His Angel – Chapter 1

Updated: Jun 3, 2021

By Ranudi Gunawardena | Sri Lanka

She runs home like a mad woman, her messy hair in the wind like the untamable mane of a lion, her feet rhythmically hitting the soft earth of the ground, thud, thud, stomp, stomp. There are tears gathering up in her eyes and pain written all over her childish face, like a disturbingly ruined art work of a famous Greek artist. As she nears the wide wooden gate of her huge house, her pace quickens, her legs flying rather than running, trying to carry her little heart away from her life’s misery and sorrow. Her long fingers tremble as she raises her hand to ring the bell. Sweat trickles down her forehead, mixing with salty tears which finally start rolling down her rosy cheeks. Voices of girls whom she used to call friends ring in her ears, ebbing her vision away from her. “No wonder she killed herself, if I was her mother I would too”


Her heart aches. There’s pain from the buried past resurfacing itself, hurt of long-gone memories arising within her weeping chest, all flooding her with overwhelming emotion. Betrayal. Hurt. Pain. Agony. Nostalgia. Grief. There’s something else in her chest too, stinging her bosom continuously, something strange and unknown, a feeling she doesn’t know how to name.


She slowly opens the door of the prohibited room, which her father had strictly advised her not to enter. It creaks from the rust collected on the steel hinges, creating a loud noise which echoes all over the room. She remembers the room from twelve years ago, the queen-sized bed in the middle of the room, her mother’s homely smell of honey as she reads stories to Clara in her calm and collected voice, sunlight seeping through the curtains and touching her mother, Jade’s wavy brown locks.


But the room looks haunted now, with cobwebs dangling from the ceiling as dust covers almost all surfaces of the room, dust on empty book shelves, dust on a broken or maybe simply abandoned piano, dust on the yellowing mattress that smells musty and damp. There are a couple of boxes at the further corner of the room-boxes containing Jade, everything she loved, everything which would tell Clara of what her mother had been.


Her bare feet feel strange on the blackened floor as she passes the French windows that open up to their large garden, never stopping to draw the ragged curtains to let the evening light in. She empties all the boxes onto the floor, there are albums containing her childhood photos, letters-many of them, a few dresses that still smell like Jade. She holds the ancient green fabric to her face, inhaling what’s left of her mother – Oh what a mother she had been. To abandon her own child.

But she was her mother and this was her dress. As she continues to hold the dress against her face, burying her nose in the cloth and sniffing furiously, she notices a journal with a paper cover of pink. She reaches for it, still holding onto her mother’s dress as if her life depends on it.


“His Angel” is a seven-chapter story.

 

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#fiction #love

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