Monthly Archives: November 2012
He was coming.
William. William Blake. The man I’d been destined to marry since the day I was born, was coming to see me. I’d never met him before. I had no idea who he was, all I knew was his name. Most importantly his surname. My soon-to-be surname as well. Blake. Lydia Blake. My heart fluttered at the whisper of this fact. My sisters giggled as Mother informed them of our guest. My face felt hot and red so I excused myself from the parlor where we had convened to discuss the matter.
I walked down the abissmally dark hallway to the door at the end, leading outside. Hiking up my skirt I exited the hallway, and entered the blinding, white sunlight. It must have been at least four in the afternoon. I descended down the stairs to reach the back patio but I did not linger there. Instead I continued walking through the patio and into the meadow that lay before me.
Many memories filled my conscious mind of this little meadow where I had spent so many glorious spring days with my sisters talking about our arranged marriages and who our husbands were. All of my sisters had always known their husbands and it was I who remained in the dark. We had always talked about Sir Blake, his proper name, in great detail. Wondering who he was, what he did, why he was a “Sir,” if he liked flowers, would he like me, and, above all others, if he did indeed like me, would he bring me flowers? My sisters and I were quite trivial. But now as the time came when I would finally meet him, I asked myself these questions again. I’m about to meet someone and then marry them, I thought. What an odd thing.
I sat down in the middle of the meadow and thought of Sir Blake and what an oddity our entire engagement had been. But before I knew it, the sun was beginning to set in the west. I rose from my position on the ground and began to walk back to the mansion, still deep in thought. As I crossed the patio I heard the giant front door open and close with squeals of delight and welcome immediately following. Upon hearing this, I ran up the upstairs, into the house, flew up another flight of stairs, and dove into my bedroom.
Grabbing my rouge and brush, I primped myself, pulling at my brown hair and smearing makeup over my visage. I, then, changed dresses from my plain ivory to my soft green, embroidered dress to go with my eyes. I looked at myself in my handheld mirror, and resigned myself to my image. It could be worse, I thought smiling slightly at the hilariously truthful fact. I set down my hand mirror and walked as gracefully as possible down the staircase and through the hallway to him. Blake. William Blake.
I turned into the parlor, with a smile big enough to have a horse race on, and looked around the room. A small, timid man sat in the corner of the room with my father, holding his top hat in his hands, looked up at me then continued togaze to my father. All the mean while, his blade head shone with sweat in the candlelight and his glasses were left perfectly askew.
“Hello, Madame,” the man greeted shyly, refusing to look at me.
“Hello,” I replied almost as timidly as he had asked.
The small man turned to me when I said this. He stood up, setting down his hat, remembering social etiquette and said, “I’m Sir William Blake. Are you Lydia?”
It could be worse, I thought.
I sit by the windowsill. Father yells at me. I refuse to listen to him. I close my eyes, the darkness surrounds me.
Father is at work today. Silence. Peace. I find myself sitting at the windowsill again. I watch the empty street. I close my eyes, the darkness surrounds me.
Father comes home early from work. He yells at me again. It is noon. The sun makes heat waves on the asphalt outside my window. A girl drives by, the windows of her car rolled down. Her hair is red and beautiful.
Father tells me he was fired yesterday. The company had too many workers. It had to happen. Father leaves to find work after two. I sit by the windowsill and wait for him.
Father came home late last night. He yelled at me. I’m not worthy of his kindness, he told me. He should have put me up for adoption, he said. I go to bed. I sit by the windowsill. The girl with the red hair drives by in her car. I envy her.
Father still can not find work. We receive a notice from our landlord. Two weeks to pay our bills. Father cries. Not at me, but for himself. He is full of self pity. I do not envy him. The girl with the red hair drives by again. This time she uses her turn signal indicator. I wonder where she is going.
Father looks for a job today. I went outside today. He does not know. He will never know. I sit on our front lawn. I see the red haired girl as she drives by. I wave at her. She smiles at me. I go back inside. I look around our house. If you could call it that. Dirt cover the area. Everywhere I go is messy. I return to the windowsill. I close my eyes, the darkness surrounds me. Blocking out the hell in which I live in.
Father hit me today. Someone saw me yesterday. No one is supposed to know I live here. My face is red and puffy. I can’t tell if it is like that from the tears or from the force of his hit. I sit by the windowsill. Father comes up from behind me. He closes the blinds. I don’t deserve to see the outside world, he tells me. I disobeyed him. I sit on the floor and cry. I want to see the red haired girl. I want to envy her. I want to be her friend. I do not know what a friend is. I want to know.
Father did not want to leave me today. He leaves anyways. He has to find a job, he justifies. I go outside again. I do not fear the punishment awaiting me. I see the red haired girl. She does not drive today but she runs. What is she running from, I wonder. She waves at me. I smile at her.
Father does not know I went outside again. I want to keep it that way.
He left this morning. Off to find work again. I do not miss him. I go outside. Today, I walk around. I see a bird and a squirrel. I did not know there were squirrels here. I read about them in books. I pick up a flower.I throw it on to the road. The red haired girl drives by today and smiles at me. She runs over the flower.
Father found work yesterday. He starts next week. He is frustrated by this fact. He wants to start now. We’re going to have to move. I do not want to move. I cry. I had the red haired girl to keep me company now. He does not know about her. He tells me to start packing. I have nothing to pack.
Father is at work. I go outside. I see another bird and another squirrel. The girl with the red hair drives by. She is on her cell phone. I hear sirens wailing. I go back inside.
Father works again. I go outside. I do not see the red haired girl. I throw a flower into the road again. I do not see a bird or a squirrel.
Father comes home. He yells at me. We received another notice, reminding us to leave. I cry. I must see the girl with the red hair again.
I sit by the windowsill. Father is at work. I see a couple drive by in a nice car. The red haired girl is in the back seat. She looks like Father just hit her. I cry for her. I hope her father does not hurt her too.
We have three days left until we have to leave. Father wants to leave tonight. I gather my belongs. He puts them in the car. We say nothing. We leave. I close my eyes, the darkness of the road surrounds me.