Fandom: The Virgin Suicides
Disclaimer: property of Jeffrey Eugenides
Written for Literary Ladies We Love, hosted bylisal825. Very short. I couldn't believe how difficult Cecilia Lisbon was to write but The Virgin Suicides is one of my favorite books and I wanted to try.
Please check out the rest of the Literary Ladies We Love.
Her dress - the vintage wedding dress of ruffles and lace that she always wore - fluttered in the wind one last time as she jumped.
It took less than three seconds for her body to land from her second floor window onto the black spiked fence below.
Less than three seconds for her to feel the wind in her face and in her hair one last time.
Less than three seconds for her to look at the stars through the canopy of tree leaves.
Less than three seconds and in those three seconds, she didn’t regret jumping.
There had been a time when she had wanted things. Wanted to be a writer. Wanted to be an artist – even though she was never quite able to draw exactly what she saw in her head. She read National Geographic and stared at the pictures and she dreamt of seeing India and China and Africa.
But one morning, she woke up and she blinked up at the ceiling and her zodiac mobile slowly twisted in the soft breeze blowing through the open windows and she didn’t think of any of those things. She laid there and it was as if she went to bed one person and woke up an entirely other.
She laid there and listened to Lux playing her records in the next room as the others began to get themselves ready for school. She could smell breakfast cooking and she knew her mother would come knocking on her door in a few minutes to make sure that she was awake. Was she? Her eyes were open.
School was nearly done for the summer.
She was thirteen.
She wore her uniform and sat with her family as they all ate, prepared for the new day. She didn’t say a word. She couldn’t even taste the food.
She cut her wrists.
She sat in the bathtub, not naked, the razor between her fingers and she stared at the blue veins and the red blood and pink-hued water and she felt her eyes grow heavy as if she was tired. She sank into the warm water and closed her eyes and she thought of nothing.
She still couldn’t feel anything.
In the hospital, her dad tried to smile at her and her mom didn’t try to hide her tears and all she did was stare down at the heavy white bandages bound around her wrists.
She didn’t know what to say. She wasn’t sorry. She wasn’t sad. She wasn’t anything they would expect her to be and when they asked her how she was feeling, she could only look at them and not say anything.
“What are you doing here, honey?” The doctor asked. “You’re not even old enough to know how bad life gets.”
She stared at him, blinked at him as if she couldn’t understand what he was saying.
No one made sense anymore. She woke up one morning and suddenly found herself speaking a language no one could understand while they all spoke to her using words she didn’t know.
“Obviously, doctor, you’ve never been a thirteen-year-old girl.”
Just a few weeks later, when she jumped from her bedroom with the party going still going on in the basement below, there were no thoughts in her mind. There hadn’t been for weeks. She hadn’t thought of her parents or her sisters or everything she still had to write or draw or all of the places she still had to see.
When she jumped, for the first time in weeks, she felt her heart beating.