Beginnings of an end
"Get this house cleaned up by the time I get back or that'll be it!" whack! I wince as my mother's beautiful face starts to smarten. He doesn't wait to see the fat teardrop roll down her cheek followed by a hundred more. He bangs the door closed with so much force the house seems to vibrate and the glass on the table falls to the floor. Mutely she gathers it up dutifully and starts to prepare herself for a day devoted to pleasing the cunt. I turn away no longer feeling. This daily routine is too customary for me. She'll cry, clean out every last millimetre of the house then swear about the husband. Saying she hates him then he comes home all apologies and she believes him, cooks his tea like a good little housewife, then they kiss and make up. Until tomorrow then, I bitterly think. I collect my money and grab my bag then head off to school.
Today's the day! Period 1 I'm late again. Period 2 passes slowly. Break everyone eats while I suck on a grape. Period 3 is English. The one subject I honestly enjoy. "Today class I'm going to read out a few poems that you wrote last lesson. Some of you clearly want to be the next poet laureate."
"This poem is called 'Home', by Shannon,
If home is where the heart is;
My heart will never be lost,
Encased behind muscle and bone,
With lungs and a kidney –never destined never to be alone.
My home is not a lime green house
Not by the train station, or on the bend,
But all the same I am house proud,
Always willing to stand out from the crowd.
My home is not indestructible,
My home is not 'safe as houses'
-Such a stupid contradiction-
It can be entered but only with your participation.
My home is where my Heart is,
With acquaintances, family and friends,
With all my beloved who mean so much to me,
I have a welcome mat reserved just for you
Well done Shannon. Simple but effective. Interesting use of heart being a physical entity then moving to the emotional aspect of the meaning." somewhere at the back a pupil blushed crimson matching the red, blue and green dyed hair.
"The next poem is untitled, it's by Kyrie,
Embracing gales greet us,
Salt scented and nostalgic,
The winds of our youth,
Bringing us home along the Rivers tide.
Now again we travel once more,
The cargo holds still fiercely dominating,
Docksides, our sides splitting.
We laugh sing dance,
Rejoice in the chimes,
Ring, ring, ring, ring.
We seem so incongruous,
Two live souls amongst the dead.
What is death? We often wondered,
Forever dying but full of so much life,
Til we turn the corner, Dock lane,
Mock lane, there is no laughter now my friend,
Ring, ring, ring, ring, ring,
Your lips now as blue as the skies once were,
What is death to you my old bud?
Now missed and lost amongst the avenues of my childhood.
Intriguing use of enjambment Kyrie,"
"The next poem has really powerful emotions, but it doesn't say whose it is. Brand your work boys and girls! This poem is titled 'Pain from the 'Beloved'," My heart all but stopped as she started to read it out.
"Seven o'clock, daily beating,
At the hands of her love,
If this the war, where is the Dove?
Six o'clock hourly beating,
Black, blue bruises. Fresh scars,
Tender pounding, death threats,
Karma, time to pay off your debts.
Mum he's driving you insane,
But denial and pain,
That makes you stay loyal,
Anything and his blood will boil.
He's punching, your bones crunching,
Enough, enough! I scream.
Mind has eluded him,
Hit, hit. Another broken limb.
Madness, chaos, anarchy,
Pull him away too late,
Bloody pulp was my mother,
Hit, punch, kick him into cover.
The deed is done, enough I said,
My handiwork is seen,
My monstrous father, dead.
I've lost my dad because I lost my head.
The cycle has finished,
Another begun, stop,
Don't let it manifest,
End the cycle, ignore the rest.
A funeral, all in black,
A heavy coffin lay,
Sorry for your bereavement they said,
We're not, he's better off dead.
Anyone going to claim it?" the class is silent looking around for someone putting their hand up. None materialises. Miss catches my eye and seems to bore into my eyes then she looks away. "Alright then moving on, this poem is called 'last one standing' it's by Andy..." I zone out further formulating my plan. A week ago, was when I plucked up the courage to leave those bastards and I knew I could do it in the only time they're not there; school. I made a fake letter 'home' for a trip to the esteemed art museum down south. I even managed to photoshop the official school letterhead into it and forged the head of arts signature. This 'trip' required £15 immediately payed by Monday, now in my back pocket. Today I was leaving. Today I'd be free. The lunch bell goes some time later.
