The Curse

I’ve been editing Hidden Tempation, yes again.  I noticed that I still had issues with the tenses.  I tried to keep up with reading your blogs but I fell behind. My muse is on vacation or something.  I seem to always fall into a funk when I get sick.  I’m still fighting this lupus.  Still on steroids but reduced and hopefully the doctor will reduce me to 4 mg next month. 

The following story I wroted trying to sharpen my skills.  It is a work of fiction and when I started I didn’t know where it was going.  The ending turned extremly ugly so I tried to jusitfy it.  

I hope to be back to blogging regularly and I will catch up with your work soon.  Hugs.

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“You’re not that smart you know.” She told me those words a least once a day. There was a time I would stare in her jaundice eyes defiantly, suck my teeth and roll my young dark eyes.  The swelling in my lips would usually go down by morning.
I wasn’t stupid that I knew but she convinced I wasn’t smart. She said I was sneaky and one day my shit was going to stink for everyone to smell. That was a mean thing to tell a ten-year-old. I don’t know why she hated me. I did what I was told most of the time and I hardly talked back. Maybe it was because Nana was old, fat, black and ugly.  That wasn’t my fault and it wasn’t my fault she had to cook and clean all day while mama and the two tenants went out to work. She was home by herself doing whatever housework she claimed she did. All I knew was she gave me a note to take to old man Robinson’s store for a bottle of cold duck and a pack of Lucky Strikes every day when I came home from school.
First, I had changed from my pleated skirt and matching button down cotton shirt. I had a different color for the five days of school. I had navy blue, brown, tan, green, and yellow. Some girls wore black or red but Nana said decent young girls didn’t wear those colors until they were over sixteen. Nana and Mrs. Murphy had a heated discussion about that very thing when I wore a white blouse and my navy blue skirt instead of black to assembly.   Mrs. Murphy looked like a fresh steamed lobster after Nana explained why I would not be wearing black on any assembly day.
After I came back from old man Robinson I had to do my chores. Monday it was sweep the steps and dust the baseboards. On Tuesdays, I had to dust the living room furniture including all Nana’s ugly porcelain people and flowers. Wednesdays I had to change the linens on all the beds in the house. I hated Wednesdays most of all, there were five beds to change and Mr. Sammy’s bed always smelled like pee. On Thursdays, I had to sweep the floors from the kitchen to the front porch. The living room and dining room had dusty old braided rugs. On the first Saturday of the month Nana and I rolled them up and carried them in the yard, hung them on the clothesline and beat them. Nana put a rag over her mouth and nose. She said I was young and a little dust wasn’t going to hurt me none.  I coughed all evening and when I blew my nose black dirt was in the tissue. Today was Friday and after I scrubbed the sink, bathtub and toilet like had to do before I left for school every morning I had to change the towels and wipe pine over everything. I also set the table and washed the dishes every night. Sometimes mama would help me wash the pots and pans after dinner.

Since I was doing all the housework Nana just cooked, drank her booze and watched her stories on the old black and white console. On Saturdays, I had to help her with the grocery shopping. On Sunday she made me wear itchy dresses and sit in the Catholic Church for an hour. I use to pray that God would give Nana a heart attack and she would die. When Aunt Beulah had a stroke she and couldn’t walk or talk anymore. She just sat in her wheelchair looking around and drooling. She must have been suffering because I use to see her cry. Once when no one was watching I pinched Aunt Beulah, I pinched her hard enough to leave a black and blue mark. She couldn’t scream but she did cry and I saw that she was scared every time I got close to her. That was when I started praying for Nana to have a stroke. Then I started praying for her to get cancer when I saw how Uncle Leon who was big and strong shriveled up and started moaning and crying. But nothing ever happened to Nana she just kept being her mean self.
Once I asked mama if we could move away from Nana’s house. Mama told me I was being ridiculous. She said we couldn’t afford a place of our own and Nana needed help paying the bills on the house. She told me we were family and family stuck together and helped each other. I told mama I didn’t mind helping but Nana treated me like a slave. I do all the housework. Mama asked me who I thought washed, hung the clothes to dry then folded and ironed all them? She asked who mopped the floors, washed the windows, and hung curtains. Who cut and raked the grass and tend to the vegetable garden? I thought about all that and realized Nana did a lot but she still didn’t have to be so mean to me.
Mr. Sammy’s room was across from mine. Nana denied it but I knew he was her boyfriend. In the evening, they either sat on the sun porch or in the backyard drinking and smoking. I could hear their indistinct voices late into the night.

 

I didn’t like Mr. Sammy. His appearance made me uncomfortable. His face reminded me of a prune, dark and wrinkly. His eyes were always bloodshot like fire and it felt like he was burning me when he stared at me.

 

One day Nana wasn’t home when I came in from school. That was unusual, she had a dentist appointment that ran late. I was in my bedroom changing out of my school clothes. I had my skirt off and was about to take my blouse off when Mr. Sammy just walked in my room. I covered my upper body with my arms and screamed and told him to get out. He ignored me and walked toward me with his toothless smile and said I was a beautiful blossoming flower. I yelled for him to leave but he kept coming toward me. He grabbed my arms and pushed me down on the bed. The smell of his hot stale breath and the piss smell turned my stomach. He was shorter than me but much stronger. He held both my wrist with one hand he used his knees to spread my legs. I tried to keep them closed by crossing them but he overpowered me. He pulled my panties and they ripped off. He put his fingers in my vagina. Next, I felt him unbuckling his pants and grab his penis and shove it into me. I kept screaming. He let my arms go and I tried to push him off and I was hitting him. It seemed the more I fought, the more excited he became and the harder he pushed himself into me. After what seemed like eternity, he collapsed on top of me and I felt warm sticky liquid oozing between my legs.

