Authors Note and WARNING: Monster is a work of fiction intended for adult readers above 18. It contains dark and sensitive subject matter that may make readers uncomfortable.
Contains explicit language and descriptions of sexual situations.
Every part of my body throbs with an aching pain. It hurts so much that I can’t sleep. I don’t dare put on any of the clothes Master and Mistress Ryland brought earlier in the evening, it will hurt my raw skin too much.
Sophia managed to put on a light dress. She’s currently sitting on the side of the bed, staring at me. She tilts her head, thinking hard on something.
Growing up with Sophia, I know everything about her. I know she’s lost much more of herself over the years than I have, and that’s saying a lot, seeing as there’s nothing left of me.
I wait, knowing she’s about to speak her mind.
She brings her feet up onto the mattress and folds her arms around her shins, resting her chin on her knees. She keeps her eyes on something outside the window, when she says, “It feels different here. Master and Mistress Ryland seem nice.” She looks at me and smiles. I don’t know how she manages to smile. I just want to die! “I think we’ll be happy here.”
I turn my back to her and grumble, “In order to be happy I actually have to care about life.” I’m done caring. I cared about David and those feeling were used to control me. Caring for someone only makes you vulnerable. I’ll never place myself in such a position again.
I hear someone come into the room and I don’t even bother to see who it is. Something is placed on the table between the two beds and then a soft voice says, “What’s this I hear of you wasting my soup, Son.”
I glance over my shoulder, but the movement only causes me pain. I watch as an elderly lady pulls a chair closer to the bed I’m on.
“My mama always said; waste not, want not,” she goes on talking. Her eyes are a vibrant blue and her hair grey with a purple tinge to it. “Now I’ve brought you another bowl of soup and you’ll eat every last drop. I’ve also brought you some pills for the pain.”
The painkillers get my attention. I struggle into a sitting position, my eyes never leaving the woman. Trust no one and expect anything.
“I’m Miss Ella and that’s what you’ll call me. Don’t even try to call me Miss E, I’m nobody’s missy. My mama gave me the name Ella and I expect you to use it.” She scoops a bit of soup up and then blows on the broth before she brings it to my lips. The action reminds me of Momma. She used to do that too, so I wouldn’t burn my mouth.
I take a few bites before Miss Ella asks, “What’s your name, Son?”
I don’t answer her. I don’t want to be here and I don’t want to get friendly with anyone.
Sophia clears her throat, “His name is Jack.”
Miss Ella smiles at Sophia. “Thank you, dear, and you are?”
Miss Ella feeds me until the bowl is empty and my stomach full. I want to cry with relief when she places the painkillers in my mouth. I quickly swallow them down with some water.
“My room is the one right by the stairs. If the pain gets to be too much come wake me.” She gathers the dishes and then gives me and Sophia each a pointed look. “You need to eat all your food so your bodies can heal. There’s a lot of work to be done. Everyone works here to earn their keep.” An icy ripple spreads down my spine. Miss Ella looks at Sophia. “As soon as you’re up to it you can help me in the kitchen.” And then she looks at me. “River says you’ve been born with a green thumb. That’s a good thing because no one around here likes to garden, and I’m too old to be playing with flowers. We can do with some color around here, so as soon as you’re better you can fix the gardens up nicely.”
She looks pleased with herself. “Now get a good night’s rest and I’ll see you in the morning.”
I can go on gardening here? Miss Ella said nothing about sex. Come to think of it neither did Mistress and Master Ryland. That doesn’t mean anything! As soon as we’re better they’ll put us to work. After all, Miss Ella said we have to earn our keep.
Michelle Horst is thirty seven years old and is from South Africa.
She’s been in love with reading from an early age. She has a passion for all things books, but she has an ultimate soft spot for nature and animals.
She first tried her hand at writing in early 2009 and as the first words started to form into a book, she knew she was hooked. Dreams spilled onto pages, and that was the beginning of a wonderful journey.
One filled with joy. One filled with passion and heart stopping moments.
But most of all, it’s filled with such pride and peace as a story comes to life, and characters fill your life, living in the very walls of your mind, living in the minds of your readers. There is nothing as satisfying as that.
Thank you for each and every story you share with me.