Three years ago my family and I lived in an ordinary, medium-sized white house with pink shutters. A lawn surrounded the house and a beautiful white fountain resided in the middle of it. From the outside we looked like an ordinary family with ordinary problems. But my sister and I knew better.
My mother came from a very proud family. So when problem after problem started to creep into our lives she did her best to cover it up. Everyday she'd cover up bruises and cuts on her arms and face with long sleeved T-shirts and jeans. And, whenever any of the neighbors came by she held her head up high and made small talk about the weather.
My sister, Elaine, and I never knew what was wrong with our father. He'd come home at night in one of his drunken rages and beat my mother who never made a sound. He'd yell and scream and throw lamps and ornaments across the room. Elaine and I would cower in my beds, shivering uncontrollably. Then, a little while later, we'd hear him coming up the stairs and stumbling into his and mother's bedroom. After he fell asleep my mother would come up to check on him and then creep into our room where she slept on a blanket at the foot of my bed.
So, thanks to my father, we all lived in constant fear. Then one day Elaine went to school and never came back home. My mother didn't do anything about her disappearance. Perhaps she was relieved that my sister wouldn't have to suffer anymore. I didn't care to know; I was just relieved that Elaine had made it out.
But after Elaine's disappearance, my father seemed to become angrier. He'd beat my mother much worse than before and, despite her adamant refusal to make a sound, she couldn't help screaming and begging for mercy. But her tears couldn't soothe his rage. And nor did mine.
He beat me, too. Maybe he thought it was my fault that Elaine ran away. Or maybe he thought I knew where Elaine might be.
One day my mother couldn't take it anymore. She told me to pack up and that we were going to move to a place far away where my father couldn't hurt us anymore. But when I had finished packing and she had finished hers and everything was in the car, she told me that she was going to wait for my father to tell him she was going to leave him. When I protested, she sent me to the car.
"I'll come back to the car as soon as I can," she promised me. "Then we'll go, okay?" She had smoothed back my hair and kissed my brow. "I promise." Then she walked back to the house.
I waited, shivering with fear. Time passed so slowly that I finally fell asleep and only woke up when I heard shouting from inside the house. Immediately, my heart started jumping around inside my chest. There was a crash as something hit the living room wall and the door banged open. My mother charged out and came running towards the car.
"Open the door!" she shouted. I did as she said and she jumped in and slammed the door. Her hands were shaking so much that she couldn't jam the key inside the ignition. And that's when I saw him. My father, with blood pouring down the left side of his face, came barreling out of the doorway and coming towards us. I felt my stomach constrict as I realized that part of his face was missing.
"Mom!" I screamed. His hand punched through the glass and, oblivious to the glass shards that left red marks on his skin, closed around my mother's face and yanked-hard. I screamed again, delirious with terror, as my mother slumped in the driver's seat. Blood was everywhere. I couldn't take my eyes off the red mass that had been my mother. But my father wasn't finished with my mother yet. He reached inside and dragged my mother's body out. There was a sickening crack as he punched her skull open, mixing bone with brain, and began eating my mother's flesh with a hunger that surprised me.
I could barely breathe, covered in blood and paralyzed in shock as I was. After all, I had just witnessed my own mother get her face ripped off and her brains splattered all over the lawn. But I couldn't look away. I could only watch as my father tore open her throat and chest (spraying still more blood onto the lawn and fountain) and began tearing at her organs.
After what seemed like an eternity, my father finally turned towards me slowly. And then he stared into my eyes with a look so alien, so frightening that I opened the door and ran off along the sidewalk. I was in a panicked daze, sobbing as I ran, so I didn't feel his breath on the back of my neck until it was almost too late. I turned around, screaming, and lashed out with my foot. He stumbled and fell on me. I couldn't stand his weight so we both fell. My head hit the sidewalk and for a moment I blacked out. But then I came to and, just in time, saw my father tear a thin strip of flesh from my leg. Pain burst in the back of my head, almost blinding me. My other foot smashed into my father's face. The force of my kick wasn't enough to break my father's neck, but it was enough to momentarily daze him. I used the few seconds I had and jumped up (ignoring the pain in my leg, in my whole body even) and ran. I didn't stop running until I couldn't hear my father behind me anymore.
I sank down, crying and moaning breathlessly. I tore a thin strip of cloth from my shirt and bandaged up my leg as well as I could. Then I just sat and let the tears flow freely.
When the tears finally stopped, I got up. I had to find the police. It was time to tell them everything. Or so I thought.