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Through the shattered glass

by Tabitha Beaudin (Age: 39)
copyright 11-09-2006

Age Rating: 18 +

Memory it’s an allusive paradox, an enigma that strains to leave its stain upon one’s soul. Much like water it twists and turns pulling it’s occupants down into ruin or is it salivation?
I lie trapped within myself, a phantasm swirling just within the confinements of the outer reaches of my mind. Each day within my tainted heart, I yearn to answer the question that has plagued me from the time I was a small child. Every since I could remember pieces of time have eluded me. Yet, other then those sparse moments, the day’s events would replay themselves endlessly, almost in a cruel loop.

* * *

I look up from the book I hold in my hands, Stephan King’s ‘The Stand’, and stare transfixed at the slightly marred pages. A small frown sits perfectly on my thirteen year old lips, my brows are arched, and my eyes close as my mind wanders backwards in concentration.
A single question starts to gnaw its way through my psyche. I look down at the book again, running a chewed fingernail along it’s battered cover, hoping that the smooth contours of its surface would hold some insight, would pour it’s knowledge into me, allowing me to absorb the hidden walls blocking my memory. Nothing.
Tears slide across my haunted visage and drip recklessly onto the book’s cover, I blink once, twice, yet still they fall. I wipe at them, my right hand shaking. Releasing a pent up scream, I throw the book against the wall, and watch as it slides to the floor. A satisfied grin replaces the frown.
Although I am free of the rage, the worrisome question still lingers but it doesn’t seem as important. I no longer care that I can’t remember starting to read the book, let alone reading seventy-three pages. I slide off of the bed and walk through the doorway, ‘The Stand’ forgotten.
It is only once I enter the bathroom, and look into the mirror, that my alarm returns. Although, the glass is whole, my reflection is shattered. I drop to my knees welcoming the blackness, which overtakes me, pulling me into the hazy abyss of yesterdays.
The darkness dissolves as muted colors twist within the peripheral of my vision. They seem to fold into themselves until blackness reigns again, and then everything fades. A vision takes their place grasped from within the hollows of my mind. It’s as if I am the star of a twisted movie. I see my five-year-old self, and yet she isn’t me. She is nothing but a broken doll, and it disgusts me to see her.
I sense more then hear hollow laugher escaping my body, which lies some where in the still reality of the bathroom. But my mind is trapped in the past, in that awful moment, and the projector is broken.

She lies hidden beneath the cozy blue and black comforter that she had stolen from her parents’ bed. As the witching hour looms, sleep calls to her. With blinking eyes, thumb stuck square in her tiny mouth, hands shaking she flips on the flashlight and shines it into every corner of the room, keeping the monsters at bay. Curled in a fetal position, Pink and white teddy bear, Strawberry Bear. (A forgotten Care Bear perhaps) clutched in her chubby arms. A black and white kitten, Sylvester is nuzzled against her side, and although his gentle breathing does little to calm her alarm, her eyes begin to flutter and close. Soon sleep claims her.
Below her bedroom, at the foot of the winding staircase a Creak can be heard, as the Monster (in the guise of her uncle) ascends, and then her bedroom door is thrown open. An eerie, almost unholy light shines in from the hallway, casting the sleeping child under a sinister glow. He licks his lips and steps inside, softly closing and locking the door behind him.
I scream at her my inner voice raw with anger “Wake up…Wake up…Wake up!” But the stupid little bitch doesn’t know any better, she just disappears further into la la land forcing me … to awaken and face him.
He is standing at the edge of the bed, so small, almost fragile looking. A somewhat scrawny 13 years old that comes to her for comfort, for protection. She is the only one that understands him. It never crosses his mind that seeking that kind of comfort from a five year old is wrong.
With a shaking hand he grabs a corner of the sheet thin blanket and tugs, it slides down her torso revealing her pajama-clad body. He trembles a little, takes a deep breath and reaches out for her. He touches the smooth suppleness of her youth, she opens her eyes and stares up at him, but she’s not there, theirs only me.
Crystal tears fall and slide across her/our face. With his free hand, he reaches up and wipes then away, he bends down and kisses her forehead, much like a lover would, and her eyes close.

