Sunday, May 28, 2017

Vigilante Heroin

Elizabeth shifted her purse from her left to her right shoulder and quietly slipped her right hand inside searching out the cold metal of the handgun she kept there. The weight of it in the bag was comforting, but once she felt the textured grips under her fingers, the world around her calmed.

She was hungry.

She only knew of one thing that would quell her appetite, and he was walking about a block ahead of her.

She had really been curious the first time she followed a man like this late at night, and it was a little unnerving how easily it could be done. She had yet to have any of these guys notice her until it was too late. It was so different than the world she knew as a woman walking with her keys between her fingers even in the daytime if she was at the bus stop for any length of time, having illegal pepper spray because getting in trouble for that was way better than the alternative for not having it… being hypervigilant, keeping covered, never walking anywhere with headphones on or with your nose buried in a book because taking focus from the world could end with death. And that night, the first night, she just wanted to know if the world worked the same for him after she sat in a coffee shop and watched him hassle the barista for her phone number then call her fat when she turned him down. She watched her devolve into a snotty, teary mess after he threw his coffee at her and stormed out. And she followed him. It wasn’t reasonable or rational or a good idea, but deep down, this rage she had never felt before welled up blasting out of her pores. She was angry at him, yes, but she was angrier at herself for being too afraid to step up and say anything.

And by the end of the night, she said a lot.

Back then she didn’t have a gun. That was a new thing. Back then it was just the illegal pepper spray and a rape whistle. At the time, it was enough, though. She followed the guy a few blocks into a parking garage with her pepper spray in hand, and just before he got into his truck (because of course it was a huge truck), she whistled at him from just beyond the tailgate. He turned, and she got him good right in the eyes. She doesn’t even remember now what she actually said to him as he rolled on the ground screaming, but she faintly remembers threatening his life if he so much as thought about doing to another woman the way he did that barista.

The anxiety she felt afterwards was indescribable. Would she get in trouble? Would he be able to track her down? What if the pepper spray hadn’t worked? What if she missed? What if he hurt her? Why did it feel so fucking good and make her feel so goddamned happy? What was wrong with her? She was a writhing mass of emotions that ate away at her like blowfly maggots.

After awhile she couldn’t get the rush out of her mind--that heady feeling from the sheer power and control she had. For the first time in her life, she felt like she had an inkling of what it might be like to be a dominatrix, but she was also getting justice or at least that’s the way she saw it. Vigilante justice, maybe, but it still made her feel good to do something and to fantasize about doing it again. Like some kind of feminist antihero. Like Deadpool but less angry.

So when she was out at a bar a few weeks later and saw a guy grab a girl’s crotch and yell “TRUMP THAT PUSSY” she did it again. He got kicked out of the bar, and she followed, sprayed him, and unleashed a torrent of obscenities about his behavior. It wasn’t long before she had another opportunity, and next thing she knew, it had been a year and she had left probably a half a dozen potential felony charges in her wake.

But the last couple months had been different. She’d been watching this guy up ahead of her for at least 6 months getting to know his habits. He was the boyfriend of her new coworker at the vet hospital. She’d never gone after someone she knew but this was different. She had seen Maven come in far too many times with bruises on her arms, her throat, with too many excuses for black eyes and swollen wrists. The girl was clumsy, sure, but that couldn’t explain the teary mornings, the fear in her eyes when someone raised a hand near her for any reason (and never to hit her, not at work). It couldn’t explain the excuses she gave when they all went out after work for drinks, and it damn sure didn’t give a reason for the times they worked late together when he, Stephen, would call screaming at her and accusing her of sleeping with the male employees.

This was different. This time it was personal.

