re·sil·ient /rəˈzilyənt/ adjective

  1. (of a person or animal) able to withstand or recover quickly from difficult conditions.
  2. (of a substance or object) able to recoil or spring back into shape after bending, stretching, or being compressed.

She absolutely hated how he spoke to her, and yet she let him finish. But this time, for the first time, she did not turn away.

She looked him dead in the eye, daring him to continue – but continue he did, so she let him finish. Because if he could look her in the eye right back, truly see her, and still have the gall to call her the names he did, to spit his venom at her with no remorse, then she would let him finish. She wanted confirmation that he was a Bad Person. Not a coward calling names from behind a shield, but an unwavering Bad Person.

His voice still rang in her ears when she finally blinked. One slow blink. And then her eyes were trained back on his. Only now, in the silence, did she glimpse in him a flicker of hesitation, confusion.

“Are you done?” she asked, drawing out the words. She watched his eyes watch her mouth.

“Excuse me?”

“I'm trying to be considerate. Because this is the last thing you're ever allowed to say to me.”

“The hell it is-”

“Time's up. You don't get any more words. Not to me. You don't get to hurt me. You don't get power over me. You are nothing to me. Which makes you nothing at all.”

Eventually, she would go days, weeks, months, years at a time between pangs of memories and increasingly distant echoes.

With nothing to turn away from, she moved forward.