Shortlisted Entry: Alex

There was a knock on the bedroom door. With shaky legs and a heavy head, Alex gets out of bed and turns the knob, letting in a waft of fresh air and a stream of light from the hallway.


Standing at the door is a raven-haired girl, dressed head to toe in black and sporting a scowl on freshly painted lips. “Don’t convince me to get out of bed,” moans Alex, wishing to continue dwelling in her loneliness and misery uninterrupted. “I would never do any such thing,” claims her raven-haired friend.

Lying side by side on her queen sized bed, Alex begins to let out words once swallowed, escape, gushing out of her as if they were a glass overflowed. She began claiming her truths as if on trial to protect her own integrity, “I am a narcissist, I am constantly lonely regardless of whether or not I have anyone in my life, I am selfish but I’ll never admit it, and I am constantly in need for attention. Why am I like this?” The rhetorical question bouncing off the walls of her pitch-black bedroom. They sat in silence for what seemed like hours before her raven-haired friend broke the silence with a sharp intake of breath followed by per-meditated words: “You are nothing. You spend your days dwelling in your sorrows at yet do nothing about it. You say you’re a woman of action, well then tell me, what are you going to do about this? You claim you’re special? That you think you are one of a kind? Why would anyone want to be like you if you are that one percent. You are nothing more than a worthless twenty-something year old insignificant wannabe singer, photographer, and writer, whatever you think you’re capable of being. You can’t even decide on a dream let alone pursue it. You’re a speck of dust on everyone else windshield of life. You are something they brush off, not value. You think colors paint your walk? The only color that was used to paint you is grey. You are glum and dull and nothing worthy of a speck of light. You constantly sit and ponder and worry about your future? Darling, there is no future for you. People like you enter and fall off this earth without ever making an impression on even the air around you. You, Alex, are nothing more than a defect they forgot to filter out of this world.”


Those were the last words spoken in that bedroom that night. They sat still and in absolute silence till daybreak. As the sun rose and began peeking into Alex’s bedroom, it began presenting hidden details of her bedroom the night did not have the pleasure of expressing. The stream of sunlight spread inch by inch; over the rug in her bedroom, showing stains from spilled nail polish, the dent on the bedside table and the notches she would etch into it to test the blades of her butterfly knives, the stain on her felt headboard from wiping her drunken mascara tears on it, the floral bed sheets her mother bought her from Spain that she coveted, her blonde hair that she dyed to resemble her mother more, her closed eyes with streams of dried mascara down her pale face, and her wrists slit from beginning to end bathing her in such scarlet that would make roses jealous, with sharpened razor in one hand and a photo of her and her family in the other.

Art Credit: Sketchbook by wakingsparrow, Deviantart.

Author: Aya Abughazaleh, Beirut.
Find her @aya_ag

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