Maven wouldn’t leave him. They had all talked to her about it last week, had an intervention of sorts. She was too scared to leave. She knew the chances he would hurt her seriously after she left were higher than staying. She had done her research… That’s the thing. She wasn’t stupid, and he hadn’t been this obvious when they got together. She turned a blind eye to the problems when they first happened because back then it was easy to make excuses. Tying their financial accounts together seemed like a logical step, and when he spent their money carelessly then chastised her for so much as buying a coffee, she chalked it up to depression. He’d get help and take medicine then get off it when he felt “fine.” Every time she caught him cheating or in a lie, there would be a honeymoon period that made her question everything. Things didn’t start at this point, in other words. They built slowly until Maven’s life was such a tangled mess she didn’t really have hope of ever getting out of it.

What other choice was there then?

Tonight, Maven would be free, and the world would finally shift in her favor no matter the cost.

Elizabeth was starving for the adrenaline rush, for the sense of good she felt afterwards, and as much as she wanted to pretend this was for Maven, she also, down deep, this had nothing to do with an altruistic need to save. She wanted blood.

Up ahead, Stephen ducked into the parking garage near his side chick’s place.



This blog post was for Sunday Confessions, a weekly blog challenge hosted by More Than Cheese and Beer. The link up is below. Be sure to check out the other submissions!

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Not So Politically Charged

I’m the kind of person that often makes politics the center of my life. And by “often” I mean like political and sociopolitical issues are my life. But recently, I have had to take some steps back from a lot of what is going on in the United States. Part of me feels guilty for it, but part of me knows that going strong the way I have about other things has made me burned out.

I can’t say the last 8 years when my interests really grew were perfect. Obama wasn’t an infallible leader by any means. Sure he was charming and put forth bills and executive orders that aligned, if not fully mostly, with my core beliefs and values. When I was outraged at something that happened in this country, it usually wasn’t coupled with fear that this IS our country. I might have known that the issue wouldn’t be addressed the way it needed to be, that these things wouldn’t be fixed overnight, but I wasn’t terrified that we, as a people, were devolving, going backward, fucking time traveling back to a time when hate was worn like a uniform out in the open, brazenly, when it was something to be proud of…

All that changed this year when 45 was elected. Being a woman, not exactly a straight one, has put a lot of issues in the public eye that I thought we were moving past as a nation. I mean, who would have thought in 2017 rational people would be like, hmmm, maybe we should let literal Nazis have a platform to speak on college campuses, maybe we should engage them and sway them from actual genocide with, you know, internet infographics and arguments.

But here we are.

Here we are with a President who has given confidential information to another country not exactly known for being, you know, all about freedom and shit. But who cares because at least he doesn’t have a vagina? Amirite???!!?

BUT HER EMAILS, THOUGH. Her fucking emails!

Like seriously, Trump is under criminal investigation for obstruction of justice AS THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES. And I don’t even think it’s the worst thing he’s done so far nor will it be the last investigation. If Trump is impeached or resigns or worse, what then? Pence? That might even be worse. He’s not as hotheaded, but unlike Trump he isn’t in it for the attention and the praise. He has an agenda, and I don’t think we have even half a clue how deep it goes.

So things have changed for me. Where I had room to be outraged, opinionated, and outspoken about big issues like police brutality, systemic racism, feminism, body acceptance under Obama, everything is so insane lately that I’m not sure where to even start. What the fuck do you even talk about these days? Which issue? Which bill? Which ineptitude? Which country he pissed off? Which attempt to cut off rights for people like me?

I don’t know how to keep up anymore, and I know this won’t last forever. Even now I see things here and there that I have to comment on or share, but for the most part, I am trying to live life and focus on self-care. I can’t avoid real life for long, and it’s a privilege to even be able to do so this long, but I needed this vacation from the madness.


This little ranty thing was part of Sunday Confessions, a weekly blog challenge hosted by More Than Cheese and Beer who has taken a hiatus lately from blogging. I love these weekly challenges with just one word or phrase to twist into something fanciful. This week, the topic was Center. Thanks for reading and feel free to link up yourself with the rest of us below.

