Closure by Sylvia Stein Excerpt


In the dark corner of a room, Sara James waited until the monster fell asleep.

Who was the monster?

Garrison James, her father.

It amazed her how much had changed in the few short months since her mother, Lila left. It felt as if it happened over night.

At first, he seemed absent. Then the yelling, drinking, and angry glares erupted whenever she entered the same room as him. Soon, he began calling her names. When she thought things could not get worse, the real abuse began.

He’s not my dad! He’s a monster!

Heavy footsteps tromped towards the room. She gulped in jagged breaths and looked to the ceiling while blinking rapidly. A feeble attempt to control her tears.

When hiding from the monster found her, she would replay what she did wrong and how he caught her the time before.

Don’t cry, she reminded herself, that’s how he finds you.

She looked around the once lively home for a sweet reminder of better times. There was a time when the house was surrounded by a beautiful garden. Her and her mother would walk hand in hand and choose which flowers to bring inside. Now, the windows were closed, and the vase that usually held flowers sat empty. No matter where she looked, there was no sign of happiness or life.

The house had become a vessel of sorrow and pain.

Mommy, think of her.

She closed her eyes and forced images of her favorite memories. A brief smile appeared as thoughts reverted her to one of the many times when her mother taught her how to bake cookies.

“Oh, Momma, I miss you,” she whispered.

The memory of her mother distracted Sara from the harsh reality. However, nearly as quick as the memories arrived, they dissipated, and before she knew it, the monster began lashing out.

“Sara! Sara! Where are you?” he screamed.

Realizing she had made noise. Sara covered her mouth and began internally praying.

Oh, Lord, help me!

“Where are you?” the monster demanded as he stormed towards the back of the house.

She looked up at the ceiling and whispered, “What does he want now?”

She knew he was drunk. Usually by the time of day, he would be asleep, but his current drunken rage lasted much longer than the other nights.

“Please Lord, make him go to sleep,” she begged.

“What was that,” the monster bellowed.

She brought her index finger to her lips and made a shushing sound. She feared “the monster” honing in on the sound of her prayer.

A sigh escaped her when he stormed pass the room and into the kitchen.

Her stomach roared to life.

When was the last time I ate? She wondered.

For months, Sara was constantly exhausted and hungry.

When the monster moved towards the dining room, she decided to try to sneak into the kitchen. Just as she neared the threshold, she heard his footsteps and quickly reverted to her safe, hiding place.

“Sara! Come here this second,” he ordered in anger.

She knew that tone all too well. If he got ahold of her, pain would soon follow.

Immediately, her heart began to race as her small body convulsed.

Her mind screamed, NOT AGAIN!

The last time her body shook uncontrollably, she was hiding in the closet. The monster heard her praying.

He whipped the door open and lashed out at her.

She recalled something hard striking the side of her head. It was late, and although she could not recall what hit her. She noticed a high pitch ringing sound that seemed to go on for days. When the ringing became too much, she asked her father to take her to the doctor.

He refused.

Since her mother left, her father stopped taking her to church. He said that God was a myth. She knew better. She believed in God and knew there was a doctor at the church she could see for free.

That was the only time she talked back to her father. She said he was wrong, and they should go so God can forgive him.

That was when the monster took over.

She recalled the pain she felt as he backhanded her. Moments later, her body began shaking, and then blackness set in.

Get your copy of Closure which is available on Amazon, Barnes and Nobles nook press, iTunes and Kobo.  

Closure-Amazon

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