Freedom.

nicolae-rosu-556707-unsplash-682x1024
Photo by Nicolae Rosu on Unsplash

‘Go on, if you can dream it, you can do it.’
‘Don’t be so ridiculous, is that a quote from  your latest self help book.’

‘I’m only trying to be supportive on your endeavors and ambitions.’
‘Well that may be so, but save your silly positive incantations for someone who may actually be damn well interested in them’.

Another nail in her heart. Another tearing down of the relationship that was once warm and loving, but now was nothing of the sort.
She was just too nice, too pleasant. Too gentle. He had grown quiet tired of her ceaseless positivity, never ending support. The way she looked. The way she dressed. Her attitudes. Her character. Just totally sick and tired of her. A change was badly needed. Fresh blood, a new interaction. An energetic shift.

‘I’m going out for a while, no need to wait up.’

She sat alone in the darkened living room, watching but not really seeing the images flickering on the TV screen. She began to question in her mind, just what in Gods name she had to do, to make this relationship work. What she wanted most in life was a peaceful, tranquil, loving relationship. To be happy. To be in love, and be loved in return. But this was not happening for sure. She was very giving of her support, her love, her physicality, her warmth, her everything. Yet it now never seemed enough to satisfy him. She really did not want to leave him, but the never ending nastiness, caustic, cutting remarks about her weight, her looks, her abilities, her aspirations, her career. Were just becoming too much. Thoughts of suicide crossed her mind from time to time, but she had resisted up to now. Although he had encouraged her in that regard, reminding her, many times, helpfully, that no one really liked her. That she had no friends, and that she would not be missed if she decided upon that avenue. Her life, her relationship was causing her way too much unhappiness and despair. How soon would it be before his anger turned to physical violence, and would she accept that also. All in her search for the loving relationship she was seeking. She tried to understand why she was afraid to leave him. Was it, that after soo many years of verbal jibes, the cutting, destructive remarks, she no longer had the psychological strength to believe she could ever be attractive, or a worthwhile partner to any other man. He had told her on many occasions, that no other man would ever want her. After hearing such words over and ever again, she had come to believe them. To say he was a toxic individual, would be an understatement. In her occasional lighter moments she laughed silently as she concluded how he could keep psycharisitics busy for years. But those moments were few and far between.

Even those still close to her had seen, and some had commented on the change. Her family had asked her many times, how things were with him. Fine she lied. But they could see her spirit was being drained, and she was a shadow of her former self. The few girlfriends she meet secretly, so as not to anger him, could see and sense her unhappiness. But she denied it all, even to herself. Her self esteem lowered, to nearly none existent levels. Her once high self assurance disappearing bit by bit. Every day, she died a little. Day by day, under the, if not daily, but fairly regular verbal assaults. Words uttered under the guise of humour, banter, and sarcasm. But words that had a deeper, more nasty intent. Designed to hurt and destroy. To undermine and tear down. Ever fearful of another day living with him. She had tried speaking to him, but he just quickly cut her down any such communication. At this stage she was no more than a nobody. Someone who provided him with sexual release. Now an empty a pointless experience for her, which she dreaded. Devoid of love, warmth and compassion. She was more than happy when it was over, glad when he no longer touched her body,

She did not want to go back to them, but now it seemed like her only option. She wanted to move away from that lifestyle. She wanted to play life on a level playing field, with no extra advantage, and succeed by her own means, without help from them.
The cat, sensing her despair, moved from its resting place in the corner of the room, and jumped up onto her lap. The animal moved its body closer to her face, as if she wanted to embrace and comfort her. She lamely smiled and put the cat in her lap, and stroked it nonchalantly. She slowly drifted off to sleep, as the animal keep her company.

In the noisy atmosphere of the pub, the discordant music thumped loudly from the speakers. The heaving crowd moved as one to the music. Strangers bodies entangled like long term lovers. This to him was more like it. Action and energy with people not so full of love. Glad to be out of the damn house. People with a rough edge. These were the people he wanted to be around. He held the glass of beer in front of him, as he too moved to the music. Watching from the sidelines. The tight leather jackets. Some dressed in Pvc clothing. Sexual in nature.
She came and stood beside him, and brazenly asked him for a cigarette. Dark black hair, dark, black clothing, and heavy boots. With light white make up, and heavy dark eye shadow, and red lipstick, that covered her full lips. She smiled, revealing her perfectly set teeth. He took note of her body, thankful for her revealing, tight fitting clothing. He approved of her look, and offered her a cigarette.
She took the cigarette, letting her hand linger on his, and smiled. It was clear she was as attracted to him, as he was to her. He looked into her wide eyes, and she held his gaze. Just something about her confidence, made her even more attractive. He studied her lips, and moved closer. His confidence boosted by the alcohol, with no words, he moved his lips to hers. She responded. Her lips were as soft and tasteful as he had imagined. He moved his hips to hers. They stood together as one, while the music thumped loudly, they began to gyrate to the beat.

After a short time, after they both ingested more alcohol, which was effecting his vision and stability, unusual for him.
‘Come, lets go from this place’, she demanded.
‘Where to ?’
‘Come with me’. Her voice was loud, and commanding.

