The light filtering thought the dew drops hurt her eye, the smell of earth freshly awakened by the kiss of moisture was so soothing thought. so soothing it had her closing her eyes and just staying in her warm spot, on a bed off moss and loose soil, covered by Nanet’s heavy wool blanket. They would be looking for her, so her soothing rest would be short lived.
She shifted and her ribs reminded her painfully of why she was out here, instead of there, of why she had fled into the darkness with nothing but Nanet’s heavy old blanket and her determination to keep her safe.
She was back in that kitchen. She could hear again the shrill voice of Lorista somewhere above her, her words punctuated by the blunt force of tiny feet colliding with her abdomen. She remembered curling up on the cold linoleum and just trying as best she could to ride it out, because this was her lot in life.
But why? Why was this her fate? What had she done to deserve this? Had she not done everything she was bid since Nanet died? Had she not surpassed her dear sister’s legacy?
The foot rose again but this time she wasn’t there to stop it and the momentum sent Lorista tumbling to the ground.
“No mother that’s enough. It’s been enough for far too long. I’m not her, I didn’t die that night. And you know why mother? Because i didn’t run from you like she did. Your precious child saw the monster you were and she ran. But I’m not running, I never left you, I don’t even hate you. But I’m not afraid anymore mother. So kill me if you want so badly for me to be like her. End me here so you can have a matching pair. Because mother, you killed her as surely as if you had been driving that truck.”
By the time she’d finished, she was screaming. Her eyes filled with tears, turning the world into a haze of indistinct shapes, so she never saw it coming. She only heard the blunt thud, as whatever it was connect with her face. Then the cool linoleum was under her again. She had only time to think of the numbness and wonder when the pain would come, before the blackness closed in.
When she woke up, she was covered in this blanket, her dead sister’s blanket. Woven with her hands and still smelling of her perfume and tears. Papa must have put it over her, when he had come in from work and seen her broken on the floor. She could hear Papa in the other room, begging Lorista to let the poor girl be. But that would never be, the madness behind Lorista’s eyes was too absolute.
But he had left the door open. For the first time in her life, the door was open at night. Papa must have known. And so she ran. She didn’t know if tomorrow would find her, but if it did, it would find her free,