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Confined in a dream

The narrow black box confined her body like a coffin. She had been inside this for hours now. She felt breathless.

The box was clearly not made for her body measurements. It was for someone smaller, younger, or maybe someone who had a premature death.

She could see Steve. His face was red and with his bloodshot eyes, he was hollering at her. She was trying to speak but the words would not come out. She could hear him say that if she did not agree to marry him, he would bury her alive. She tried to explain that she was not in love with him anymore. But the words were not coming out.

She tried hard to kick, to move, but the sides of the box were caving in her elbows and her legs. She had been lying down straight for hours now. Her knees were hurting from being unable to move them.

The darkness above her was all-consuming as the sound of the ocean was like a sinister dark abyss. She had already been thrown by Steve and his friends into the sea.

The sea was swallowing her in its hungry unending belly. The slimy sea snakes swarmed above, waiting to wrap themselves over her body. The sinister fishes were waiting to break open the box. She felt fear dripping between her legs, as she passed warm urine inside.

She was trying to shake herself free. She tried desperately to make noises so that someone could hear her.

She begged Steve to let her go, but he just grinned as he pinned her down tighter in the narrow box.

She felt suffocated and claustrophobic.

Then suddenly the lights came on. She opened her eyes, breathing heavily. She was alive. She looked to the side. She was far away from her town. She was in a new city, in a girl’s hostel. Her roommate was sleeping in the cot next to her. She felt her wet nightdress. She did know if it was sweat or it was her piss.

But she knew she was far away from Steve in another city. He could never reach her ever.

She felt relieved. She realised it was the same recurring nightmare.

She had lived for years with the fear of never getting Steve angry. He was her fiancé who loved her. But every time he was cross with her, he threatened to put her in a box and throw her into the ocean. He was inconsiderate about her claustrophobia and was insensitive to her issues.

But her family dismissed Steve’s anger issues as a man thing and reprimanded her, telling her to count her blessings.

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