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May 16

Song fic: “Far Away” by Nickelback

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This month’s song prompt is “Far Away” by Nickelback. Laugh all you want, but I love Nickelback, and this is one of my favorite songs by them. Music video can be found here and lyrics here if you somehow have no idea of this awesome song.


“You’re kidding right?”

Jared had the audacity to look dumbfounded. “What do you mean your birthday is today? You told me it was in December!”

I barely resisted the urge to smack him on the back of his stupid head. I mentally counted to ten, then twenty. Fuck it, this isn’t working.

“I have never once in the history of ever said that my birthday is in December. It is November 24th and has been for the last thirty freaking years. When we first started dating, you joked that my birthday was in December to try to keep me from finding out about the surprise party you threw me. And somehow it stuck in your stupid head and you’ve forgotten every single year!” I tried to breathe, I really did. I could feel my face turning red with rage and wouldn’t have been surprised to see steam gathering around my head as it blew out of my ears. “I can handle you forgetting when it’s Thanksgiving. That’s kind of a big deal and takes precedence over birthdays. But when it’s your girlfriend’s thirtieth birthday and you’ve listened to her make plans for a huge party, it’s kind of expected that you not forget.”

I turned and left the room, leaving him standing there with his mouth gaping open. I nearly tripped over his cat and I swear the stupid thing laughed at me. If he weren’t laughing at me, it was only a matter of time before he started. Or peed on my side of the bed again. Morgan—as in Captain Morgan, Jared named all of his pets after alcoholic beverages—and I had an interesting relationship. I fed him, gave him water, changed out his litter box, and he did everything in his power to make my life a living hell.

I glared at the overweight orange ball of fur. I guess there was something in my gaze that warned him not to fuck with me because he slunk away without so much as a single meow. I tried not to slam the door since our landlord hated loud noise, but my hair trigger temper had never made me what one would call serene. The door shook on its hinges as I flung myself on the bed, dashing at the hot angry tears on my cheeks that only served to piss me off more.

Okay, so that made me feel thirteen again, but there was just something about the comfort of your own bed when you’re upset.

Except this wasn’t my bed. Jared had insisted that my bed was too small, so we—and by we, I mean he—got rid of my bed when we moved in together and brought over his king size. The gunmetal gray sheets were mine, but the copper and blue comforter scratching my cheek had belonged to him.

I sniffled and hated myself for crying over something as stupid as my birthday. Yes, it was my thirtieth and might’ve my parents and me, yes. But Jared and I weren’t married, nor had we ever even talked about getting married.

And I doubted we ever would.

Jared wasn’t the marrying type. I knew this when we first started dating. I tried to talk myself into thinking it when he finally agreed to move in together, but who the hell was I kidding? It was nothing more than a fantasy. One I’d indulged in for far too long.

I got up from the bed and walked into the bathroom, where I splashed my face with cold water. My blotchy red face stared back from the mirror, and I barely recognized the girl starting back at me. The blonde hair her boyfriend had insisted would look great on her framed her pale face. Dark circles under jade eyes told endless stories of sleepless nights after argument after stupid, pointless argument.

Where did I go?

I turned the white and silver handle so hard, I wondered if Jared would be able to turn it on again and realized that I no longer gave a shit. And wondered when the last time I actually gave a shit about what he thought was.

My big red suitcase sat in the back of the closet, empty since our last trip to Las Vegas. I’d foolishly psyched myself up for a surprise wedding while we were vacationing. His mother, father, sister, brother, and their spouses had all come with us. What else was this but a surprise elopement?

But when we’d boarded the plane back home, my ring finger was still bare and I was still pretending that he hadn’t proposed because he wanted my mother to be there.

The suitcase bounced on the bed, the shoes I’d forgotten to unpack clunking around inside. Looks like I found the flip flops Jared had been looking for last month. Also looks like I don’t give a fuck. I threw the shoes in the closet, not caring whether or not they were in perfect rows of five or whether they were matched with their mates.

Too many years of disappointments. Too many years of being relegated to third position behind his job and his family. Too many years of being spoken to like I’d never finished second grade, much less earned my Master’s degree in education. I was the youngest English professor on staff at the college, for fuck’s sake!

Bitter tears burned my eyes as I folded my clothes and set them in the suitcase. There was no way I’d be able to pack them all, but I’d have to come back and get the rest, along with the few items still left from the Great Purge of Kimberly’s Belongings. I’d have to borrow my dad’s truck and pray my couch would fit. While I had enough money in my bank account to rent a moving van, I had no idea how to drive one and didn’t fancy the idea of begging my parents for any more help than I was going to have to anyway.

My mom hated Jared. It’s funny, because she’s the one who set us up to begin with. He was a friend of the family, had a great job, was funny and charming whenever he was around them… what wasn’t to like? But when he got behind closed doors, or around his jackass friends, he turned into a completely different person. His silly jokes turned into mean, hateful barbs he thought were hilarious but really just made me want to hide in a corner. Or punch him in the throat. Lately, it had been far more of option two than I wanted to admit. And maybe that should’ve been a sign that things just weren’t working.

The zipper on my suitcase wouldn’t close, nearly bringing me to tears again until I sat on the top while I both cursed and prayed. My slightly smaller suitcase was still in the closet and I pondered whether or not my shoes would fit. Probably not. If I left a few of my older beat up tennis shoes, I wouldn’t be too upset over the loss. I had at least three other pairs of them anyway.

I shoved as many of my shoes as I could into the bright red suitcase and huffed as I struggled to zip it. This one probably weighed as much as I did. I somehow doubted that Jared would help me bring these down to my car. Not that he’d helped me do much of anything around the apartment for the last five years anyway.

Jared didn’t even come out of the spare bedroom where we’d set up his home office as I fumbled my way through the apartment with two very large, very heavy suitcases. I left the cell phone he paid for on the kitchen counter next to my house key. If the clothes and shoes missing from the closet weren’t enough of a clue that I was done, surely this would show him just how serious I was.

I’d have to pick up a new phone at some point before the weekend was over. Apartment hunting would have to be rushed since finals week was coming and I’d be up to my ears in term papers. I really hoped that my mom would be okay with me staying at her house for a week or two.

When I showed up at her house, tears staining my cheeks and my clothes suitcase at my side, she didn’t say a word. She just opened the door, held out her arms, and let me cry.


Check out the other ladies’ prompts by clicking the link below:

Bronwyn || Kris || Jessica

4 comments

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  1. Kris

    It’s funny. I think at heart this song is a happy one. It’s about realizing what not to let go of… but I have a feeling everyone is going to write sad, jaded stories. :) Well done.

    1. Paige Prince

      I have…memories attached to this band. This song, in particular. My first college boyfriend introduced me to Nickelback. We broke up. I joined the Navy. We reconnected. He dedicated this song to me. He stopped returning my calls. I may be a little bitter over it, but I will forever love this song. And Nickelback. :)

  2. Bronwyn Green

    I really like how much emotion shows through in this one. It’s really intense. Good job.

    1. Paige Prince

      Thank you. Lots of feels went into this one.

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