She stumbled away from the fiery wreckage of the only relationship she’d ever known. She supposed, in terms of the indignities suffered by countless billions of people, she was being dramatic. Or was she?
After three gut-wrenchingly long years of abuse and debasement, she felt she’d been seared to her inner core. She’d been scoured clean of joy, of laughter and, possibly, of hope. She thought herself less a person than an object. She had no sense of self-worth because objects were simply…things... to be done with as their owner saw fit.
She’d been with him since she was 15. He had money. He had a car. He had plans for the future that included her. What she’d come to find out about, when it was too late for her to run, were the things he had that weren’t apparent but were quite concealed.
He had a wicked coke habit and an uncontrolled drinking problem. He had a mean streak a mile wide and very hard fists and feet. He was sexually sadistic, leaving her body scarred to achieve his gratification. He had so very many undesirable aspects she could scarce believe she’d ever found him appealing.
She believed she’d seen the worst he had to offer when the most disturbing feature of his twisted nature emerged. It was a rare occasion when he’d deigned to take her out somewhere. Even now, she flushed recalling the reason for his largesse. The night before, he’d sodomized her so enthusiastically she’d required a trip to the E.R.
At the restaurant, she’d made the, unwitting, mistake of politely smiling at the male server. She’d learned how very bad an error that had been when he had her securely behind closed doors.
It is an unfortunate truism that truly dysfunctional personalities rationalize their behavior with the specious belief everyone around them is every bit as dysfunctional as they are. He’d accused her of being a whore using her wiles to try and seduce the lecherous bastard server. Then, the beating began.
He’d beaten her before and she’d been astonished by the severity of physical assault he was capable of. Those beatings were as nothing compared to the harm he inflicted upon her that night.
He’d finally left her alone and gone to sleep, secure in the knowledge she was both too cowed and too crippled to do much of anything while he slept. As in so many other ways, in this he was wrong.
It is also a truism that no matter how beaten down an animal may be, somewhere within them remains the call to be free. She heard the call that night. First crawling, later stumbling, she left behind her all she’d been in the desire to be something more.
Emotionally burned she might be and, yet, from those ashes would arise a wondrous phoenix with the power and the right to fly proud and free. She spread her wings that night and flew away gaining speed and strength as she flew.