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Author Topic: The Beginning  (Read 759 times)

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Friday

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The Beginning
« on: July 05, 2012, 05:49:29 PM »

"Mom?" you ask, slowly, your voice shaking.

She faces away from you. Her head and neck twitch to the right like a metronome every few seconds. She makes no reply.

"Mom?" you say again, taking a hesitant step forward. The hall light casts a huge shadow across your face. Your mother remains silent.

You are about to speak again when you notice something. A droplet of liquid falls from the fingers of your mother's limp hand like from a leaky faucet. Your eyes follow it to the carpet below.

Red.

Your mother begins to turn toward you.

************************************************

You gasp yourself awake, taking deep gulps of air. Something is choking you, wrapping you. Your panicked mind slowly realizes that you have become entangled in your bedsheets. They twist like tentacles around you. You claw them off and breathe freely for several moments.

The door to your room is thrown open, flooding your eyes with light from the hall.

"Sweetie, what's wrong?" your mom asks.

You blink several times, holding up a hand and squinting against the brightness. "I had a bad dream," you manage.

Your mom sighs and crosses the room to your bed. Taking a deep breath, she sits down on the mattress, the box springs groaning under her weight. Her nightgown is a silky blue, flowing down her body like water. You can vaguely remember a time before your mom was fat, alongside vague images of your father's face. Before things started to go wrong.

"Honey, again? This is the third time in a week," your mom says worriedly.

"I know," you say. You touch a hand to your face, wet with tears and sweat.

"The same dream?" your mom asks, her eyes searching your face.

"Yeah," you admit.

"Will you please tell me?"

You look down. You still can't bring yourself to tell. You shake your head slowly.

Your mother is silent for a long moment, and then sighs, again. "Alright. You don't have to talk about it. But I'm worried, honey. I think we should ask the doctor about it."

You meet her gaze and nod. "Okay," you say.

"Okay," she echoes, and then smiles, leans in, and hugs you.

You return the hug, feeling her hand come up behind your head to stroke your hair. "We gotta get this cut soon," she teases.

"No way," you say, smiling. "I like my hair."

Your mom kisses your forehead, and you take a deep breath, smelling her reassuring scent. "Go back to sleep, honey," she tells you.

You nod, knowing you will not be able to.

Your mom pushes herself up off your bed and walks to the door. "Night," she says.

"Night," you reply.

The door shuts, leaving you in the darkness until dawn.

************************************************

"I don't want you getting in any more fights," your mom says, glancing at you as she packs your lunch into your yellow lunchbox. Bologna again.

"But they call me names and throw dirt at me," you protest.

"That doesn't make it OK to fight," you mom says. "Tell the teacher."

"I did! They just called me a tattle and picked on me more."

"Well maybe we'll have a talk with these boys' parents," your mom says distractedly as she hands you your lunch. "Now run along. You'll be late for the bus."

You exit the apartment and head down to the gate and then out it. It's not a bad complex, but it's not really good, either. You miss the old house. You can remember your dad pushing you on the swings out in the backyard, with the flowers and the green grass and the wind. But not his face. Never his face.

You walk down the block past the gas station. Carl is walking up the other street.

"Hey," he says as you converge.

"Hey yourself," you reply.

"Did you remember?" he asks.

"Remember wha --"

Then you DO remember. The dream had forced it out of your mind like a bullet from a gun.

"I'm sorry," you say.

"That's alright," Carl smiles at you. "Just don't forget tomorrow, because I need it for the weekend!"

"I won't," you promise. You know exactly where it is, laying on your desk in your room.

You wait in silence with Carl and several other kids from the area at the bus stop. They chat about TV, movies, stuff they saw on the internet. You're not really interested. But then, you've always been a sort of loner. You've been called a weirdo more than once in your life, even by adults.

Carl's alright, though. He's nicer than most kids. He was wearing that stupid shirt again today, the one with the banana on it. You decide to tease him a little.