In the cold evening night, as other revellers noisily made their way from one drinking establishment to another, she hailed a black cab. She quietly gave the address to the driver, and helped him into the back seat. In the rain sodden night, the cab mad its way to the suburbs. He sat close to her and breathed in her scent. His imagination firing up, about the night to follow. He smiled in anticipation. Somewhat troubled by increasing sense of disorientation. But he comforted himself by expecting it to clear up once out in the fresh air.

The others began to gather in the dilapidated church. Quiet, muted murmurings barely hiding the building excitement. To any outsider, they looked so ordinary, dressed in their day to day clothing. Housewives, elderly people. Doctors, Businessmen, Consultants. But as they donned their dark robes, and began to decorate the large black altar, with the pentagram, chalice, the elements of the earth, wind, ocean and fire, and the unlit candles. The horned skeletal head. Representing the demons worshiped. An opening to that gateway. They no longer seemed innocent. Now, way more sinister.
It had being some time. But she was a good hunter, and the high priestess always knew she could be relied upon to do what was required. The black cab dropped them outside the padlocked gates of the dilapidated and run down church. The city lights, of the vast metropolis looked so inviting, from the elevated area overlooking it. She took his drunken head in her hands and gently kissed her lips. Pressing her taunt body again his, encouraging his speculation. Taking his hand, she guided him towards the church.

‘Come’, she said softy, enticing him.

He smiled foolishly, and followed her through the rusted gates, she opened with ease. From the outside, the church was covered in brambles and leaves, much of the stone work was broken and cracked. The church was darkened within. Up the gravel path they went together, she linking his arms, as he struggled to steady himself. Slightly irritated he was unable to clear his head. Agin he glanced at her well defined body, and his excitement grew. She pushed at the large oak door, that gave way easily enough. Slowly it opened, creaking as it did so. The church was empty. Dark and cold. She took his hand and lead him into the foyer cold stone paving and dark wood panelled interior, empty. They moved through a second door, into the confines of the church.

The door behind him, shut rapidly, loudly and with some force. Once inside, she broke contact with his hand, and moved to stand by the high priestess. Tall and also dressed in black. They embraced each other, and kissed each other softly on the lips. He stood, dumbfounded and watched the scene unfold before him. Rapidly coming to his senses. His disorientation now replaced by a thumping heart, shaking legs and a real sense of dread. The large number of participants busily going about what they were doing, dressed in dark robes. The dim interior, lit by large candle’s. The palatable sense of excitement, of the robed congregation. He watched in some disbelief, as bramble and broken trees were piled high, in front of the black altar. He turned away and towards the door he had entered.
The high priestess laughed as she raised her hand, and pulled him back energetically from his possible escape. She weaved her hand, as she manipulated the energy that existed between them, to forbid his escape. He danced like a pupet in response to her manipulations. She pointed her hand towards the floor, and he sank immediately to his knees, as her forceful evil energy controlled his. To ensure compliance, she formed her hand into a v shape, between thumb and index finger, held it out in front of her, and brought the fingers closely together. He grasped at his throat, trying to release the energetic pressure that was crushing his windpipe, and smothering him. She released her energy, as he fell to the floor, holding his throat. Again she laughed.

At last they had finished building the pyre, and took their seats. The chanting began. Low, monotone, but hypnotic in its flow. He was brought, struggling to stand in front of the pyre. The High Priestess stood beside him, and began to recite in Latin. Her voice took on a deep, almost manly, demonic tone. Rasping and frightening in its intensity.  She then turned to him, and spoke again in latin. The attractive woman he had met in the music pub hours earlier, translated for him.

‘Our sister has called out to the heavens, in her hour of need. She may not have wanted this, but she is one of us, and will always be. It is our belief that you must make reparations for your cruelty. We offer you as a live sacrifice to feed the demons who rule our lives, as we bow down before them, and worship them’.

The chanting became louder, rasing in volume. Reaching towards a crescendo. The perspiration began to stream down his forehead, and his back. His heart palpitating at an enormous speed. His breathing, fitful, and hard to catch. Roughly he was taken to the stretcher that lay on top of the pyre, and tied to it, with old ragged, but strong rope. He struggled as the briars and brambles beneath him were set alight. Quickly the blue and yellow flames rose up the wooden pyramid temple that held him.
She awoke many hours later, the cat having long left her lap. Now securely resting in its basket on the other side f the living room. The shone shone brightly through the light curtains, that covered the living room window. Something was different, she could sense it, or perhaps it was just the result of a good nights sleep.
But she felt clearer and more energized than she had in a long time. More light and free. With all this good energy running round her, she could not stay still and had to dissipate it some how. She set about cleaning the house from top to bottom. Not something she had done for queit some time. Happily she began to prepare dinner for her she and her partner, hoping for a better day. She knocked on the bedroom door, when the food was ready.

Written in response to a photo prompt seen here : https://creativewriting.ie/writing-prompts/

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Revelation.

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Photo by Blake Cheek on Unsplash

His Eminence held the book in front of the assembled monks, priests, invited religious leaders from around the world.

‘In this tome handed down from millennia are the secrets to the world order. Who actually runs the world. Who decides what happens. It has remained a secret within these hallowed halls, for hundreds of years. But I have being called upon to divulge its contents to you. The assembled, invited leaders of your people’s, your followers.’

