The water droplets on the window kept her from seeing any sort of reflection, neither good nor bad, exterior, or any hint of the internal darkness that hemmed her soul.
She was a quiet girl. The kind of girl whose silence was deafening, who had wars in her mind so clearly written on her face that people knew she wasn’t quiet underneath.
No, nothing was quiet underneath. Not in the form of voices or whispers, but in the form of her own thoughts steered only by something that had threatened to spill over for years. This thing, this internal conflict was bubbling to the top so quickly the girl had no more energy for things other than the mental precautions she took to keep it at bay. No more energy for friends, no more energy for family, no more energy for caring about someone when any mistake, any loss could result in the thing finally leaking out. No, nothing was worth it.
The girl worked. She had a good job, which was an echo of her old life, of the dreams she used to have. She wrote things. She wrote for politics, she wrote for news stories, she wrote for death. She used to write for herself, before the wars in her mind caught up with everything on the outside. Now, she was too scared to see her dark thoughts illuminated by tiny black letters on a bright, glowing screen.
Monsters. Demons. Such vile, daunting words most people use to describe inner conflicts of this magnitude. The girl didn’t use those words. They were a lie, and a romanticized excuse for her behavior and thoughts. There were no monsters or demons in her head. There was no one else to blame but herself. She was the real monster.
The girl wasn’t always the monster she believed herself to be. She wasn’t always quiet. No, actually the girl was more the opposite. But, this sounds cliché and typical: a happy girl who entertains the devil because of a tragedy and becomes a monster. No, there was no tragedy. There was no overarching event that turned her life upside down. There was just a slow, steady downward slope where the girl watched as parts of her life become consumed by darkness. She saw her normal, sunny life become a slow motion black and white film.
She saw the fruits of her summers rot and wither under the looming presence of a winter that never turned back to spring.
Children of spring, and friends with the fires of autumn left her. Sometimes because the girl pushed them away, and sometimes because she didn’t pull them back quick enough. And while the girl was often to blame, so were her friends. Spring is lovely and sweet, but behind the flowers and young fowl, briars and poison ivy lurk. Autumn is often so close to the death of winter itself that going there even to help a friend is not worth the cold.
So in winter she remained.