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Pain and Deceit

The Shambles of Love

By Lily SéjorPublished 2 months ago 3 min read
Top Story - February 2024

Why are the most impactful moments in love also the most painful ones? In fact, a lover’s betrayal might be the very best prompt to self-actualization. It will force you to launch a full body scan to evaluate all the feelings and sensations you are experiencing and it will push you to analyze them in extensive details, making a poet out of you. Perhaps that is why I do not hate my ex so much.

Being Black, queer and a woman means I am sexualized and fetishized from all angles at all times. Such a context demands that protections be put in place. As a consequence, I have mastered the art of building castles. I have learned to design them with the thickest walls and to plant them at the very center of the bushiest labyrinths. Sadly, however, I have come to the realization that you are never truly out of reach of Pain and Deceit if they have decided to come for you.

No matter the extent of your expertise when it comes to building defenses and camouflaging, these two acolytes will claw their way through the bushes, bore passages through the walls and slice your back open when you least expect it—Freddy Krueger style.

Pain and Deceit are the most patient pieces of work you will ever know. They will wait for days, weeks, even months... working silently, lurking in corridors—where you could never see or even suspect their presence. They will gladly hold their knives until you are at your weakest, your most vulnerable.

Of course, you do know they exist and that is why you have sought the shelter of a fortress. However, at some sad point in your life, you may be lulled in a sense of comfort and trust—how cute—and forget that these two are sharpening their blades. Ignorance is bliss, they say. That is not quite true. The instant when your eyes lose themselves for just a bit too long in the pool of ecstasy provided by the beautiful face of the one you love… and have faith in (poor thing); when your mind is captivated by the appeal of hope; that is precisely when your nostrils will be surprised by the sweet and metallic smell of blood. Then, a wave of pain will start radiating from your back.

At first, despite the excruciation, you will refuse to understand that you are the butchered; that is, until you hear the plops of your flesh, falling to the ground, cut to shreds, in a puddle of your own blood.

When you try to run, and escape reality, you will be blinded by a strange screen of smoke and will choke on the atrocious smell of gas. Well… gaslighting to be precise.

“Why?” you will ask, as if it mattered. You will welcome the confusion and feign not to be quite sure of what is happening. You will look for answers that do not exist, in the lovely face that is the source of all this hurt.

When you understand that there is no safe place to run to, then Pain and Deceit will finally unmask themselves and look you in the eyes. There will be great laughter (but not from you), cackles, screams of joy (still not from you). The two monsters will seize you, drag you away in front of the man you trusted, who will silently watch and let it happen with an undeniable expression of sadness on his brows and lips but the most vicious twinkle in his eyes.

You will later find out that these two are really his goons and he has, in fact, delivered you to them.

“Did you really think you could protect yourself from us? Did you really think you could hide? Death and us... we’re the only sure thing, honey. Especially for you!”

See? I did not lie about the poetry part—or about any of it, sadly. But I cannot leave you without exploring the situation more thoroughly. Although Pain and Deceit are unstoppable once they are on their way to you, they are not completely unavoidable.

I have learned that once they have visited you once—or twice, if you are not that careful—you are better equipped to identify situations that may invite them; or rather to reveal the caches in your castles where they tend to find refuge. Smoke them out. Never be afraid to confront them. They can only harm you if you refuse to face them.

My ex may have been of some use, after all.


About the Creator

Lily Séjor

Lily is really not the best at describing herself, so she'll put this down for now and circle back when (if) she's inspired. For now, she wants you to know that she's your verbose friend who rarely knows what to say.

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Excellent work. Looking forward to reading more!

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  1. Compelling and original writing

    Creative use of language & vocab

  2. Heartfelt and relatable

    The story invoked strong personal emotions

  3. On-point and relevant

    Writing reflected the title & theme

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Comments (9)

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  • Gena Adamson23 days ago

    I really enjoy your writing. It is elegant and captures depth. Thank you!

  • Julia Alfredabout a month ago

    I liked this!

  • Anna 2 months ago

    Congrats on Top Story!🥳🥳🥳

  • Andrea Corwin 2 months ago

    Wow, the ending is so great! Smoke them out, indeed. Loved this.

  • Kodah2 months ago

    "My ex may have been of some use, after all." I guess people come into your life for a reason 🤷‍♀️🤷‍♀️ 💗Incredible story! 💗

  • Carol Townend2 months ago

    I was taught how to stand tall and never allow myself to be used and abused ever again through my exes, so yes, I agree, sometimes our exes do have some uses! I love this.

  • Melissa Ingoldsby2 months ago

    Taking pain and suffering from the worst kind of betrayals is how we heal! Great work on your cathartic journey in this narrative

  • You've done a wonderful job at capturing the paradox that love can be both beautiful and sad. It serves as a reminder that we may still grow and learn about ourselves even in the depths of despair.

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