Woke up one night when the sun was to rise, I woke because of a nightmare that I had. I was chased by these dogs made of fabric. They had a perfect face with its features greatly defined it’s hollow body just flapped with the wind. There were 7 dogs after my dear life and all I could do was follow the path straight ahead of me. Terrified in my dream I was wishing to change it all, wishing that my blinking will help change the situation I was in. Last I remember was taking one step too far and suddenly falling into an abyss of complete and utter emptiness.
It’s hard trying to make something of the little that’s left of my life, but I leave it to God to roll the dice to land on chance and get me a ‘get out of jail free’ card. Nothing worthwhile comes easy, so I guess I may have to pay its price to bail myself out.
‘myself’ what a word. I wish I wasn’t always thinking about that. Sometimes I wish I was like my elder sister. We are only a year apart but she’s miles ahead of me with the grace and understanding she has been blessed with. I’m all blows and fire while she’s the epitome of patience. She’s someone I’m truly happy for. My protective instinct is higher towards her, she deserves to relax. I look over to my sister who stirs in her sleep. I wish I was patient.
*bang* the sound of a door closing with force startles my stirring sister and me. I get up And peek through the slightly ajar door. I hadn’t the courage to go out and inspect only prayed it wasn’t a thief here to steal. Lord knows what would happen to us if things went missing in the house whether we remain conscious or not. Things have to be our fault.
Through the little opening I found my mother, red in the face, seething with anger, storm right towards our door. I panicked, hoped she didn’t catch me peeking through. I wouldn’t want to get her upset. My body trembled and I whispered to my sister ‘mom is coming’ though that was unnecessary for trembling was a cue in itself. She lay her head back down on her pillow and let the blanket engulf her. I ran to the bed and covered myself within the blanket as well. Oh how I wish there was such a thing as an invisibility cloak from Harry Potter. Miss. Rowling if only you knew how desperately we need your imagined world.
My mother pushed the door open and turned on the lights breathing heavily. I was clutching on to my blanket grasping onto my delicate life hoping she wasn’t in our room because of us while she’s furious like that. She walked in and yanked the blanket off of us. Threw it on the ground, mumbling curses under her breath. She grabbed my arm and threw me off the bed behind her and continued her way towards my sister. My arm had been bruised “what is wrong with you?!” I exclaimed. She snapped her head towards my direction and I swear I saw the grim reaper in her. I shrunk and looked away. She continued to stare for a second worth a lifetime of pain and agony; she continued towards my elder sister. grabbing her by the arm she threw her off the bed as well. I couldn’t dare myself to see her do that and only relied on what I saw from the corner of my eye. My sister felt the same amount of pain but I didn’t hear her flinch or protest she kept her gaze towards the floor.
My mom looked at us with tears welling, “he is not to be trusted, do you know what he did?” Her hair was flying though there was no wind in the room, I believe in her erratic state electricity found a hub in her, she was surging. “He looks at other women, he comments on them so disgusting and on top of that he can’t give money to his kids?! No! God forbid he ever buy them clothes, instead he will spend every penny, EVERY PENNY, I kid you not, on his friend’s’. I’m sorry you kids have him as a father.” My sister and I just stared at her as she ranted, and saw tears roll down her cheek as if someone, somewhere left the tap running. “My parents ruined my life getting me married to him, I told them no I didn’t want to get married I wanted to study, but they forced me and left me in this hell hole. What did I do to deserve this?! Look at what he did to me, look.” She lifted her shirt from the back and though it was dark it wasn’t hard to miss large black bruises on her porcelain skin. “He hit me with his belt. What did I do to deserve this god?! Why are you punishing me.” It was all very unsightly, the bruises, the erratic state, the crying the corners of her lips would be spotted white and the scent of tears was taking over the room. She was sweating, she was crying, she was rather ugly, she was broken. My sister got up and went to her, as my mother sobbed uncontrollably. My sister took my sobbing mother in her embrace and as soon as she made contact with her body my mother collapsed in her tiny arms. It was a vision I have yet to erase from my memory, the child and adult were blurred as a saw a weakened woman be caressed by a child so strong that the source of it remains a mystery. It was moments like these when I would think to protect that child for as long as she needed it. Instinctually, I walk towards the two and lay my hands upon them both in a supporting fashion, one on the poor, battered wife and the other on the motherly babe. Never shall they have to carry the burden on their own.