Their were murmurings of excitement within the assembled audience, in the darkened church hall. Adorned with religious statues of many creeds. The scent of incense at times overpowering. The low repetitive chanting of the unseen voices adding a sense of tension and suspense.

‘ I will also reveal to you today, what happens when we die. Where we go. The exact date the world will cease to be, and what will happen then

‘Hersey, this is nonsense. How can you possibly know. What give’s you the right to divulge this secret knowledge to the masses, that have being hidden from them for hundreds of years.’  The voice from the audience was loud and angry.’ He stood up, a large man, with an ornate sword hanging from his hip. A wild beard on his face. His angry, and thunderous.
‘Who are you to profligate such nonsense ?’ How dare you assume such an exalted position of power and knowledge. Who has called on you to divulge such powerful knowledge held within these scriptures.’

The eye’s of his Eminence meet those of the beast of a man daring to question his nobility and power. Never before had any questioned his authority. He looked to his aides at the high table to furnish him with information and knowledge as to the identify of this disrespectful entity, who had the temerity to question him.

‘Who are you, and where do you come from.’ he demanded.

‘Where I come from, and who I am, matter little. But I am hear to tell you that you have no right to divulge the secrets held within that tome, and if you do so, I will see you through with this sword that lies by my side.’

The assembled audience watched and listened quietly to the war of words between the two powerful men. The private guards that ensured His Eminence ultimate survival looked to him for guidance. Awaiting his order to attack, spears and scarberts at the ready.

His Eminence consider his choice of words carefully. His spoke slowly, powerfully and with much thought. His dark black sac cloth cape and regalia, adding to the perception of his power.

‘ I trust all of you specially invited, to never divulge the secrets buried within this tome. To ensure the continuation of the world order as it is, which has served us all so well. Are we not, as it stand the purveyors of the law, and wealth. Long may it continue’.

The assembled audience cheered loudly in response.

‘Silence’. Again the large unkempt man for the midst of the audience stood up.’There is no need to reveal the contents of those scripture’s you hold in your hand. For those of us that already know what they contain, that is enough. For those that do not know, that is how is it to be’.

‘I can promise that to any that divulge the contents of these scriptures outside of these hallowed halls. Will be cursed forever more to a life of suffering, destitution and suffering. Not only in this life, but in their many reincarnations to come. Not they alone, but the lives oft their families and loved ones will condemned to the same fate. Do you understand’, he asked loudly, slamming the tome down on the altar beside him. Many were startled by the sudden loud noise.

The eerie chanting continued in the darkened background, getting progressively louder and faster. Building toward’s a crescendo. His Eminence turned his back on the audience, and began to mumble in Latin. Quietly at first. Few recognized this version of Latin and Hebrew mixed together. The large velvet curtain behind the altar was pulled aside, revealing the symbol he worshiped. Gaps of disbelief were heard from the audience, then silence. He dropped to his knees, and recited the Latin and Hebrew words faster and louder, that he read from the parchment in his hand, over and over again. The unseen voices chanted ans matched his tempo and speed. His raised his arms in adoration and called on He who is pure evil to come this very moment into his life.
His body shock as the evil power entered his body, he heart turned black, his eye’s red. His voice took on a demonic tone, deep and rasping. His aides on the altar moved away in fear. The chanting of the unseen voices, overwhelming, repetitive, almost hypnotic. An atmosphere of extreme evil, menace, suffering, torture and death swirled around the hallowed hall. He turned around to face he who had the temerity to challenge him. His red eyes’ and scarred face, twisted in a grotesque snarling smile. With his imbued evil power, he pointed his hand at his enemy and unleashed a torrent of black putrid energy, that traveled at speed towards he who had dared to question. The audience scattered and ran, rightfully fearing for their lives.

The energy struck it’s recipient with such strong force, the large angry man with the wild beard was knocked to the ground. His Eminence on the altar waved his hand up and down, pointing in many different directions as the black putrid energy followed and obeyed his commands. Repetitively  stabbing and stomping on the fallen prey. The large fallen man’s eye’s were pecked out of his head. Some of the energy was forced into his mouth, and chest, strangling his organs and breathing. When the large man was no more, the evil energy, screamed cruelly and returned to the altar, and back into the body from whence it came. His Eminence collapsed on the altar, and black ravens flew overhead, silently watching. The eerie chanting stopped. Light began to fill the darkened chamber, and many of the hiding audience began to pray.

Written in response to a prompt seen here : https://creativewriting.ie/writing-prompts/

Summertime.

Stained Glass Window
Photo by Adrien Olichon on Unsplash

via Daily Prompt: Ceremony

They stood together at the altar. Her sense of happiness palatable. If  any from the happy congregation could have seen his face, and austere expression, it would have conveyed much about his thoughts.
He stared straight ahead. Not at her, and especially not at him, although he was aware of the self satisfied smirk. That look that said it all. The look that said, We have a secret. You will never tell, and I will get away with it.
He listened as he continued with the prayers, and the blessings. The hypocritical blessings and prayer’s from one so sullied with sin. It was sickening. In the quietness of the church, the creaking wooden door opened and he watched the priests face turn from arrogant self satisfaction to fear, and anxiety. Perspiration began to trickle down his face. His words became muffled and quiet, so much so, people strained to hear the ceremony.

