She drove that damn road every time she left and every time she returned. Not once did it bend to change her path. Not once did it split and force her to make a choice. It just brought her right to where she was headed. And right to where she started.
„Let go of me. Please.“ The voice was broken and small in the darkened room, the little flowers on the yellow curtains a sarcastic reminder of how she got to be in this situation. So was the silver frame, now lying on the floor in a mess of broken glass and a torn wedding photo.
The man on that photo looked nothing like the one standing over her, eyes dark with anger and swollen from a bottle too much of that whiskey he used to collect. That, and his breath, was the only thing about him that didn´t spell out perfect. Every other piece of him was a well groomed, professionally tailored image of a healthy and successful man. Even the cruelty and fury might be recognized as passion if put in the right context.
„Shut up.“ He snarled at her, swinging his hand so that the bottle barely missed her face. He hadn´t hit her. He wouldn´t. But that only scared her more, knowing exactly what he was capable of.
He did let go, and she pushed herself away from him, curled up against the wall like a frightened animal. Her nails dug into the bare skin of her thighs as she hugged her knees almost violently. She didn´t have courage to ask him to go. And she didn´t have enough confidence to leave. Her heart was racing and her skin was damp with cold sweat, her head twisting stray thoughts into a somewhat conscious stream of thought. She needed to remain calm. She needed to make him relax. She needed to… She needed to breathe.
Her eyes searced his hesitantly, found the dark grey windows to his troubled soul and locked the gaze on them. Slowly, the rage began to calm and his frame relaxed a little bit. He seemed to return, and even took a deep breath as if to sever the last ties to the forceful anger that had overtaken him, but then his eyes found the frame on the floor and he stepped back.
When he looked into her eyes again there was no hint of regret or sorrow. Only anger.
„You better leave now.“ He said in a strangled, low voice and slammed the bottle onto a sidetable. When she didn´t move immediately he growled a curse under his breath and then strode to her, yanked her up off the floor and shoved her out of the room. Her shoulder hit the doorframe on the way out and her knees threatened to buckle under her when he let go, but she managed to scramble over to the wall and into the bedroom. She pulled on the clothes he´d removed in a moment of passion only a few hours ago and then fled the house.
Her car seemed a lame shelter, but it was better than nothing. She floored the gas and sped down that road one more time, hoping this time she would stumble across an unexpected turn or a fork in the road. Something, to keep her from making herself believe she could fix this. Change this. Live like this.
An hour later she was sitting in the driveway, watching him through the curtains in the big livingroom windows. God, she loved that part of the house. He´d even built her a fireplace.
Time to go back.