 

“What the hell is going on?”  Nana yelled as she threw the door open.
Mr. Sammy jumped up and said, “she invited me in.” He was pulling his pants up and walking toward Nana.
“You got five minutes to get out my house, you son of a bitch,” Nana said to Mr. Sammy. He quickly brushed past her. I was still on the bed curled in a ball. Nana had a switch in her hand. She said, “I told you, you’re not that smart.” Then she beat me. She was right I wasn’t that smart and I was stupid because I didn’t lock my bedroom door. I don’t know why Nana beat me and not Mr. Sammy. Was it my fault he came in my room and hurt me?  Did I do something to make him want to do that? I lay in a ball and screamed with every sting that hit my body. When Nana finally stopped I had whelps from my back down to my legs.

 

 

“Go wash your nasty self and get dressed and do your chores.”  Nana glared at me.  It wasn’t anger that I saw in her eyes.  It was a look I never saw before. Was it pity? Was she angry because of what Mr. Sammy did to me? Nana never said another word about what happen.

 

I was scared I would get another whooping if I told mama but I needed to know why Nana beat me,  I didn’t know what I did wrong. After Nana went to bed mama was sitting at the dining room table reading the newspaper and I was doing my homework I found the courage to tell mama what happen.  Mama came over  and hugged me with tears in her eyes.  I ask why nana beat me.

 

Mama said, “Nana wanted you to forget what that man did to you. She wanted you to be mad at her instead of being mad and afraid of men.  You see Nana was raped by my daddy and she never forgave him or herself.  I was raped by Uncle Leon and you came along, she beat me too. After you were born she said she was sorry she beat me. She said she thought she could beat away the evil her brother did to me and hoped I wouldn’t have a baby like she did.  She said she beat me out of love.

 

That didn’t make sense to me, Nana loves me? I could have a baby? It wasn’t my fault what Mr. Sammy did?  After the Mr. Sammy incident, Nana would only rent rooms to women.

 

That was fifteen years ago.  Today I’m about to marry Harold the love of my life.  I never told him about Mr. Sammy and Nana told me I didn’t have to.  She said I can take that ugliness to my grave.  She said I broke the family curse. I survived Mr. Sammy and didn’t have a bastard by him.

Mama and Nana were about to walk down the aisle before me. Mama had tears in her eyes when she hugged me and told me she loved me.  Nana hugged me and put her cheek next to mine and whispered. “You are a smart young woman

27 thoughts on “The Curse

  1. Uncertainty is part of being alive. Feeling helpless, dealing with your health will only strengthen you. Keep on writing. Don’t give up on yourself. You do write great story. And you will see that writing will help you recover much faster. Here’s a quote for you, hope it will help –

    ‘If a man truly desires to write, then he will. Rejection and ridicule will only strengthen him …There is no losing in writing, it will make your toes laugh as you sleep, it will make you stride like a tiger, it will fire the eye and put you face to face with death. You will die a fighter, you will be honored in hell. The luck of the word. Go with it, send it.’
    – Charles Bukowski

    God bless you! Namaste!

    1. Thank you for your inspiring words. I do love the quote. I’ve been writing a very long time and I will always write. I’ve been writing but just not sharing on WP. I just have to get back in the groove and I will. Be well. HUGS Helping Us Grow Spiritually.

    2. Thank you for your inspiring words. I do love the quote. I’ve been writing a very long time and I will always write. I’ve been writing but just not sharing on WP. I just have to get back in the groove and I will. Be well. HUGS Helping Us Grow Spiritually.

  2. Wow, this was very gripping, Kim, and heart-wrenching, enough to dive into the screen. 🙂 But I’m so glad you ended the darkness with some much needed light. I hope you feel better soon, take the time you need, and good luck with your writing, too. Sending lots of love and many hugs! ♥

  3. Negative reinforcement is a great puzzle.
    Sometimes we have to find the light all by ourselves.
    Keep looking and take all the time you need to recover.
    Enjoy working on your editing.

  4. I think you’re more than entitled to take time for yourself Kim. Please know you are missed and supported. Your writing reminds me a little of a favorite book of mine by the indomitable Laurie Lee, it has music in its words.

  5. A dark story in its way, Kim. I liked you left that ray of light in the end. I can sort of understand Nana. My mom is a lot like her. Keep writing when you can. 🙂

  6. That’s such a gripping and heart-wrenching story, so well told. I’m glad that Nana called her smart in the end.

    I’m sorry that you’re still suffering with your lupus, Kim. Hope you get back on a more even keel with your health soon, and can cut down or cut out the steroids. Love and prayers xxxx

  7. A very heart wrenching story Kim.. Wonderfully descriptive and beautifully told.. So pleased she broke the family curse .. Glad you changed the ending..
    Love and Blessings and Good luck with your writing xxx ❤

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