He so wanted to turn around and see the cause of the priest’s unease. She sensed what he was about to do, and pulled hard on his hand, and briefly glared at him. Her angry eye’s told him all he needed to know. So to keep the peace, he continued to stare straight ahead, and wait for the priest to regain his composure. But that was not forth coming.            The sun shone its warm healing rays through the many stained glass windows, brightening the church interior. There friends and families looked on with joy and happiness. many believing this was a coming together that was ment to be, from a very young age.

The stench of alcohol was pervasive, from he assumed the latest entrant into the church. The priest lamely continued with the ceremony. But his words were still weak. Barely audible, and he continued to perspire, and glance furtively and continually at the congregation. His anxiety plain to see.

Then it started, as expected, and brought with it  a sense of relief. We all could sense something untoward was about to happen, and now the waiting was over.

‘You Bastard’, the words were loud, thunderous, and slurred. The ceremony stopped. Many in the congregation turned to see where the angry words emanated from. Some ignored the angry words, which were heavily laden with many years stored up emotion. Hoping things would quieten, the priest continued the ceremony. The priest rocked back on his heels, nearly knocked over by the force of the anger and venom, that the words were wrapped in.

‘You Bastard’, again the angry words revebatred around the peace and solemnity of the small country church. His anger directly aimed at the priest. There was loud shuffling among the seats, as a few of the others tried to contain, and control the drunken angry man. Tried to plead with him to see sense, and not ruin a young couple’s wedding day.
He broke free of those holding him, energized by his indignation and sense of righteous, and stood in the aisle, before the altar. His voice even louder this time. His face red, and tortured. Reflecting his years of alcohol abuse. His dark suit, shabby.

‘You did this to me’, he screamed at the priest, who again rocked back on his feet, as he absorbed the words directed at him.
‘Had you not taken my innocence as a child to satisfy your perverted sexual desires, I would have never ended up like this. Why do you think I’ve become an alcoholic, a drug user, Why ? he asked accusingly, never once lifting his gaze from the priest. ‘To hide those memories deep within my mind, and soul. To hide that shame, that has haunted me all of my life. That sense of filth and inadequacy I have felt since. Why could you not have let me be, Why ? You caused this, to me and many others, and I’m here today to call you out. To let the members of your congregation, and this small town and community know that you are not that helpful innocent soul, the do godder sent by God, to do his good works. You are a charlatan, a deceptive, sleazy lying manipulator, who in the past has taken the innocence of many young boys, and condemned them to a life of misery, addiction, chaos, abject life failure.’ ‘You’, he continued to point his shaking hand at the priest, ‘used your position and power, and our sense of deep shame, humiliation, and fear to satisfy your lustful desires at our expense. Satisfied in the knowledge that none would speak out and expose you. Well no more. You are, a destroyer of people’s lives ‘.
The congregation listened in silence to the man as he unleashed his vitriolic speech, swaying slightly in the aisles. The priest looked uneasy on the altar. The young couple turned around to see who was this intruder into their peaceful wedding day.

Then it stopped. The shouting, the anger. The loud angry man collapsed on the floor. None moved to help him. Just watched. The young couple at the altar turned round, and after a few moments, Jason, the groom went to the fallen body. The stench of urine, an unwashed body, alcohol and cigarette smoke that emanated from the man, was stomach turning. The long hair was unkempt and matted with dirt, and God’s knows what else. Those in the congregation watched in silence, as did the priest.
He moved closer to the fallen man, and moved the his long filthy hair away from his face, to check his breathing. The mans skin was in even worse condition close up. Pock marked with red sore’s, a few of which were leaching some disgusting poisonous looking liquid. His breathing was short, fitful, and strained. He called for a Doctor, a nurse among the congregation. For an ambulance to be summoned. He searched inside the mans crumpled dirty suit for some ID. In his hand the collasped man held with a tightened grip an object on a broken chain.  Not knowing why, but Jason wrestled with the clenched hand to release the object. Eventually securing it’s release. He studied the object, wiping away the accumulated dirt and filth.

He recognised the silver coin, given to him by the older brother he so much admired. The coin from all those years ago, that held pride of place among his belongings, and which he treasured. A symbol of their togetherness and closeness, a bond which would never be broken.

‘Where did you get this’, he asked the fallen man urgently. His voice loud and urgent.

‘Tell me where, Goddam you. Answer me’. He shook the man’s shoulders hard. But no response.

He had searched over many years for the brother he so loved and admired. Never knowing what had happened to him, was worse than actually knowing. No contact for years. Nothing.

Jason lent over the  older collapsed man, wishing him silently for his consciousness to return.

‘Where the hell is that ambulance’, he called loudly to no one in particular.

The wedding congeration looked on in silence.

The man continued to struggle to breath. His breath’s audibly becoming weaker, and fewer. Unable to fully expand his chest. He moaned quietly. Jason watched his face intently, and was helpless, as the last sign’s of life slowly ebbed from the man. His lips turning slightly blue. The failing weak breath telling its own tale. Jason closed his eyes, began to pray by the man’s his side, and wished him a safe passage to the next life. As he knelt beside the fallen man, with his head bowed in prayer, his hand was gripped in an iron clamp. He looked up and into the now open eye’s of the fallen man, and in that instant he recognized him. That slight smile, that twinkle in his eyes, told what he needed to know.

