Previous Challenge Entry (Level 4 – Masters)
Topic: Rage (violent, uncontrolled hatred and anger) (02/05/15)
TITLE: Hazard Warning - Mummy's Bicycle!
By Danielle King
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I suck in a long, deep, breath, expanding my lungs and plumping my belly. Thatâ€™s the way God designed me to breathe, says the man with the mesmeric, velvet voice. I exhale, slowly, as instructed.
I will not, NOT be consumed by this thing.
I loosen up and think of early morning beach mooches; pebbles crunching beneath my plimsolls; seagulls squawking, swooping upon a small fishing coble as it lands its catch. I lick the tang of salt from my lips. And rememberâ€¦
Childhood; security, naivety.
The garage door slams. Heâ€™s whistling his stupid tune. He canâ€™t even get that right.
I wait, tentatively; breatheâ€¦ slowly, mindfully. Iâ€™m in the moment, and Iâ€™m calm.
He snatches at the door handle.
Mindless heartbeat pumps unwelcome adrenaline. Why does he grab at stuff? Clang, like a gong? It hurts my ears.
He lets the door slam behind him; my brain rattles. â€śIâ€™m home,â€ť he hollers.
Here it comesâ€¦ from the tips of my toes, gaining momentum as it courses relentlessly through my entire sensory network, to surge, mercilessly, swamping my delicate tolerance threshold.
I lose the battle. Outrageous accusations spill from my lips. â€śWhere have you been?â€ť I growl.
â€śSame place you sent me?â€ť He sticks his head inside the larder and chooses an apple.
â€śDavid, do not lie to me.â€ť Apple juice sprays his chin as he bites the rosy side.
â€śDropped the kids off at Granâ€™s. Told her Iâ€™d collect Sunday. OK?â€ť Heâ€™s guilty. Canâ€™t look me in the eyeâ€¦
â€śDavid. Can you please NOT CRUNCH SO LOUDLY!â€ť
â€śItâ€™s an apple Kate. Deal with it.â€ť
â€śWho is she, David?â€ť
Iâ€™ve blown it. My cheeks burn white hot; my head fit to detonate. Why does he not react? How can he play so cool? He is one consummate liar!
And now heâ€™s turned tail, and nonchalantly walks out the door without a backward glance.
His parting shot, â€śGoing fishing!â€ť Hackneyed! Bugging! Bore!
He has no conscience. See you when youâ€™re over yourself, he says, leaving me alone, to smoulder and fester.
He is adept at turning things around, making me believe that Iâ€™m the unreasonable one.
My mouth is dry. Panic rises from the tips of my toes as I embrace thoughts of harm. I reach for the disk, my refuge; the man who croons gently in my ear, calms me with subtle persuasion; affirmation.
My mind driftsâ€¦ wrong direction. I visualise a carving knife; gleaming, freshly sharpened. I run my fingers along the bloodied blade.
I am vindicated. And it feels good.
I rinse the blade clean before leisurely slotting it back into the knife block.
I turn to witness the result of my vengeful, rancorous act and balk at what I am capable of. The full horror of the malevolence that lurks in my heart repulses me.
I cannot shake the hideous image. I screw my eyes tightly shut, yet it stalks relentlessly behind closed lids.
No impassioned pleas to God. I deserve to suffer. I am pure evil.
Daybreak is dawningâ€¦ yet I donâ€™t recall sleeping. My stomach is cramping in painful spasm. I roll off the couch to visit the bathroom, take a shower, get my head together. The kids are home tonight.
I ponder over Daveâ€™s whereabouts. Somehow the heat has died down. I recoil afresh at last nightâ€™s heinous scenario. Iâ€™m almost afraid of myself. Maybe Daveâ€™s right, I need professional help.
I leave the bathroom in a state of flux. I am released, lightened and desperately in love with my husband. I pick up the phone, â€śHi Dave.â€ť
â€śIs it safe to come home?â€ť He asksâ€¦
Itâ€™s 6pm now. Here they come; bang, crash, wallop; Jody first, headlong as always.
â€śMummy, are you feeling better now? Daddy told Nan youâ€™d gone la la, and Nan says youâ€™re ruled by the moon.â€ť
I chuckle at the analogy. â€śJody, you know the biggest, brightest moon we see through the window sometimes?â€ť She nods.
â€śDaddy says it comes every month on a bicycle, mummy.â€ť
â€śSilly daddy, he means cycle, a monthly cycle.â€ť Two contemplative blue eyes scrutinise mine, tussling to untangle my meaning.
â€śMummies have cycles tooâ€¦
And, when you grow into a big girl, mummy will tell you all about it.â€ť
â€śBut I want to know now, mummy.â€ť
â€śTrust me, you do not,â€ť calls the man I slaughtered last night.
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