Headphones

He gazed into her eyes longingly. Normally a lovely sea green, they were now almost black with terror. The sharp wings that she had spent a painstaking amount of the time that morning mixed with her tears and fell down her cheeks like rain. The gag in her mouth had smeared her perfect red lipstick.

The longing in his eyes slowly turned to disgust and he turned walking away from her across the musty room. This wasn’t his love. His love was bright, she was happy, she was beautiful. The terrified woman with her wrists bound, sobbing on the floor in front of him wasn’t his. She was a mere shell of the woman he once loved.

Broken.

Ugly.

Imperfect.

His mind spun. He had been watching her for weeks. From the first moment he saw her he couldn’t get her out of his head. Her red hair was messily piled on top of her head in a way that looked effortless, but he knew instantly that she had spent a long time on her look that morning. She wore a loose, white tank top and black shorts that barely covered the tops of her thighs. And of course, that lovely red lipstick. She was perfect. Just sitting in a coffee shop, headphones on, without a care in the world.

Which was perfect for him. She didn’t need to pay attention to anything. Not to anything but him. But she paid him no mind, just like everything else. And that was her downfall. Maybe if she had been more alert, he wouldn’t have been able to follow her home from that coffee shop. Maybe she would have noticed the man that seemed to be everywhere she went, just out of the corner of her eye. Maybe if she didn’t have those stupid headphones on all the time, she wouldn’t have heard him creeping up behind her and taking her for his own.

Maybe.

Just maybe.

While lost in his inner turmoil, he didn’t notice that the sobbing had stopped. He didn’t notice her slip lose of her bonds, so hastily tied, he had just been so excited to make her his once and for all. He didn’t notice any of that. He was too caught up in his fantasies of the woman he never knew to notice the one in front of him.

He might have stood there forever. But the woman who didn’t notice anything saw an opportunity that she couldn’t miss. Free from her bindings and with her head clearer than ever, she quickly reached for the rusty, metal pipe that had been thrown haphazardly in the corner of the dark and dank room where until moments before she had been sure she would spend the rest of her days.

He was looking out the cracks of a boarded-up window, she knew this was her chance. She raised her pipe and began to move towards him. “Hey, asshole!” She shouted, brandishing her weapon like it was Excalibur.

He quickly turned, suddenly aware of his surroundings. He saw the rage in her once again sea green eyes. It seemed as though the light had returned to her very being. He smiled as she almost closed the gap between them, his love for her had returned. It was as if her rage was all he needed to be reminded of it.

She saw the man smile when he saw her and that infuriated her even more. She griped the weapon tighter as she got near enough to swing.

Before she even had the chance, the man swiftly pulled out his gun and

BANG

The bullet seemed to stop her in her tracks as the back of her head exploded in a visceral display of gore and gray brain matter. She fell backwards into the pool of her own blood that was rapidly expanding.

He sighed, “goddamn it, I do not want to clean this up.” He looked out the slates in the window once again, just to make sure no one heard the gunshot. He doubted anyone did, no one really pays attention anyway.

“Oh well,” he chucked to himself as he resigned himself to clean up the mess that the once perfect woman had made. “Better luck next time.”

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