Then he was gone, life extinguished. In that small church on that bright summer’s day, not a sound was uttered.

Tranquility.

Forest

Photo by Lukas Neasi on Unsplash

Forest

He watched her through the trees. Unseen and unmoving. He camouflaged himself so well, to be near enough invisible to the human eye. She sat in the clearing, as the large oak, and conifers in their magnificence stood so tall so proud.
In times of crisis and lack of life direction, she always graduated towards the peacefulness and the sense of security she enjoyed among the trees. The quietness, the silence. Nothing moving. She had to release and let go. From the depths of her wounded soul she let loose with such a ferocity, she physically fell backwards, surprised and shocked at herself, with her gutteral, demon like screams, expunged from her body with such momentous force and venom, she was embarrassed. Again, and again she screamed. Screams of anger, of human hurt and distress. Screams of betrayal and deceit. Screams of mistrust. Screams of a once blossoming, truthful love, now lost, never to be reopened. Crude, nasty words she knew existed, and which sickened, to her very core, which she never, or only very seldom used, now loomed large in her vocabulary, and spewed from her with an evil venom. She did not, could not recognize this voice emanating from her. A voice barely human, full of evil intent.
Fearful, she ran deep into the forest to escape whatever had possessed her. Her heart beating faster than ever it had before. Her legs jelly like. Her light summer dress wet from her clammy body. Her perfect long hair, now damp, and unkempt. As fast as she ran, the spirit followed her.

He also followed her, but with the practiced expertise of a hunter, from a distance, and well hidden. When she could run no more, she fell to the ground physically exhausted, and breathing hard. Leaned back against a supportive tree, and slowly her breathing returned to some semblance of normal. But not her fear. The malevolent spirit slowly made its way through the trees towards her. She watched from the corner of her eye, hoping she was not really seeing what was approaching her. More than anything it was the physical coldness, and its energy that, foreshadowed the spirit, that frightened her the most. She just about managed to retain the sickly contents of her stomach.

‘You called us, and we have come. You have asked for change, and that is what we will bring into your life, and those around you. When you called on the spirit world for help, be advised many evil, malevolent spirits live in that world. A chance to escape that eternal world and be reborn into human form, will be jumped on, by those of us who are quick to recognize, a pure innocent soul reaching out for help. I will take your soul, your spirit, your physical body, and reek untold havoc onto your loved ones, for evermore. It has already begun’.

He  slowly raised the rifle, enjoying the sense of power and security as it rested comfortably in his shoulder, and quietly cocked the trigger back in anticipation of the shot. It was brutal, and swift, but he had to be sure. The cartridge was well on its way, before the sound echoed around the quietness of the trees. It entered the head with much force, just above the temple. The cartridge exploded upon impact, and slowed down ensuring a much larger wound, and confirmed kill. What was left of her head ricocheted off the tree she was resting at. Her body slumped forward. He watched the black putrid energy leave her body at speed and with a non human scream, enter the forest floor and return to the depths of hell, from whence it came.
Satisfied the spirit hunter lowered his rifle, and for now, peace was once again restored.

 

Another Night.

 

asdrubal-luna-485688-unsplash

Photo by Asdrubal luna on Unsplash

She stood by the doorway, watching in silence. So many memories trying to force their way into her mind. He busied himself exploring the other rooms of the large house.

‘My God, what a house, and what a garden. Your so lucky to have brought up here’, as he stood beside her. His arms enveloping her fragile body. If only he knew.

She didn’t answer, but put her head in his large shoulders. Were he to see her face, he would see the tears, and the sadness it held. Again the memories pushed at the gates of her mind, where she kept them hidden. How could she share them with anyone, even him. How would he be able to trust her. She did not want to lose him. Some secrets are better left untold.

‘So when can we move in ?’, he asked, with childish excitement. The wide smile, and happy eyes, features that attracted her attention when she saw him across the shopping mall, that Saturday, not so many years ago.

‘Well, anytime now’, she responded. Hiding the memories and images behind her pristine smile
‘Well that’s, brilliant. I’ll get things moving’, and he held her close once more. Again she felt somewhat safe, and secure in his arms. She loved his enthusiasm. His drive and determination to achieve a goal, once set. They left her family home, just outside the small prosperous town, that was surrounded by wide fields of corn, and the high mountains and forests that were visible from every area of the town, adding to the beauty. They drove past the lake, where she had spent many summer days. He yelped with delight, and smiled at her, as the stunning scenery unfolded before them, and headed back to the tiny Manhattan apartment, in the overly busy, slow moving, mainly gridlocked traffic. Surrounded by the other near claustrophobic high rise blocks, that loomed large, so close by. There living space were tiny, cramped, with their goods and belongings  packed high and tight. The space and freedom would be more than a welcome relief to both.
It was a struggle at times, living in such a small cramped space. But they were in love, and they struggled with the living conditions together. He set about the task of packing up their belongings with boundless energy. Their dog joined in with unabridged enthusiasm, sensing the excitement.
She left him to pack their belongings, using a brief shopping trip as an excuse for time alone. Time to consider her past, and her future. She sat alone in the corner of the darkened coffee shop, in the quiet street. Grateful for the peace and solitude. The staff sensible and intelligent enough to know when one of their patrons needed time to be alone, to reflect upon their life, or write their memoirs or just be allowed the luxury of thinking. The cafe being a haunt of many whom liked to write, to reflect, and needed the peace and solitude.

