Monday, May 21, 2012

Chapter 56: Fragile China Doll

"His voice--I keep hearing it. Any time of day or night, I'll hear 'You like fucking cop that cop, bitch?' I haven't been able to make love to my husband since--since that. Every time we try, I hear that voice, those words, and I break down."

"Do you think you resent your husband? Because your attacker was trying to get to him through you?"

"No," Heather fidgets uncomfortably on the therapist's couch. If anything, Ulises should resent her for getting involved with Esparza in the first place. "I don't resent him. And he's been so good about everything since he got out of the hospital. He's so careful with me, trying not to trigger--memories. Everyone is careful with me. I just want to be normal again."

"It will happen," the therapist assures her, "It will just take some ytime."

"So what happened with you and Shannon?" Heather asks.

"I don't want to burden you with my problems..."

"Because I'm some fragile china doll that might break if you look at me the wrong way?" Heather sighs, "Please, Bec, I'm tired of everyone candy coating everything for me like I'm a child. You're my friend, and I want to know what's going on with you."

"I wish I knew what to tell you," Rebecca says, "I've been so confused about everything for so long. I thought I wanted to move on and leave him behind, but as soon as he came here for me, all I wanted was to be with him again. And now he's the one with doubts. Because I slept with Coby."

"Well, that would do that..." Heather says gently.

Heather wishes she was as excited about this pregnancy as Ulises is. But whenever she thinks about it, she remembers that day, the day she learned she was pregnant and spent so much time preparing a romantic dinner to share the news with Ulises. The day she was raped.

'You like fucking that cop, bitch?'

"I want to make love to you," she says when they finish the dishes, "I want to be with you," her lips tremble as a tear falls down her cheek.

"I know," he says gently, "I know how hard this is for you. We don't have to rush this, mariposa. When you're ready."

"I want to try," she says.

"All right," he agrees, and they go upstairs to their bed.

'You like fucking that cop, bitch?'

"I'm sorry," Heather sobs, rolling onto her side, "I can't."

"It's all right, Heather," he whispers, "We don't have to rush this."

He's so gentle with her, she thinks as he caresses her, holding her while she cries. He's so patient, and loving. She should be able to make love to him, she should want him more than anything, and she hates herself for failing him.

Stuck down here in L.A., Rebecca catches up on her reading.

And she tries to get back into her writing. She has so many ideas, characters who speak to her all day in her head, telling her their stories, but when she sits down in front of her notebook, they become shy and flee, and the words don't come.

Her phone rings, distracting her from her sullen staring at the empty page.

She picks it up, wishing it was Shannon, but it's just her old boss from the coffee shop, telling her they'd had to replace her when she disappeared.

I want to thank misukisu of Virtual Artisan for making a bullet wound scar for Ulises. You don't see it much in this chapter because of the way things are positioned in the screenshots, but it's there. Thanks, misu!


  1. I can't quite bring myself to feel sorry for Rebecca since she brought everything down on herself in regards to Shannon. And she should have known was she was getting into.

    Same reasoning applies to Heather in the "should have know what she was getting into" thing but I can still pity her and I really want t see her recover. I don't see it happening any time soon and I really hope you don't make them go trough anything worse.

  2. Poor Heather. Hopefully she won't feel weird about her next child because of this.

  3. I'm glad Heather is seeing a therapist, I hope she helps her work through her pain. As for Rebecca, I think she needs to give Shannon time, she can't just run off on him, and sleep with someone else and then dump it all on him. She's hurt him profoundly and she needs to acknowledge that, and make ammends. If he'll have her that is.

  4. That's very true, about Rebecca and Shannon.

  5. I hope Ulises will get Heather through the difficult period. He seems a gentle soul.

  6. Yes, he is. And he loves Heather just so much.

  7. I feel for Heather. I hope she can work through this.

  8. I love that Heather is trying to work through her emotions. Ulises is incredibly sweet with her, trying to help her through this. He understands and she shouldn't try and rush things like he is telling her. Time will help her heal.