Chapter 1 : tick tock.
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She clutches me fiercely, her hands surrounding me, clamping onto her sanity.
Not that I am her sanity, mind. I am nobody’s sanity. I am the holder of their savior or downfall, depending. This time, she just left me dry. She put me on the table, attempted to pour some wine into me, but her hand shook too badly. A drop fell onto the table.
She did not mop it up. She put the bottle down carefully, sat down, and encircled me with her hands.
She has a strong grip.
Her eyes are glued to the clock, which ticks on almost stubbornly.
She grips me, the holder of the sweetest essence, the one they have devoted gods to. I am the one desperate men run to, the one they fill with that which makes them forget or remember, depending. I welcome them in and then slay them, time and time again, yet they keep coming back for more. Always returning, like lost puppies. And I beckon, I take hold of them, and I lay them down again.
But I am not uncompassionate. I cry as they do, weep with them, drunkard’s tears falling, but they do not notice. They hate me or love me, depending.
It all depends.
She does not hate me; she does not love me. She does not even fill me. She just clings to me, almost desperately, as if I am the one link left to her sanity.
She whispers a name, breathes it almost. I do not hear what it is. But I know.
Her eyes are still latched onto the clock.
I keep expecting her to move, to stir, but she does not. She keeps me in her iron grip, slender fingers encircling me, the bottle forgotten. I think she has forgotten me, forgotten I am even here. In her world, there is only the clock.
For me, there is only her.
People think I have them in my power, and I do; but they also have me. I see the world through her eyes. They’re green, a stunning green. Beautiful.
She does not care. She does not care about anything but the clock.
An hour. Just an hour. That’s nothing. That’s nothing. He’s fine, he’s fine, he’s fine, he said he would be – he promised – didn’t he promise? – yes, and he always keeps his promises, always –
A wedding band adorns her ring finger. A simple flower is carved in. A lily, I think.
She weeps, and her – my – vision clouds with tears.
The tears stop, but her grip has not weakened.
She is a fighter, she is.
Make a wish, I want to say.
Surely you can see it’s 1:11, I would say, if I could. You are staring at the clock so intently – surely you can see –
There are so many things I would say, if I could.
It’ll be okay is not one of them. Because it is never okay. Never. I, savior or destroyer of men, I would know. Because there are no such thing as saviors, not really. They are destroyers too, but they smile at you as they slay you. And you smile back.
Please come back, she whispers. Please, please, please be safe.
I suppose that was her wish.
Her grip on me is getting firmer and firmer. She focuses on putting as much strength as possible into squeezing me and finds that if she does so, she can shove some of the thoughts into the back of her mind.
The pressure increases.
Her eyes haven’t left the clock for nearly half an hour. It feels like so much longer, hours, days.
I always experience things as my user experiences them. I know how it feels to her.
When the user is drunk, drunk off the drink that I hold, that embraces them and pulls them into forgetfulness, a welcome escape, the world is colored so wildly. Everything swoops and swerves. Everything is beautiful. Colorful. Wild.
Now, everything is gray.
Especially the clock.
One twenty-five in the morning and he’s not home yet, I can see her thinking as hope drains slowly from her eyes as despair takes its place.
“He said midnight,” she whispers at the clock. “He said midnight.”
He is trying, I want to say, he is not doing this on purpose. If he is late, it is for other reasons.
She knows. She also knows all the other reasons. Involuntarily, she’s listing them all.
Thirty-nine minutes past one in the morning. One hour and thirty-nine minutes too late.
She is still hoping. A part of her holds on to it desperately as it slips quietly through her grasping fingers. What else can she do? She was never one for giving up.
She has always been a fighter.
There is a crack in the living room, sudden and sharp. She whips her head towards the door opening.
“Lily?” he calls.
She whispers his name, and then she begins to cry.
A/N: This actually originated from a prompt I got off a website I go to when I’ve completely run out of inspiration: “Describe an event from a glass’ point of view.” I combined it with “Write a story in under half an hour,” which got me to this messy one-shot.
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