"Hey, Carl," you say. "Ring ring."

"What?"

"Ring ring ring."

"What are you --"

"BANANA SHIRT!"

Carl hits your shoulder.

The bus pulls up, and you and the kids pile on. Rowdy now. Throwing paper, laughing, talking. You find a quiet seat in the back and close your eyes.

*******************************************

"What's the matter?" Kenny taunts. "Scared?"

"No!" you shout back.

"Then come on! Do it!"

Kenny was a sixth grader. King of the measly elementary school hill. Trouble was, he knew it. He wasn't actually that much bigger than you, but sometimes it seemed like he towered over your head. Especially when he was with a bunch of his friends.

You swallow and look up to the top of the swingset. You're not supposed to climb up it, but...

"You are chicken," Kenny says.

"Am not," you reply.

"Bawk bawk bawk bawk bawk," he says, flapping his arms. One of his cronies, Cody, joins in.

You grit your teeth. Why couldn't they just leave you alo --

"Ow!" you say.

Kenny releases his grip and dances back. The yank of your hair left your scalp burning and your head swimming. "Come on, chicken, show us what you're made of," Kenny grins at you.

"Fine, dork. And don't touch me again, if you know what's good for you."

Kenny and his friends laugh at you, knowing it's an empty threat.

You turn and begin to climb the metal pole. It's slippery and hot, and you don't make much progress.

"Aww, poor baby," Kenny croons from behind you.

You grit your teeth and try harder. You manage to make it up halfway by sheer willpower before you slip and fall to the wood chips below. As you stand, you hear a whistle being blown.

"Aww, man," you say. Kenny and his friends are still laughing.

The yard duty blows the whistle again as she walks up to you.

Yeah, yeah. We heard you the first time, you think.

*****************************************

Later, sitting in the corner facing the wall, during next recess by yourself, you slip a glance behind you at the TV and teacher, the latter watching the former. You don't really care what is on, but it's better to watch than the wall. Some sort of news program.

"Reports continue to come in of these strange attacks," a reporter is saying. You can barely make it out from all the way across the room. Your eyes roam the classroom, examining the bright, colorful arts and crafts the students this year had made adorning the walls.

"Two victims were found in the canals, both missing an eye. They are both in critical condition at St Rose hospital, doctors say they are stable. The suspect is ..."

The teacher glances over his shoulder at you, and you quickly face the wall again.

Rustling papers. Your teacher, Mr. Adams, sighs. You hear him open a drawer.

You cautiously look over your shoulder again. The TV is now showing some smoking building.

"... is linked to the explosions at the Evotech Lab in Anaheim. Officials deny any allegations that a "poison gas" or any other harmful substance was released in the explosion or is in any way responsible for this recent rash of bizarre incidents."

"It's ridiculous," says a man with glasses and a beard on the TV. You can't read the text under him on the screen that tells you who he is. "We here at Evotech aren't involved with anything even remotely like that. The explosion was caused by a malfunction during an experiment with hyper-accelerated photons. We don't store hazardous chemicals on the premises, or anything of the kind."

The TV switches back to the pretty reporter. "In other news, an unusually high level of meteor showers have been occurring in recent days. We have a video here of a meteor shower captured by a viewer from two nights ago. Quite dazzling, if I do say so myself!"

Mr. Adams begins to turn toward you again, so you flip around and resume studying the wall. Outside, you can hear the other kids screaming and running.

"Alright," Mr. Adams says. "I guess we should have a talk."

You stand up and watch as Mr. Adams flicks off the TV with the remote, and gestures to your desk. "Why don't you have a seat, Nicole?"

**************************************
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eddy14

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Re: The Beginning
« Reply #1 on: January 12, 2014, 04:54:15 PM »

Thanks for sharing
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Sky is the limit

Caithness

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Re: The Beginning
« Reply #2 on: January 12, 2014, 04:56:29 PM »

Oh wow, spambots gettin' sassy up in here.
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