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Submitted into Contest #98 in response to: Write a story involving a character who cannot return home.... view prompt

85 comments

Sad Fiction

ย 

TW: self harm, suicide, suicidal ideation, domestic abuse

The tears of the moon glisten in the water. The soft pitter of rain echoes throughout my temporary house. Iโ€™ve never been so alone, just me and my thoughts sit in the shack. The moonโ€™s tears gather in puddles on the floor. I cry with her, just letting my sorrows drift away like a lost cloud on a clear day. Life isnโ€™t fair. It never was, never will be.ย 

I put my head between my dirty knees and stare at the decrepit floor.ย 

Everything brings back memories. The moon is my Fatherโ€™s disapproving smile, chilling me on the warmest of days. The puddles are my siblingsโ€™ faces when they get pushed down, bullied, saddened. The dark dank sky is everyoneโ€™s empty presence around a vacant dining table. Even the wind is Motherโ€™s whispers of regret and shame, all the bad choices she made, begging me to follow.ย 

The shack is Stepdad Randyโ€™s โ€˜protectionโ€™ around me, rough, flawed, abandoned. The endless meadows are all the years of all the abuse Iโ€™ve lived through under Stepmother Willaโ€™s rule. The wilting hemlocks and sweet peas are reminders of how I failed everyone. The glint of the moon in the puddles is like the glint of the knife that took my brotherโ€™s life.ย 

The small moss specks on the rotting wood is the cancer that took my grandparents away. The gopher holes are signs of separation that canโ€™t be put back together, just like my family.ย 

The cricketsโ€™ chirp is the grasping cry of my heart, pleading for renewal. A new start. Anything better than this current state of being.ย 

Even if I want to return home, there would be nothing to return to, like a leaf when it decomposes. Nothing remains.ย 

I brush away my tears, like my mother always would, ever so gently. I hug myself, pushing away all negative thoughts for now. The rain keeps coming, like the clouds are crying tears of doubt along with me.ย 

I lift my dreary head to the mocking face of the moon. Itโ€™s as if Father is shaking his head in shame at my being. I pick up a board and throw it with gusto across the shack. It hits the wall, just as thunder booms through the rain.ย 

โ€œFREYA!โ€ Stepmother Willa booms inside my head. โ€œGO DO THE DISHES YOU BRAT! NOWWWWW!โ€ย 

โ€œNow, now, Freya, you know better than to cut yourself. I love you with my being, so please stop,โ€ come Fatherโ€™s false hopes and lies.ย 

โ€œFreya, live life to the fullest,โ€ Granโ€™s words echo in the wind.ย 

โ€œCโ€™mon, Frey, betcha I can hit you with more rocks!โ€ Koy, the youngest of the four, calls out to me.

โ€œFreya, get yourself some drugs already. Join the club, and get some beers while youโ€™re at it,โ€ Stepfather Randy nearly shouts, in a dazed state from drinking.ย 

Freya this, Freya that, Freya Freya Freya. More water rolls down my cheeks, more than I thought possible. The saltiness filling my mouth is my only comfort, the only thing that I have plenty of, my tears.ย 

โ€œTears are emotions leaving the body,โ€ comes Motherโ€™s soothing voice, the last thing she said to me on her deathbed.

In the hospital room bedecked in flowers and โ€˜Get Well Soonโ€™ cards, there stood the two of us. Father squeezed my shoulder, and left me and Mom alone.

โ€œFreya,โ€ came her weakening voice. โ€œPromise me something baby.โ€

โ€œY-yes, momma? Anything for you,โ€ I said.ย 

โ€œPromise me that you will let your tears fall. Promise me,โ€ said she.

โ€œWhy momma? Why should I cry when you want to see me strong?โ€ I asked.

โ€œFreya, every strong soldier has to weep sometime. Tears are emotions leaving the body,โ€ she said in a shaky tone.ย 

โ€œBut momma, I love you! I donโ€™t want you to go,โ€ I cried out.

Her eyes closed and she exhaled for the last time.ย 

I cried and cried that day, just as I promised her.ย 

The salty taste continues to fill my mouth, and the little droplets are holding races down my cheeks and neck.ย 

โ€œI love you, Mom,โ€ I whisper into the storm.ย 

The wind whips my hair around, and the storm continues on. I hang my head in despair.ย 

I look at the cuts on my arms.

In the kitchen, I glanced up at the knife rack. Is this the right thing to do? I thought. I selected the smallest black-handled knife. I fingered it in my palm, feeling the weight, feeling the tip. The blade caught the summer light that drifted in from the window. I saw my reflection in the shiny silver blade. My chocolate-brown hair hung over my hazel eyes, covering up my shame and regrets. The frown etched on my face was the only hesitation. I pushed away the angel on my shoulder, and I sat on the tile floor behind the counter. I hefted the knife over my arm and hovered. I softly grazed the skin at first, then I pushed deeper, wincing as I did so. I dropped the knife as tears and blood slurred my vision. I heard Father approaching, so I quickly jumped up and ran to the sink, running cold water to soothe the burn inside me. I swiped at my cheeks, and didnโ€™t dare to look Father in the eye. He walked by, not paying one bit of attention to me, like always.

