My latest book:
Time within my twisted mind, skipped and changed, yet it was weird how I remembered everything about the day Papa slaughtered my mom and my sisters - it was a Friday.
I remembered the month too. It was September. Pretty leaves – reds, oranges, browns and yellows concealed the path up to the house like the carpet our neighbour bought despite the elders’ protests.
I remembered the year. It was 2014. I was fifteen and was wearing a new dress that hung on me like a heavy cornsack. It was a murky brown; one of the acceptable colors for us girls.
I remembered their screams. They were loud and unrelenting. I remembered their bodies; Ruth, Eden, Lydia, Anna with baby Tabitha and Mom lifeless together in a huddle in the far corner.
I remembered his face. Papa was standing with the shotgun in his hand and blood was sloshed all over it. His eyes were black like an overcast, shadowy night as he was snarling,“The beauty of women is the root of all evil, it makes men do crazy things. Makes them lose their…”
He didn’t say minds but I knew he should have. I focused on a scream in the far distance and seconds later I understood it was my scream. There in that room.
Gabriel with Benjamin sprinted in and screamed alongside me. It was a horrifying scream-choir. No tune. No control. No chorus. They shifted up an octave when Papa pointed the gun at me.
My egg-basket fell to the floor making a sickly crackling sound.
“The beauty of women is the root of all evil,” he repeated cocking the gun.
My twin, Gabriel, bolted toward him. They moved together in a bizarre, aggressive dance. Both thrown onto our old, badly painted green sideboard before the gun went off.
A silence descended on us so I slumped to my knees, placing my fingers onto our bare wooden floor. No pretty carpet dressed up our room. I stared at one lopsided hammered in nail.
Then I noticed the blood. Blood seeped into my finger-gaps. Dark red. Flooded in. A bitty bubble formed on the top of the blood which bridged the gap between my wedding finger and baby finger.
“Is this blood Papa’s?” I whispered. “May this blood be Papa’s.”
Time moved on but I couldn’t. I knew I would keep my hands still if the blood was Gabriel’s; my twin, my friend… my life.
“Oh, God above, help us all,” I said. Then silenced followed. A heavy responsibility-like silence that hung in the air as if something had been forgotten.
The bubble burst when Benjamin put his hand on my shoulder. Gentle like he was at church service asking me to reach him the hymn book. I twisted around and scrutinised his skinny-worm-like lips. Waiting whilst smelling the death-stench in my nostrils. I knew he could smell it too. A sickly-sweet odour.
I waited for the news.
“Papa’s dead,” he said. “Gabriel got him.”
I bolted upright and trailed my bloody hands down my dress. Rejecting Papa’s foul blood between my fingers.
“I’m glad,” I said fumbling to stand before dragging Mom’s heavy body off my innocent sisters.