Other submissions by Dacia Weist:
If you want to read their other submissions, please click the links.
Trial of Reality (Sci-Fi, Writing Award 2023)
The Dragon from Guangzhou (Historical Fiction, Book Award 2023)
Trials & Tribulations of Modesty Greene (Historical Fiction, Book Award 2023)
Glue (Women's Fiction, Book Award 2023)
The Sinners' Club (Contemporary Fiction, Book Award 2023)
The Dragon from Guangzhou (Historical Fiction, Screenplay Award 2023)
Trials & Tribulations of Modesty Greene (Historical Fiction, Screenplay Award 2023)
The Sinners' Club (Contemporary Fiction, Screenplay Award 2023)
Trial of Reality (Sci-Fi, Screenplay Award 2023)
Bek (True Stories, Writing Mentorship Award 2023)
The Original Zodiac or Philo and Pater (Historical Fiction, Writing Mentorship Award 2023)
Letters to the Bottom of Elephant Butte (Women's Fiction, Writing Mentorship Award 2023)
In the Interim (Drama, Writing Mentorship Award 2023)
Lori; my favorite four-letter word (LGBT, Writing Mentorship Award 2023)
Screenplay Award Sub-Category
Award Category
Logline or Premise
Almost a love story. One woman’s life filled with sex, drugs & betrayal.
Convinced she is in control of her drug addiction, Dacia makes a series of wrong choices that puts her on a path she never expected.
Fast-paced and edgy, Glue will take you on a roller-coaster ride & leave you craving more.
First 10 Pages


The alcoholic virgin Roman goddess. She was a virgin because she was afraid to love again after her first love. She was famous for her sex appeal and her wonderful personality. She had a beautiful heart and body. She had a low self- esteem because her face wasn’t usually as beautiful as her heart. Her heart was the purest and truest of the lands.

A word that infers something is cool, awesome, or hip.

—Urban Dictionary

Chapter 1


If I were deranged, I could have walked into the bedroom, grabbed one of the dozen guns he collected, and shot him in the back of the head. All the odds were in my favor. At such close range, I would have hit him no matter how bad of a marksman I was. I’d planned every detail of my escape, but now that it was time, I almost couldn’t go through with it. Instead of walking out the door, I found myself standing in our bedroom with the gun case open, wondering how difficult it would be to pull the trigger.

The gun felt heavy in my hand, but not cold.

Weren’t guns supposed to feel cold? It felt all wrong. I certainly liked a little naughtiness in my life, but not this kind of bad, not this kind of wrong.

An image of the bloody mess Leonard’s head would make if it splattered on the wall appeared in my mind’s eye. Chunks of his gray matter sliding down the wall onto the carpet finished the scene.

I thought of the double bloody mess if I shot first him and then myself. Would I put the gun in my mouthor hold it to my temple? Who would have to clean it up, or would they even bother? Our trailer would probably be condemned. Hauled away. I came to the conclusion our blood would commingle in some landfill forever.

My stomach roiled. I put the gun back in the case and locked it. Breathing slowly, I reminded myself that everything was ready for my escape. My life was about to change.

Throughout our short-lived marriage, he had insisted on controlling everything, from what I wore to when I worked, when I went to bed, when I got up, and what I ate. He also took my money. He directly deposited my checks into a joint account from which he paid the bills. He would give me fifty dollars a week as an allowance, like I was his kid instead of his wife. God, I hated him. Little did he know that for the past year I’d hidden most of what I’d made. I’d created a tiny nest egg to start a new life and had slowly packed my belongings into four cardboard boxes, putting them into the back of a car. I did it little by little so he wouldn’t notice. First my keepsakes, then my clothes. I didn’t have much. Finally, the plan had come together … for the most part.

I left the cream-colored wedding dress hanging in the closet. Leonard had insisted that I wear that when we exchanged our vows in front of the justice of the peace. It was short and borderline slutty-looking, not really a wedding dress at all. He wouldn’t let me wear heels and told me how I was to wear my hair. There had been no talk of whether I would change my last name; it was assumed I would. The biggest red flag I ignored was that he insisted on the traditional “obey” in my vows.

My stomach turned when I thought of how he’d stripped me of the last bit of my youth, as if his sole purpose had been to pluck me from my formative years and make me old, cynical, and cold. I was freaked out about uprooting my life, especially since it could create another “out of the frying pan into the fire” situation, but I knew I couldn’t take one more day of this loveless, sexless marriage. I refused to be his doormat or pissing post any longer.