Clearing my tray away after lunch I overheard them. The Rat Pack is what I call them. AKA the popular girls' every school has them. Including the popular boys that swarm them like insects. "Did you hear? The Entwiners have been spotted around here." "Don't lie Paul everyone knows if you see one of them you don't get to talk about it." "No seriously, there's an increase of missing persons and the police reckon they're to blame. Better watch your back tonight sweetie, a handsome man might find you and offer you the world. While you gaze into his eyes you believe him." Paul turned and stared into Shelley's "you imagine your heart's desire at your disposal. Then his face changes and BAM" he clapped his hands "his true form appears. The demon has you, you try to move but you can't, his eyes have you. Then he opens his enclosed palm... and your his now" The group gasps "st... stop Paul let's talk about Saturday instead." I smirked of course Entwiners weren't the worse things out there. 2020 of course everything has appeared into our diverse society. Vampyres, shapeshifters, werewolves, superhumans, every little thing that people thought were myths come into the mainstream. Accepted but still greatly feared many roam the streets and an ordinary human might not even realise it. When something unexplainable happens the Otherbeings law is called in. They collaborate on nearly everything but actual justice. The Otherbeings are punished by their own; the humans are punished by humans... except in certain cases like a human killing an important Otherbeing. Neighbours, sweet old ladies secretly turn into that coyote that runs wild and out of place in these parts. Vicars can actually freeze you mid run. I looked at the perfect group; I felt my self-loathing come back. I ran to the bathroom.
Fast heartbeats. Come on you can do it! Silent encouragement to myself yep that's what I need. I heave twice more. The vile food comes up at last. I wipe my streaming eyes and blow my nose. God it stings. Not as much as the first time, that took some courage. I cough and decide to act as if dinner just didn't agree with me. Again. It's not like anyone cares they'd just make more fun of me. I emerged out the cubicle feeling better at the emptying of my stomach. As predicted the girls didn't glance at me. I rinsed my mouth out with water then drank some. Splashing the cool miracle over my fevered face. I glanced at the Rat Pack coming in. Gawd! Like I could take any shit off them today. The rat pack stunning perfect girls, perfect bodies, lives, money, boyfriends. Oh and perfect at making fun of the not-so-perfect girls and I'm the prime candidate for that area. I pretend not to acknowledge their existence and try to escape the bathroom. I nearly make it then Shelley grabs my arm, talon sharp false nails pinching me. "Hey weirdsky watcha doing?"
"Nothing" I shrug and pull my arm away. It draws blood and I don't care I just wanna get away.
"Nothing? Your eyes are bloodshot and your arms bleeding have you been cutting again little Zoey...?"
"I've got to go."
"She was vomiting Shell, fat lot of good that'll do" butted in a little wisp of kid that is Kelly Watson. She pointedly looked at my swollen stomach.
"Hey weirdsky the fat freak!" butted in Cherry or was it Sherry? I shouldered my way out and walked away. But they followed. "Hey its P.E next let's see you try roll over lardass!" I quickened my pace. I came to the end of the corridor then kept walking into the main field. I looked side to side as I glanced at the school entrance. I hesitated edging closer. Unlocked on one side, you have to go through the building to get to it but it's forbidden to leave until the end of school. I go through the building, into the office instead, into finance. "Excuse me miss but could I borrow bus fares?" she glares at her interrupted lunch. "Come after school like everyone else!" I shook my head innocently
"I can't miss I've got art coursework to complete and that'll finish at 4:30..." knowing damn well they only stay til 3:30.
"Fine! Two buses as usual then Miss Weirdsky, ahem, Polanski?" I nodded pretending not to realise what she called me. "There!" and I left the office and snook straight out the other gate, like I had been given permission. Then I ran. Ran the mile nonstop sprint to the Tesco, to the changing room. After changing into my clothes that I had hidden in my PE bag, I left my uniform scattered in the toilet cubicle, I won't need you now. The money I just borrowed will never be payed back, well not by me at least. I pulled my hood up and smiled for the first time in ages! I caught the bus and relaxed back into the seat riding it to the last stop. I would start over. I'd be free.