The memories are not helping the waterworks. My clothes are already soaked, and so are my bones. The rain starts to subside, but the thunder rolls on, like the many hills surrounding me. Everyone knows that lightning comes before thunder, but I donโ€™t pay attention to anything. Lightning is striking all around me, but I pay no notice. It is only when I hear the villainous cackle strike wood that I realize itโ€™s too late. Fire consumes the shack in a gulp, me included. The wood crumples and breaks, trapping me in a fiery globe. I cough and stutter, trying to get oxygen to my lungs, but to no avail. I swallow heat, and my tongue goes dry.ย 

I lay in the pile of wood, the fire burning my hair, skin, and the tatters of my clothes. At least no one will miss me, Mother and James are gone. Father is continually grieving. Koy, Micheal, and Jack are dispersed across the globe. Stepfather Randy is drunk silly, and Stepmother Willa is glad that I leave. Gran and Gramps are already gone, so I might as well reunite with them. The fire roars in my ears, and the heat intensifies. No one sees my struggle, no one sees my pain. The smoke billows up in puffs, only noticed by the dank night sky. I grasp and cough, and the heat burns my chest.ย 

Time seems to slow down. The wood is reduced to ashes, the smoke dies down, and nothing is left.ย 

Freya, comes a weak voice riding the wind, whispering my name. Freya, come join usโ€ฆ

June 13, 2021 21:25

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85 comments

20:35 Jun 17, 2021

I don't know if it's just me, but a TW mentioning dark topics makes me more compelled to continue reading. There is a trend going on on Reedsyโ€”writing beautiful stories with incredible imagery. It pains meโ€”because I will never be able to write a story like thatโ€”but I will eat them up! The comparison to multiple things in the scene (like the moon, the puddles, the shack) to bits of Freya's life was such a clever way to introduce the readers to her backstory. I loved the word choices as well; they were captivating. I don't know if this was int...

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I can see that, I understand being pulled in my something that stands out lol. thanks :) yeah, I only looked it up after I published it XDDD ironyyyy (yeah I suppose so) yep, I tend to do that XD I'd appreciate it, but only if you want. XD thanks :))))

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15:30 Jun 18, 2021

You're welcome! Here are the tense examples: "The tears of the moon glistened in the water." "Even if I want to return home, there would be nothing to return to, like a leaf when it decomposes." "Freya, came a weak voice riding the wind, whispering my name." "The wind whipped my hair around, and the storm continues on." "I lay in the pile of wood, the fire burning my hair, skin, and the tatters of my clothes."

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Philia S.
16:08 Jun 14, 2021

Wow. I mean, wow. Like, not the kind of wow which is all excited, but that wow which is blown away. Cause this story blew me away. The imagery...twas wonderful!! Just a small thing I noticed; you tend to switch between past and present tense, I think you can work a lil bit on that... Otherwise, great job!!

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thx. yeah, that's like my flaw in writing XD the italics was intentional though because she was recalling a memory so yeah. thanks for checking it out :)

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Philia S.
16:12 Jun 14, 2021

XD, yeah, I understood that, but I noticed the difference in the para before the flashback and after it :)) Well, I was obliged to do so, considering we are friends, so no 'thank yous' needed! :DD

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okay, fixed, thanks (yes, I'm gonna say it anyway, give credit where credit is due ;) )! :DDD

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<3 GAH the descriptions were written so well and I love the comparisons to her family members, those were sweet <333 the end was so sad too :'(( Why does Freya sound like the perfect name for this story lolll TEAMAZING ๐Ÿต๐Ÿต๐Ÿต job!!! ;)) ~ Amethyst

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ksjdkfjksd TvT iT's sO pErFeCt np! :))

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well, it's close to perfect :)) and that is hard to achieve~~

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Valerie June
23:20 Jun 13, 2021

This was chilling. The imagery and descriptions fit so well. Everything felt so fragile and delicate, if that makes sense. Iโ€™m glad you submitted this story, though Iโ€™m sure it was a bit hard. Dark stories can turn out amazing and this was no exception. I loved this line: โ€œFreya, every strong soldier has to weep sometime. Tears are emotions leaving the body.โ€ Simply beautifulโ€ฆ

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yes, it makes sense. at one point, I was like 'how can I make this darker' lol. ik, I like that line as well :)

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Valerie June
06:40 Jun 14, 2021

Yes! You figure how much you can bend a character before they snap. XD It'll never hurt to include some wise words from a loving mother.

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Valerie June
20:01 Jun 15, 2021

Mhm, thatโ€™s where things get funโ€ฆ >:)

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Object Mixer Ej
16:28 Jun 25, 2021

This is a really cool story! You're always the best at doing them.

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Object Mixer Ej
16:41 Jun 25, 2021

I'm doing great! How about you?

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I'm doing very well :) what's your fav color (cause I totally don't know)?

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Object Mixer Ej
17:05 Jun 25, 2021

Sea Green!

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14:58 Jun 17, 2021

Hey, Loney? who's Harisha Fantima?

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20:41 Jun 18, 2021

She only follows you. No comments or stories or followers. Suspicious.

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Itโ€™s interesting for sure. Maybe theyโ€™re just new or something.

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goodz thanks! wbu do-do-do-do (Iโ€™m sorry my mind is a mess hah-)

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(it's alright, I understand. I'm going crazy from listening to the star spangled banner 24/7 so yeah) eh that time of the month so not the best I could be...

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(WAIT DO YOU MEAN THE LITERAL NATIONAL ANTHEM LOL or did I understand that wrong-) ahh yoikesโ€ฆ*sends chocolate and warm bedsheets and movies*

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(yeah that's the one, thanks to my bro) *gratefully accepts* shanks

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