‘The Voice’ by Maisy Phillip

It’s there. It’s always there. The voice, the guilt, for every mistake she’s made. Wherever she goes, it follows and it never goes away. Some days it’s worse than others, but it’s never something she can brush off. It makes bad days harder, and good days very rare. But life goes on for her, like a constant nightmare.

She lives in the occupied city of New York and the impact of the population doesn’t have a benefit on the voice. She’s always looking back on herself, as paranoid as one could be. Almost every face she locked eyes on has a memory, and more often than not, it isn’t a good one. As she walks to work, one to the left of her catches her eye. It looks like her grandma, who she’s not seen for six years. Grandma suffers frightfully with Parkinsons, but her overloaded life means she’s been too busy to see her. She can’t get away from the guilt that each day she’s getting worse, and one day she might be gone, but she still doesn’t find the time.

She proceeds down the brimming streets of central New York, until she stumbles across a young boy. It reminds her of her younger brother, who she was often jealous of as a child. She’d go out of her way to cause him harm, but as he was so young, he’d never know. She’d play cruel jokes on him at night time, causing him sleepless nights. Some say the heartless humor still affects him today.     

They were never very close, and the voice points that out a lot, making her family suffer, calling attention to her life’s biggest regrets I suppose that’s the only thing the voice is good for; a comfort. She’s not really got anyone else.

Work is on the horizon, she’s nearly reached her day’s destination. The busy streets are out of sight, and she is now strolling down more empty lanes. But the voice begins to muffle; they became more reserved as she chances upon an old woman, struggling to carry her belongings inside. She stops and thinks to herself before hesitantly approaching. This was the first time she’s befriended someone in years. The women appreciates her offer; they make small talk and then she hurries on her way.

Now it wasn’t there. It was like it was never there. The voice, the guilt, for all the mistakes, it went away. Wherever she went, life was more amicable and each day became easier. Bad days were still bad, but good days became more prominent.  

Life went on, no longer like a nightmare.

Photo by picjumbo.com from Pexels

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