"The Monster Mash" played on the radio the night I wore my best blue dress with lace and black patent leather Mary Janes. Gary, the boy next door, told me I was special, a princess. We danced. I was four and balanced perfectly on his black leather loafers. The lights were dim, and the house was empty. We were alone, but I wasn't afraid.
He made me laugh.
But mom yelled at me for peeing my pants. A good girl would never let a boy tickle them.
The truth surfaced in nightmares, and every time I hear "The Monster Mash."
Every item I owned, books, typewriter, and clothes, sat on the back porch. "I'm done. You're gone." Tears fell nonstop as she deliberately shredded my heart. "Forgive me. Please. I'll do anything." Mortally scarred, I leaned against the refrigerator for support and clearly recall how cool the metal felt against my fire-hot skin.
Mom washed the breakfast dishes. Soapsuds rinsed off before she placed them on the drainboard. So calm and indifferent. Memories include the smell of dish soap, bubbles, and spiraling steam. But her words are forever etched on my soul. "It's just a shame you were ever born."
Anticipation grew with each mile vanquished on the flight to Fairbanks, Alaska. In an open jeep, we drove through miles and miles of emerald conifers and stately white birch. The Tanana Valley, a kaleidoscope of earthly browns and jades, was framed by snowcaps. Mount Denali, the sovereign.
A rusting gold dredge scarred the pristine landscape. But crisp, clean air, fresher than a stick of Wintergreen gum, clears my soul of discontent. Poe's aristocratic black ravens cawed a welcome, or was it a warning?
No matter. I'm energized, even though I have no idea what's ahead. Truly free, I've found utopia.
Don't look at the clock. The wait will lengthen. Don't admit your love. He'll disappear. Four hours later.
Breathe. Stay cool. It's just a little landslide. The train will arrive soon. He'll be glad you're here.
I pace. Distract myself with magazines, scenery, and even eavesdropping, yet time seems to stand still. Unsettled, I consider driving to him, but what if he's not on the train? Did he change his mind?
Miss Independent waits for no man, yet she's wasting time for—him.
After all, no strings—no emotional ties means no regrets. It was our vow.
We were wrong.
I'm flying through the windshield and shards of glass sparkle like stars as they move with me. Blood trails in gelatinous drops. There is no pain as my mangled body reposes face down in a ditch. Cars speed by. Has no one noticed?
"Are you all right?" my boyfriend asks. He's driving."
"Yes," I whisper.
The day passes.
The next morning, as I round the bumper, I'm stopped cold. An invisible wall of dread, an intense heart-stopping fear restrains me.
Is death stalking me?
My hands shake. Keys clatter on cement.
For ten days, I'm unable to drive.
How I love your CNF, though my heart is still racing.ReplyDelete
Happy April - and WEP.
Hi, Sue. So awesome to see you. I had fun this week. Jump started my memoir. :)Delete
I wouldn't drive either! Well done!ReplyDelete
Funny thing, I seriously couldn't. My body wouldn't let me.Delete
Hi Renee - 100 word drabbles are fun to write ... I'm prepped for WEP ... so the concept is there - I'll get to write it up in time. Congratulations on these - cheers HilaryReplyDelete
Such fun, Renee. Good brain games. Happy April Fool's. A pity I own all your series. I hope there is a good take up with such a great offer!
A good writing exercise, no doubt, but my heart goes out to the unwanted daughter. So relatable! I'm lacking inspiration these days, but might attempt something for the next WEP. Best wishes for the book sale!ReplyDelete