She watched the few people passing on the street, and wondered about their lives. Did anyone, she considered get out of this life without, the drama and heartache. Did anyone, anywhere among the billions, actually get an easy ride through life. She doubted it. she considered there future together. Like many before her, and like many would in the future, she considered was he the one. Was he the man she was willing to spend the rest of her life with. Was now the time to settle down. To possibly have children with him.  An option she had yet to consider. What of her career. Did he have enough to offer. She began to mull over his positive characteristics, which were many. His kindness, empathy, and gentleness. His ambition, and determination, while impressive, had yet to lead to any substantial success. But he certainly had potential, and that was good enough. His honesty, reliability, and discretion, were certainly attributes to be welcomed. His loyalty was unquestioned. As for his love making skills, although not stellar, were certainly not at the beginner stage, and like many, there was always room for improvement, as she smiled at her private intimate thoughts. But mainly she felt loved, desired and secure with him.

He was not a saint, a perfect human being, which she allowed. There was at times that his cutting sarcastic humour, regarding the misfortunes of others that she so disliked, and had scolded him many times for. The little too much reliance on alcohol, and that little bit too much time, spending some of her funds in the casinos. His at times, flippant and childlike refusal to take life seriously. At attribute she found engaging and repellent all at once. These were the only negatives she could see at present. While serious enough to some, to her, they were not a deal breaker.

It was the ringing of her cell phone, that she had carefully layed on the darkened coffee table, that shock her from her imaginings. Its flashing screen , and shrill ringing tone, taking her back to real life. She knew it was him, checking up to see what she was up to, and was she okay with that. So lost in her thoughts, time had passed very rapidly, and he was becoming very slightly concerned for her, which she mostly welcomed.

‘Hi, yeah I know. I’m sorry. I should have called’. There was silence at the other end, holding the phone on the palm of her hand.

‘Do you think your actually going to get it. To get the damn house. To live the happy ever after life. Do you really think that’s how it’s going work out for you’.

The voice was still recognizable, even after all these years. She could sense the mental sickness, the illness through the handset, which she had left fall from her hand in shock. Nothing seemed to have changed. She was at once back in the family home, with her deranged older sister. She was at once the cowering, scared young girl, that she was many years since, as her sister worked out through one of her many psychotic episodes in the family home. The wicked screams. The seething empty accusations. The physical violence and struggles. The intense paranoia, that terrified her. The visionary uncontrolled hallucinations, and the voices. The never ending voices that told her to trust no one. Those voices that give her the detailed instructions of whom to harm. Her refusal to take her prescribed medication. The rapid slide into illegal narcotics, decadence and the most extremes darkened corners of the fetish sex scene.
Encouraged by the new friends and acquaintances from that sordid side of life, that were attracted like vampires to her vulnerability and and obvious psychosis. They swooped in quickly, using well honed abilities to suss out another victim to be used, abused and discarded, when the time was right. Their toxic, manipulative ways, hidden under the guise of instant friendship and camaraderie. There blackmail, emotional and otherwise, trivialized. Words such as loyalty, honesty and trust, and their meanings ment nothing to them. Idea’s such as that, they only laughed at. She was way too far gone. Too mentally unwell. Just too lost, in some form of Orwellian, dystopian world to see them for what they were. she was just being used by them, for their own gain. A world of extreme fetish sex. Myriad uncontrolled drug use. Criminally, blackmail, dishonesty. Mental illness, and insanity all rolled into one.

‘That’s right bitch. I’ve never gone away, and I’m coming to claim what’s rightfully mine. Do you think you can take my inheritance. My family home. It’s my home, not yours. Never was, never will be. Your not entitled to it’.

She was at a loss for words. The coffee shops lights seemed so dim. Her head was swirling and light. She gripped the wooden table for strength. She physically reeled at the onslaught. The shock. The sister she thought, had thankfully being removed from her life, was now back like an unwanted and destructive force of nature.

‘I’ve being following you. I’ve being watching your life these past few months. Do you think I don’t know whats going on’.
She did have that nagging feeling she was being watched those past few months, but had put tit down to an over active imagination, and dismissed it.

She pictured her sisters face as she spoke, and correctly imagined the twisted and ravaged features, spewing such anger and venom. The eyes, narrowed with hate. The bad skin, and unhealthy scarred, pale complexion. Her energy toxic in the extreme. Her body releasing itself from it’s physically tight hold as the mental and emotional chains were undone. She began to unleash her palatable madness. Her tangible mental sickness.

‘Do you think he will want to stay with you when he knows what you did, and are capable of, do you ?’
‘No man would ever want you, no man would ever trust you, ever’.
‘Your damaged goods, sweetheart’.
‘Do you hear me’, the voice so loud, so poisonous.

