When I was young I lived in a large house out in the countryside with an impressive garden dating back many years - this garden was like a maze, especially to the inquisitive mind of a youngster and I'd spend many hours exploring the garden before being called in by my parents when it got too late.
I wasn't exactly the most sociable of children and as such I didn't make many friends, though my parents were determined to keep me in public school so as not to isolate me from others.
I hated school, the other children seldom had much to do with me and many of the staff either ignored me or found some trait of my personality to object to and thus when I returned home I often went to the garden to explore and in the weekends or holidays I would spend even more time there.
One day whilst exploring the garden I came to the edge, overlooking a nearby forest - I had never actually went this far down the garden before: usually only exploring the parts near the house, thus I was naturally curious as I looked around.To my surprise I found a small statue of a little girl holding a butterfly in her hands, standing alone at the bottom of the garden - even though it the sun was shining bright and birds chirped in the trees I felt somewhat disturbed by the statue and could actually feel my heart beating faster.
As you can imagine I didn't stay long, heading right back towards the house I decided not to stray that far again - yet what was to follow was a series of events that continue to horrify me long into my adult life..It began that night when I came home and got ready for bed, my parents were downstairs and I could hear them arguing - which was unusual as they were normally very good with each other: in fact it was the first time I remembered hearing them argue and it scared me, they were obviously very angry with each other and I could hear them yelling and slamming doors.
I considered going down to investigate when I heard footsteps coming up the stairs and I jumped back as my door swung open to reveal my father, who was extremely drunk - this was startling as he was strongly against drink and for as long as I remembered he had all but banned alcohol from the house.Yet here he was, drunk and angry, staggering into my room and muttering something under his breath as he went into a cupboard and took out a few boxes: I tried to speak to him but he ignored me and staggered back out the room with boxes in tow.
By this point I was afraid and followed my father, my mother having arrived up the stairs - she yelled at my father as he spat back at her in a drunken manner: I watched as he threw the boxes on his bed and began taking clothing and items.I asked my mother what was going on but she too ignored me as she continued yelling at my father, who clumsily finished packing the boxes before storming down the stairs. That was the last time I ever saw my father and to this day I don't know what happened, my mother refused to talk about it - in fact following that night she barely said a word to me and before long I found myself moving in with my aunt in the suburbs.
Eventually I spoke to my aunt about the statue in the garden of my parent's home and she seemed a little disturbed, I asked her what was wrong and she told me a story about the house that neither of my parents had ever talked about:
Around a hundred years ago the house was inhabited by a wealthy man and his wife, who had a young daughter who often explored the garden day and night - one day however the girl strayed too far from the house and wandered into the nearby forest where she became lost.
A search was performed but sadly by the time the girl was found she had already died, curled up by a tree in an effort to stay warm - following the girl's death her mother and father would argue continually: blaming each other for what happened.
The girl's father turned to drink and her mother became reclusive, shortly after building a statue in memory of his daughter the father committed suicide and was buried (as was his request) in the garden.
The girl's mother would continue to live on for several years before succumbing to old age but remained a recluse until her final days.
After hearing the story I felt a little chill down my spine but my aunt was quick to dismiss it as the past and assured me what happened then had nothing to do with my parents - looking back as an adult I suppose I should believe my aunt, yet there is still a part of me that looks back to that story and wonders if there wasn't something else at work.