106: R&R – Repentance & Remorse (drabble) [written Friday to Saturday 8-9 January 2016]
Thought I should get in a few words before the time of day passed into the next, which would have left me to think about the promise I broke.
The little girl of six-and-ten years will hear the quick and angry slamming of the front door. She will wait the ten or fifteen seconds before she hears her sister stomp up the stairs in her usual after-work fashion. She will wait to hear the thumping of her handbag on her sister’s bedroom floor before the inevitable footsteps she will take to see her younger sister. Five and almost six months is the age difference.
The older girl, of two-and-twenty years of age, will ask her sister where the parents are and what will be for dinner as she notices the closed and locked door of the parents’ bedroom. The younger sister will say, “Mother and Father are out, at the grandparents’. Mother said that we shall have to discuss the arrangements for dinner.” Although, in reality, she will say that, just not in so many superfluous words. Her older sister will sigh and jangle the keys in her hand. According to her, dinner will consist of foodstuffs from the local convenience store. The little sister, having been confined inside for the past week, will have decided to come with, but only after the older sibling will have proposed the suggestion to her. She will look in her wardrobe for a casual outfit, to be seen as acceptable in the eyes of the external world. Not even twenty mere seconds will have passed as the little girl tries, will try to pull a favourite t-shirt over her head. Her older sister will huff in impatience and toss at her little sister the sundress, the second-hand sundress she had personally given to her to own. She will say, “How hard is it to pull a dress over your head?”
The little girl will get confused at this. All she wanted was to look nice before going outside, but she will become slightly annoyed with her older sibling’s impatience. She will say, “What’s the deal with you? There is no need to be mean or mad for no reason.” Immediately, that will seem like enough reason, enough cause for her sister’s impatience and overall sour mood. Her sister, the one who is madly frustrated, will threaten to leave her at home. Both of the sisters know there is no real consumable food at home. The little sister will say something else now; she forgot what it was later on, but it must have been a weak jab at her older sister which she took offence to very quickly because she will now descend the stairs in a moody fashion and declare that she will be leaving the house now, without her. The little sister will be still barefoot when she hears her sister arrive at the bottom of the stairs, briefly change her mind for a tiny millisecond and stamp slowly up the stairs, as if it were in her the remnants of an instinctual need to care for her sister, but then she will turn around and go back down the staircase, and this time she will not stop until she is out the front door. By the time the little girl will have gone down, she will be just in time to see her older sister close the door on her. Time will allow her only one thought to cross her mind and it will be one word, “Bitch?”
Much later, however, her sister will pay for her cup of noodles and a beef pie, and they will walk home together with a heavily uncomfortable tension between them. On the way home, the little girl will think, “What a beautiful day to take a walk outside. There are things of the natural world that I have missed out on, and I shall not miss out on future things like these.”
Promptly after dinner, she will scrape together a few coins, six dollars in total, and dump them on her older sister’s desk along with the double Twix bar she will have found sitting at the bottom of her plastic bag while she was walking home. Then she will take an evening walk without notifying the older, which will inevitably infuriate her.