Friday, May 12, 2017

I've Got This

Today’s post is a writing challenge. This is how it works: participating bloggers picked 4 – 6 words or short phrases for someone else to craft into a post. All words must be used at least once and all the posts will be unique as each writer has received their own set of words. That’s the challenge, here’s a fun twist; no one who’s participating knows who got their words and in what direction the writer will take them. Until now.

My words are: blue line, stick, bad jibs, forward, barn burner, top shelf
They were submitted by:

Fair warning, this is a tough subject and I didn't try to go easy on it. This is absolutely fiction in the way that this kind of thing happens way too often, but this exact thing didn't happen to me. Also, trigger warning: sexual assault. 

I lean forward staring at the little white stick with its lavender-colored cap and will it to have the answer I want, need really. “Just one little blue line please, pretty please,” I whisper out loud in the bathroom. “Just one.”

The tears that have been precariously waiting to fall start flowing then with no holds barred. The room blurs making it impossible to read my future on the drugstore pregnancy test, an off-brand because ohmygodIcan’tevenaffordanEPT. I know without even being able to see the mirror across the room that this is a full on OITNB-Piper ugly cry with earthquake sobs and a flash flood of snot.

I’m not ready for this.

I can’t even handle being in my own skin these days. I can’t shower enough trying to get rid of every last skin cell he touched.” He” being the man who attacked me, the guy I met online who said I was the most beautiful creature he had ever met, that said all the right things. We’d even gone out once before, met in public just to be safe. His idea actually. But the second time, I went back to his place for a glass of wine after out public meet up, and next thing I know I was waking up naked in his bed the next morning.

I know without a doubt that I have no idea what to do with myself right now much less a baby from a night I can’t remember and sex I couldn’t possibly have agreed to…

That next morning after I woke up sore and dizzy, he acted like nothing happened. While I was still coming to the realization that SOMETHING definitely happened to my body, he called me sleepyhead and handed me a coffee. Before I could even run to the bathroom to check myself over, he leaned in to kiss me on the cheek making me gag. He giggled. The man actually giggled at my wretching and asked if I had always been such a lightweight when it comes to alcohol.

I am, was, his to use and also the butt of the joke.

So how am I supposed to make it through this when I can’t even figure out where I go from here? What if the kid is a boy with bad jibs like his…like…what if he doesn’t look like me and every day is a reminder of a night I can’t remember and don’t want to remember. Or what if it’s a girl and every single day I am terrified that she will be hit randomly with a fuzzy memory of a man on top of her, slapping her across the face and calling her a dirty slut? What if…what if I can’t go through with this and have to end it? How can I live with that for the rest of my life? But how can I live with it if I don’t? What if he asks for custody? For fucking visitation rights.

The timer on my phone dings letting me know it’s time to check this thing, my future. I splash water on my face hoping it will at least give me enough of a reprieve from the emotional rollercoaster I’m on for me to see. I grab a towel, dry my face, and search my eyes in the mirror.

I’ve got this.

I reach for the thing where I dropped it by the toilet, frantic and determined.

I’ve got this.

It’s just one line.





I know sitting there on my knees in front of the toilet that I’m going to have an emotional breakdown. And I also know that I’m going to be fine, and I would have been fine no matter how many lines appeared on this fucking thing, but…BUT, I am also going to throw one hell of a barnburner tonight once I pull myself together. It might end up being just me, but that just means more top shelf liquor I don’t have to share.

I’ve got this.


Links to the other “Use Your Words” posts:

Baking In A Tornado

Spatulas on Parade

The Blogging 911

On the Border

Bookworm in the Kitchen

The Bergham Chronicles

Simply Shannon

Southern Belle Charm

Confessions of a part-time working mom

Friday, May 5, 2017

Not Today, Satan

Welcome to a Secret Subject Swap. This week 12 brave bloggers picked a secret subject for someone else and were assigned a secret subject to interpret in their own style. Today we are all simultaneously divulging our topics and submitting our posts.
My subject is: Mother may I?
It was submitted by:

I tried to make the best of this subject. It wasn't easy. haha. So here is a little fiction.


It started with flowers.

