My visions.. In my words.

June 20, 2011


Filed under: Very Short Stories — SR @ 12:42 am

It was around 10 in the evening. I was in my study at the back of the house trying to write. Recently, to make ends meet, I had taken a job at a local Sunday paper writing a weekly story for their flash fiction column. I had two days to turn in my copy and I had nothing.

For a long time, I sat staring at the lamp. It was the only one in my study and it had no shade. I looked at the naked bulb. Suddenly, the room plunged into darkness. I heard a faint squeak which might have been a house-lizard or my rickety chair.

“Electricity just went. Stay where you are. I’ll get a torch.” My wife called through from the hall. Seconds later, a torch shone in my face and I raised my hand to shield from its glare. “Hey! Turn it away from my face.” But, the light stayed. “Bitch! I said, turn it away. Don’t make me come after you.” I squinted to help my eyes adjust to the glare.

She held a knife in one raised hand. The trembling fingers made it flash like a neon sign on steroids. Fear and confusion gripped me. “What are you doing? Watch that knife..”

Searing pain rushed through me a split second after the knife entered my left shoulder. My chair tipped back and I crashed to the tiled floor hitting my right elbow as I braced. I screamed.

“Scream!” She said, “Like our baby did. When you killed her.”

My left hand was immobile. Using my other hand, I dragged myself away from her towards the wall. Her eyes were ablaze. Maybe it was the torch light. Maybe she was possessed. I don’t know.

My fingers found the corner of the frame of our backdoor. I turned and scrambled for the door knob. I stepped backward to open the door and banged right into her again. I yelled and flew through the door into the night. Somehow, I stumbled onto the street. I ran in pitch darkness, turning first this way, then that. When lights came back on, I stopped and looked around. I’d run clear out of my neighborhood onto the main street leading into town center.

I heard a car moments before I saw the headlights. Just then, the adrenalin receded and the pain hit again. The road, the headlights, the signal started swimming around me. I threw up my hands and dropped to my knees like a muslim at Friday prayers.

The car slowed down as it approached me. Its lights were in my eyes and I shielded my eyes until they passed me. The pain came back stronger and blurred my vision. I could make out a twisted blue fender. The door opened and fair, stocking clad legs wearing red, high heels stepped out. So familiar. It was our car.

I looked up and she stood looking divine in her wedding dress. She smiled and shook the meat knife in her hand.

“It wouldn’t have come to this. It shouldn’t have, *Honey*. But, we exchanged vows. Until Death do us part. I can’t break my promise, can I?”

I jerked backward and pulled myself up off the street with my good arm, turned and ran. Heels pounded behind me. Sweat was pouring down my face. My shoulder and my arthritic knees alternately screamed for rest. I could hear her closing the gap.

I saw flashing red-and-blue lights coming toward me. I heard the siren. I ran faster, waving desperately. I stumbled, fell and rolled on the grass. “Help!”, I managed in high pitch.

“Drop the knife, lady, or we shoot.”

Someone spoke into a radio. “We need an ambulance. Corner of Hedgewood and Main. It looks like a knife wound.” I lay dazed for an eternity looking up at the stars.

“Sir! Can you hear me? Squeeze my hand once if you can.”

“What’s his name?”

“No papers on him. For god’s sake, he’s in his pajamas.”

“Sir! Squeeze my hand if you can hear me.”

“”Punish me, Lord, for I have sinned.” Tears blinded me. “I killed my little girl. With my own hands.” I cried.

“I’ll kill him, I’ll..” My wife yelled and struggled to get free.

“Calm down lady.”

“He killed her in his rage. He was angry with me. Angry, I had an affair.” She sobbed.

The road started to swim around me. My tears were flowing freely now.

“Why didn’t you take it out on me, you bastard? Like you always do. Why her?” Her body shook. It was the last thing I heard before I blacked out.

Today, they let me attend her funeral. They said she’d died of epileptic seizures. Apparently, she’d been having the fits for years. Ever since our only daughter died.


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