Who am I, I wondered as I looked at myself in the mirror, my eyes were smudged, they were dark circles, my own eyes freaked me out. My lips were swollen and bleeding. Every bone in my body ached like I got into a bad fight with a raging bull. As I felt my bare skin from head to toe, where were my clothes. This wasn’t me, I was nothing like this, I was healthy just last evening or was it ages ago. I looked around, this wasn’t my home. My home was bright and radiant, there was light, there were people. There wasn’t any sunlight here, there wasn’t a living soul around me. But, it wasn’t empty as if there was something dark around, I couldn’t see it but my body felt its presence. I didn’t know what I was doing in that place with huge bare walls. My body felt so sick I threw up, it was only water. I didn’t remember what I had for dinner last night, but was it even morning?
I searched my clothes all over the place. I couldn’t help but notice, the beauty of the place. It was breathtaking and at the same time very dark. What was it about these dark things that always seemed eternally beautiful. It was dusty as if no human had set foot in years. On the other hand, all the things were so neatly arranged as if someone just put things in place. There in the corner of the living space, I found my shorts and a t-shirt that was not mine. “How drunk was I”, I wondered. But I had stopped drinking long ago. My bones ached more from the cold, I wore the clothes. I wasn’t the kind to experiment with a haunted house, what was I doing here. Was it haunted or was it all my fear of new things. There were knocks from inside the shoe rack and I thought it must be a rat. I didn’t want to confirm ignorance was bliss right.
There was a hollow space behind the kitchen area, it was so hollow, it seemed like a barren woman. The door was partially open and that annoyed me, I slammed the door shut. I didn’t want to go further inside that space. But I didn’t want to leave for once, the darkness appealed to me. I hadn’t been to the church for long, it was as if I was pissed with God, with family but mostly with myself. But when I breathed again, darkness was cold, and suddenly a part of me missed the warmth.
Where was everyone, I didn’t even remember who that everyone was. But there were shoes, different kinds unfamiliar but mine were missing. What day was it? I didn’t matter I didn’t how long I was out for. There in the corner of the kitchen was my phone. The screen had cracked and it was off. Yes, the screen was cracked for a long time. Why wasn’t I leaving?
I finally mustered my strength to walk out of the door. It was hollow as if someone had sucked the life out of it. The man in the neighboring space stared at my chest, I didn’t care. I slowly walked towards the stairs. There were a lot of people going up and down the stairs. All were staring at me. I wanted to scream that I wasn’t a whore but I didn’t have the voice.
I remembered how young I was when a man first entered my body and contaminated my soul. I was angry because I was alone and helpless. As the anger faded I remembered that smile on his face, the first love they say. His laugh echoed. As his laugh faded, I remembered that girl from college, she called out my name from the top floor, I turned but she wasn’t around. I saw my dad, I wanted to reach out to him, I couldn’t. There was a pool of mom’s tears on the bottom of the staircase, “woman! stop crying”, I almost screamed but there was no sound. I remembered the heartbreak, but it wasn’t my heartbreak but why could I feel it as if it was my soul that was hurt. I climbed down those never-ending stairs. I was cold and I was tired. When I almost gave up, a ray of sunshine hit me and I walked out of that space, embraced the sunlight and collapsed.
Newspapers headlines dated 19-09-2014: A unidentified body of a female found under a construction site. Around the age of 20-28, dressed in khaki shorts and a white t-shirt. Suspected rape and murder.