Moral Compass

Mother has been through my writings again, I can tell. It is only a personal diary. She really should not hold against me the things that I write simply for my own edification. I no longer have anyone to converse with, and so I must create my philosophies within the confines of my own mind.

It is raining again today. Every time I feel that I have Mother convinced that I should be let out for some fresh air, it rains. I am starting to believe that she times her acquiescence with the likelihood of precipitation. I do not believe that she wants to let me out. I do not know if I shall ever get out again. I know that she is afraid, both for me and of me, and I cannot say that I blame her. That does not mean that I am not angry about it. These walls grow closer together with every passing day.

There was a time when she thought that it could be controlled, that I could be controlled. That time passed, rather long ago I admit, and I am not happy. I have put so much effort forth to be other than I am, to no avail. Failing that, I worked to conceal it, to allow a film down over my eyes so that the urges buried in my soul were not on display. This failed as well, excepting one memorable experiment that most likely cannot be repeated as Mother now keeps the only key to my door upon a chain around her neck.

She does bring me things to brighten up my lonely days. She brings me small animals, sometimes. Pets, she calls them, though she never asks what I plan to name them, and very obviously refuses to notice that they are no longer keeping me company when next she returns. She is most certainly playing the willful ignorant, as the small collection of sharpened bones that had been squirreled away underneath my mattress is now gone and the dumbwaiter frequently reeks of bleach when I pull up my supper.

Earlier today I heard a woman’s voice that I did not recognize, through the door at the bottom of the attic stairs. The tantalizing lilt of Ireland sang through it as she answered Mother’s murmured directive. “Yes, Miss, I swear to you that I will never try this door again.” Despite the gloom outside of my barred window, I feel that my burden may be lightened, soon. It is nearly a given that Mother was not explicit with the woman when delivering her warning, and where there is a crack I may find a way to slide through it.

I do wonder that Mother did not bother to mention to me that our missing maid had been replaced.

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Categories: Fiction | Tags: , , , | 13 Comments

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13 thoughts on “Moral Compass

  1. Ooh, murder. Murder most foul. Very nice.

    • Ha, exactly πŸ˜‰ I read it out loud to see if it sounded like the same voice all the way through and I found my own voice going all Edgar Allan Poe-y…

  2. Tantalisingly wicked. I really hope this is a portion of a larger work. There’s so much more I want to know… so many more ways for this character (and the plot) to develop. Delightfully done, Shannon.

    • ‘Tantalisingly wicked’ is such a wonderful compliment, thank you πŸ™‚ It’s funny, as I hadn’t really thought about it until I read your comment, but I could definitely see re-visiting this story on a few different levels…hmmm…thank you so much, I’m very glad that you enjoyed it!

  3. Very nice, Shannon, enjoyed this!

  4. That is one terribly creepy voice! What a great job you did of creating a strong character, and maintaining his voice throughout. I hesitate to say that I actually like the things he said because he is so wickedly nasty, but “I am starting to believe that she times her acquiescence with the likelihood of precipitation” did make me snicker.

    • Oh, please don’t hesitate to say that because I heard that line in such a sardonic tone of voice when I read it to myself that it makes happy to hear that that it made you snicker πŸ™‚

  5. Meg

    I agree with Silverleaf — a creepy voice! There is something metallic and cold about it. Interesting that I perceived the narrator to be female, though — not that it affects the overall tone. Spooky good.

    • That is interesting to me, too – I had originally thought that I was writing from a male perspective, but as I re-read I was actually rather delighted to realize that it could be either, and how much fun it would be to continue the storyline from a female POV. So, I think it’s kind of awesome that you perceived it that way πŸ™‚

  6. So cool the relationship your narrator has with his mother. As if his proclivities are a game. I would love to read the mother’s perspective on the other side of the door!

    • Yes! That’s exactly it, all he has left to play with is his wits and he’s going to do his damndest to win. Um, and yeah, I may just have to run with your idea about exploring the mother’s side of things, so thank you!

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