11 May 2013

Broken



The second story I submitted to A Novel Approach. Please to enjoy:

Broken

      Mollie’s sundress kicked up around her thighs as she sat looking out at her options.  In front of her, the land fell away from the road, leading to a row of elm trees, beyond which lay the unknown.  To her right, her car grumbled and sighed in the barrow ditch; its grill crumpled around the stump of an oak.  She touched the lump on her forehead and pulled away sticky, crimson fingers.  Wiping her fingers on the grass, she looked over to her left and the road leading back to him.  Back to pain.  Back to a certain death.  ...well, of her soul, at least. 

     “Shit, Mollie.  Don’t be so fucking dreary.” Her whispered voice echoed in the open space and drifted off in front of her.  She watched it float through the elms, stood up, and followed on unsure footing, in unsuitable shoes, without hesitation - leaving behind the wreckage of her life.

    
     She’d taken no more than a hundred steps when her foot slipped into a hole, twisting her ankle.

     “Ow!  Shitshitshitshit.  SHIT!”  Now I ache at both ends, she thought.  Thank you very much! 

     She looked back at her car.  Then, she remembered her purse sitting on the front seat… oh, and her coat in the back… and the package of sunflower seeds opened on the dash…  Well, they were on the dash, before that damned rabbit darted out and scared the shit out of her and off the road.

     Stupid, fucking bunniesThe road to hell is paved with stupid, fucking bunnies.  This hole was probably dug by a stupid, fucking bunny.  Stupid, fucking bunnies.  She kicked at the hole, trying to release her foot, and a pain shot up her shin. 


     She heard his car before she saw it; engine revving around that last bend so ostentatiously.  She heard the tires squeal, and then turned to see the bumper of his Dodge Charger as it came into view, sidling up next to her wrecked Mustang.  His window eased down.  Mollie heard the rhythm of his radio, but couldn't make out the song.  It pounded with the beat of her heart, hard and fast. 

     How in the hell did he find me?

     "Come on, Mollie.  Don't keep me waiting...again."  She couldn't see his face, just the point of his elbow resting on the car's window frame.
     "Mah-lee..." in a sing-song voice.

     She eased her foot out of the hole and tried to stand on it, gingerly at first, but then applied her entire weight.  Not too painful.  A bit of a twinge, but...

     "Mah-lee... you're starting to piss me ah-ahf..."  Again, with the sing-songy, half-lilting, full-scary voice.

     She looked back toward the elm trees.  I could make it.  Could be halfway into the trees before he opens his door.  I could...

     His horn tore her thoughts apart.  
     "Mollie!  Get your fat arse in the car!  Now!"


     The hour-long drive back to his house was tedious, to say the least.  She'd had time to grab her purse out of the wreckage, but not her coat.  She imagined she'd get an earful about wrecking the car, but he just listened to his radio rock on. 


     The air conditioner blasted, causing her bare arms and legs to riddle with goose bumps; her nipples hardened against the thin cotton of her dress.  She noticed him noticing her, and grew hopeful when his hand reached for the knob.  When he turned it up, she looked out the window and tried not to cry. 

     Figures.  Nipples trump goose bumps.  Men!  She crossed her arms over her chest.

     "You look a mess, Moll."  He dug in his pocket, pulled out a handkerchief, and tossed it onto her lap.  "At least clean that blood off your forehead.  You're not nearly pretty enough to sport an open wound."

     Mollie picked it up and searched for a soft, unused spot.  She tried to ignore the gross, off-color lumps.  She glanced over at him.  His hands sat on the steering wheel at 9 and 3.  His eyes darted between his rear-view and the side-view mirrors, never focusing on anything in particular.  He sat rigidly straight, buckled and proper, just as he'd done for the past seventeen years she'd known him.

     She spat on the edge of the cloth, pulled down the visor mirror, and examined her forehead.  A bruise grew around the bloody cut.  She dabbed at the wound, cleaning it as best she could.

     "What were you doing so far out?"  He smiled at her.  His cold eyes looked right through her.  A shiver ran down her spine.  "You know better than to make me worry."