Although my husband wasn’t physically abusive, he was verbally abusive, emotionally unavailable, and downright mean. His favorite pastime was to belittle me to others—friends, coworkers, or total strangers. Whoever would listen. His most common complaint was my cooking. He talked about me as if a woman’s worth was found only in the kitchen.

“Bitch could burn water,” he was known to mutter after describing something I had made. “Like burnt- mush goo,” he would snicker. “Have you ever in your life had burnt-mush goo?”

I never learned to cook. My mom never taught me; her mom never taught her. The bedroom was the place to keep your man happy, or at least that’s what she told me. As the old saying goes, I was young and dumb when I got married. My husband was only twenty months younger than my father—and twenty years older than me. Some people may have said I had daddy issues. Who was I to argue? As much as I hated to admit it, Leonard treated me more like a daughter than a wife. Perhaps he had daddy issues too.

As I continued thinking, the tacky wood-paneled walls seemed to be closing in on me. I looked down the hallway and stared at his mullet draping over the top of an overstuffed La-Z-Boy recliner, his hairy hand holding the remote control. My mind reeled back to when we met, how we ended up together. He; his wife, Jackie; and their dark-eyed daughter were my neighbors in the little trailer village that became my home when I took a job at Pipe Spring National Park in Arizona. Their daughter, Christy, was a sweet little thing, polite and pretty. His wife was spicy in both her looks and her attitude.

One afternoon, Leonard showed up at my door with a fifth of Captain Morgan’s rum and a few cans of Coke. I should have noticed the alcohol-to-soda ratio was way off. We drank, I smoked a little weed, and we drank some more. Once buzzed, we ended up on the couch. MTV’s Beavis and Butt-Head played in the background for five minutes and then commercials for ten. During one ad break, he turned to me and kissed me. He jammed his hand hard between my legs and pulled them apart. “You’re wet,” he huffed.

“You’re married,” I replied. It was my only hesitation before our clothes came off.

Beavis was laughing that stupid guffaw of his as Leonard pushed inside me, grunting and groaning. All I remember thinking was His back is hairy. The rest was a rum-induced blur until he pulled out of me and grabbed me by my hair, trying to force his penis into my mouth. I clamped my lips shut as he came all over my face.

“I respect a woman that can take a good face shot.” He laughed as he put his clothes back on. As he walked out my door, he took a slug from the quarter- full rum bottle. “Thanks, Dee,” he said as he disappeared through the front door.

Later that night, someone came beating on my door, loud and angry like a cop knock, one that jolts you and leaves you startled out of your skin. I could see through the openings in the curtains that it was Leonard’s wife. Quickly, I locked the door.

“You fucking tramp!” she screamed, still pounding on the door. I moved to the far side of the window to get a better view.

Leonard strode up behind her, saying, “I told you I was trading you in for a younger, sexier model.”

“You bastard!” she screamed, and it was then that I noticed she was wielding a wooden baseball bat. “You made me abort my baby! You said we could fix things!” Mascara was streaming down her face, making it look masked and ugly.

My eyes flickered to their trailer, which was about twelve feet away from mine. I could see their daughter watching ringside like I was.

“You said you forgave me—that we could start over.” Her rage was ebbing.

“Fix things?” he hissed. “Kind of hard to fix things when it wasn’t even my baby! That’s beyond fixable.

You’re a lying, cheating cunt! We’re done.”

“But you said you still loved me,” she sobbed. “I lied.” Now his face contorted to ugliness too.

“Payback’s a bitch.” He spat at her feet and stormed back to his front door. Their brown-eyed daughter’s head disappeared from the window. I pictured her darting down the hallway to hide in her room. Leonard jerked the door open and then slammed it as the bat

flew end over end, landing several feet short of him with a dull clatter.

“I hate you!” she bellowed toward their house. She turned toward my front door. “I hate you too!” Her fists pounded on the door, and I retreated to my room.

Nervous energy caused me to lock that door too.

The next day, a U-Haul appeared, hooked to the back of her little Honda. Even though Leonard and I were married for eighteen months, I never saw her or their daughter again.

Chapter 2

I was smart enough to know that despite the fact Leonard had never been violent with me in the past, there’s always a first time for shit like that. So the idea of confronting him made my knees shake and my palms sweat. Usually, he acted calm at first, and then— Bam! Insta-asshole.

