A Masterpeice

July 9, 2008
By Karleigh Neal, Roseville, CA

My mothers eyes welted with tears. Her face a masterpiece of pain created from a once ordinary white canvas.
“Everything will be alright.” The words flooded through the air, somewhat purifying the hurt that consumes me. Her breath heavy with fear. I could feel her grip my hands harder every second the clock ticked. Was this really happening, was my mother finally finding the nerve to tell my father it is over, the end. “The end” I liked the sound of the phrase. Was it truly going to be like a story book? “And they lived happily ever after, the end.” It would be the story of my life’s missing page. No bruises I would have to explain, no more hiding in my darkroom, no more yelling and screaming in anger and fright, no more pain for my mom, no more for me either. But happily ever after seamed to surreal to me.

The clock turned to 3:32 a.m. as I heard my fathers car pull up to the drive way. One last breath. I starred into my mothers deep blue eyes which held stories of weakness. The black pupils seemed to be the strength in her eyes as they narrowed, getting smaller as the sound of my fathers stumbling feet strained her strength. Bang! I was startled by the sound of the front door slamming, shaking the doorframe and damaging the already broken hinges. My moms eyes moved from my gaze quickly to his entrance.

His form mirrored in the glass window behind my mothers head. He was a bulky man who carried a overpowering presence. To a stranger he would seem pleasant featured, but to me his disturbing face holds as a memory of disloyalty and anger.

“You’ve been drinking?” my mother said eying him. “It’s three in the morning and you have been gone for almost seven hours!” she stood up and I smiled at her
Bravery, in my head, but I feared to let it show or my father would knock the grin off my face.

“Since when should ya care, I need ta drink look at this place, it’sa mess, you’rea mess.” He slurred his words and I was disgusted by his answer. He walked past my mother to his room.

“Since I’m your wife, that’s why I care, and you’re the one whose a mess, you cant even talk correctly!” she walked down the hall after him and she glanced at me. She could see the panic in my eyes, I felt it in her eyes as well. She tries to hide her sadness and fear. To any stranger even her friends and family its invisible, but she can’t trick me I can see it all.

Both their bodies disappeared from my sight. I got out of my chair and grabbed the phone off its receiver. My common action, grab the unused phone as if it’s a security blanket. I’m a coward, I never can truly dial 9-1-1, a simple three button number and all I can do is trace them with my fingers. I walked down the hall of doom towards their door and listened. My mothers small voice was overpowered by my fathers strong dominant voice. I placed my ear towards the door, “I’m sick of it, so is your daughter. Do you think she deserves to be put through this?” I winced at the sound of my fathers wide hand against her small gentle face. The sound haunts me, since I was a child I have grown familiar with it’s sound but it still pains my ears and heart.

I opened the door to see my mother struggling behind my fathers heavy body, it looked like a painter of the horrid masterpiece at work. “Stop!” I screamed, I threw the phone at my father. I tore at him flailing violently. My power was no match for his. He flung me against the wall with enough strength to knock me unconscious.

“Ashleigh wake up!” her voice trembled with fear. Her hands shook me. Through
my blurred vision I looked at my mother to see a busted lip and a bloody nose created by my father, a fragile piece of art he controlled. She pulled me up with all the strength she had. My small hands found the dresser to hold onto. Behind my mother was my monstrous father. He ripped the alarm clock out of the wall and flung it towards my mother. “Mom! Look out!” The alarm clock broke against the wall were my unconscious body had just sat. A piece flung across the room towards my dad creating a distraction. My mother grabbed my arm and we escaped my violent father and fled to the living room. She grabbed her keys and we ran through the door leaving it open.

The morning sky was dark, it was hard to see the steps leading to the van. Inside the car I sat as I eased my adrenaline rush. Looking through the darkness I could see my father glaring from the wide open door. Light escaped the house causing my fathers face to morph into a threat like grin. The look taunted me and would not exit my mind even though he was now out of sight. The car accelerated faster as we drove down the street. I glanced at my mom. Tears were running down her face and they drained into her bloody mouth. The sight was so sad I turned in horror. What a poor masterpiece my father created. Faithless, pained, and torn, the paint used to create it.

“I should have done something before it got this bad, Ashleigh are you okay? Were going to the hospital and turning him in. I should have done this years ago. Ashleigh. . .” she began to cry more. “I was so scared, I understand how scary it must be for you.” “Is it over?” I asked whimpering, I placed my hand on hers. “of course it is. Yes.” I finally smiled, I believed her, she was so sincere it was as if she was promising with her words. She caught my smile like a contagious flu. Her eyes glistened for once, her smile twinkled, I saw the beauty of the canvas coming through. I stared at her face for a while, I could not take my eyes off of her. I was proud. Behind her face a bright light glistened growing deeper giving her an angelic appearance. The light was not radiance from her beauty but the headlights of a car.

It all happened so fast. I was flung towards the passenger window into a dark slumber. I woke to the sounds of ambulances and lights circling the area. Cars and people surrounded us. Blood stained my eyesight my head ached. I tried to turn my body it would not move. Was I dead. I looked over to my mother. She was worse then me. Blood was everywhere and her body was lodged into the dashboard. Her face staring blankly towards me. I screamed in horror. Could she be dead? There was no way, no one would allow it. I could hear the paramedics calling out. They were at the car. Struggling to open the door. Cry was all I could do, I couldn’t move. How could someone so wonderful die. I looked out the window only to see my father standing by the other crushed car. Police were arresting him, talking to him. What they said I could not tell because my cries now flooded my own ears. He was the one to start her pain, he was the one to finish it as well. He killed my mother.

I was removed from the car and placed on a stretcher I could see them cover my mothers body. Shattered glass greedily gouged my mothers arms and legs and blood stained her soft supple skin. Though dead and deranged she was beautiful, I realized it never was my fathers horrid masterpiece but a masterpiece of God’s beauty.

I look back to that day and I understand that my mother wanted me happy more than anything she wanted me to have what she didn’t, so I try to do anything to make her happy. Her beautiful pictures serve as a memory, and my life experiences with her serve as my motivation, her love and her peace serve as my happiness. She was a masterpiece that molds my life and stands tall as my role model, my guardian angel.

The author's comments:
I was inspired to write about this topic by my mother who tries everything to make me happy, we have gone through alot. I wanted to make the story an eye opener for many people who relate to these type of situations, and i wanted to use a strong situation to show people that if "ashleigh" can get through her situations so can anyone else if they truly try.

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This article has 1 comment.

shelby said...
on Aug. 18 2008 at 11:09 pm
Wow Karleigh, you are an amazing author. Such a brilliant girl. You have the world in your hands and a BRIGHT future!

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