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Choker (Fic: The OC, M/T, Oneshot)

Title: Choker [AU]
Fandom: The OC
Pairings or Characters: Marissa/Trey.
Genre: It's not really a romance, given that it's an abusive relationship. Fits more into angst than anything.
Word Count: 920
Rating: M [graphic scene of domestic abuse]
Warnings: Covers the first time a man abuses his girlfriend; depicts her being nearly strangled. I really wouldn't read it if you're triggered by depictions of domestic abuse.
Disclaimer: I own nothing!
Summary: She should be more scared, she thinks, that she prefers not breathing, not thinking, lying in stillness and darkness and smoke, hazy after too many drinks and too much nicotine.
Notes: This fits into my 'verse The Way It Hurts. It will take place sometime during my fic Falling In and Out of Love, but as I don't have an exact timeline for that, it stands alone for now and I'll slot it in when necessary.

This was for Prompt #15 in the Pile of Books Challenge at 5_prompts, he could tell she was struggling to breathe now, and Prompt #14 in my un_love_you table, I'm awake and you're breathing.


“I hold my breath as this life starts to take its toll.”
- Evanescence

At first, she finds it attractive.

He kisses her as hard as he can when they make love. He bites at her lips, drawing blood, making her taste it, seemingly loving it himself. Passion. That’s what she thinks it is.

He kisses her hard enough to take her breath away, to leave her gasping for air, as if she’d just surfaced after nearly drowning. In a way, being with him feels like she has been. She can’t breathe when she’s with him; he leaves and the air comes rushing back.

She should be more scared, she thinks, that she prefers not breathing, not thinking, lying in stillness and darkness and smoke, hazy after too many drinks and too much nicotine.

She should be more scared, but she isn’t.

***

She wakes in the early morning, and it surprises her, because they stay out late and sleep in even later and she’s normally never awake this early. But when she opens her eyes, she realizes why. Trey is skimming his fingers along her bare back, her spine, pressing on each vertebra, seemingly marveling at the pale skin of her back, the way he can distinguish each bone.

“What’re you doing?” Marissa mumbles, drowsing.

“Exploring.”

He says it gruffly, as though he’s embarrassed to have gotten caught, and she smirks and flips onto her back, taking his hand and moving it to her breasts, murmuring, “Wouldn’t you rather be exploring somewhere else?”

He does what she asks, roughly exploring her breasts with his hands, his tongue, his teeth. She should mind, but she doesn’t. It gets her hotter than she’d like to admit.

His hands move up from her breasts, to her throat, and she shudders as his fingers trace at the hollow there, as he presses down. “You like that, huh?” he asks, and he seems to think she’s gasping in pleasure, because soon his hand is pressing at the base of her throat, harder than before.

At first she feels it, that intoxicating rush of not being able to breathe, of ceding control and letting him take over, to choose for her whether or not she breathes, the same as he does when he kisses her hard enough to deprive her of air, of sensation in her fingers and toes as he makes her go weak and malleable in a way she’d never thought she’d be.

Panic takes over quicker than she’d thought it would.

She chokes out his name, swipes at his arm and scrapes her nails down to try and make him stop, and when she scratches again, it’s hard enough to draw some blood, little droplets welling and spilling and trailing down the skin.

He seems to like that, and he presses just the slightest bit harder, breathing in her ear. “You like it, huh?”

“No—”

She wonders if she says it out loud or if she just thinks she does, because she can barely breathe, so how can she speak? Her confirmation comes just a second later, when he slaps her cheek so hard it stings.

“You want it,” he’s saying. “You love it, not breathing. You said it yourself the other night. Taking your breath away.” The mocking lilt in his voice makes her close her eyes, makes tears she hadn’t realized had been welling spill from her eyes, and she hears him laughing. Laughing.

He has to be able to tell she can’t breathe. She’s stopped kicking, stopped scratching, and the dizziness is growing—not the same dizziness she gets from too much alcohol, too much him

When he lets up, taking his hand from her throat, she nearly chokes on the air she frantically tries to take in, retching, her chest burning with how much it hurts to breathe but how desperately she needs to.

“Trey, fuck!

She regrets the words as soon as they’re out of her mouth, because he presses his fingers against the sore spots at the base of her throat, leaning close enough that she’s breathing in what he breathes out.

“You asked for it. All your talk about not wanting to breathe, wanting me to kiss you harder. You never said no before.”

She didn’t.

Maybe that’s the problem.

*** 

She can almost forget it.

Almost.

She remembers when she takes too deep a breath.

She remembers when she’s afraid to open her eyes in the morning, because he’s awake and she’s breathing and she knows now how easily he can take that breath away.

She remembers when she sees a wreath of bruises at the base of her throat, purple and ugly against her fair skin.

She remembers when she has to go into her jewelry box to find something that will cover them.

A choker. She shouldn’t find the name funny, but she does. It’s a type of necklace, nothing more.

But no, it is something more. Choker: that could mean a person who chokes. A person like Trey.

Choke is too mild a word, she realizes. No, in the back of her mind, she hears one of the neighbors from Newport, a lawyer her parents had been friends with. Strangle, that’s the world. Choke is nothing. Choke is what happens if you swallow too fast. Strangle is what happens when someone wraps his hand around your throat and squeezes. Hard. Too hard.

She can almost forget it.

She doesn’t.

She can pretend it’ll only happen the one time.

It doesn’t.

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