Milly wanted a black hole to appear and swallow her. Grabbing another tissue, she wondered what that would actually feel like. Straightening up, her eyes fell back onto the phone screen, causing her to take the words in again. It’s over, glared up at her like an ugly scar that wouldn’t go away. Her fingers strayed out to tap something into the empty box below, but she couldn’t bring herself to reply.
Her desk blurred as another round of tears took over. Sniffing, she buried her face in the harsh paper and give up the fight. Squeezing the tears out and gasping for every breath, Milly felt a tension headache building. Wiping her face and throwing the tissue away, she brought her handbag up from the floor and dug around inside it. Pulling out a packet of painkillers, she went to take two tablets then paused.
She glanced around the office, peering over the top of her claustrophobic cubical. Everyone was caught up in their own worlds of doing their jobs and no one was watching her. Milly looked down and had the fleeting thought of taking the other ten tablets that were in the packet.
Clutching the two in her hand, she threw the packet back in her bag and grabbed a bottle of water. Taking the tablets and a mouthful of water, she buried that dark thought in the corner of her head. Finishing off the bottle, she dropped it into the bin and looked down into the crumples of rubbish.
It feels like I’ve easily been thrown away too, she thought.
Rubbing her eyes, she focused on her computer, but couldn’t concentrate on the lines of names and numbers. After a few moments of scrolling up and down, she decided to call it quits. There was no way her voice and her emotions were going to hold steady cold calling people now. She closed everything down and gathered her things, including her phone, which she didn’t look at as she threw into her handbag.
Getting up, she walked to the manger’s room and knocked on the door. He waved her in, though he was on the phone and she had to linger just inside whilst he finished.
‘I’m really not feeling well,’ Milly said in a shaky voice as he looked questioningly at her. ‘I’ve got this killer migraine and I’m feeling very flushed. I’ll make up the two hours sometime next week.’
He eyed her suspiciously, ‘alright…’
‘Thanks,’ Milly jumped in and left before he could say anything else.
She hurried out of the office, not bothering to say goodbye to anyone and went to her car. Sinking into the driver’s seat, she stared at her handbag on the passenger’s chair and thought about calling him. Maybe, I can fix things… her thought trailed. Her hands reached out, but then she decided driving home first was more important. She looked up at the office windows and saw a still figure seemingly watching her.
Milly drove home on autopilot, struggling to hold back the tears and a sea of turmoil thoughts. She pulled up outside her tiny flat, having easily cut her journey time in half on the quiet roads. Grabbing things and getting out, she locked the car and went to the door.
Grateful no nosy neighbours were around, she let herself in and went straight to her bedroom. She dumped her stuff, got changed then sat on the bed with her phone. The text message was still there, waiting for her reply. She frowned and thought about what she’d say as her fingertips toyed with the phone’s protective case edges.
Finally, she set the phone aside. Her mind made up that she wouldn’t reply. Curling up on her bed, she grabbed one of her teddy bears and began crying loudly into the soft fur. Pain hammered into her chest and she came up gasping for air like a diver. She wiped her face and lay quietly, soft moans escaping her chapped lips. She rubbed her chest and felt the black hole opening up in the middle of her heart and swallowing it whole.