She was safe inside her home while he was safer far away. When the urge to be closer proved stronger than safety, he turned and soon was down the street, then just a few blocks away, then right on her porch under the protection of the decorative awning that extended from her front door. He remembers the journey to her porch, though he is not willing to share it.

She sat by the window watching him. To be honest, she expected him to leave after she didn’t respond to his first knock, but he didn’t, so she opened the door on his second. Everyone was surprised when she opened her door and stood to stare; neither of them moved and neither of them wanted the other to care if they did or not.

After awhile, she took a step to one side, making a small amount of room just enough for him to fit in. As soon as she did it, he spoke frantically and urgently, “don’t let me in… don’t let me in!” He repeated over and over until she replaced her foot where it was before, leaving no space for him at all, and even then he only quieted down to a whisper.

“don’t let me in, don’t let me in,” he chanted softly as they stared at each other.

Once his whispers faded and silence once again ruled their connection, she took a step forward. Slowly, she placed her foot on the other side of the threshold, trusting the porch cement to be there when she stepped down. With her foot still in the air, hovering just over the ground in front of him, his voice pierced loudly again, “don’t come out… don’t come out!” this lasted longer than his first objections; he even took a step back himself to ensure that if she did put her foot down, their distance wouldn’t change.

Finally, she reclaimed her foot inside the house. He breathed a heavy sigh and took his place closely across from her; neither of them moved and neither of them wanted the other to want to. Occasionally, he would remind her in a gentle whisper, “don’t let me in, don’t come out.” And she would give the slightest nod or perhaps a small grin and they both would feel better.

She was surprised when his arm was suddenly stretched out and resting against her back, but she didn’t have time to contemplate it because he snatched it right back to his chest, holding it tenderly and wincing – it had a sharp arrow sticking out of it. She couldn’t even whirl around before the arrows started whizzing past her and sometimes striking her in the arm, throat, chest, thigh, everywhere that mattered. He didn’t block any of the others. He watched as she ducked and dove and sometimes failed at protecting herself from the rapidly flying, sharp, and sometimes poisoned arrows that were hurled at her inside her home.

Soon, she became a flailing target with arrows protruding from every part of her body, except her face. Her face was left untouched, clean, and beautiful as ever. She swayed in the doorway as the weight of the arrows pulled her this way and that. He opened his mouth and uttered the only words either of them could remember: “don’t let me in, don’t come out.”

She nodded, and winced.



Kelsey Pinckney – 21-years-young, from a modest desert town in Southern California, and currently living in Phoenix, AZ where I think I’ve finally found a place to stay for awhile. I enjoy the words of others and like to ponder what they mean and where they came from; I write my own words as an attempt to understand things that I don’t. It works, more or less. I find fitting companions in candles, British literature, a crochet hook, loud noises, and strange people.

To read more cartoonishly violent explorations of relatively troubled relationships, order Four Chambers 01 here.