I barely hear his voice as he says the words that I dread the most, “ Don’t worry it’s just me, there are no monster’s here.” He climbs in next to her. “ You must not tell anyone, they wouldn’t understand our little games.” He pauses, as if he is pondering, thinking very hard and carefully about what to say next. “Besides they would blame you, a tainted whore like you, well you see none of this is my fault. How can I be held accountable, don’t you agree?”
And the foolish girl returns from her mind trip, she opens her eyes, and smiles at him, she actually smiles at him. Deep within the contours of her/our mind, I shout out a warning but it’s to late. With his selfish touch, she falls back into her pre-determined fantasies hurling me into these harsh realities.
From the safety of my memory, I look at him and wonder what kind of pain he harbors. It is true, deep inside I don’t blame him, and I don’t even hate him. After all it was her, she was the one who forced me to endure this, and I don’t want to be here, I don’t’ want to re-live this but she is so weak. I know that without me, she would die. I must confess that sometimes I wish she would.

As I open my eyes and stare down at the cold black and white tiled bathroom floor, his caress lingers. It burns me, and it seems that he is corroding my very essence with his phantom touches.
Dry heaves consumes me, as I pitiful and broken lay sprawled against the base of the toilet, my body refusing to relieve me of this disgust. Oh, I hate her right now. I hate her more then anything…and so I reach for the razor, the cool steel, the only thing that erases this pain, and as the blood drips, it no longer matters that my reflection is shattered.

* * *

Just beyond the room he waits, it’s a big risk and he knows it but the girl is oblivious, and on the brink of women hood, a sixteen year old gift, a pure vessel just waiting for him. He takes one last look around to make sure none of their other relatives are awake. Not that what he is about to do is wrong, (yeah right) after all they had been separated for so long. He really had tried to give her up, what with all the other women, but no one could come close to claiming him like she did. Just earlier that night his older brother, her other uncle, had made a comment on how his latest girlfriend kind of resembled her, they had really teased him about that. Asking if he had some kind of forbidden thing for his niece, oh if they only knew. Anyways, that was all the incentive he needed, she will be his again, in fact on that night he would claim her forever.

After one last look around and only after he is certain that he is alone. He pushes the door open and just likes all those years ago, he eases himself quietly into the room. Softly he closes the door, and fumbles quite desperately for the lock, to discover to his horror that there isn’t one. Panic fills him, how can they be reunited if he can’t ensure their privacy. Crestfallen, he walks over to the bed.

He sits on the edge of her bed and watches her sleep for a while. Longingly he reaches out and brushes her short dark hair. She stir’s a bit, and he is a little worried that she will awaken, and ruin their reunion. After all, the bedroom door doesn’t have a lock, and he knows that this time she would have to be forced. She isn’t the type to take to these kinds of things easily, nor is she that lost little girl anymore but once he reminds her of her proper place she will break. After all, whom else does one as tainted as her turn to for love?
He pulls the blankets off of her, only because he wants to crawl next to her, like they use to lie tangled together when they were children. But he ‘accidentally’ (yeah right) pulls her nightshirt up to her chin and then he just can’t help himself. After all it must have happened for a reason. Like maybe it was fate, maybe she made it happen. Maybe he wouldn’t have to force her at all.

* * *

Something is pulling at the back of her mind as she stumbles half hazard through the realms of dreams. A voice barely a whisper is crying. Part of her really wants to ignore it, really wants to continue down the yellow brick road, to Grandma’s house with a basket of goodies. Oh, but what about the big bad wolf? But it getting louder and no the voice isn’t crying, it’s shouting. A melody of anger and hurt intermix within its words. Now that she thinks about it, this voice seems really familiar, like maybe it’s been within her all along. She forces the parody of ‘little red riding hood’ out of her mind, and focuses on the voice. Yes, it is familiar.

“Wake up…Wake up…. Wake up….” I scream from within my dark corner of our mind.