And, yeah, I know that sounds awesome and shit, but it wasn't. I would get flowers at work every single day with a card that read "Mother may I?" and that was it. Every. single. day. This has gone on for like 6 months. No weird texts. No messages. No dating scares. (Yet.) I mean, I don't even have a recent ex. It was just flowers, every day, same time, at work, different arrangements every time.

It was cute and mysterious and, eh, kinda romantic for the first couple days maybe, but after the first week, it was old, and that fucking card was the pinnacle of creepiness from the get go. By the second week, I thought it had to be a prank. But then it never ended.

All my friends asked me to call the police, but what do you actually say about it? I tried calling the florist, but they didn't have any information they could give me. The orders had been placed online with a credit card, but the owner really didn't feel comfortable giving me a name since the cards were never supposed to be signed. So. yeah. Throwing away flowers became part of my daily routine for awhile.

Then I started getting comments on Instagram. Every time I posted a selfie, some random account (different ones every time) would be the first to comment , and every time it said, "Mother may I?" The accounts weren't new. Each one had a few hundred followers and random memes posted. Never of photo of themselves, though, and no indication of who might actually be running the account. I set my account to private after a few days of this, but it didn't stop, and I had to shut the whole profile down.

I still didn't take it to the police. How crazy would I have looked telling them about flowers and Instagram photos? Hysterical is the word that comes to mind because it has been used to undermine women forever. And yes I realize that's absolutely cynical, but oh well. Such is life. Maybe they would have taken me seriously, but back in college my roommate went to the cops when she was drugged at a bar, and they wouldn't even take down a report because she couldn't prove she didn't "just drink too much," so, eh, I don't have much faith in the cops. Or didn't. Don't? The jury is still out on that one honestly.

It was when I started getting explicit pictures on my phone by text that I finally went to the police station. Porn gifs, dick pics, images burned into my skull forever and all accompanied by "Mother may I?" The guy was tech savvy, and I say guy because I just don't see too many women having a reason to send me dick pics or call me mother, but who the fuck knows. I could be wrong. I still don't know who it is or why. Anyway, the texts were all coming in from different numbers, burner phones the police said, so I changed my number (I didn't want to before so I would have stored up some evidence) about 3 days ago upon their advice to see if at least the messages would stop.

And they did. For the first two days...

But today... Well, everything was fine. Okay, everything wasn't fine, but I was mostly alright. I kept on thinking, hoping, that maybe it really was a prank. Maybe it was someone's idea of a sick joke. Maybe I had actually made someone mad, and they were trolling me. Today, though.... today, I started getting violent photos, battered, choked women; what could only be described as snuff film gifs; mutilated women's bodies; and things I can't even put into words. Every half hour on the dot starting at 7 a.m. I've been getting these. I called the cops--again--and I was asked to forward every single one of the texts to the guy handling my case. So I'm having to see every single one of these fucking things, and it's terrifying. They're supposed to be using the texts to try and get warrants or some fucking shit, but while I've been waiting to hear back, diligently forwarding each one of these texts and crying all the while, I've had a knock at the door. I looked out the peephole to see someone in a suit wearing some kind of realistic skull mask staring straight into the lens. We made "eye contact" if that's at all possible through a peephole for about 30 seconds before he, she, whoever leaned in and whispered "Mother may I?" barely loud enough to hear through the thin apartment door (or was it my imagination?) before taking off down the hall.

So the cop is supposed to show up, but I keep hearing things at the windows. Why oh why do I have to live on the ground floor?? And now the texts have stopped. Maybe the cop will actually get here and do something, but just in case, I'm sitting in the kitchen floor with the biggest knife I own because not today, Satan. Not fucking today.


Baking In A Tornado

Spatulas on Parade

The Blogging 911

The Lieber Family Blog

Sparkly Poetic Weirdo

The Bergham Chronicles

Bookworm in the Kitchen

Simply Shannon

Southern Belle Charm

Confessions of a part-time working mom

Not That Sarah Michelle