It was 4.30 am when I woke. With a desert-like throat I was thirsting. As I got up I felt someone’s presence in the room. I knew my mom was sleeping with us so it wasn’t my mother whom I felt. I knew who it was, I had a nightmare about him. I also knew that he wasn’t there, just a memory, one that is etched. With a shiver down my spine I felt him fade out and finally decided to complete what I planned to do before returning to bed.
I rise from my bed, swing myself over to the edge and push my tush off the cushioned surface. I leave my room and walk towards the water cooler. The glasses were neatly placed next to them. As I walked towards the cooler I tried my best to avert my eyes from the spiral staircase to my left leading up to the second storey of the house. It was the single most frightening thing a child could see especially one who loved the thrill of watching horror films, but would almost die of the terror that followed. It had been 10 years since anyone had ever gone up to that part of the house. My mother wouldn’t allow us as it housed my uncles’ belongings. Those uncles who had abandoned everything they had in this country to live a better life in America.
As a response we abandoned the second storey, it was more like an eye for an eye tactic, as they had also abandoned us in this black hole of a place. Please understand that I’m not bitter. My sister and I could care less about what they do or who they are. We just find it tragic that they abandoned their brother. My grandmother too had abandoned him. No calls, no birthday wishes nor gifts. He was left alone. It must be a terrifying thought being so alone. And Maybe that’s why…
I was just about done replenishing myself when the door knob turns at 4.42 am. I’m startled by the soft sound and sent into a panic. Who could it be at this hour, I wonder. Preparing for the worst I clutch the glass held in my hand that swings ever so slightly to the back in a stance that would allow me to gain momentum as I throw my glass at the direction of the unknown intruder. The door opens at the count of my skipping heartbeat, and once it’s open wide enough to see the individual that comes walking through my body relaxes. I let out a sigh of relief as I recognize my father, with disheveled hair and a groggy look on his face he walks through the entrance.
He looks up and makes eye contact with me, soon after, a look of disgust replaces his groggy disposition. I greet him while receiving the look one gives to filth. He scrunches his nose as if he smelt a whiff of my horrid breath from the 9 foot distance we shared. Outwardly I stand tall, undeterred, and politely as a daughter should; inside I’m just cud, formless, incomplete and useless to others. We exchange looks for a millisecond or less before he ignores my greeting, walks past me with out a word; with a hard shove, to head towards his room at the opposite end of this massive house.
The rough contact took me to an unpleasant place where he, whom I mentioned earlier, comes back. Creeping up from my back, he places his hands on my shoulders holding me down. He bows his slithery body so that he may be levelled to my ear and allows his wet lips, slimy tongue, and hot breath imprint upon me as he whispers ‘you’ll always have me.’
As soon as the words are spoken, heard would be more appropriate, he vanishes. With the damage done he needn’t stay long. Now I stand, frozen looking straight ahead feeling mostly tired than anything. The dry mouth and throat threatening its return. I look back at the cooler and place the used glass on the tray designated for its kind. Fearing any sort of moistening would signal for his return. I let out a heavy sigh and turn around to return back to my bedroom, this time not worrying about the staircase to my right but only looking for solace in my bed. I mean I had very little time to sleep now that the clock read 5 am.
‘Ma’am wake up please, it’s 6 am.’ I heard a girl whisper but never receiving a reply. ‘She’s out cold. Miss, wake up please it’s 6 am you need to leave in 5 minutes, madam isn’t waking up.’ This time the voice is directed to someone else and a groggy reply is provided.
‘Hmmhmm’ all that is heard from my sister I feel the bed move as she stretches for good measure and gets up.
‘Thank god, I was going to hit something if..’ the young girls murmurs on her way out. I felt my blood boil, how dare she even insinuate such a thing as hitting anything around here. I wanted to get up and yell at her but I felt this pressure holding me down, my mind was awake but my body was completely disconnected from its power source. She is lucky that I am too tired to reprimand her or else there would’ve been hell to pay. Well let’s just say that her punishment is delayed but punishment sure as hell is on it’s way.
She was my nemesis and my mother’s beloved. I hated her for that. I hated how my mom would take her name with such gentility that each syllable was uttered as if on a cloud. It was a song, hearing her name, out of my mother’s mouth and instead of travelling it would dance to our ears. I never understood why she would have so much love for her and that was one of the many reasons why I absolutely hated her.
I vowed to make her life one that she would regret because I saw through the pretty ‘yes ma’am, no ma’am.’ I knew how opportunistic she was, and were the perks removed from the table she would be gone without a second’s hesitation. You just wanted all that was mine didn’t you?. I saw through her niceties and knew of that personal vendetta she had against me.