I showed a few days ago a star that I entered in the weekly contest at Creative Construction. I mentioned then that I was going to try to write a short piece for the theme as well. I have managed to do that, and I thought I would post it here as well. Please offer comments and suggestions as you like.
“The stars,” she thought. “If only I could reach the stars.” Her heart pounded as she lay in the bed near the window, the curtain blowing in the warm summer breeze.
Her head hurt and she only wanted to escape the pain. Throughout the years, she had made every effort she could, she had tried to make him happy, tried to make sure that anything she said wouldn’t set him off again. Of course, it never worked.
Neither did the halfhearted disguises she tried to implement to hide his hatefulness, his disdain for her. The long dark hair that she let drape casually over the sides of her face, covering her cheeks and the inevitable bruises left by his individual fingers. The long sleeved shirts every day of the year, to cover the marks on her upper arms where he grabbed her to slam her against the wall. The jeans to cover her legs where he kicked her when she was down. Everyone knew it was a futile attempt to hide insanity – his for treating her the way he did; hers for taking it for so long.
She no longer knew what to do, only knew that it had to come to an end. The catalyst had come – a trip to the emergency room that couldn’t be avoided – a shattered wrist. Of course, they all had questions and she answered them the best she could, all the while protecting him. Three days they kept her – two surgeries on her wrist. A hope that she would one day regain full usage of it, but no promises from the doctors. No one could promise her anything.
They sent her home with a prescription for painkillers and something to help her sleep. Her wrist would be in the cast for four months. He was scared to come visit her, scared to come pick her up; afraid that the police would be waiting for him. Her friend that lived in the apartment above her drove her to the pharmacy and then to the apartment building. Her friend helped her up the stairs and left her, telling her if she needed anything, to please call.
A sixty-day supply of Oxycontin and Ambien. She looked them up online before he came home. Both addictive, both potentially toxic. A story about a two-year-old girl who accidentally took one of her grandfather’s Oxycontin pills. Luckily, her mother found her before she slipped into a coma and never woke up.
He didn’t believe that she had protected him; didn’t believe that no one would come looking for him. He took his anger and disbelief out on her. After seemingly endless hours, he finished his rage and left to go drinking. She crawled to the bed with her medicines and a bottle of water.
“The stars,” she thought over and over. “Safety in the stars. A savior in the stars.” The warm summer breeze bathed her body in comfort. “If only I could reach the stars, there would be no more pain.” Her thoughts fell further and further apart, her breathing shallower. Her last thought was of the stars and the safety they could provide from the evil that her life had become.
When he opened the door, the curtains fluttered in the breeze, the wind blowing her dark hair across her face: an angel bathed in sunlight.
I've submitted it over there, so we'll see how it does. By the way, she had a very interesting post today about rejection. It was very insightful and had the most touching letter that she received as a child. You should certainly check it out.