An Early Winter's Morn

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“If you just did what I told you, I wouldn’t have to do this,” Henry growled as his left hand clutched my esophagus even harder, crushing the second to last bit of breath I had. With his other hand, he continued to hold my body firmly in place against our living room wall. “I can’t trust you anymore. Actually, I don’t think I ever could, you fucking cracker.”


I tried to scream, to call out for help, maybe the nice family who lived in the front house would hear me, or the couple next door, but nothing would come out. I struggled and tried to wiggle my body loose, but I couldn’t breathe anymore and the room was getting blurry. The koi fish in the painting on the opposite wall started to swimming across the ceiling and out the window. Something shiny to my left caught my eye, and my eyes anxiously darted in its direction. Henry was holding something in his right hand slightly behind his back. I squinted at the TV screen, hoping the angle would catch its reflection and saw the Glock when he–


“Lorelai!” my mother yelled. “Wake up! It’s already 4:15am. Danny is waiting.”


I coughed, choking on my abrupt breath and tried to respond quickly, not wanting my mom to know anything was wrong. “Okay, mom. Thanks.”


I turned over on my side and hugged myself. Not another one, I thought. Henry had been invading my dreams recently. Like it wasn’t bad enough he tortured me during our relationship, now he had to continue harassing me in my sleep. I took a deep breath, sighed, and threw the covers off my legs, startling and waking up Euripides, my sister’s cat, who had taken a liking to my bed being in the den.


I made my way to the bathroom, sat down for my morning piss, and proceeded to scrub my face, put back my hair, and apply chap stick. Those cold early winter mornings on site dried a person’s lips out like crazy, and I had found out the hard way. As I brushed my teeth, I examined myself in the mirror. My stomach was becoming more prominent, and I looked tired.


In the kitchen, a thermos of coffee sat on the counter waiting for me. My mother could be really sweet, sometimes. I went back to my “room,” dug around in one of my plastic bins and found some men’s jeans. I threw those on, put on some socks, and armored my feet in my scuffed up steel toed boots. I grabbed a baseball cap, threw it in my bag for when the day warmed up, grabbed my highlighter orange sweatshirt and my coffee, and ran out the door where Danny was outside smoking.


“Sorry. I’m ready now, let’s go,” I said, and with that, we hopped in his truck and took off to Simi Valley.


Created: Dec 30, 2010

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