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Slipping through the Cracks (Revised Narrative Form)

Without making a sound, I slipped through the cracked door. The quiet town slept as I crept along the well-beaten path. My barefoot steps were silent; I didn’t need shoes where I was going tonight. I heard the angels weeping while they watched my steps barely clear the cracks along the pavement.

The shadows were hiding on this moonless night. But finding my way in the dark wasn’t a challenge, as the trail to the night’s destination was etched upon my soul. My heart ached as every step brought me closer to fulfillment.

Quickening my pace, I leapt over the familiar brook and took the last few steps through the overgrown grass. I scaled along the side of the familiar house, running my hands along the building’s cold stone facing as I inched closer to my purpose. My feet stopped when they felt the familiar earth underfoot that cut away the grass and formed the opening to the basement window.

I slid my fingers down the wall to the glass pane, and tapped lightly upon the window two times. As soon as I heard the tap in reply, I continued to the side-door opening, where I waited for the familiar click of the lock. On cue, I slipped into the house and grabbed the waiting hand. With muted steps, we made our way down to the blesséd room.

The thought of being so close to receiving the much-anticipated promise filled me with overwhelming hope. Without wasting another precious second, I submitted to fulfilling my preludial obligation. It wasn’t very difficult working toward what I wanted most. I felt great purpose to be the one to reciprocate meeting the vital need of another person.

Once contented, my lover pulled me to his chest. Wrapping his arm around me, he allowed me to drift into peaceful unconsciousness. My descent was quick, as breathing him in always produced a tranquil euphoria. We lay in this embrace until the dawning of a new day threatened our exposure.

Unnoticed, I slid out from his embrace. One glance over my shoulder imprinted the image of his peacefully sleeping form into the special place where our memories were kept. With soundless steps, I climbed the stairs and slipped through the door as if I had never been there.

Autumn ushered in without my notice or welcome. As I weaved through the overgrown path on another one of my midnight missions, the unruly landscape shifted me off-balance several times. These subtle alterations caused me to experience a few stumbled steps along the way. Crossing over the brook was easy, as summer’s insatiable thirst had consumed more than her share of the available elements.

As I closed in on the back of the house, my focus was drawn to a figure illuminated by the crescent moonlight. I slowed my pace while assessing this unexpected exposure. He hesitated pushing himself away from the house until I stood next to him.

Pulling me into a passionate hug, he told me that I couldn’t come inside that night, or any other night in the future. I wept bitterly and clung to him while his hands ravaged me. His whispered apologies produced agonizing chills against my neck. I was terrified to let go. The last few kisses he forced upon my chest were savage.

Prying himself free from my clutch-hold, he suggested I consider one of his friends who had expressed an interest in me. This concept, with all of its cruel intentions, was difficult to swallow. So I just stood there and stared through him. After a moment’s reflection, and a flicker of irrational contemplation, I submitted to defeat. In his most sincere tone, he promised me everything would work out and then disappeared into the darkness.

The wind was feral as I raced back home. The leaves along the path were swept up into the air and danced within the breeze before me; taunting me with their lively, spirited performance. I wasn’t sure what they were so happy about. Didn’t they know what was knocking on their door?

Winter came, and brought with it a biting cold. I waited for the house to be still before letting my newest lover in through the back door. We slunk to a small room in my basement where we were sure to go unnoticed. It was hard to ignore the angels mourning as they watched us through the door’s crack.

He wasted no time revealing all of his intentions, and even less time acquiring them. My attempts of controlling the pace were overruled, as there was clearly urgency to his madness. When I curled up against him, he rolled out from under me. With the same tenacity with which he satiated his lustful desires, he escaped up the stairs and out the back door.

Following after him, I reached the driveway’s edge in time to watch his fleeing silhouette vanish beyond the full moon’s reach. With fresh tears in my eyes, I slid to the ground and wrapped my arms around my knees. The harsh, crisp air sunk its teeth into my vulnerable form, leaving permanent marks in its wake. I resented the angels’ sympathetic arms embracing my brokenness.

Near winter’s end, I met someone. He came to visit me on a day when spring was peeking her curious eyes over the horizon, enticing me to venture into the outside world with this new friend. Assessing his sincere expression, along with my wilted and neglected needs, I accepted the offer.

We talked while he drove toward no particular destination. Oh, he was good: he appeared to be genuinely interested in what I had to say. Eventually, he pulled the car over and parked on some remote street and he proceeded to give me his undivided attention. When he motioned for me to move closer to him, I obediently slid under his extended arm. The muted sun, as it radiated through the windshield, bathed us in a soft umber glow.

I waited with expectancy for the instructions he never delivered. Instead, he stroked a rhythmic pattern along my hairline as he caressed the hair behind my ear. The entire time, he extended more questions and intently listened to my responses. The angels listened with the same attentiveness.

It struck me as being odd that he hadn’t expected anything for himself yet. I wasn’t conditioned to my needs being attended to without earning the privilege. This unmerited affection riddled me with guilt. Something was terribly wrong with this picture. I was sure he was up to something, but I couldn’t quite put my finger on the matter.

I noticed he couldn’t help cracking a smile at my conflicted expression.

Slipping through the Cracks (Revised Narrative Form)

Jenifer DeBellis

Dryden, United States

  • Artist
  • Artwork Comments 4

Artist's Description

125 views as of 2/19/11

I revised this story from third to first person narrative. I’d love feedback as to which one works best. Here’s the third person version:

Women are born with the need to be loved and to belong hidden within the core of their beings. How many of us lose our way in our quest to fill the voids of our heart?

Artwork Comments

  • sandra22
  • Jenifer DeBellis
  • linaji
  • Jenifer DeBellis
Jenifer DeBellis

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