Light shone in through the half open curtains of a midnight sky. Madison drank it up until even the insides of her were glowing. There I was degrading away in her room, curled up, fetal position in a chair, half asleep. “You want tea? ” “I hate tea. ” “Iced? ” She obviously had disregarded my previous statement. “I could use some ‘ Dalmore 62’. ” She swiveled, the ends of her hair flying madly in her pupils, eyes rolled behind her head . “Real insensitive, Elizabeth. ” I reclined my forehead back, blankly staring at her wall. “ You’re a better friend when you’re drunk. ”
She bit the underside of her coated tongue, trying to ignore me. Lengthening out my limbs, I stood up and combed my nails through the wrinkles of my skin. I ever so carefully walked over to Madison and our eyes met where she had been sitting,the edge of her bed. Madison was susceptible, the kind of person who would pretend that they owned a gun in their back pockets . I thrusted out my eyes for her hand. Her nail polish, chipped. “Nail polish wasn’t as advertised? ” “No,” she said stated in an irritated manner. “Elizabeth, I could not have chosen a more cliched habit. ”
Madison’s remark made me smile one of those smirky smiles,the ones you tried to keep for yourself Suddenly, she swung for my wrist. I flinched and she was forced to loosen her hold. “Let me see your Goddamn arm,” she uttered into my ear drum. I groaned, smirked and threw my body back onto her pillows and proceeded to lifted up my right sleeve. There were scabs covering the once raw skin that lay beneath the surface of my existence. Even so, there were still some patches that still stung. I lay back, closing my eyes, trying as hard as I could to be still, to allow Madison to count my battle wounds.
Six new ones in a month? ” She was attempting not to sound discouraging for my sake,but It was not really a question of the matter. “I guess,” I said short of breath. Madison’s nails drifted to the fresh smell of an opened wound “ You really need to put a bandage on that one. It’s coming very close to bleeding. ” Her clutch dropped I snickered, uncertain. “C’mon Madison, it’ll be fine, just like my other accidents . ” “No,” she called, already at the bathroom. My nails with canine sensibility sensed a clear patch on my arm and instinctively started scratching anxiously, my frustration building.
Madison threw out the the bandage roll onto her bed before she entered the room. After, trying pry away myself from the attached arm. “ Elizabeth, this is self-destructive. You would be considered a perfect fit in a mental institution, you know. ” “ Well, I don’t think you would let that happen, now would you? ” Knowing herself that she wouldn’t, she stayed silent while wrapping my arm with the bandage. “Elizabeth,do you recall what you said when you know who wanted to put me in that rehab facility? ” Madison asked. “Well Duh” I looked down trying to gather my words. ‘I can make her better. ’ I said it again and again. ” My breathe felt heavy as I remembered that I was always the one who messed everything up. “Will you? ” “Maybe. ” My mind went back to a certain moment at the hospital, after the hours of waiting for someone to say she would be fine I realized that they never did.
The doctors huddled around her father, every once in a while sending me stark glances trying to tell me that I wasn’t supposed to be listening. I mean, I was the last person they wanted to allow her to talk to. “Alcohol poisoning, are you stupid? I had said sharply, unable to fathom the belligerent attitude seeping through my very own lips . Madison bit the tops of her remaining nails. “They’re sending me to rehab. ” “What? ” Those five words echoing within the hollows of my ears. Madison did not dare to cry, instead continuing constantly to bite her nails. “I can make her better ,” but my voice was unheard by the doctors and her mother. Yet I still said it again and again. I can make her better. I sat up, propping myself next to the worn teenage figure sitting next to me , “What did it feel like? ”
She jolted slightly. “What did what feel like? ” I stared at her sheets trying to avoid eye contact. They were wrinkled and covered with tea stains. “What did it feel like to be close to dying? ” My voice sounding torn. “I don’t want to think about it anymore Elizabeth. ” “What did it feel like? ” I insisted knowing I had crossed a boundary Surprisingly Madison started biting her nail but mid bite stopped. She hugged her knees in close to her hear. “Elizabeth, do you know when it’s so dark outside that you can’t tell if your eyes are open or closed anymore?
That’s how it felt ” Her ghostly voice faded , and she quietly slid her half pale body off the stained mattress, heading towards the bathroom that once had led her to her doom. “Start drinking decaffeinated tea, that’s the first step in making you feel better both inside and out. ” As I lay there my arm still stung immensely and I had to keep taking slow deep breaths. “Switching to decaffeinated tea is the first step to your success,” I repeated again and again.
“Wow, what do you have against caffeinated tea? ” Shut up, Drinking decaf tea instead of caffeinated tea is almost like drinking water instead of alcohol. ” “ Elizabeth do you have a second step ready for my recovery? ” “Not yet. ” I replied, again blankly staring at her wall I Really want you to stop, I thought to myself. Sadly, I couldn’t say it out loud. There were so many things I wanted to say but couldn’t risk the outcome. She was glowing inside and out, my eyes were wide open, looking at the future she could have bestowed, and there she was just lying there like she was a goddess lying in the sun caped hills .
Still, she was so fragile l that the light could have drank her up as quickly as she was able to get drunk. “What does it taste like? ” “Hmm, I don’t really know,” she mumbled “ No, Madison, right now, this moment, what does it feel like? ” Madison let out a large sighed. “Like it is so glistening that I am not able tell if I’m awake or asleep. ” “God Damn Madison, you’re awake. ” MAdison and I always looked out for each other’s bad habits, and this was her at her worst. Honestly, I think she was my worst habit. She was early mornings and wasted nights.
She was flat tires and getting lost with no cell phone reception. She was taking every bit of glistening light out of me, and oddly I went with it. When I was around her, my everything felt off balance and shattered in millions of scattered pieces Every night as i wobbled home I would ask myself a question, “Elizabeth do you know the feeling when it’s so dark outside that you are unable to tell if your eyes are open or closed? ” The truth? That’s what it felt like to be Madison’s friend, but I couldn’t never find the honesty in myself to say it aloud.