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Drama Contemporary Fiction

The flames were dancing in the night sky, lighting up the dark street and releasing an intense smell of burnt wood. The starry sky welcomed them: the stars, perfectly visible until shortly before, were covered by that bright, intense, red color.

Joleen, Zoe and Maia were watching the house burning, standing in the middle of the tight country road. «It's over», was whispering Joleen, «it's over». The remnants of the old walls fell at their feet in sparks and immediately went out, even before touching the ground. «What have you done?», asked Maia, turning to Joleen. Zoe was so desperate that she couldn't even talk; she just watched the burning house, almost hypnotized.

That afternoon Zoe received a phone call from her younger sister, Maia, who begged her to come home. Zoe took a deep breath and got into the car: she didn't come home in almost three years. She was came back six months earlier for her mother's funeral, but she stayed just one hour. She couldn't bear that place and, most of all, her sister Joleen with her impudent behavior. When she arrived, nothing was really changed: the same small townhouses, with the white fences a bit wonky, the dented road signs and the children screaming in the park. Joleen and Maia's apartment was in front of that park: a small white bricks apartment blocks, nothing fancy.

«You have no right to talk to me like that!», was shouting Joleen, «Leave me alone and go back to wherever you came from!». She was so mad that threw a heavy book against her sister, with so much violence to break the wall behind Zoe. «Don't you see what a mess are you?!», Zoe shouted in turn. It was unbelievable. Zoe understood why Maia called her, so desperate. Joleen was a disaster. Have to do with her was always difficult, but since they stopped talking it was even harder.

Joleen watched her sister with bloodshot eyes and red cheeks of rage. Her curly, short and messy hair and the ripped undershirt weren't helpful: Joleen knew that Zoe was right, she was a mess. But she couldn't let her win, for no reason at all. «You came here, after years that we don't speak», growled at her sister, «and you have the face to lecture me about my life? Get out!». Zoe sighed, and shaking the head as a sign of surrender, turned and went out of the apartment.

Maia was the youngest of three sisters but compared to Joleen she always felt like the older. When her sister decided to moved out, her mother begged her to go with Joleen: she couldn't leave her alone, she wouldn't do anything good, said her mom. And so, Maia tried hard to convince herself and her sister that it would be the best choice. However, that day after years of sacrifices and problems, her world suddenly collapsed. Joleen was totally out of control, she didn't even recognize what was real or not. Maia was so desperate, she didn't know what to do and finally decided to call Zoe, the oldest sister. «Zoe please, Joleen is completely out, I can't even talk to her! Please, help me, please!», she begged her on the phone. Zoe didn't come home in years, even though they talked all the time. She saw her shortly six months earlier, at their mother's funeral, but it was a hit and run: at the end of the ceremony, Zoe was already in her car, coming back to the city.

The voices were everywhere. Whatever she did, wherever she was, they were there. They never left her alone, every second was a suffering. And they never was quiet: Joleen’s head was crowded by a constant bustle that drives her crazy. Some of them talked louder and more often than others, always with sentences that Joleen couldn't understand. The only way to calm them was that magic white powder that she had to inhale with her nose, as she taught her one of those voices. Every time she breathed the magical powder the voices stopped talking and there was only one left, the one that made the most important decisions and convinced her to do what she wanted. «Come on, Joleen, it's time», the voice was saying, that morning. Joleen didn't understand what she meant. What moment was arrived? «You know it’s time to end this once and for all». Joleen closed her eyes tightly and began to beat the fists on the table. «NO!!!», she yelled at the empty house. «Yes! Mom died six months ago and nothing changed. What are you waiting for?!». It was true, Joleen's mother died but her sisters and their compliant attitude for her wasn't change. «Maia and Zoe will never let you to have your own life, can't you understand? I'm the only one who you can trust!», the voice pressed her, «Take some of the magical powder now. Today is the day you will show your sisters that it's over». Joleen took a deep breath and went to the desk of her room. The magical powder was well hidden in the chaos of the drawer, under the papers and the junk. Maia didn't have to find her for any reason in the world, she had promised it to the voice. She poured some of that white dust on the table and picked it up in a single strip. Then, she took a piece of paper and rolled it up, she brought it to his nostril and took a deep breath. The effect of the magical powder was almost immediate: she felt a shiver running through her whole body and then an uncontrollable euphoria. In that moment the voice inside her head screamed with excitement and Joleen knew she was right: it was time. That night she would take away what her sisters held the most: she would burn that damn house and show them what she was capable of. And then it would be over, once and for all.

April 15, 2021 21:20

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2 comments

Francis Daisy
02:01 May 03, 2021

Powerful! I can feel the sister's anger!

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Giulia S.
21:18 May 03, 2021

Thanks! It was kinda liberating wrote that part haha!

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