This story is actually for my English Literature coursework but I thought, since it's a "recreative writing piece" that I'd put it up on here to see what you think before I have to edit it to 500 words and stick an analysis on it. The examiners are so cruel.
So tell me what you think, I'd really love to know. :) It may not seem like my own writing style because it was supposed to be written in Du Maurier's style, oh and its Bookverse as well.
Hope you like it, please review.
The Devil's Demise
Last night I dreamt of my life in Manderley.
In my dream I was happy. I was sat before my mirror in my room, listening to the ocean waves crashing against the rocks and smelling the sweet, salty sea air as it wafted through my window in to the room. Danny was brushing my hair with my brush in her gentle hands as she slowly ran it through my hair. She always complimented me, "Oh Mrs de Winter, you have such lovely soft hair! It's like silk satin." I smiled at her but didn't answer. She didn't mind not getting an answer back because I already knew. She complimented me about my hair every day. I closed my eyes and listened to the call of the sea, feeling like I was on cloud nine.
The dream ended there. I wished it could've gone on longer. That way I wouldn't have to face my reality. Despite my horrid and quite frankly inconvenient marriage to Maxim I had a nice life. I had loyal servants who hung on my every word and adored me. Oh Danny, if only you knew you foolish old bat. If only you knew what I was going through, what my struggle was doing to me but ha! You're just like the rest.
I strolled calmly through the valley casting my gaze on the calm, carefree nature as the storm clouds rolled in from overhead like an oncoming army of raindrops and thunder and lightning. Dark shadows creep in like a monster consuming and gorging itself on everything, leaving behind twisted elms and squat oaks. The shadows began to follow me, step for step like a prowling cat stalking its prey.
I hurried my pace, not wanting the rain to ruin my hair. Well, when they finally bury me, I want to still look as beautiful as I am now. I rush down to the boathouse on the shore to wait out the first spatters of icy rain, slipping and skidding on jagged rocks, clutching on to thin air as I stumbled along the beach.
I slammed the door open desperately, sighing in relief that I had escaped the pummelling rain. Looking out on the beach and the rain, I smiled and closed the door firmly. I was in my sanctuary. Nothing or no one could stop me doing anything I wanted in here. Not Favell. Not Maxim. No one.
The grandfather clock in the corner chimed eleven. Dong! Dong! Dong! It felt like the sound was taunting me. Death! Death! Death! It was like it knew, like the grandfather clock knew my secret.
I lit a cigarette to calm myself. It was silly. How could a silly little object know my secret? Stupid. The smoke filled the air and I inhaled the toxic scent. I wonder if I'll be able to die quickly when the time comes. Would death be painful? I cast my gaze over by the mirror in the corner and decided to sit before it.
They used to say in my childhood that I had very beautiful eyes, but also the most tormenting eyes. Like the Devil's, they used to say. Damn them! Damn those hypocritical witches that did this to me. If they thought I was the devil-made-flesh then that is because they made me that way!
I took a soothing breath and lit another cigarette to calm myself. I'll be rid of them all soon one way or another, I told myself. I didn't want to die a long death. The quicker my death, the quicker I'll get to see my father. I stood and looked out through the window to the sea. I wish I was out there now, out in a boat with no troubles to harass me. Just me, a boat and the sea. The Vikings were so inventive to sail their dead companions out to sea on a burning ship. Just imagine, sailing for the rest of eternity. Now, that is heaven right there. I wonder if I'll be able to sail forever.
The door slammed open with a crack, causing me to jump slightly in surprise. Maxim stood in the doorway, his eyes wide with rage and his posture stiff and rigid against a background of rain and lightning striking the rocks on the beach. He seemed like a feral, wild animal that had been set loose to wreak havoc; like he had been a dog that had turned back to bite his owner on the hand after being beaten too many times. He must know about my latest rendezvous with Favell then. The fool. I wonder what he's thinking. Is he upset? Does he feel betrayed? I shouldn't think so considering we mean nothing to each other. What would he do, I wonder? Would he burn the boathouse and all of my possessions to punish me? Would he hit me? What would he do?
A light flashed outside followed by a deafening crack. The storm was close, getting closer with every minute. I pulled out another cigarette and lit it, blowing the smoke in to the air. I didn't care for Maxim to be here. I didn't care for much anymore. Everything seemed like the cigarette smoke, floating and rising in to the air. Soon it will be out of sight. He began to rant and nag like an old hag then and for the most part I blocked him out.
"You know the conditions," he said. I sighed inwardly, refraining from the urge to roll my eyes. "I've kept my end of our dirty, damnable bargain, haven't I? But you've cheated. You think you can treat my house and my home like your own sink in London. I've stood enough, but my God, Rebecca, this is your last chance."
Was he trying to threaten me? My God, he was! This was laughable. I stubbed out my cigarette, stood and stretched my arms above my head. "You're right, Max," I sighed. "It's time I turned over a new leaf." I decided to taunt him. Dr Baxter said that I didn't have much longer to live anyway. I might as well have a bit of fun before I go.
"Have you ever thought how damned hard it would be for you to make a case against me? In a court of law, I mean. If you wanted to divorce me," I chuckled quietly. "Do you realise that you've never had a shred of proof against me, from the very first? All your friends, even the servants, believe our marriage to be a success." I turned to watch his reaction. His mouth was hanging open in disgust. He asked about Frank and Beatrice, as if those bints could hold any evidence against me. Ha! I laughed out loud at the incredulous thought. I told him that he still had no proof.
"If I had a child, Max," I said, "neither you, nor anyone in the world, would ever prove that it was not yours. It would grow up here in Manderley, bearing your name. There would be nothing you could do. And when you died Manderley would be his. You would not be able to prevent it." I lit a cigarette, the last one in my possession and most likely going to ever be in my possession, and smiled. "And no one would ever guess, no one would ever know!"
I turned around to smile at him and I heard a bang!
They say that when you die, you don't really feel the pain of it until seconds later. The shock of it numbs you at first and then it slowly grows on you. There were dark shadows from all around the boathouse closing in on me, like the shadows outside in the Happy Valley that ate everything. It was suffocating me. I could feel the shuddering palpitations of my heart as it tried to beat against the bullet. The world was getting colder, but I felt warm. I felt the warmest I had felt in years. It seemed like I was back in my father's arms, hugging me like he did when I was a child.
With a final look at Maxim, I grew content. Oh, the fool. Even if he has killed me, Manderley would never forget me. And nor would he.