     "Just...  Sorry...  Um..."  You have no idea how far away from you I wish to be.

     "Jestsorryum...  You sound like an idiot.  You know that, right?"  He barked a laugh, and then looked down at her nipples pressed hard against the front of her dress.  He adjusted himself.  "Are you cold, Babe?"  He asked in a softer voice, raising his hand from his crotch to stroke her shoulder.  It brought a chill with its warmth.  Mollie tried to not pull away, but he must have felt her cringe.  His grip tightened; his face pinched in anger.
     "You know better than to be afraid of me."  His voice almost made her pee. 

     "I know.  I just felt a little static shock when we touched, is all."  Mollie looked out her window.  Ourfatherwhoartinheavenhallowedbethynamethykingdomcome
thywillbedone... She clamped her teeth, and stifled a sound as she felt his hand migrate to her chest, and linger over her nipple.
 ...onearthasitisinheavengiveusthisdayourdailybread...
     His touch made her skin crawl these days, even the more gentle ones.

     His breathing became wet, heavy, and easily heard over his music. 
     "Let me just... adjust... your..." his hand moved from her breast.  "...vents.  There."  He settled back into his seat.  His hand rested on his distending crotch.  "That's better, isn't it?"

     "Yes."

     "Yes, what?"  He smiled.

     "Yes, Sir."  She forced a smile.


     They rounded a corner, and his house came into view.  The air grew stale.  He turned off the radio as he pulled into the driveway.  The ring of keys clanked against the steering column, drawing her attention.  She watched them sway back and forth, mesmerized by the glimmer as they caught the sunlight.  The white rabbit's foot did little to mute the clinking. 

     Stupid, fucking bunnies.


     She feigned a headache and went straight to bed. 

     He came to her just after sunset.  She heard her door creak open in the dark.  She listened to his footsteps grow closer.  She felt the bed dip on what she thought of as "his side" of the bed, as he settled in his bulky frame.  She clutched her pillow.  His meaty body pressed against her back; his hardness nestled between her cheeks, separated only by the thin nightgown she wore.

     "Hey, Babe.  You feeling any better?"  He rubbed himself against her.  "You have some apologizing to do.  Cars ain't cheap."

     "I need to go potty."  She pulled away from him, and sat up.  A wet spot on her nightgown stuck to the small of her back.  "Did you take your medicine today?"

     "Shit.  No.  I forgot.  Grab them for me."
    

     The water tasted refreshing.  She took a deep breath and glanced around the bathroom.  Bunny wallpaper.  Bunny curtains.  Even the glass she held was bunny-fied. 

     Stupid, fucking bunnies.  I was that close to freedom.

     She opened the medicine cabinet.  Neat and orderly, just the way he likes it.  She took out his medicine, and noticed the pearl-handled razor.  He'd said it belonged to his grandfather.
 
     Mollie put the bottle on the counter and opened the razor.  The blade glistened, sharper than any she'd seen.  She pressed it against her wrist.

     Remember, Mollie, one must cut upward to do the most damage.

     "Mollie?  You fall in?"  His voice made her jump.  She nicked her skin, and a bead of blood welled.  She kissed it away.

     "Coming..."  She tucked the blade under her arm, grabbed his pills and the water.

    
     The medicine bottle and empty glass sat on the bedside table.  With heart pills dissolving in his stomach, he pulled her on top of him.  

     He pushed aside her underwear.

     "Love you, Babe," he said, as he entered her.  "You like this?  Does this feel good?"

     ...must one always cut upward? 
     "Does this?" She asked.

     The blade went cleanly through his neck, his windpipe, his arteries with no effort, which surprised her.  Surprised him, too, judging by the look on his face.  She stood, and watched as dark liquid oozed from his neck and soaked into the bed.  It didn't spurt or spray, as she'd imagined.  Probably because of his fat.

     "Love you, too... Dad." 

     Blood dripped from the razor.  She held it in one hand and reflected on the shocking speed at which her fortunes had turned around, a longed-for moment that, even as it registered on her, ceased to be a goal and became a memory.

     "Mind if I take your car?  Mine's broken."



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