Sad Fiction Suspense


When she happened to find it at the back of an old wardrobe, wrapped in pillowcases and towels, Alice gave a start of fear. Yet that doll was not anything but ugly or frightening. It was indeed beautiful. It was blonde, with very fine-flowing hair, and had a face with perfect features, almost regal: the perfect oval of the delightful face, the high cheekbones, the lively gaze. It had blue eyes and a small rosebud-shaped mouth. The blonde doll wore a white floor-length dress that was embroidered and embellished with beads. Alice was frightened by the unexpected encounter with the doll because by now an adult she had forgotten that toy.

It had been she or perhaps her mother who had hit the doll in that closet a lot of years ago.

In her childhood, that doll had been called Anne and had been given to her by her aunt Ada. It had been an important and very welcome gift. In fact, Alice’s parents were too poor to buy her toys.

Anne had been a precious gift.  To Alice, it remembered her aunt Ada dressed in white on her wedding day.  She was( had been) very fond of her aunt and she liked spending long periods of time at her house which was welcoming and beautiful and, not least, the food was good, not as poorly as at her home.

Alice's attachment to Aunt Ada and her willingness to stay at her house had even aroused the jealousy of her mother who often asked her: “ So is it with Aunt Ada that you want to live? Oh, do you want to leave us?” Not that Alice would have minded having as parents her Aunt Ada and her husband, Uncle Karl who always pampered and pleased her. She was better off at their house than at her own where quarrels between her parents, between her and her brother were the order of the day and when she lived poorly. But when her mother asked her those questions ____so is it with Aunt Ada you want to stay? ____Alice felt her heart clench and was gripped by the desire to cry. In those questions she perceived ( felt) her mother’s concern, indeed her mother's anguish as if she was afraid of being abandoned, rejected by her own child, as if she ( Alice) would have chosen … another mother. In those words, in those questions, she felt that her mother was aware that they, her parents, were unable to offer her the life she wanted. And, at the same time, she felt that her mother wanted to remind her that she ( Alice) was her daughter, not Aunt Ada’s. With those questions, her mother claimed Alice as her, their property and she couldn’t help but feel like a thing, an object, as the doll her aunt had given her. Indeed worse, because the beautiful doll Anne had become a dear friend to her. Alice combed its hair, cuddled her, talked to it, and confided her dreams to Anne: one day her parents would no longer be poor and they too would have a house like that of Aunt Ada, a house with a bathroom that had a shower and a hydromassage tub, a house with the television! Yes, since at Alice’s house, there wasn’t even a television, she had to go to watch it at the house of her friends, as well as at Aunt Ada’s ( house).

Her aunt Ada continued to take care of her and even spoiled her ____she always cooked her favorite foods, such as ravioli with rosemary, sausage and potato balls, and pistachio cream ____ even when, to Alice's surprise, her belly started to swell more and more. Alice was a child and she feared that her aunt had fallen ill. “ No, I’m not at all sick,” her aunt said laughing. Then Aunt Ada told her that her belly was getting bigger because….her child would soon be born  (was going to be born). “ Ah, I hope she or he is as beautiful, good, and intelligent as you” Her aunt added, smiling. Alice was amazed and disconcerted since she believed the storks brought babies. Her aunt Ada told her that instead the babies were formed in the mother’s womb by a miracle of love and when they were ready to come into the world they were extracted from the mother’s womb.

Aunt Ada’s baby was about to be born and her aunt was preparing the layette for it and involved her in the preparation too. So Alice found herself knitting sweaters and slippers, while she was very eager to see the unborn child. It seemed to her that it was a surprise ___it was not even known whether the unborn child would be male or female _____a gift that her aunt was giving to her, as happened for her birthday, Christmas and Epiphany.

When Alice first saw Aunt Ada’s baby, and she saw it beside her holding it in her arms, it seemed to her it was extraordinarily big. Its appearance, features, and body is those of a puppy, a doll, but to her, it seemed imposing, it seemed that it dominated all the bed, all the room, and…that it absorbed all the thoughts and feelings of her aunt.

Even after the birth of Susanna Alice, she continued to spend time at her aunt Ada ‘s house, who was always busy looking after her baby. She breastfed her, washed and dressed her, and cuddled her. Alice felt put in the background, neglected. Now that her aunt had a little child considered her as a helper to look after her baby. She seemed no longer to consider her a child but an adult. Alice was sorry, she felt a lump of regret inside her and had a great desire to cry.

Her mother always repeated to her. “ See? Aunt Ada now that she has a child of hers no longer has time for you, she no longer cares about you” She added with more satisfaction: “ Eh, who gives you more than mom deceives you “ Alice felt like she was dying and she would have liked Susanna to disappear.

Aunt Ada’s child was a splendid bubbling baby. Susanna had a sweet face, and a soft and graceful body that attracted cuddles. She had very smooth, velvet skin that induced to caress her. Even when she cried and her face wrinkled however she remained delightful. Yet Alice when she took Susanna in her arms was tempted to let her fall to the ground. However she didn’t dare to do it, she feared what would happen to her, not to Susanna. Ah, if had been possible to get that puppet out of the way! Not being able to do it, Alice began to mistreat the doll Anne, which she often banged on the ground. One day she decided to destroy it and was tearing off its legs when her mother came and snatched the doll from her hands. Sure, she now remembered, it was her mother who had hidden that doll which she had never seen again. Who knows why she did it….Alice would have been tempted to ask her but by now her mother was old and maybe she didn’t even remember that doll.

July 29, 2023 00:26

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RBE | Illustration — We made a writing app for you | 2023-02

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