7 months ago

Comfortable Madness First PDF 4-13-18

Back in my Bed Three

Back in my Bed Three faces hung in the corners, pale and swollen, tongues hanging like slugs from their thick lips. I sat in my bed feeling sick. I wanted sleep. I needed it but I couldn’t. Voices scraped along my jaw bone telling me over and over that Coy was coming through the window with a knife to kill me. I sat with my knees tucked under my chin and tried to act as if I were alone. Laughter crawled through the room. Something fluttered in my belly. It could have been the baby or it could have been gas. I couldn’t take it anymore and went downstairs. I went downstairs and found Tayla lying on the couch asleep. I sat at her feet and waited for her to wake. Headlights from the street lit up the curtains over the window. Tayla started rustling, batting at some dream. Her eyes ran circles in their sockets. After a moment, she woke. Surprise blanched her face. “What?” she asked. I said nothing. I just watched her face, her swollen eyes and pale lips. “Butter?” she asked. “Can’t sleep,” I said. Tayla sat up. She sat up and stretched. “What’s going on?” she asked. “Too much.” She knew what I mean when I said that. She’d been with me through too much in the past not to know what I meant. “She hates you,” Gid said, his voice coming from the walls, the air. Part of me believed him. Part of me nearly got up and left. But then part of me knew that she loved me. She’s loved me since the seventh grade. “Gid?”

“No,” I said. “Yes. And others.” “I need a cigarette,” Tayla said. She stumbled into her clothes and we went out to the patio. Sunrise was hours away. School was hours away. No one moved in the night. It still felt as if someone were watching me but having Tayla there helped. Tayla made me feel safe. Tayla made this world, the physical world more genuine than the world in my head. “You’re okay,” Tayla said. “Yeah?” “Nothing’s going to happen,” she said. “I’m right here.” “I need you.” She looked at the gnarled and twisted trees. She looked into the shadows at the edge of the yard. “I need time,” she said. “I thought…” “It’s hard.” I nodded. I nodded and finished my smoke. “Would it be better if I lay down with you?” she asked. “You don’t have to.” “I know,” she said. I closed my eyes. She had no idea how nice it would be to have her in my bed again. She had no idea how nice it would be to feel her pressed against my spine, protecting me from the villains in my dreams, the intrusion of unwanted visitors.