“Are you packed yet?” my mother screams from downstairs in the kitchen. I can’t wait untill tomorrow. I’ve never been a bridesmaid before, and it seems really fun. Everyone staring at how beautiful you look, waiting in anticipation for the bride to waltz down the aisle to the man of her dreams. Too bad that man is my stinky older brother. I can’t comprehend how he got such a great girl like Lili, I mean, he has no respect whatsoever, is always teasing me and making me so angry I never want to speak to him again, but… he is my brother and even though we fight, all the time, I do love him and I guess that’s all you need.
“Yes” I call back out as I stumble down the stairs with my new Lou Boutin heels and Burberry coat on. I see the limo out the front and demand the driver put my bags in the car. As we start the 40minute drive to the airport, to catch a plane that leaves in just over an hour I begin to wonder what the Maldives will be like. Hot sun blazing down, peaceful and refreshing sound of waves washing up onto the white sandy beaches, calm birds flying past. I loud horn distracts me from these thoughts, and in the dark street the last thing I see is the piercing red traffic light flash past and the bright approaching headlights of a fast car to my left.
I open my eyes hoping this has all been a bad nightmare. I see my brother sitting on the other side of the room weeping.
“What happened?” I stammer.
Tom looks at me with dead red eyes and starts to walk over, almost dragging his body behind him. I can tell it’s not good news by the way his hands are curled into fists.
“Ava, you were in a car accident, you suffered a minor concussion and severe bruising to your ribs.”
I know this is true because I’m finding it hard to breathe and I feel some-what dizzy. Before he can say anything else I see a single tear stream down his face.
“Where’s Mum? She’s ok isn’t she?”
Somehow I know she isn’t alright, I know she isn’t even here anymore. “She’s gone Ava”
I don’t want to believe it, although there is nothing I can do. Tears begin to fill my eyes. They start to fall as Tom hugs me trying to comfort me I look over his shoulder and see my Dad lying in the hospital bed next to me with a few scratches on his face but nothing looks major. Tom lets go of me and continues to tell me what happened. How the driver ran a red light, the car crashing into us, how he had to call off his wedding. I feel to blame for all this, even though I didn’t do anything. “Everything will be different now” I think to myself as the nurse informs us we’re able to go home. Home is probably the only thing that will make me feel any better right now.
As weeks pass my Dad becomes distant, yet somehow closer. By closer I mean abusive. I know this is his way of dealing with Mum but his abuse makes me feel even more to blame for the accident than ever before.
I sit in my room which has become my haven of the past few weeks and a thought comes over me, I start school again tomorrow. Even the thought of it begins to make me feel sick. All my friends will be surrounding me with their un-sympathetic hugs, fake faces and half-hearted condolences. I’ve always known they used me for my money, I’ve just never seemed to care. Although now it feels worse than it ever has to have lost your mother and have no-one to comfort you. I hide the bruises from my Dad to avoid any romours of self-harm. It’s been 4 weeks since i left the hospital and all 28 days I’ve been punched, kicked, slapped or pushed by my father. I do think abut telling my favourite teacher about the abuse, I just hope it will stop before it’s too much to bear.
I walk through the door and up to my haven, I can hear my Dad storming up the stairs, - he hasn’t been at work much since the accident and I don’t think he’s going back untill next month - “Nice to see you say Hello for once.”
I can hear the sarcasm in his voice. I glance at him for a second, then turn my head away from him.
He grabs my arm, I whip my head around to look at his as he drags me down the stairs. I’m resisting but he starts kicking me. He lets go and I roll down the stairs, bumping my head on each step. This almost same routine happens day-in, day-out for the next 2 weeks. I start to form bruises, cuts and grazes all over my body. I’m sore and depressed and what’s worse is I know it won’t stop. I’ve let him get too strong and knows I’m too weak.
Weeks pass before I find myself standing in the office of Miss Hubbard explaining what’s been happening to me. For a minute it helped, but I still feel like I have no one to talk to, I feel defenceless, I feel taken over, I feel dead.
I arrive home from school one late afternoon. Dad’s back at work now but the abuse has started again. I’ve had enough. I don’t know when but I started crying a long time ago. I walk down to the garage with my black Chanel mascara running down my face into black puddles on my school dress. “This is the only way out” I say out loud, re-assuring myself this is the only option. I open the tool box and grab the silver gun and a single bullet. It’s so heavy in my hands that I find it difficult to hold up in my fragile state. I load the gun and put it in my left hand. I try and think of reasons to stop myself but my mind is blank. I hear the front door slam shut and I know It’s now or never. I hear my name being called over and over again but promise myself not to call back. I slowly close my eyes and count to three out loud.
“One” my hearts racing .
“Two” tears are falling from my eyes quicker than ever before.
"One, Two, Three" - A short story written by Shanelle Blachford