at her face. Her sobs could be heard, heart breaking sobs as she recalled all these events. As she pieced the puzzle of her past together.
"But, mi amor, what have you done now? Divorce? Me? You bewitching bitch. You will never leave me! Not while you live. So, die."
"No, you don't have t-" Bang. A bullet wound left in her heart, a quick death.