Scanning the living room, I realized there wasn’t anything in there I wanted. I honestly couldn’t imagine missing this barren place or this barren relationship. It was now or never; I knew that much. Clearing my throat, I stood in front of him, deliberately blocking his view of the huge console television. “I’m leaving you,” I said and braced myself for the blowback.

“Do what ya gotta do,” he said and craned his neck to see the screen. He touched the buttons on the remote control, surfing the five hundred channels of garbage. For a moment, I thought he hadn’t heard me or he didn’t understand what I was saying.

“Um, okay,” I squeaked out. “Goodbye?” It came out as more of a question than a statement, and I felt foolish.

“Good luck, Dacia.” His tone was flat, no hint of emotion.

What? Is this really happening? Just like that?

My facial muscles relaxed.

For a moment, I thought he agreed with me and our split would be amicable, but then he added the punch. “You’ll need all the luck you can get because you don’t have any goddamn skills.” He looked up to the ceiling, reconsidering. “Well, hoeing, maybe, but you ain’t even that good at fuckin’. Ain’t no one gonna want you. You’re worthless.” He took a long slug of his Coors Light and belched, loud and wet. “Fucking worthless.”

My stomach clenched into a knot. Worthless. A wave of panic crested over my whole being as his eyes met mine and he shook his head. Could he be right? Am I ruined? Again, I hated feeling like I was his kid. What was I doing? I glanced behind me at the car loaded with my things. Doubt poured over me. He had ruined me.

Perhaps he could change into the man I thought I’d married. Maybe I should wait it out, I thought. Was my life really that bad? Maybe it was me. Perhaps I should try to be a better wife. If I was ruined and worthless, what would I have to do to fix myself?

An uncomfortable silence hung between us as I waited for him to say more. I looked around at the trailer I had called home for over two years. A heaviness settled over me, suffocating me. Should I stay or go? When I thought of staying, I felt nothing. No sadness, no happiness, nothing. When I thought of leaving, tears stung my eyes. A knot tied in my throat. Feeling sad was better than not feeling at all.

“Do you still love me?” I managed to ask.

“This union was never about love.” His eyes narrowed, and his attention shifted back to the television. I silently counted to ten and then turned and walked out, my hands shaking, my knees weak.

As I left, I didn’t slam the door, although I wanted to slam it hard enough to make our wedding picture crash to the floor and shatter into a million pieces. I wanted to scream at him—to take Jackie’s bat and smash the television. In my mind, I pictured myself swinging it at his head as he sat rooted to the recliner, remote in hand.

My heart raced in my chest and my stomach clenched into knots as I headed for the car. He must not have thought I was being serious. This was no bluff; I had to leave or face his scorn for threatening him.

As I shifted the car into reverse, he appeared on the porch. He must have looked in my nightstand and seen that the few important items in my life were no longer there. For a moment, I thought he’d profess his love. Ask—no, beg—me to stay. For one fleeting second, I pictured myself bounding back into his arms and our marriage turning into something wonderful. Hope rose in my chest. The corners of my lips trembled, and I waited for—

“You stupid, fucking bitch!” he screamed, interrupting my imagination. “You worthless cunt! You’re nothing without me! Nothing! Leave! Go be worthless on your own time. You’re a nobody!”

His tirade continued. He threw his half-empty beer at my windshield, hitting the glass with a tinny clatter. As the can rolled off the hood and into the overgrown weeds, I backed out.

Nervous bile boiled in my gut. My mind played his words again. Good luck, Dacia. You’re going to need it. The way he’d said my name, laced with venom, made me ill. Worthless. His hiss repeated over and over in my anxiety-driven mind. This union was never about love. Tears tumbled down my cheeks as I wished for a fairy godmother to appear, wave her magic wand, and make my bad choices of men disappear.

As I got on the freeway and headed north, my mind wandered back through my relationship with Leonard, the roller-coaster ride. When it was good, it was good, but when it was bad, it was horrible! I drove by a billboard advertising a local restaurant. A huge steak was featured, cut open to display the inside, cooked to a perfect medium rare. A memory of grilling steaks popped into my head, Leonard and me drinking a beer and watching the early-evening clouds roll toward us. About the time it started raining, the propane ran out on the grill. I took the meat inside and turned on the broiler to finish cooking them. I heard the truck pull out of the driveway and looked out to see Leonard drive off as the rain began to pelt the ground.

Thirty or so minutes later, I had the steaks in the oven, broiling. I was watching them through the lit window of the oven door. Leonard walked in, drenched.

Submission file