That's something I used to be.
That's something I used to be.
Something I used to be.
Just another thing I used to be.
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I looked in the mirror and straightened my top. This was going to be hell, a whole new school, a whole new chance at life, a whole new group of people who may actually talk to me. But with how I was now. Who would want to? I looked in my jewelry box and sighed, I couldn't wear any necklace at all. I grabbed a scarf off of my dresser and sighed, this would hide everything I needed it too. Too bad it did nothing for style in the middle of the summer.
I wrapped it tightly around my neck so I wouldn't have to continuously press against the front of it. I wished I could sigh without it hurting but I just couldn't. I shook my head and grabbed my back-pack and left.
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I walked into the school to many curious eyes, but I kept my head down. I wouldn't meet anyone's eyes. I couldn't do it, I feared that if they would know my truth if they met my eyes. I tucked a strand of hair behind my ear and went to stand at my locker before opening it. Inside there was a dent right at the center directly across from where my hole was. I put my books in and grabbed my envelope of notes to teachers as to why I couldn't take my scarf off. This would be hard to do.
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The teachers were rather disbelieving and sometimes I had to pull my scarf down slightly to show them the top of my blemish. The disgusted and pity filled looks I received broke my heart and just made me feel worse. I ran a hand through my hair as I stepped into the lunchroom. If I ate I couldn't bend over later and lord knows I would need to. My stomach growled, I was starving, so against my better judgement I found a table and pulled out my brown bagged lunch.
you may want to move
that's Ivan's spot." Came a small voice from beside me.
I looked up and murmured an apology and got up not wanting to make eye contact after he heard my gravel filled voice. The voice that was once so beautiful. I went to walk away and bumped into someone.
"You were sitting in my place, da." Said this exceptionally large boy with bright violet eyes and a pale pink scarf around his neck, he was obviously Russian and he scared the boy who had warned me.
I apologized to him, shocking him with the way I spoke. I looked down and brushed a strand of hair behind my ear trying not to cry, this had been the only student who had really heard my voice
well my new voice.
"Are you alright, are you sick?" he asked thinking I just had a sore throat.
I shook my head and asked if I could just go, I didn't want to be around people for too much longer. I met his eyes once more and he nodded, seeing the few tears brimming. I began to walk away but he caught my wrist.
"What is your name?" he asked.
I told him in as soft a voice as I could manage and left hearing him repeat it.
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As the day ended not much else happened and no one had seen under my scarf. I turned around from my locker and there was a dirty blond boy with bright blue eyes and glasses.
"Why are you wearing that scarf?" he asked in a loud voice.
I shook my head, I didn't want to answer him.
"Why don't you talk?" he asked.
I shook my head, I wasn't going to answer.
I pushed by him and started out then I felt it, the tightening of my scarf then the tell-tale loosening before it fell off of my neck as I turned back around in shock. My hand shot to my throat. But it was too late, he had already seen it.
"Whoa, dude what the hell is wrong with your neck?!" he asked the disgusted shock laced all through his voice, drawing more attention than I could ever wish towards me.
I shook my head the tears starting down my cheeks.
"Whoa, let me look at that!" he said and grabbed my wrist to try and tear my hand away.
In an instant there was an even larger hand on his wrist.
"I don't think that's a good idea, da?" came a darkened voice that I recognized from earlier.
My eyes drifted up and met the violet eyes of I think Ivan was his name. The other boy took his hand off of my wrist and I took off running still gripping my neck, tears slipping down my cheeks. I hid in a stairwell and cried still holding my neck.
"Are you okay Sunflower?" came a gentle Russian voice.
I looked up and shook my head.
"Why was he trying to take your hand away?" he asked.
I made him promise not to tell anyone.
"I promise." He swore.
I took my hand away and watched as the shock and sadness enveloped his face.
"What happened there sunflower?" he asked.
With tears in my eyes I reached up and pressed two fingers over the hole in the
center of my neck, "I nearly died." I said in a scratchy voice I tried not to recognize as I took my fingers away.
"How?" he asked me and sat down, "You can trust me."
I looked up at him and took a deep breath before setting my fingers back on the hole, "I was raped. He tortured me and then as an added bonus he took an ice pick and jammed it into my neck, and it got so infected that they had to cut more away
I look like those old chain smokers
and I've never smoked a day in my life."
"Why did he do that to you?" the Russian asked.
"To make sure I could never sing again." I said as tears slipped down my cheeks.
I handed him my phone and told him to watch the first video, it was of me back in my prime when I had the voice of an angel. He looked at me crying after it was over.
"I used to
I used to be
but he took
" I sobbed.
The last thing I ever expected was for this large Russian man to pull me into a warm embrace. I finally broke and hugged him back and cried softly into his shoulder while he stroked my hair and comforted me.
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"What are you thinking about Sunflower?" came the soft voice I knew so well.
I raised to fingers to my neck out of habit before taking them away, I had an implant there now that made it so I could speak without having to press my fingers to my neck, "The day we met Ivan dear." I said as he walked into the room.
He came over and wrapped his arm around my waist.
"You were so beautiful to me." He whispered in my ear.
"Some would say you were crazy to think that
I have a hole in my neck." I said.
"But you are beautiful." He said and kissed my cheek.
I turned and looked at him a softness in my eyes.
"Are you ever going to sing for me?" he asked.
I bit my lip, it was our wedding anniversary and he had been asking me to sing for him for ages. I bit my lip before singing in a low voice, the gravel obvious in it.
"You got a fast car; I want a ticket to anywhere. Maybe we make a deal. Maybe together we can get somewhere. Any place is better; starting from zero got nothing to lose. Maybe we'll make something. But me myself I got nothing to prove
" I began to break down in tears once more.
"Please don't stop Sunflower." He said.
"You got a fast car. And I got a plan to get us out of here. I been working at the convenience store. Managed to save just a little bit of money
" I stopped to choke back a sob before going on, "We won't have to drive far. Just 'cross the border and into the city. You and I can both get jobs. And finally see what it means to be living."
This time I just couldn't go on I pulled away from him, tears streaming down my face.
"What's the matter Sunflower?" he asked me.
"I used to sound so much better. I used to be beautiful
I used to be normal
but not anymore
" I said in a tear filled voice.
"You still are to me." Ivan softly said as he pulled me into his embrace and pressing his gentle lips to mine, as he pulled away he murmured, "You still are to me."