Fish Hook

The man walked out, slow, too slow, like a walking dead man. His face was blank. The eyes held nothing. Almost black holes shining like pebbles on a beach at night. A crumpled figure lay in the darkened space, set back from the door. Horrified realisation coursed through Esther’s being. Then sheer terror, disbelief, consumed her as her eyes widened and her breath came in short shudders. Because there, behind her father, her mother stood. From the depths of his shadow she looked out with eyes that screamed in pain into those of her daughter’s. Her neck was bent, her mouth ripped, blood thick and darkly leaking, the sockets around her petrified eyes the blue-white of bruised china. The lips moved slowly and Esther followed them. And then she was gone.

The men were pressing blankets around the girls. Tom’s brow furrowed as he loosened Esther’s grip on the cold metal hook, checking the depth of the gouges it had made in her clenched palm. Esther stared after her father as they led him away. A calm descended on her.

“The city.”

“What’s that?” One of the men turned to Esther. She reached to hug her sister closer, and turned her still porcelain gaze his way.

“The city” she repeated. “My mother’s brother will take us. We’ll go to the city.”

 

End





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