Milly: The Greener Shade

TW: Milly’s story contains Coercive Behaviour.

Hunter insisted Milly quit her job after discovering she was carrying twins. He expressed concerns she would struggle to manage her condition. The chemicals used in art were too potent, in his opinion. Milly preferred the focus as painting was her passion. Things in her career were slow but hopeful. Milly would remain patient as she knew art appreciation took time. Her mother, Vicky, found painting a way to express her feelings. She created beautiful pieces for their home. Milly intended to do the same. Hunter refused to listen as she needed to prioritise their children. Other changes felt beyond Milly’s control. The money Eliza held in trust for her would be the payment required to buy the house in Oasis Springs. Hunter discovered this large two-bedroom with a pool. There was ample space to extend the house upstairs. The open-plan living area was perfect, allowing the children to play and be together as a family. Large windows brought light into the house. The surroundings gave them privacy, trees, and a covered porch. Hunter found the home of their dreams.

Work offered Milly an escape from Hunter’s good intentions. He brought nutritional lunches and healthier alternatives to the chocolate she craved. Milly felt relieved her work colleagues took pity on her. Symptoms were extreme; the weight of two babies pulled her back. They played football with her kidneys and used her bladder as a trampoline. If her stomach grew another inch, Milly wondered if she would explode. The sensitivity of her body meant living with a chef was unbearable. What tastes and smells repulsed her one day were mouth-watering the next.

Relief was temporary when the deeds for the house came through. The four of them living together made cosy appear uncomfortable. Hunter’s presence ended the cousin’s alone time. Hunter knew when Eliza and Milly planned a spa day or sneaked to the café for hot chocolates. He grumbled about taking time out of sorting their future to focus on her and their babies needs. Milly felt guilty for wanting to tell him no, but in equal measure, she needed to spend time with Eliza. Hunter would pout. In the evenings, sometimes for days, he would ignore her. A lack of sympathy for the effects pregnancy took on her body. Eliza would be on the receiving end of his temper or snide comments. Hunter asserted Milly was the mother of his children, and he knew how best to care for them.

Her final months were alone in the new house. It appeared Oasis Springs had not heard it was winter. The region’s warmer temperature made the increased weight unbearable. She would love to sit on the patio and dip her feet in the water, but Hunter deemed it too dangerous. The kitchen was lower than the main living area with a tiled floor. Here she could sit with tall glasses of water, fanning herself.

When Milly imagined the birth, it had not been so alone. Hunter abandoned her with the doctors. Her waters broke during dinner, a meal cold on the kitchen table. Reassurances that he would return to her side evaporated as the urge to push took over. She felt a red-hot poker sear through her body. The ante-natal classes were a waste of time, as Milly forgot to breathe. She stiffened, voice strained, grabbing the nurse’s hand. Silence fell as the first baby arrived in the world. Milly heard her heartbeat pounding. The doctor, midwife and attendant, their movements slowed, paused in a precious moment. With a cry, the world rushed back in. Milly reached for the child, but another was on the way, and there was no time to process.

Milly’s hair was stuck down with sweat. She begged for the newborn twins as Hunter arrived. He intervened, taking the first hold of his son, James. Milly let tears flow, desperate to hold both her children. The nurse felt uncomfortable as she gave Selena, the younger twin, to the sobbing mother. His smile changed, lips parted, thin and narrow, bearing teeth. The nose crinkled. Eyes darkened under a heavy brow. Milly had disgraced herself. It angered him she would want to deny him the chance to hold his son. James cried in his arms, an objection to his sister’s separation. Hunter surrendered the child to Milly. Hunter’s harsh words forever tainted her memories.

Eliza and Milly

Milly and Medical Personnel

If you or anyone you know is affected by the issues raised in Milly’s Story help is available.


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