I wrote this late on Christmas Day, a time of fellowship and family and goodwill; so, naturally, it's the darkest thing I've ever written. It's about Faith's childhood...
305 words, rating 15, but contains concepts which some readers might find distressing.
Getting in the Game
Faith picked up the book carefully in both hands and walked into the kitchen. She wanted to hear the story again, and perhaps this time Mom would…
No. She knew from the smell, even before she saw the empty bottle rolled away on the floor, heard her mother’s crack-voiced snoring. Not this time. Then came a more sinister sound; a key in the lock. ‘Uncle’ Sean was back. He hit her if she didn’t call him that, so she’d learned real quick. She moved back carefully, trying to make herself small, as he came in. Smelling of the drink himself, he was. He seemed happy, a matter of a deal made or a bet won, and wanting to celebrate. But Mom wasn’t interested, however much he shook her and slapped her, she snored on. When he tried to pick her right up, she roused just enough to spew all down the front of his shirt. He bellowed in anger and threw her to the floor with a thud, and stripped off his sodden shirt and threw it on her unconscious body.
Then looked around and caught sight of Faith, pressing herself back into the wall. He glared, a new target for his rage; but then a different look crept into his eyes. Calculation, and hunger. He grinned, glanced down once more at her mother, then tried his best to smile ingratiatingly. Sweat glistened on his face.
“Hey, Faithie, since your Mam’s sleeping, do you want to play a little game? Just me and you?”
She shook her head mutely, already knowing it would do no good. If you were big, or strong, or rich, you got to make the rules. Anybody else, didn’t matter what you wanted. Wishes never worked except in stupid fairy tales.
The book fell onto the dirty floor, ignored and forgotten.