She put the phone back on the coffee shop table, and switched it off completely. Her hand shaking. Her breathing shallow and rapid. The perspiration formed above her lip and on her forehead. She was litterly shaking, and tearful. She sat at that table for many  hours. Her body weak. Her engery drained. she sat their until the the coffee shop closed and they asked her to leave. She walked the darkened, quiet, rain soaked streets, for what seemd like hours. Trying to clear her mind. Could she tell him. Should she tell him.  Would he ever trust her, for withholding such a hidden part of her life. Had they not promised each other toal honesty and disclousure in their relationship, from the start. Would he be able to understand that some aspects of one’s life, are just to hard, difficult and painfull to share. Would she mean nothing to him, were he to know.
Would her own deception, and non self disclousure, be her downfall, and the end of the relationship she had come to cherish, and wanted to last forever. After many hours, she arrived back at the apartment. She knew he would be waiting, most probably angry, and expectaing an explaination for her long abstnce. She was ready for the confrontation.
Tentatively she entered the lounge where he was sprawled out dozing in front of the tv. The flickering light from the tv illuminating the otherwise darkened room. She tripped over the resting dog, and the sound woke him.

‘Oh sweetheart, your back at last’. He got up from the couch and smiled and embracced her.
‘I tried calling you a few times, but your phone was off.’
‘Yeah, I know. I needed time to think’.

She was grateful for his calmness and peacefulness, enjoyed the comfort and security his phyisical touch offered her.

She reached down and took his hand, and looked into his gentle eye’s.

‘We need to talk’.

 

Memories.

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Photo by Masaaki Komori on Unsplash

She stood at the doorway, and looked into the bedroom. It had being many years since she had seen the room. Not something she really wanted to do, yet she just had to. Like watching an accident unfurl before one’s eyes. You know you should look away, but you just can’t.
Images and memories cruelly flashed through her mind. She stood by her side, with her hand gently on her back, offering her strength and support. She bit her quivering lip. She tried the deep breathing, like she had practised. But it was not working now, when she needed it most. Her chest and shoulders began to shake, with her breathing becoming rapid and shallow. Tears and distress not too far away now.
She gently encouraged her, with her persuasive words.

‘You’ve got to face it sometime, love. You cannot keep running away’.
‘You are safe here. You will not come to any harm, while I’m with you. Do you trust me ?’

She looked at the older woman’s, kindly, sincere face. Could she really trust her. She studied the dark uniform, and the official accessories. The walkie talkie. The mobile phone, attached to her stab proof waistcoat. The silver handcuffs secure within the snug compartment of the wide black leather belt. She did not note the missing body cam. Perhaps if she had…..

They needed her to break, to show vulnerability. They could then show her the false kindness and concern, that could be used to confuse and entrap her once again.

‘Why don’t you go and sit on the bed’, the police officer cajoled. ‘It’s only by facing your fears, that you’ll break free of them, once and for all’. Her words, soft, sincere and believable.

She slowly moved towards the bed. Those horrible images, and sounds, hidden for so long from her everyday consciousness, came to life in her mind. That putrid scent, of tobacco, cheap aftershave and alcohol. The loud, crazy fast, thumping music. Their insane maniacal laughter, as they were about to satisfy there perverted lustful desires, on another unwilling innocent, echoed in the recesses of her mind, torturing her, yet again. She began to feel light headed. Her legs weakened and she quickly sat on the bed, before she fell. Her school satchel drooped to the floor. The police officer helped her to lay down, and soothed the childs lightly damp hair, and flushed face.

‘There, there, it will be alright’. She gently carresed the childs pale skin. So soft, and inviting to the touch. The full luscious lips, and wide innocnet brown eyes. Her heart beat faster, and the chemicals in her stomach began to break free. Yet again she was on the verge of intruading on, and stealing yet another innocents childhood. She moved her face towards the young girls lips, who turned her head away, and struggled to move from the bed. The police officer grabbed both her wrists harshley and lay her body on top of her young captive, trapping her.

It crackled into life, the voice was serious and urgent. He spoke fast.

‘Get out now, her Mother is entering the gate, and you know what a mad bitch she is, get out now’.
‘Ok’, she hurridely whispered into the walkie talkie.

‘Ok, so you heard all that’, her face so close to her young captive. ‘Say nothing to anyone, especially your Mother, or I will bring a whole lot of heartache to this family. Do you understand’. The voice, even and full of ugly menace.

She nodded, while the older woman, moved away from her, and stood up by the bed,  readjusted her uniform, and calmed her ardour. They both listened as the key was roughly inserted into the front door, and she entered the house.

Written in response to a photo prompt seen here : https://creativewriting.ie/writing-prompts/

Justice.

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Photo by Evan Dennis on Unsplash.

This was torture. This was cruel. Tantalizing, and teasing. She’s in the forest. That was all the message said. They along with the detectives looking after them rushed to the scene, to be greeted by this.

They searched among the trees, with the cruel question marks. They searched by the lakeside, but to little avail. The birds in the trees above giving the forest a semblance of peacefulness. Again they wept. She could take no more, and turned to her husband for sustenance and support. But he too was hurting, and incapable of helping her.
The police officers who accompanied them, offered what physical and mental sustenance that they could, grateful that it was not their own child who had been taken. Intent of holding their own children tight, and loving them that bit more when they returned home later that evening.

