the short story project


Faruk Buzhala

A glass of water

Tali filled a glass of water and asked Sarah while gazing her , “Want water, Sarah?”
“No, thank you,” she answered.
He drank the water alone and left the empty glass on the table. He returned to the bed and lay next to Sarah. He grabbed the blanket at the end of their feet and covered both. Sarah placed her head on his chest and with one hand began to gently touch his thighs. Likewise Tali caressed her hair though his gaze was lost towards bedroom’s small window.
At ease… they fell asleep in thoughts.
When Sarah opened her eyes, she noticed they had fallen asleep without realizing and the new day had dawned. She stood fast from the bed and began to gather her clothes thrown in the middle of the room while orderly putting them on. As soon as she dressed, she gently headed toward the door. She carefully opened it and as she headed out, she turned her head toward her lover, seeing him for one last time and left closing the door behind her. It was early morn and the sun’s first rays were beaming solemnly warming the city. What splendor and aroma was the morning dew giving to the dawn! The bird melodies echoed happily as they flew to the branches. Roadside, caretakers chatted and swept holding their brooms. Here and there, a passerby strolled the sidewalk. Occasionally vehicles drove by spoiling the morning peace. Swiftly and troubled someone known would notice her this early hour, Sarah drew close to home. She tried opening the door, but it didn’t open. She walked a few steps to the window and gently knocked on the window and whispered, “Mom, open the door.”
She returned to the door and waited. Shortly after she heard the hinges come off from the inside. She slowly opened the door, but was suddenly greeted by the father’s scowled face.
“Where were you?” He asked in an angry tone.
“I was at Hyra’s,” she responded with her voice cracking in fright.
“Why are you lying?” he asked furiously.
“I’m not lying.” Sarah answered.
“You’re not lying, huh?” he grabbed her hair hollering, “I’ll show you now.” He dragged her by hair than threw her to the bedroom floor. He began to take off his belt, asking, “Where were you all night?” Then lifted his belt in the air and beat her with all of his strength. Again, he lifted his arms and hit her again in fury, unleashing and asking, “Who were you with last night, huh?”

Sarah groaned as she held her head each time her father whipped her body. Images of previous night reappeared in her closed eyes. Oh… the dark room with small table and the three stools, the water-filled pitcher and the glass. She felt the pain of the whip and exhaled a sigh. Oh, that room corner in which she laid with her lover… Oh… sigh again after another whip. They lay naked caressing each other… Oh… sigh. Passionate kisses, sucking on each other’s tongues, oh. Oh… the hugs… the gentle bites… Oh… the feeling of the bodies rocking with joy… Oh…the floor where their clothes flung all over without care. Oh, the little window that seeped the moonlight and softened the darkness… Oh… the other corner where its light shined over a few books and notebooks. Oh… their lustful breathing that broke night’s silence… Oh… she felt how she melted with only him…
By now, father was sweating entirely from the uncontrollable beatings. Frenzied with his goggled eyes and lips under his teeth released ah’s after each whip over his daughter then gaining strength from his madness.
Ahh… ahhh… ahhhh… Sarah cried after each hit as she evoked Tali’s sighs over her. After a while quietness reigned and which Tali broke getting up and nakedly approaching the table.
Meanwhile, father felt someone grabbing his hand stopping his beating while yelling, “You’re killing your daughter.”
Lost he turned to see his wife that stood in front of him, troubled and blocking his hands with both of hers. Her look halted his haste. She looked at Sarah lying below his feet. She knelt to check on her daughter who had crashed on the floor with her hair strewn.
Laddered from beatings, Sarah barely moved. Panicked mother got up and ran terrifyingly to get water while screaming and cursing at her husband. Almost unconscious, Sarah opened her heavy eyes and a clouded image of her lover as he filled his glass with the pitcher… she saw him as he turned his head toward the bed where she lay and asked, “Want water, Sarah?”
The voice came from afar and drowned. She tried to speak, but couldn’t. Though her mouth dry she no longer had any strength left. As such she mustered all the pain and might and smiled longingly; reaching, but weakened arm fell on the floor. Her eyes darkened… and darkness was all she could see. 

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