Here at TKnC we pride ourselves in helping new talent and Aimee is a fledgling writer - our second youngest contributor - so please offer constructive feedback...
The Lost Child.
My father, he was a family man, a true husband in many respects. I looked up to him, my idol he was. I always knew that what he had was exactly what I wanted for myself.
I wanted to be that son, who one day he could turn around to and look deep into the eyes of, with a meaningful glare and say, ‘Son, I’m real proud of you.’ One day I could show him that I had followed in his footsteps and declared the family name with pride.
From an early age, me and my father had a special bond, we always spoke of how I was going to be ‘Just like you dad’.
I had achieved a lot: a beautiful wife, a beautiful home. I couldn’t really ask for anything more, although I always dreamt of us one day having children.
When she fell pregnant my world felt fulfilled, how I had always imagined it to be. It felt as though God had carefully painted my dreams. We spent the next nine months like one big path of excitement each day gradually bringing my journey of ambitions closer.
My wife, she meant everything to me. I would never do anything to harm her, so how she could do this? She knew how much a child of ours meant to me. Looking back now, I know it wasn’t her fault.
‘Lost,’ the nurse had said, as though it was a set of house keys, gone, never to be seen or heard.
I couldn’t look my wife, the person I loved so deeply, in the eye. It felt like she had placed my world in my hands and, with an evil intention, snatched it straight back from me.
Another day, another sunset commencing, ending another day filled with anguish and despair.
There she was sat, looking so desperate and needy, tears streaming down her face which displayed an intense red hand print spread across her cheek. Her top was resting on her shoulders revealing a deeply bruised body.
At that moment I accepted the dream of living up to my father had been destroyed.
My wife had left me and I was alone. The only thing I was left with was the question of why it happened to me, why having a family and a child I could be proud of was so much to ask for.
Living with the thought of this haunted me. Each child that passed me glowed with innocence, so happy and care free. It amazed me how something so small could make a family so complete.
I began to believe it was selfish, life itself was selfish. It has its way of picking what will happen and who to, who deserves certain things and who will have their perfectly painted picture.
I carefully started to capture what was happening around me. The breeze was gently lifting the small hairs on my arms, I was listening to the sound of the sea which sounded so perfectly composed, my eyes forced to remain shut due to the beam of sunlight coming from my right. Although at peace, I couldn’t help but notice the horrifying sound of children’s laughter in the distance. The sound of happiness pierced through me.
There was a girl who was running carelessly across the perfectly raked sand, her feet gliding across the tide. She immediately drew me; grabbed my attention.
The warm glow from around her suddenly disappeared. I was filled with an overwhelming feeling of guilt.
I wanted to prove how much I would appreciate the chance of caring for her, prove that I deserved a family, but I knew she belonged to somebody else. I could picture my wife and that same feeling I felt when the nurse told me my child had been lost, the feeling of being numb.
As I stepped back and looked down into deep brown eyes I saw the girl was laying on the floor. I panicked and ran. My chest started to pound. My mind felt corrupted, feelings and thoughts constantly flickering. How did I turn into this?
As I walked up the stairs to the house the sound of my own pulse drummed through my head. My knees started trembling and I was struggling to focus, every step I took closer made it harder to turn back.
I watched my arm grow towards the door of her room. There was a moment where I realised what I was doing. But I did not stop. It continued growing. My wife’s face again appeared in front of me and the feeling of despair quickly returned.
I saw fright, but with a strong force I felt innocence. Who was the child? I don’t know who was more scared, me, or the girl. I didn’t want her to be scared; I didn’t want to harm her.
If it wasn’t for Dick, I don’t know what I would have done. His voice brought me away from the darkness. And the blindfold covering my emotions was removed. The thought of the girl I met on the beach returned and her cry was the only sound I could hear.
I am an evil man, pride and pain had combined and left me worthy of guilty actions. Rapist.