By Loryn Nieto, TIWP student
He had me wrapped around his finger like the golden ring he twisted around mine.
“The sapphires, they remind me of your eyes,” he would tell me. And I would smile at the floreal stones and look into his own dangerous eyes and see a very unpleasant place.
His mind is an unkempt bookstore. Books of every genre are sprawled across dusty floors. Empty bookshelves are left with marks of who and what used to be there. Characters of his past and his present leak out of naked or torn pages. If there are any future characters, he has them tucked away in a musky corner for not even himself to find. And in his mind of countless plots and problems, I’m supposed to believe there exists a photograph of my eyes in a polished frame? I know very well the answer to that question, so I do what I do best: I pretend.
I let him take my newly decorated hand and I pretend to believe he loves me. I pretend I adore the twinkling piece of jewelry that resembles the various others I have regularly received. I pretend I can’t see the dishonesty behind every dark stone. I pretend his “Daisy, I always come back” speech is a sober one. I pretend I’m as naive as I look, that I dance happily on top of a world of mistakes, greed and passive aggressive arguments. I pretend I’m adorned in shiny gifts that prove to others that I am so dearly loved— when in fact, I am suffocating beneath the weight of expensive, gilded promises.