[identity profile] halfaustere.livejournal.com
[Just before Robert's final coma, while he's already becoming largely catatonic. 2002.]

Robert's handwriting (dried tears underneath it, not above it) was almost entirely unintelligible, words barely pressed into the page, ink spilled everywhere as it seemed his hands had been shaking so he was unable to make anything but a mess – a mess of his mind spilled everywhere as much as the ink.

Tuesday, 26 March, Volume MMII: I fear this may be the last thing I ever write. )
babyjosephine: (raincoat)
[personal profile] babyjosephine
May 2002

Alice was sitting in traffic. Heavy traffic, stocked with holidaymakers and elderly women dragging their husbands out for the first real month of stately home tours. Heavy traffic over the first sunny weekend since the previous autumn. And Alice was stuck behind four rows of cars jammed behind a red light, inhaling exhaust and exhaling frustration, on her way to work, sick from the chemotherapy. Her hands were shaking on the wheel, though after a half hour of trying to complete what should have been a ten minute drive, she couldn’t be sure if it was effects of the treatment or the onset of a breakdown. Either would have been welcome, just to have the excuse of ringing an ambulance and getting out of the maze.

If an ambulance could get into the maze to begin with.

Another minute ticked by. The green light came and went. One row of cars was knocked off. Alice was feeling dizzy from the sun shining into her eyes. She hadn’t brought sunglasses, and there was a lingering shadow of a headache that had plagued her all weekend now threatening to fall across her eyes and blind her.

She sighed, elbow grinding into the window sill, airconditioning blasting as much as it could at the lowest setting. Direct sunlight and black, leather seats were cooking her where she sat, melting her legs, confined in trousers, to the fabric.

Flicking grey hair out of her eyes, she sighed again and contemplated blasting her horn until the road expanded or the cars parted. )
babyjosephine: (Default)
[personal profile] babyjosephine
Early autumn 2002

Today had not been a very good day and there were hours yet still before tomorrow would banish it away, and some hours more after that before Alice was likely to fall asleep.

For the first time in what would one day be a year (though she dreaded the day it happened), it wasn’t her mind ruining her day, but her body. Or rather, the things put in her body to chase other things away. There was a scar she didn’t have to worry about hiding, as no soul had seen her undressed since Robert left her—no soul except one doctor after another, but she didn’t count those doctors. They saw her as an old woman when she stepped into their office.

No, no one had seen her undressed since Robert left her, and no one would ever see her undressed again. )
babyjosephine: (Default)
[personal profile] babyjosephine
6 April, 2002, about two days after Robert crossed.

I should be used to disappointment.

There was one small problem. Alice wanted to die.

Wanting to die wasn’t the problem. It was that she couldn’t. Physically, she could try. But what would happen if she did? She had an eighteen-year-old, promiscuous son to chase—and if she crossed over, if she did what Robert did, where would she fit? Robert had crossed over to get away from her, from earth. She would be a burden.

She could go to her parents. Her mother wouldn’t like it. Her father might be upset. Fabian would be happy he didn’t have to listen to her nag, at least. As a mother, that was all she became good for—ignoring. Even Robert ignored her when she told him not to go—don’t go. Don’t leave us here.

I should be used to disappointment. She picked up the pieces of a coffee mug, one that had hit the kitchen floor and shattered into shards and dust at her bare feet. Her fingers were shaking too violently to pick them up, but she tried, and cut herself in the process. She could barely get the tap to work. The rivulet of blood broke free and dripped down her hand, splattering quietly at the bottom of the sink. Alice wiped her eyes with her left wrist and turned the water on so violently that it hit the sink’s surface and sprayed her.

And every minute of this was killing her. )

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