Content Book 1
By now, how many times have my mother threaten to drown me in the cellar? Answer: too many to count. This time I was out too late. It’s not like I have any friends to run away with or a house to visit that wasn’t father than 50 miles from here. Still living in the Northeast forests with no other human soul for miles do have their merits.
The wilderness in autumn is the most beautiful thing you’ll ever see. All the trees changing into various shades of yellow, orange and burgundy. Running through these dense forests with the wolves is riveting. Ha, no wonder my mother calls me wild. The sudden start of rain hitting on the windows creates a melody that resembles a lullaby.
“Sorry, mother,” I say. The reason why I ever call her mommy or mom is because she never gave birth to me. I should just call her foster parent or guardian. She never told me but it’s obvious. Her skin as white as snow while mine is as dark as bark. My hair has grown into vine shaped locks while hers is like straw. But of course I’m not envious of my mother. Being darker helps me blend into the trees. I would stand out if I was like a bright white light, except during the winter but still I’ll just look like a tree. To tell you the truth, I might as well be a tree.
You see, I talk to them and …they talk back, they have been leading me to this stump about a mile from home. The small stump had 16 rings showing it was 16 years of age, just like me. The trees told me she was once a wispy weeping willow with beautiful violet flowers. Now what remains is a decayed stump.
“Well,” I hear, her constant shoe tapping awoken me from my wonder. This is the part when she goes into a fit. I don’t know if it’s a motherly thing or not, to beat your children and lock them in the cellar for hours or days, but either way I don’t want it to happen. I clutch my teeth. I should just run away but of course I’m always afraid. Living here is hell but the unknown is always worse. Filled with courage or foolishness I state, “Fear has lost her grasp on me. Nothing can ever steer me again. I relish the fight against your demons and I’ll gladly win your wars!” An old saying I found in a book, it creates the aura that nothing can defeat you.
“Fine, you heathen!” my mother screeches like a harpy. She’s able to wring my hair and drag me down the steps. We look like Perseus holding Medusa’s head as we nearly trip as we descend down. There in the cellar laid an old antique claw foot tub. I’ve been in the cellar more than once but the cobwebs and dust that surrounded the room made me never want to return again, if I’m ever able to.
Mother pushes me into the murky water and makes sure my head is just beneath the surface. My fingers claw at the smooth sides of the tub as I sputter air that form bubbles. I don’t bother screaming, no one will ever have the chance to save me. So I must save myself, but I don’t have much time. Water filled lungs feel numb and everything seems to slow down. I’m practically dead and surprisingly I feel peaceful but I can’t give this wrench the satisfaction of killing me. Through my clouded judgement I remember a miracle.
In the past, I used to hide items in the impermeable water. Things my mother wouldn’t approve of, crystals and knick-knacks. Recently I’ve put an old Indian arrowhead into the tub too. It was made of stone and was made to kill. Naturally you know what happens next. As the grip of my hand strengthens, I grasp the arrowhead and shove it deep into my mother’s neck. In the span of five minutes, I have escaped and replaced my death with another’s, my mothers. Her body slumps halfway in the tub as I sputter water onto the floor. The grey waves are now burgundy. I’ve taken a life but not an innocent one.
She was not my mother, she never was! I took care of her but she never even took care of me. Still, she’s all I’ve ever known and now with her gone, I’m alone. I can’t stay her anymore, I must find others. Gathering food and water I take a small memento. A strand of dried violet-colored flowers, light and delicate, it is the only memory of my past before all this. As I leave the cottage, my trot becomes a sprint as I run through the forest.
I have no place to go, no place to live, and no place to call home. How could I be so stupid! She wasn’t blood and I hated her but she was all I had. I killed a human being! My hands will forever be stained with blood. Now I shall pay the price of solitude and isolation. My legs burn as I reach the small clearing with the 16 year old tree. This must be no coincidence. Sitting in its severed stump, I start to cry. Tears roll down my cheek as the weight of it all feels heavier each second. Do I even deserve to live? I don’t know the laws of the universe or what my punishment will entail but I do know one thing. I was born to be alone. I have only know and lost one person my whole life and it was her. As my hand rubs the rigid stump, I can feel the heartbeat of its core. It’s alive and it matches mine. Entranced with pity and sorrow, my soul becomes one with the forgotten willow. My arms are her branches and my hair is her flowers, violet and pure. Finally I am free from quilt and fear. The forest was my only home and now I have returned. I am content.