Torture of Four Years | Daily Prompt: With or Without You

Tell us about the time you threw down the gauntlet and drew the proverbial line in the sand by giving someone an ultimatum. If you’ve never handed out an ultimatum but secretly wanted to, describe the scene and what you would say to put an end (one way or another) to an untenable situation.

I had four years.

For every day of each year, I tried to reach out to you. My hand kept waiting for yours. My fingers ached for even just one touch. My palm left empty and waiting.

You did take my hand. You took my hand when we crossed the street. And I took yours.

Even then, I knew it. You didn’t want to be left behind. So I didn’t allow that. I led you across, proud that my hand isn’t empty. It was no longer a desert, a space useless and abandoned. With that single moment, it found its purpose. And it translated what it discovered to the rest of me.

But the truth goes beyond our palms and fingers.

There he was, waiting for you. Like I was. But his hand didn’t shy from yours. He took it with certainty, with pride while yours surely slipped from mine, like a blade cutting through flesh and bone and soul.

Did you ever see my hand? Did you know it was there? Did you know I was there?

All I have been to you is a hand.

Mine is again empty while yours isn’t. May yours never be like mine; it has gone through heaven and hell, living and dying in the same moment as it is ripped while holding and letting go. Leave mine as it is with me, as it has been before you held it: worthless, neglected, inexistent.

The torture of four years is enough.

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