11th February, Story #42/366. This follows on from the micros yesterday and the day before. It should work as a stand alone story, but if you prefer to read them in order, then *skip to the end* - I've linked them there for you.
I stared down into the moonlit bassinet, cold and empty like me. My beloved Ryan lay behind me, glassy eyed, his blood soaking into our shared mattress.
I remembered what the merman had told me last time I'd answered his call. You can't outrun us, you know. Make the payment. Or we will take it. With interest.
I'm in the frame. Psychosis, they said. I remembered those kind nurses who hovered near me every moment I was in hospital, exchanging glances. I imagined them describing my behaviour, how I'd begged them to leave my baby snug in my belly where he was safe.
They asked me over and over where my baby was, and wouldn't believe me when I said I didn't know.
I tried to tell them that I'd never hurt Ryan, much my less my baby. That my son had been taken. The way they humoured me was infuriating. (Gently: "Who took him?") I gave them the name of the solicitors' and they told me, gravely that such a company didn't exist.
"But they sent me letters!" My panic simmered. I tried to keep it steady, terrified of confirming their suspicions. Of looking crazy.
"Where are the letters?" they asked me, still oh so gently. I thought of the embossed cream papers curling into flames before Ryan got back from work. I wasted moments wishing I'd kept even a business card from Merman & Merman, and dissolved into an ocean of tears.
I sit here looking at these soft white walls and I wonder if they're right. If I am crazy after all. Was any of it real? Did I dream even Ryan? His love, our happiness, his blood in our bed and on my fingers...
And my son: the agony and joy of his arrival, his sucking mouth, his grip on my finger. Was that real?
A moan escapes me, and I feel the needle again. It wouldn't be so bad if I could slip into dreams of Ryan when we first got together. Before that little blue line, before that first call. But every dream has that blue suit, curly yellow hair, sharklike grin.
Word count (excluding note): 366
Submitted on 11th February at 10:15
Part One is here:
*Quick Author's Note*
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Excellent work. Looking forward to reading more!
Heartfelt and relatable
The story invoked strong personal emotions