Tami Parker Other Duties as Assigned

Finish the Story: Betrayal


Join in for a lighthearted, no-pressure writing prompt. Leave your perfectionist at the door and follow a dangling story thread to see where it leads you.

I always post my story doodle in the comments, and I’d absolutely love to see yours as well if you feel comfortable sharing it!

She believed in me in a way no one else ever has and no one else ever will, and I betrayed her. The worst part is she doesn’t know. She still thinks …


  • (My response wasn’t super cheerful for this one, but I still like aspects of it)

    She believed in me in a way no one else ever has and no one else ever will, and I betrayed her. The worst part is she doesn’t know. She still thinks I’m her friend. That I deserve her love.

    It doesn’t matter if anyone would have cracked in that situation. It doesn’t.

    I made a promise and I broke it.

    Every morning, I swear that today will be the day. The day I confess that I was the one who turned her husband in to the cleansing squad. The day I tell her they knew it was someone in our neighborhood. The day I tell her that it was me or him, that one of us had to go and I was so fucking scared that I pissed myself while they questioned me.

    I barely even remember saying his name, but I remember the glint of light off the Investigator’s glasses. The click-clack of his pen against the clipboard as he wrote down the damnable proof of my betrayal.

    That night, I sat in the shower and cried myself to sleep, battered by sheets of stinging, bittercold water.

    The next morning, she stumbled up the walkway to my front door, weeping and wailing about her husband being taken.

    I tried to tell her then, I swear I did, but she was insensible. I hugged her to myself and let her cry against me. Felt her tremble as she bared her soul to me. Wondered how they could have taken him. How anyone could be taken for the crime of being born with powers.

    She still doesn’t know that I have them. No one does, though the evidence listed by the bespectacled Investigator included events that I had been a part of. My guilt, not his. I’d been young and stupid and of course I hadn’t been discreet.

    None of us had, not in the beginning.

    It’s been two years.

    Every morning, I swear I will tell her.

    Every evening, I lie in bed and curse my cowardice.

    I love her. It happened gradually, like a dandelion growing through a crack in the cement. She brought her grief to me, and I took it all. At first, it was penance. Heal the wound I’d created.

    Now? Now I was just selfish.

    She sits on the couch next to me and we share a bowl of popcorn while we watch the news. Every once in a while, her hand grazes mine and I feel a brief shock. I hide it, and her eyes never flicker.

    She doesn’t know I love her. I’ve hidden it well. I suppose I’ve gotten good at lying to her.

    The show ends and she reaches over to click the remote.

    The screen goes black and the guilt wells up inside of me like a living thing.

    Tell her. Tell her. TELL HER.

    She gives me a hug at the front door and tells me she what a dear friend I am, and that she’ll see me tomorrow.

    I watch as she retreats down the sidewalk and dances up the steps to her front door. A light goes on in her kitchen, and I turn off my own lights and stare up at the ceiling fan.

    I’ll tell her tomorrow. This can’t go on.

    I’m such a fool.

  • *noodles in*

    She believed in me in a way no one else ever has and no ene else ever will, and I betrayed her. The worst part is she doesn’t know. She still thinks I’m going to do it. We’ve been together long enough now that I can tell. She’s looking up at me with those eyes, deep pools of endless joy.

    It feels like nothing will ever take the light from her eyes.

    She looks up at me now and all I see is the trust she has for me. As deep as the ocean and just as fathomless. Something that’s been there from the very first moment I met her.

    It’s crazy, you know. I hear people tell me that it takes time to build up trust. They say that trust isn’t something that’s intrinsic to a relationship, that you have to earn it. It comes over weeks and months and years, a slow progression of trust until you have a bridge solid enough to walk across.

    With us, trust was just…there. As natural as breathing. It had more the consistency of gravity, there was just no other way to be.

    All this trust…and you’d think that it cuts both ways. That trust in me would necessitate a reciprocating trust?

    Except it didn’t.

    Call me a cynical bastard, but it really didn’t.

    You want the truth? I can admit that to you, even if I can’t admit it to anyone else, right?

    I enjoyed it.

    There, I said it. I enjoyed seeing how much trust she had in me, knowing that I was deceiving her the whole time.

    It’s the feeling of mastery, alright? Knowing that you hold someone’s trust in the palm of your hand? And knowing that it’s up to you whether you want to reward it with faith or to crush her hopes?

    That’s power.

    That’s real power.

    I looked down at her adoring eyes, reached out to caress her chin.

    Silly girl.

    More to your peril that you should choose to put your faith in a fickle creature like me.

    “Okay, Abby,” I said, raising my arm up above my head, revelling in her trust as her tail started wagging in a white blur. “I’m REALLY going to throw the ball this time…”

Tami Parker Other Duties as Assigned