Anastasia

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Red Velvet

It was the dead of night, and all was silent. Ana lay curled in her sleeping bag, on the hard cement floor, of that cellar. Unaware, of the darkness afoot.

"What are you doing here? I killed you." Nadia was startled awake, by his presence standing over her.

"You silly bitch, I told you. You can't kill me. You seriously think a fucking, metal baseball bat, is any match for me? You have to be delusional."

"You can't have her, I wont let you take her."

"I already told you the terms. You provide me with a sacrifice of your own offspring, each year that she lives, and I will leave her alone."

Nadia felt her stomach turn, and curdle like spoiled milk.. "I did, I have bared ten children, all of which, I have given to you. I've followed the rules, you however, have not."

The demon tilted his head, smirking through hollow blue eyes.

"She told me what you did, she told me you hurt her. The deal was that if I sacrificed a child for each year that she lived, she would not be harmed. Those were your words. Not mine."

His eyes shone red for a moment, before returning to their natural state, of icy blue. Reaching towards the head of a sleeping child. He brushed through Ana's hair. Sleek, and bunched over her pillow.

"DON'T YOU TOUCH HER!"

"Mama? What's wrong, what's going on?" Her voice was raspy, as she rubbed the bags under her eyes.

Nadia ignored her child, as she stared over Ana, and into his eyes. Ana looked back into the dark room. She could see nothing, but a silhouette, which outlined the crates of food. Gawking back at her mother, who continued to stare into thin air. Ana relived the terror and confusion from the day they left.

"Mama you're scaring me... What are you looking at?"

Without even an tiny acknowledgement, towards her daughters' distress. Nadia stood, and with one fail swoop. She picked up the child, and positioned her on her hip. Grabbing their bags with her free hand, and running as fast as she could. Away, from her demon.

Out that impenetrable hatch. She flew through the snow coated field, passed the farmhouse, and onto the road. The dim light of street lamps on each corner, guiding her way.

"Mamochka what's happening. Where are we going?"

"Hush child. Just you let me worry about that."

As Nadia approached her jeep, that she had parked a block away from the house. Ana caught one final glimpse of her fathers' hometown. Nadia threw open the door to the back seat, tossing in the bags, and placing Ana on the bench.

The speed limit on these small-town streets was a snail-pace of 40km/hr. Though Nadia clearly had different plans in mind, as she sped through the dead streets, at an 80.

Ana side-eyed her mothers expression, from the back seat. She was acting exactly like she did before. She seemed almost... possessed.

"What about Mary, and Ed?" Ana cowered, through shaken breaths.

"What did I tell you? No questions."

Ana shook her head, sitting back, with her arms folded, intolerant to her mothers response.

"I thought you were getting along for a second there." Ana grumbled.

"What was that?" Nadia glaringly, made eye contact through her rear view mirror.

"I said... I thought you guys were getting along. You seemed so... I don't know... less angry with Mary after the graveyard. You didn't fight all day after that. That's all I was saying."

"This has nothing to do with that Anastasia. And watch the way you speak to me. You have no idea the lengths to which I go, in order to ensure, your happiness and safety."

Ana sighed, as she leaned her head on the frosted window. "Well sorry." She let out in a muffled, sarcastic tone. Nadia rolled her eyes. Ending the conversation in a pool of tension, and silent frustration.

They sat in that car for so long, that Ana could feel the pins and needles, numbing both of her legs. She could of sworn, someone was twisting a butcher knife into her lower back.

With the amount of pain she felt, stuck in that one spot for what seemed like a lifetime. Leaving, was out of the question. It was out of her control. There was nothing, she could do about it, and she felt helpless at the hands of her psychotic mother.

"Well morning, sleepy head." Nadia proclaimed, as Ana began to open her eyes. Realizing in that moment, that she had given in to the exhaustion.

"Are we still, driving?" Ana rubbed her eyes. She had been hopeful that she would wake up in her own bed, as though this had never happened. Unfortunately, however, that wasn't the case at all.

"Mhm." Nadia sipped her extra large cup of coffee, as she held tight to the steering wheel, with her alternate hand. The bag's under her eyes, were as pronounced as if she had gotten two shiners over night. And she was yawning, every other second.

"Mom you're tired, why don't we pull over so you can sleep?"

"I'm okay." Nadia responded, between yawns.

"Come on mom, we can continue after you get some rest. Look at you, you're struggling to even keep your eyes open. Neither of us will be happy, or safe if you crash this thing, because you're too tired."

Nadia's heart nearly jumped from her chest, as she looked back at her baby. The spitting image of the man that she had once loved. In that moment, she looked identical to like him.

Nadia began to comply. Relinquishing the stubbornness she had held, to her husband, through her daughters' precious eyes.

"Okay baby doll, okay, but only for a bit. We've still got a ways to go."

Ana nodded as she exhaled a sigh of relief. Not only were they about to return to safety, but Ana could finally stretch her legs, for the first time in eons.

They parked in the lot, of the next supercenter they found. And Ana, leaped from her seat. "Can I walk around for a bit?"

"Yeah, but don't go far, okay?"

Within a few minutes, the feeling returned to Ana's limbs. And she had finally gotten rid of that stabbing pain. She felt relieved in a physical sense. However, the same could not be said for her thoughts.

Why would they have left in the middle of the night? What was she talking to? Why did this keep happening?

Every scenario Ana could think of, played on a loop in her mind. She needed answers, and now was the time to get them.

With Nadia sound asleep, Ana began her snooping. As quiet as she could possibly be. Ana picked up her mothers suitcase, and placed it on her lap. Slowly, she unzipped the bag. All the while, holding eye contact, with her snoring mother.

Inside lay a mountain of clothes, which covered a small book, and her mothers' Super K. The book was a velvety dark red. It was the exact color of blood, a beautiful shade in Ana's eyes. The cover was hard, and engraved with gold Italics, which read, 'Diary.'

Nadia held her breath as she glared at the small journal. With the vicious whisper of bad seed, Ana smirked. Looking up at her mother. "Fine, If you won't tell me what's going on. I'll figure it out myself."

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