Not only is the voice familiar but the words are as well. And suddenly she doesn’t want to listen; suddenly the ‘big bad wolf’ is looking better and better. But then, She feel’s someone brushing their lips against hers, and the voice grows louder, and this time she listens and opens her eyes.
To say that she was surprised to find him pressed up against her, pinning her to the bed would be an understatement. Suddenly for a brief moment she is that five-year-old girl again. A glaze look fills her eyes, as her tortured mind reaches out for safer pastures. Yet, it only finds me! After all this time, I have finally grown wary of carrying this burden. It’s time that she realized, time she accepted the truth, time that she stopped this madness. After all, if she lets him taint her this time, there would be no return from the darkness for either one of us.
With strength she never knew she possessed she pushes him off of her. He goes flying to the bile colored carpeted floor. He climbs to his feet and stares down at her, his guilty eyes finding hers, filling her with repulsive rage. She sits up pulling the blanket against her, covering her nearly naked flesh.

“What the Fuck do you think you are doing?”

He looks flushed, he brings his hands to his face, wipes at his eyes, they fall back to his side, where he clenches and unclenches them. He laughs a horrid hollow sound that sickens her.

“Get out or I will scream,” Her originally sweet voice is tainted with venom.
He backs slowly towards the door, still clenching and unclenching his fists. “I…” he begins.
“Get out, Get out Get out….” She screams.

“I was looking for my contact lenses,” he softly says, as he turns from her and leaves the room.
She falls back onto the bed sob’ shaking her entire body. A single hated thought consumes her mind; Her uncle didn’t even wear glasses, let alone Contacts. She never did fall back to sleep that night.

* * *

She skipped class today, even though she knew that she would fall behind, College is just so much harder then High School. Yet in her 22 years, she never had a better reason then this. She is sitting in the police station, calmly explaining to the officer what her uncle had done to her so many years ago.

The officer shakes his head sadly, “I am sorry but due to the fact that you were both children, you can’t press charges.”

She thanks the officer and then leaves dejected.

Two weeks later, when she is checking her email, she comes across a message from him. After an agonizing ten minutes she opens the message and this is what it said.
Tabby Cat, I am very sorry that our RELATIONSHIP hurt you it was never my attentions to do so. However, I feel the need to defend myself. You seem to think that this whole thing was my fault, when in fact you are also to blame. Maybe you need to take responsibility for your own actions, and then you can make peace with this. After all having a RELATIONSHIP of our nature does take two consenting people. We both know why you are being this way, you just couldn’t deal with the fact that I came to my senses when you were sixteen and ended it. I do hope that one day you will be able to find someone else.

She stares at the screen in disbelieve, a relationship, what the hell was he taking about? Is that how he justified it, did he seriously think that they had a relationship? Was he freaking insane? How could a five year old give consent for any kind of relationship?

Anger and bitter rage fill her; she reaches for her journal and a pen, and does the only thing she can in moments like this. She writes, and in the guise of a poem, she tells him exactly what she thinks about his idea of a relationship.

Who is this voice inside your head, am I devil or angel?
The succubus finally coming to claim you, am I the
reason for your discomfort, the numbness of your mind?

In you eyes I am the tainted one, the one you could never
hold mold to you likeness, oh but you tried.

What is this feeling deep inside? Am I just a memory of your
Fucked up reality, a morsel to your whim. But you won't even acknowledge me; acknowledge the sin of your temptation. I was
flesh and innocence lost to your penetration. Your holy views
of morality.

In your eyes I was to blame, the seductress sent by Satan
to claim you. Surround you in darkness, smother you till nothing
but I was left. Oh what a merry sight... a five year old with devil horns.

What is this realization deep inside, is it I the victim of your sadistic game, the victim of your selfish touch. No, that's not me. I am that voice that whispers of regret. I am darkness calling to you in the night, the soothing blackness that awaits you. The pain, the horror, the emptiness bleeding out of me and seeping into you.

Most of all I am the realization that its you not me that's to blame. But do you think you could do it. Stand up and be a man for once in your pathetic life.

So where is it, my golden song, my apology.
You owe me at least that.

She looks down at the journal entry and frowns. Not sure if she should actually waste her time on sending him this. She turns away from the book, and walks to the bathroom.
As her gaze finds the mirror she begins to shake, afraid of what her image will reveal. She swallows her fear, and allows her eyes to linger on the mirrors surface, and from the looking glass, I stare back at her. Her hand shoots out and traces the contours of my, no our face. And finally my looking glass is no longer shattered.

I smile at my refection and my voice shakes, as I say, “I may be tainted but at least I am not alone.”

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