Fear of High

9 Sep

Door scratched

 

“I’m exhausted” Adie said aloud, though to herself, as she poured vodka into a glass. She had just put her baby, Belle, to bed after much fussing. As she put the bottle down, she reached for a half smoked joint. She went right to the kitchen window and smoked what was left.

The alcohol and marijuana always offered the same one-two punch. The booze numbed her while the weed sunk her into a pit of guilt and memories, deep inside her mind. She sat down on the couch with a familiar feeling of satisfactory intoxication and echoing regret.

“Why am I here again?” she pondered. The feeling was compounded by knowing she told herself she would “take a break” today, when she woke up with a slight headache from the previous night’s exaggerated indulgence.

These thoughts vanished like a puff of smoke in the wind when she heard a desperate scratching at the front door of her apartment. At first she thought it was a cat. Then she thought, but how? None of the neighbors on her floor even had a cat.

Furthermore, how would a cat get through the front door of the building and past security? After that feat, it would have had to either used the elevator or managed to open two fire doors and climbed the stairs to the fifth floor.

She was petrified with fear. The scratching continued, slightly more frantic now. Belle started crying. Belle only woke if she was sick. Something must be dreadfully wrong. Adie rushed into the baby’s room and immediately locked the door behind her.

She soothed the agitated baby; herself shaking all over. She couldn’t focus on a single thought of the many swirling in her head but they were all colored by terror. “What kind of mother am I?” she thought. “I can’t even protect my daughter, I’m so high”

As Belle calmed down, Adie fought back sobs. She put the baby back down to bed and went to confront the threat.

“If I die tonight protecting Belle” she thought, “At least my life was useful for something. Up to this point I’ve been a worthless loser” Calling for help was completely out of the question when Adie was in this state. Her paranoia of people didn’t even let her answer her phone when she was like this. Hearing footsteps in the communal hall sent her into panic so she knew she had to conquer this on her own.

She fumbled with her purse for the mace and stun-gun she had never used. Everything fell to the floor. Between the panic and the inebriation, her motor skills were compromised.

The scratching reduced but had not ceased. As she walked to the door, she played out many scenarios in her head. None ended well for her. After what felt like a long journey, she made it to the door.

First, she undid the chain, then the bolt. When she went for the lock on the doorknob the scratching picked up in intensity. She threw open the door. A shadowy figure darted for the couch. In the melee she couldn’t make out what it was.

Her eyes focused. There sitting on the back of the couch was Hope, her very own cat. In her intoxication she had forgotten she had one. That night she promised she’d reel it in and clean herself up. It wasn’t the first time she made that vow and it wasn’t the last.

 

2 Responses to “Fear of High”

  1. bgddyjim September 11, 2019 at 12:14 pm #

    You know I can relate to that insanity. Nice read, brother.

    • Ryan September 13, 2019 at 1:20 pm #

      Thanks for the nice words! I know the insanity all too well, as well.

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