She stood in the park, alone and shivering, knowing if she waited there much longer she’d be as sick in body as she was in soul. What was this hold he had on her that she kept coming back to him again and again? After the things he’d said…had done…she wondered if he was even capable of loving anyone but himself.
His disdain of conformity and social convention initially drew her to him. All too soon, she realized she was little more than a whipping post for his vitriolic diatribes. He crushed the life and love from her, leaving her like some battered and bludgeoned cochineal, metaphorically surrendering up her heart’s blood like so much carmine dye.
Shaking the snow from her umbrella, she promised herself she would give him another half hour before leaving. A slow-spreading numbness crept over her hopes as if mirroring the loss of feeling in her fingers and her toes.
This story was written for the weekly Saturday Sunday Tails flash fiction challenge prompt: bludgeoned cochineal