Context: Sienna is an abused teenager on the edge, Spencer is an old friend that no longer speaks to her.
Spencer Cobain glances at her from across the colourless room. There's something about his eyes that make her think she's the only girl here. Their vibrance holds a depth and innocence - a passion that is incomprehensible to her. She feels her cheeks heat, his jeweled eyes briefly resting on her chest, her heart leaps into her throat to press against the roof of her mouth as he realises she's looking at him too. Guiltily, he quickly diverts his eyes to the board.
"Why don't you talk to him already?"
Monique seems as capable as ever at grasping the gravity of the situation. It's a simple game of status, girls like Sienna just can't start up a conversation with guys like Spencer. For one, it's unlikely he'd even acknowledge her if she tried. And she's too afraid of trying as it is. Better to sit tight and ignore the pulling feelings. Better to keep her mouth shut and deal with the melancholy, the dread, the cold grey of winter that was her life. If perfection had a namesake, it'd be Spencer Cobain.
"You know it's not that simple."
Monique shrugs and returns to twirling the ends of her glossy locks.
Damn, I need a haircut. Sienna thinks as she flicks her colourless dead hair ends back over her shoulder and away from her fiddly fingers. It would become a typical history period if she brought out the scissors onto her hair. She always kept a sharp blade on her, never knowing when it might come in handy. If not for cutting the death out of her hair, then maybe the rotten parts out of herself.
The rain rattles the streaky windows, posters hanging limply against them, pools of ink created by the condensation from the cold. The classroom is drab, the teacher sitting in the corner, her beaky nose shoved in a book on the Vietnam War. Sienna knew she had a dud the first time she faltered when a student questioned the validity of her historic facts. Unsurprisingly, golden student Elaine is in fact right. Sienna feels a sneer pull to her lips. There's something intolerable about teenagers that shamelessly flaunt their ability to read high school history books.
The shrill thrum of the bell interrupts Siennas reprieve and she quickly packs away the single biro she took out of her bag. Unsurprisingly, she hasn't needed it.
"Are you coming?" Monique stands just out of the flow of the foot traffic from the classroom, and although she's talking to Sienna she's looking elsewhere.
"Um, no," she hitches her backpack higher as she steps away from the hot bodies of the other students. "I've got to go meet up with Zach. Over by A block."
Monique shrugs and has already turned away from her before Sienna even gets the chance to say goodbye. Instead she lets her head hang a little lower and heads off towards the other side of the school.
Life sucks when even your supposed best friend doesn't give a shit about you.
Nothing good ever comes of being alone with Zach; Sienna's learnt the lesson more times than even the most obsessive compulsive person would bother to count. His eyes are black and cold, his mouth chiseled into a permanent scowl. The only time the corners of his lips manage to peak up is when he's hurting something. His favorite target is her.
It's hard to see the bruises - mainly because they only exist in the deepest places. The wounds he leaves on her insides are exponentially worse than anything he could physically do to her. Even now as he runs his fingers across her cheek, and his other hand encircles the scars on her wrist she knows its not right. The problem is she can't say no.
He tells her that he loves her, and maybe - just maybe - she believes it. Believes that he does love her in his own warped way. She makes excuses for how he's damaged, how he doesn't mean to hurt her...except she is damaged too, and he means every last insult, every last push into her unwilling body. The rape he subjects her to is completely intentional. He wants her to hurt so that she won't leave him.
And she won't. She can't. And he uses her.
Until she met Zach Sienna had an underlying belief that she was strong. She had been alone, but she had also been coping. Now she knew that she wasn't strong at all. She was weak - oh so weak that she couldn't even say no. Not to his suffocating tendencies, not to his hands all over her body, or his intrusion of the privacy intrinsic to basic human rights...not to him fucking her whenever the desire to do so struck him.
