When The Ice Melts

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Spring is almost here. I can feel the warmth of it seeping into every living thing. The glittering icicles that I have been watching drip, drip, drip, for the past three hours are melting my joy away. It is as if they are counting down the seconds of my life, a twisted hourglass. It is almost twilight, the time in which a most despicable excuse for a human being will arrive to these quarters. The fear that shadows him perches on my windowsill like a malignant vulture, feeding on my fright and insecurities. With this fear I sit alone in this house, watching the sun refract itself through the ice and play shadows on my dreary walls and face. It makes my tough heart yearn for a day when the ice will melt. Not the ice that is suspended from the gutter on my dilapidated porch, but the ice that has manifested itself inside of his heart. I jump at the sound of his old Ford rumbling up the drive, a sound that resembles the earth shaking in fear of his arrival. I begin to brace myself for the inevitable event of his rage and bitterness. He slams open our ebony front door and instantly, I am retching in my mouth from the stench of the alcohol that is coming off him in waves- trashing and beating against the shore. My eyes are filled with his monstrous figure, as he enters the vicinity and blocks out the light that was shining in through the door. He looks at me, vacant eyes narrowed in suspicion, as he takes in my presence in the room.

“Lyn?” he inquires of me incoherently in his brusque, raspy voice. Lyn was my mother, whom I resembled greatly and everywhere that I arrive to, I am reminded of the fact. She died three years ago in an automobile incident and to handle his grief and keep a hold of some insignificant form of his sanity, he began to drown himself in alcohol.

“N-no,” I stutter, cursing myself internally for letting some of my alarm show, “dad, it’s me, your daughter.”
His glare does not register that he heard me and I catch a gleam of the rage that is beginning to creep into his pupils like a mouse, slowly but surely. I cautiously start to back away, aware of the danger he presents, and I feel the frigidness of the window press up against my bare skin. I was still wearing the shorts and tank top that I had worn to school earlier; knowing, when I returned home, the house would be hotter than the depths of the hell from which he originated. His gaze catches fire as he begins to take in his full surroundings.

“What are you wearing?” he spits out at me cruelly. “You w****! Is that what you do all day Lyn, huh? While I’m off at working, earning a living, you’re out on the town sleeping with other men?”

“No, daddy it’s me!”
I’m trying my hardest, giving out all my effort to make him see, but it is all in vain. The truth stays hidden to him behind a drunken veil.

“Liar!”
With that, his brute of a hand lashes out like a whip and strikes me across my face. I fly to the ground, and feel the bruises beginning to seep themselves into my skin; my soft, vulnerable flesh, marked, by his unearthly fury. The stinging in my cheek, where his hand inked its shape onto my face like a tattoo that I had not presented my permission, throbs deep in the core of my heart. Does he not perceive the fact the I am diminishing before his eyes? That my demise may be caused by his brutality? How can he stand by and witness my slow death, the aching fatality of my youthful soul? From down on the wintry marble floor, I see his eyes. His cold, dark, decaying eyes. They are hazy from his intoxication, foggy from his addiction. They enable me to be sure of the fact that on the day the ice melts, he will not. He will be frozen solid in his bottle of alcohol, fermenting away. On the day the ice melts, I will be free. I will be reborn, resuscitated from the depths of the frozen rime. When the ice melts, I will finally be . . . me.





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