He watched smiling from afar. This was revenge pure and simple. Some say revenge is a forlorn and pointless exercise to indulge in. But can they not understand the joy and pleasure it affords one. To watch the perpetrators of unsavory deeds and acts get whats due to them, it’s only right. He was undecided how long he would keep her in the cabin or if he would ever let her go. His main concern was which was the best way to inflict as much human pain and suffering onto her loving parents. To continue with this teasing and tantalizing method, raising their hopes and then dashing their hopes. Or perhaps to dispose of the child once and for all.

But he too was a reluctant victim of an unjust world. Of a corrupt society, and a fraudulent  legal system. Where favours and deals were conducted out of sight, among the well to do of the old boy network.
Where was the justice for his loss. Where was the care and compassion for his sadness. Why were the police so lackluster in their investigations. These and other questions ran through his mind. Enough justification for his actions.
He along with many others, would always remember her for her diligence and tenacity. Her absolute determination, to see right be done. She like many others could see the injustice of the International Co-operations refusing to play fair. Making billions of profits in sales, and paying little if any tax on it. Hiding their profits in tax havens, guided by highly paid knowledgeable financial professionals. While at the same time, these duplicitous co-operations claiming their innocence and honesty. Blatantly lying to the public, trying to deceive the masses.  Do they take us for fool’s. While normal people suffered, and struggled to pay the tax they were forced to pay, by their governments, or face possible imprisonment and large fines.

Outraged by such injustice she used the power’s of her office to work her way through these large deceitful co-operations, one by one, and with other’s intent on bringing them to justice, and making them pay financially. He remembered her, with her paper’s spread out over the kitchen table. The scent of her fragrance so alluring. With forthright indignation. He watched her stern face and body held tight with anger, as she explained to him what had being going on, and what she was going to do about it. Her frustration at her colleagues in the seats of power in the Government,  of her own country, and other countries. In an attempt to calm public outrage, the swiftly convened government committees  and public inquiries that quizzed the executives of the deceitful, dishonorable co-operations. Before the government ministers and officials, in front of the TV cameras, again the executives lied. Bewildered and disillusioned by politics and it’s dishonesty. Many of her colleagues had called for reparations and promised changes in the law. But what had it come to, nothing. Promises made but soon forgotten. With the public temporarily calmed, and philosophical about political ineptitude, once again big business had won out. She slammed the kitchen table hard, in frustration. Public services so badly in need of funds were to be denied once again. Overcrowded hospitals lacking equipment. Overworked Doctors, exhausted. Children playgroups disbanded. Psychological counselling services for the disturbed, curtailed. Had her government colleagues succumbed to the backhanded gifts of luxurious holidays, share options, mortgages quietly forgotten and much else besides. He watched and silently admired the power of her outrage, the disillusionment and unleashed anger that drove her. He loved her the more for it. Here was a woman, he would never leave. Where was the justice, she asked quietly. Who was to blame. She explained to him how they would be made to pay for it, in financial terms, and public humiliation. Justice for the people.

Neither realized just how powerful and to what lengths these business would go to. Hard to believe in this day and age. This was not a fast paced thriller movie. This was real life. In the quiet street, he watched as her hand was roughly torn away from his, and her lifeless sweet body was launched into the darkness of the wet night. He barely glimpsed  or noticed the speeding Mercedes, as he stood transfixed. Taken in by the sickening sounds of bones being crushed by the fast moving metal and glass weapon. Of human flesh and cartilage being ripped apart, never to be repaired. Watching in slow motion, the surreal, impossible event unfolding before him. His consciousness vacated his body, as he watched. A moment later, it returned to his physical body. His frame shook, as he wept quietly as he held her in his arms. She moaned gently in distress. Her breathing labored, and growing weaker with each inhalation. Her eyes turning grey, and her once luscious lips, a light bluish shade. Her precious blood covering her clear skin, and expensive clothing, she took such care with. His stomach swirled at the vision, and the rising contents of his intestines, were expunged from his body, with great force, onto the empty street. He longed to hold her gently, and make it not so. To chastise her, and tell her to let the corrupt and deceitful go. What does it matter. There would always be others of the same ilk. He cried aloud to God when her spirit left her body, but God did not answer.
He sat in austere courtroom. A place devoid of much emotion. Functional, that’s what it was. He watched the proceddings with disbelief and gripped the bench, to steady himself. As he watched and listebed, his face became red, and perspiring. His breathing rapid, and short. The veins in his arms, his neck, were held so tightly, to bursting point. His legs started to shake with the surge of adrenaline moving through his rigid body. He stood and repeatedly swore loudly at the judge, using language he did not realize he had at his disposal. The violence and venom in his loud raging voice, filled the courtroom, and suprized himself. The judge released the culprit with nothing more, than a meaningless and ineffectual slap on the wrist. An empty punishment. More evidence, if any was needed, of the hidden corruption, that affords freedom, to those in the know, with helpful connections.

The Judge and his family would be the first of the many who would feel the wrath of his revenge. He had much work to do.

Written in response to  photo prompt seen here: https://creativewriting.ie/writing-prompts/