Thursday, 6 October 2011

The Twenty-three Hundred Hour Storm

She leaves her friend after a pleasant evening of hot chocolate, marshmallows and a good romantic comedy.

Saying farewell at the door she glimpses the raging storm outside - heavy rainfall, thunder and high speed winds - oddly peaceful and comforting. She smiles to herself as she makes a run for it, becoming impossibly soaked in just a few short seconds. Collapsing into the drivers seat she has a quick glance in the rear view mirror, as usual a stranger stares back at her. The unknown girls brown hair is windswept and and clumped from the large droplets of rain and her dull blue eyes are smeared with black mascara at the edges. She recalls a time when these eyes sparkled, like diamonds in the rough... but she knew this girl had long disappeared, unsure of when or if she'd see her again. Attention from the mirror is quickly withdrawn and she flicks to her favourite track on the CD currently in the player; starting the ignition and turning on the lights, she drives.

Driving home in adequate spirits she braves the weather and rolls down the window slightly to have a cigarette. Softly singing to the song echoing through the vehicle she drives through the torrential rain fall, windscreen wipers at full speed. As she turns a corner a carefully aimed swoop of wind drives water directly through the window splashing on her face. She laughs to herself as her face drips with rainwater. Continuing the drive and nearing home another smaller burst of rain manages to rocket through the small gap in the window and splashes on her face. Suddenly she is without breath. Her heart rate increases and the dull blue eyes widen in horror as a memory comes to the surface. A memory where a diamond blue eyed girl meets up with a new male friend in her car and they go for a drive in the rain.

Unable to see through the rainfall they park down a side street, enjoying the loud noise of the rain bouncing off the car roof. So much laughter, so much good conversation. At the time her old banger vehicle had a leak and water started to seep through the light in the roof, dripping onto her face. The man finds this hilarious. They both laugh as the water continues to drip from the roof of the car, splashing them as the droplets fell. He wipes the water off her face and smiles at her. She feels so safe around him.

As soon as the memory had come it quickly dissolved, leaving the girl barely breathing. Her smile has faded, her dull blue eyes now grey and her hands tightly grip the steering wheel.  To an outsider this would be perceived as a happy memory, but not to the dull eyed girl. Driving home in a trance-like-state, flash-cards of more images, memories, are burned into her eyes. Like quickly flicking through a photo album, still frames of a certain memory darted across her field of vision. These images were far from happy. Time had fast forward and the location had changed but they involved the same two people, the male friend and the girl with diamond blue eyes.  The images held many secrets, secrets that were buried, secrets to painful and unimaginable for the girl to envision. She tried to fight the images off, knowing ultimately what the ending would be, but this time she couldn't fight it. The final image showed the sparkle drain out of the girls eyes....

Pulling up on the street to her house she turned off the ignition and sat their frozen. Rain pellets belted the front window and danced down the glass, mirroring the tears now waltzing down her face. She was angry at herself for allowing the nearly one year old images to play through her mind. The truth was unacceptable and incomprehensible, it needed to stay locked in its Pandoras Box... despite this belief she heard a quiet voice, shouting from a dark deep place inside her soul,
'Say it, admit the truth, just say it, say it out loud'.
She tried to  obey the tiny voice and whispered,
'I was..., I was....', but the final word escaped her.

Distressed and vulnerable, she did what she does best and locked up Pandoras Box. The 23:00 hour storm that brought this brief moment of clarity calmed down and she walked up the back to the safety of her home.

The tiny voice inside her soul shook its head and exclaimed 'I will try again tomorrow....'
The memories sunk back to depths at which they came from...


  1. Hold on, baby girl. You will get there. You are doing well.

  2. Thank you for your support, as always Sharon! :-)