I caught another bus to nowhere or anywhere and slept for the timely journey. I wandered aimlessly just walking for the sake of it. Why do they call it Running away when, all I'm doing is just walking? I found a little park hidden behind a nice part of town. I looked at the swing and remembered when my Dad used to push me. Back when arguments was there, just far and between. Before his mental health deteriorated into nothing. When he got paranoid, made mum 'cover up' so she'd be wearing floor length coats in the middle of a heat wave. When he got so bad he refused to take his Prozac, when everyone was conspiring against him. His wife the women who adored him no matter what suddenly had a thousand affairs with men who were all in his head. He'd threaten us all not to let on what's really happening at home. If you could call that place home. A traitorous tear had eluded my eye. I started to swing. Higher and higher. The air got cooler and I decided to scout for somewhere to sleep. I looked at the church clock 9:47. Wow I'd wasted a day. I looked around the area but everywhere was patrolled by police officers who'd ask to many questions. 10:26 not a place in mind. The park wasn't so bad a few families had passed through around dinnertime but not crowded. Close enough to main streets if there's any trouble. Drip. Drip. And the heavens opened. I raced to the nearest waterproof shelter which was the climbing frame. I made a little bed under the climbing frame using my bag with very few spare clothes and essentials as a pillow. I hugged my hoodie close to my body and gritted my teeth. I was lucky the ground was dry because the entire park became waterlogged instantly. They'll know I'm missing now. Will they even care? Good thing teardrops are invisible in rain. I shivered if I can tough it out the first night I've got good chances. The first night is the hardest.
I awoke immediately to the sound of footsteps on sodden ground. "Hello? Are you okay?" I froze in place. Please don't be speaking to me! "Excuse me miss?" I looked to the right of me and jumped at the sight of a young man, or is he an older looking teenager? "Sorry but I figured if you're out here alone at this time you don't want people asking questions."
"Are you okay?" the police officer neared us. Well at least the rain has stopped...
"Yes I'm fine thanks."
"We missed the last bus sir. So we'll camp out tonight, unless of course we're breaking the law?" His voice was so luring and he wasn't even directing at me.
"No son." he came closer and saw this boy/man's arm around me and smirked "enjoy your night kids". Once I was certain he was gone I turned to the stranger.
"Okay get your arm off me. Now." He held his hands up in surrender.
"Had to make it convincing otherwise there'd be a lot more questions than that"
"Fast thinking with the bus, thanks. What time is it?"
"About 2:30" over 14 hours since I've been missing! The police wouldn't even start looking until after 24 hours. Still, better safe than sorry. I turned to stranger boy/man as he asked.
"And you're out here why..?"
"I could ask you the same."
"Touché. Is the coat warm enough?" I realised then why my teeth weren't chattering unbearably. I had a huge, unmistakably male, overcoat draped over me... and tucked in. I raised my eyebrows at him.
"What a nice gesture is forbidden now?"
"No but TUCKING, as in you know touching and stuff, is weird. I don't even know you!"
"First off it's not like you were naked, don't feel so violated, secondly it shouldn't be awkward since you all but froze and you can call me... Casper." He's lying to me. Fine two can play that game.
"Hi friendly ghost I'm Ava. So do you hang out here often helping girls?" we fell about laughing.
"I like this area and I like helping people out but usually the two don't collide. It's a good thing you crashed around here. There are sleazier places you could runaway to." I whipped my face to his into his gaze.
"What? I'm not-" His eyes unnaturally mystic blue. Shapes started swirling around in his eyes.
"Don't lie to me little Zoey."
"How do you-"
"I believe you know. Go on beg plead do whatever you want but you Zoey Ava Polanski are mine. What say you?"
"You can't..." I've got to run. Far away. Gawd why won't I move?! An of the most feared Otherbeings. He'll slave me and do whatever he wants and I have no choice, it's all in their power. You can't run they'll find you. I'm his now. So much for being free.
"You know the answers to all this little Ruya." His eyes became more intense "Ruya, A delwso une Tu." The patterns grew more complex. I was getting smaller and smaller, seeming to dive into his eyes. A bright flash then I passed out.