She knows it's wrong but she goes on justifying it even now, just so she doesn't have to face the truth. Just so she doesn't have to be alone again. Because nothing was worse than being alone. Not even a best friend will no loyalty or a boyfriend that doesn't care for her in the slightest. Not even an abusive father that blames her for her mothers death two years ago.
The rain steadies and the weight of the drops changes from a persistent drizzle to big flat plops that slide down the collar of her shirt. She shivers and Zach feigns care in pulling her closer. If only she hadn't fallen for his charm eighteen months ago, if only she had kept her personal hell under lock and key...if only Zach had left her alone.
"Don't," Zach spits in her ear when Sienna goes to shuffle slightly further away from him. His breath is thick and sweet from the tobacco he smokes, and his hand is cold from the rain as he slides it up her shirt and tightly squeezes her right breast. The underwire of her bra digs into the soft tissue at the side of her body. He already makes her wear a bra a size too small in both the cup and back strap, - partially so he has more to look at, but mostly to make her feel shit about her size - so his hand clenched in the material only adds more to the strain and the discomfort.
When he wrenches her face towards him with his sharp fingers and fastens his mouth onto hers she can't do more than close her eyes and focus on holding in the tears. Even if she were to cry in the rain it would not wash away the pink stains on her cheeks, nor would it change the colour of her eyes from red rimmed pale green and back to grey. No one can ever know. Especially not Zach. Even when he stops kissing her she does not open her eyes, instead she lets him bask in how entirely his she is. He knows he has her as broken as ever, and he also knows she will do anything for him.
Weak, I'm so weak...
Like so many other times before, Sienna dreads the moment she has to open her eyes and face him again. At least in the darkness behind her eyes she can pretend he isn't there watching her, that everything is okay.
But you can't keep your eyes closed forever.
Zach's hand comes out from under her shirt to close around the back of her neck. That's the signal that she needs to look at him, if she doesn't do as he wants Sienna knows he'll get mad. She knows that she'll regret it in the bruises that will eventuate along her inner thighs, the undersides of her breasts, her stomach... That it won't be worth it for the words of disdain and disgust that he'll spit at her after using her tonight when her father isn't home. Easy. Fat. Whore.
A sharp pain zaps across the side of her face and her head continues with the movement of Zach's slap, thudding lightly into the brick wall. Sienna lets her long hair hang down as to cover the tears boiling in her eyes, using the wall as a support to not allow herself to curl up into a small ball on the ground. Zach may not be as tall as her, but there was no doubting his physical strength being superior to her own. He doesn't even bother to grace her with words, not in anger after slapping her, not as he stands to leave her sitting alone in the rain.
Her eyes are filled with tears, the concrete path that Zach has left visible to her in his absence has no variation in tone to the buildings or even the sky. Her tears tumble down her face, some even catching in her lank hair. She recognises the lower torsos of some of the people that pass nearby, but unsurprisingly no one stops. A sob she didn't allow to slip out catches in the air, someone halts for a second. Hold on...aren't those...
Sienna lifts her head slightly, the whipping rain hitting her raw cheek for the first time. Oh those eyes, that look. As though she really is the only girl left in existence. Spencer's brow creases. He turns away, his green polo-shirt joining with a gaggle of blue, red and black. She knows his friends are ridiculing him for so much as hesitating, for merely pitying the abused girl, let alone thinking to help her.
A final tear slides down the finger marks left on her face.
Everything is grey again.
A/N: So here's another These Lives I Walk oneshot. I wanted to write one that detailed Spencer's character for when I rewrite the second novel in the series. I also thought it might be good to challenge myself and not only write in third person, but also in the present tense.
For any of my old readers that may be reading this, please tell me what you think of it in relation to the novels (If you can remember them, that is!)
For any new readers, I hope you enjoyed this without the background of my full lengths! It can definitely stand alone.
Thanks for reading, and if you're interested in joining a budding forum community that I have only just started then please do check out my profile, click the link to The Revival and introduce yourself there!