by Rachel St. Patrick-Davy

    Counting the money calmed her.
    Twenties here.
    Tens there,
    and so on.
    A door knock.
    What she wanted and dreaded had finally come.
    _____Do you have the cash?
    _____All of it?
    _____Lay down and relax.
    Relax. HA!
    Her mind was a jumble
    of electric flickering
    ebbs and tides
    all swirling
    in and around her
    like the blood
    that she could now feel
    warm and languid
    slowly dripping
    now pulsing
    from between her legs.
    Only the pain surged her
    back through the maze
    of confusion and fear
    to the stark
    sheer blinding white
    surgical hell.
    _____Don't move or it will hurt more.
    But her body wanted to squirm
    from the chasms of pain
    that she had willingly
    allowed it
    to endure.
    __________No one must know.
    __________No one must ever find out
    __________the truth.
    That had been enough to make her do it.
    She'd been human afterall.
    Hadn't completely constricted her life
    to conform to someone else's ideal.
    __________But still,
    __________She'd given into weakness.
    Had reveled in it.
    Celebrated it.
    Given into herself,
    and brought back fear.
    Alone and scared
    she lay rigid
    trying not to scream more
    than she'd already done.
    _____He had no sympathy.
    Made her feel
    vulnerable and foolish
    even as her body
    fought to return
    to its first position
    innocent and clean.
    _____You may have some cramping and bleeding.
    _____If you start to hemorrhage call a doctor, and forget
    _____that you ever saw me.
    The door slammed before she realized
    that he had left her laying on the kitchen table
    spread eagle and panting,
    barely noticing the pain,
    just the relief
    that it was finally over,
    forgetting the shameless way
    that droplets of blood
    had fallen
    springing up
    puddle after puddle
    upon the floor.

Copyright 2018 by Red River Review. First Rights Reserved. All other rights revert to the authors.
No work may be reproduced or republished without the express written consent of the author.