She Watches

My watcher gazes upon me, great despair and longing seeping through her gently fluttering lashes. She lives a life of torment, a life filled with a depth of pain and depravity that rivals my own. Closer she wishes to draw, trying – always trying, but the measure of her success is a cruel and harsh one that denies, not grants, the wants of those like us. Unable to do more, she watches.

She watches as I sink ever further into the squalor that is my self-imposed exile, my place of preciously preserved pains, the darkest recesses of my mind where even I cannot find respite from my own deranged ramblings. Gasping for a breath that will never come, hope a thing lost to a moment that can never be regained, I will forever dwell in this chasm of nowhere. Capable of infusing life into me once more, yet unable to wade such a distance, she must simply watch as I succumb.

She watches as I prance about in this tattered garb, seeming to most a thing so giddy; a toy bright and shiny – all the while, inside… nothing but a fool. She sees my cracks, my flaws, all that makes me unworthy. She is witness to the tarnish that dulls my plating, the rust that flakes my surface, the debris that hinders my step. She gropes at the pile of destroyed dreams, hoping in vain to free me; the more she digs, the deeper the rubble becomes. She must watch as I succumb to what others have done, and what has become of me.

She watches as I shatter into innumerable shards, only to suffer my tears as I collect each delicate fragment to me; insistent upon rebuilding my ruined castle once more. Tears of acid crawl down my cheeks, the madness that accompanies them the crumbling of the world – my world – should they ever truly be unleashed. A steady stream of tangible harm inflicted by so many, each droplet a testament to the life I bear. Her desperate plea for me to hush heard only as an echo in my ear. Her arm stretched towards me, wanting so much to offer reprieve, is hindered by obstacles both beloved and unfair. She must watch as I succumb to what others have undone within me.

She watches as I flay open my own flesh for allowing moments of weakness, glimpses of joy, lies of happiness that happen in an instant, gone all too quickly. Brief encounters, an hour, perhaps two. Touching, loving, seeing, hearing; feeling – breathing; for the first time in so long, breathing. A small step that leads to a brighter existence, a false step placed upon undulating ground. A promise of the sweetest forever, but no promise ever made, a faith always held – a mourning that shall never end, my forever, my reality.  This she must watch as I succumb not to what others have undone, but what I have done to destroy me.

Would I give so much more for even a lie of something less, if that lie was not this? With all the wasted remains of me, I would…  But my watcher stands as guard. She will not allow one to crumble, for the other would fall, no longer even the loathsome wreckage that now exists. Scalding tears pour in a cascade of deafening silence from her eyes. She must always watch me from behind a glass wall that cannot be allowed to shatter for all that would be lost.

A pile of forever swept to the side so that the tendrils of this now never break for what should have been.


Originally posted on Pen of the Damned on October 2, 2012 – shoot on over to to read more of my mad ramblings, the exquisitely pain filled and deliciously horrific works of my fellow Pen members!


About Nina D'Arcangela

Nina D’Arcangela is a quirky horror writer who likes to spin soul rending snippets of despair. She reads anything from splatter matter to dark matter. She's an UrbEx adventurer who suffers from unquenchable wanderlust. She loves to photograph abandoned places, bits of decay and old grave yards. Nina is a co-owner of Sirens Call Publications, a co-founder of the horror writer's group 'Pen of the Damned', founder and administrator of the Ladies of Horror Picture-prompt Monthly Writing Challenge, and if that isn't enough, put a check mark in the box next to owner and resident nut-job of Dark Angel Photography. View all posts by Nina D'Arcangela

5 responses to “She Watches

  • the happy horror writer

    This is a beautiful phrase: “I will forever dwell in this chasm of nowhere.”

    The image of a shattered woman trying to rebuild herself, but unable to complete the task before the next shattering is Sisyphean. It is more tragic, though, because her ability to understand herself is riddled by the warp and holes of madness. Her watcher is her truest self, but she literally cannot help, and must witness her own destruction at the hands of others, and of herself.

    Deliciously dark!



    • Nina D'Arcangela

      Thank you Aniko! So few understand that my she is often me, but you seem to see right through the prose to the heart of my musings. I think you are a kindred soul who ‘chooses’ to see what is, not only what is comfortable. I genuinely appreciate that!

      Thank you for commenting on the “chasm” phrase in particular, it has deep meaning, and there is much beauty in its pain.

      My apologies for not replying right away – Coffin Hop 2012 has kept me very busy of late (and up late to be quite honest)!


      • the happy horror writer

        What ‘is’ and what ‘is comfortable’ are often two different things. I suspect that is why our species has the greatest and most varied coping mechanisms. What I love about dark fiction is that it gives us a safe way to examine the horror of living without having to feel threatened or like we need to pull down the cowl of coping to cover our eyes – at least not immediatly.

        I’m excited about the Coffin Hop! See you out there!



  • Hunter Shea

    I so love this. I’ve got some dude watching me at this very moment. Might tell him to take a picture, it lasts longer.


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