“Eddy! Eddy get up!”
Eddy didn’t move.
With an irritated groan, Eddy rolled over on the couch in the living room and struggled to push himself up to a sitting position. “Babe what the hell?” he grumbled. “I was sleeping.”
“More like passed out, Eddy,” Rayne crossed her arms, scowling. “You’re high. Again. After you promised me you wouldn’t do this anymore. What was it this time, huh? Cocaine? Meth? Heroin? How did you almost kill yourself today?”
“I just did a line of coke, it’s no big deal, what are you freaking out about?” he scowled. “I’m fine, so leave it alone. You always exaggerate shit.”
“That’s not the point, Eddy!” Rayne shouted, losing her temper. This was the last straw. She couldn’t keep doing this. Not anymore. “So you’re fine this time. So what? What about tomorrow? Or next week? Or next month? I can’t do this, Eddy, I can’t keep sitting here watching you kill yourself like this! What if one day, I get home from a tour and I go to wake you up but you never get up off that couch?” she choked out, her eyes brimming with tears. “I can’t go through that. I just can’t.”
“Well don’t worry about that because this is the last time,” Eddy told his wife, struggling to get to his feet. “I mean it. I just needed one more hit, that’s all it was. It was no big deal, Rayne, seriously. Just relax, okay?”
“It’s always the last time, Eddy!” Rayne burst out, storming up to him. “Every time I catch you doing drugs again, you say it’s the last time! How many ‘last times’ are there going to be before you put yourself in the hospital or the morgue?! I don’t believe you anymore! Why won’t you go to rehab like I keep begging you? I work in the entertainment industry, you don’t think I know of any really great rehab facilities where you could get the help you need? I could name a dozen but you won’t go to any of them! I love you, Eddy, I want you to get better. If you’d agree to rehab, I’d stand by you but I can’t watch you circle the drain like this!”
“I don’t need rehab because I don’t have a fucking problem, Rayne!” Eddy shouted back right in her face. “I don’t need help! You’re my wife, not my fucking mother!”
“Exactly!” Rayne screamed. “I’m your wife, not your mother and I shouldn’t have to act like your mother in this marriage! You should be a grown ass man all on your own!”
“What happened to you, Rayne?” Eddy scowled. “You used to be cool. You used to have fun and protest against the man and march around with your fist in the air, screaming about individuality and freedom of expression! Now you’re just like everyone else. What’s special about you now, huh? Nothing,” he spat out his insults like poison darts that left his wife stunned into hurt silence for a long moment. His cruel words seemed to cripple her, leaving her with a broken expression on her face before she finally spoke, her voice quiet and defeated.
“That was college, Eddy. I grew up. I’m sorry you can’t seem to do the same… and I’m sorry you don’t see anything special anymore when you look at your wife.” Her tears spilled over, taking her mascara along with them and leaving streaks of black on her pale blue cheeks. She turned away from him, putting her face in her hands and Eddy reached out to touch her arm.
“Rayne, wait…” he started but she just shook her head to silence him.
“No,” she answered. “No Eddy. I’m not waiting for you anymore.”
“What’s that supposed to mean?”
“It means I’m walking away from you before you drag me down into your hell with you. It’s over, Eddy. This marriage is over. I’m too tired to keep trying to fix something that can’t be fixed. I keep trying to find something to salvage because I’m scared of letting go of the only person I’ve ever loved, but there’s nothing left to salvage,” she wept. “I kept thinking I could save you, but I can’t be your saviour, Eddy. The only person I can save is myself, so I’m saving myself. I’m saying goodbye.”
“That’s it? Just like that?” Eddy stated in disbelief. “Without even trying? Some resolve you got there, Rayne!”
“I have tried, Eddy!” Rayne exploded, furious again but this time with tears marring her features. “I’ve tried so hard and for so long that I barely know who I am anymore because all I ever think about is you, but you don’t want to do anything to fix your problems and if you don’t want to fix them, then I can’t help you fix them! I need to let you go and start thinking about me again! I need to find me again!”
“Well I hope you find yourself wherever the hell you go because it’s not going to be here!” Eddy snapped. “You’re the one abandoning me so you’re the one who can leave my house! I’m staying right here!”
“Actually, this is and always has been Rayne’s house, Eddy,” a different voice made the warring couple turn around. Rayne’s step-mother, Monica was standing behind them with her arms crossed, giving Eddy a look similar to one she might give a cockroach she found scuttling across the kitchen floor. “Rayne has a successful singing career. She’s an international celebrity, a multi-millionaire and she owns this house and everything in it. You are an unemployed druggie bum who has been leeching off of my step-daughter’s love and generosity since the day you walked into her life. You have done nothing to contribute to the lavish lifestyle you so selfishly enjoy that your wife has provided for you all these years so you are the one who will be leaving tonight, thank you.”
For a long moment, Eddy just stared defiantly at the elderly woman almost as if he was about to challenge her to a fight but eventually, he just scowled and shook his head, storming out of the house. “I’ll be back to pack up my shit! You want a divorce so bad, go file the divorce papers yourself! Have fun when the media gets a hold of that one, Rayne!”
As soon as he left the house, Rayne dissolved into heartbroken sobs. Her step-mother walked over to her and put her arms around her. “Shhh, I know, honey. I know it hurts, but you did a brave thing. He was using you and you finally said enough. I’m proud of you.”
“I can’t breathe, Monica…” Rayne choked out. “I don’t know how to breathe without him…”
“I felt the same way when I lost your father. For a while, I didn’t know how to keep going, either,” Monica said softly. Rayne sniffed and wiped at her eyes.
“What kept you going?” she asked in a feeble, hopeless voice. Monica wiped her step-daughter’s tears away with her thumbs.
“You,” she smiled warmly. “And your brother and sister. All three of you got me through the darkest time of my life. I knew I had to keep going to be there for you three because your father couldn’t be anymore.”