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Intoxicated

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I was bound to be a little jumpy.

The night was strange, starless and grey. Outside the window, I could see the moon in the hollow spaces in the clouds, its light highlighting the soft, wispy blanket that veiled it.

I was too frightened to sleep.

I remember every bit of it because I was eight and that was the day I had sipped a little alcohol from my father’s glass. I had regretted it instantly. My sister told me about hangovers and the side effects of drinking and it added to the terror I felt about the whole endeavor. I figured that I could manage with the dehydration and headaches, but I needed my memory.

So I memorized every detail of that day.

If I hadn’t, I wouldn’t have remembered anything about being eight. I wonder if my bedroom’s still as it used to be.

I hadn’t any idea why my family members laughed every time they recalled the incident. I do now, and it was certainly very funny.

But didn’t anybody remember what happened that night? Or did they just assume that I had forgotten and didn’t bring it up because I wasn’t amusing enough for them that night?

I sigh as I step into the cab. I can’t blame anyone for finding me cute and interesting. I should be flattered, but somehow I wasn’t. I was a kid. Everybody loved it, I hated it.

“Where to, ma’am?” The driver asks without turning around. He can see me in the mirror, he knows by my attire that I’m going somewhere special.

I tell him the address and sit back comfortably in my seat.

“A party, ma’am?” He asks as he starts up the engine.

I smile. I realize that I am, indeed, overdressed. I tell him about the family reunion at my old home.

We remain quiet after that. I sink into my memories again, feeling nostalgic and a little awkward.

I had a small, single bed in the corner of my bedroom, as if the bed were the least important part of the BEDroom. The wall behind my bed had a large window so I could stare at the sky and count the stars as I drifted off to sleep.

Was the wall adjacent to my bed pink or blue? The day I had a sip of alcohol, what did I see when I went to bed? Perhaps it was too dark to see anything.

I remember being uneasy while sleeping. In fact, I don’t think I remember sleeping at all. I think I was frightened of the delusions I thought I’d have while ‘drunk’. I flinched at everything that moved. The windows that rustled from time to time, the door that creaked as the breeze played with it…

I had a hollow, wooden door?

I think it was blue; no, it was cream.

Where was it?

Window behind me, wall beside me, barren if not for the light bulb at the high end;

The third wall had a mirror and a dressing table. I remember keeping all my toys there and getting into trouble for that. Also, there was a blue door.

No… no. That night I stared at the door. It was on the fourth wall.

Nothing else was on the fourth wall.

A cream colored, hollow door; Watching it sway with the wind was what finally put me to sleep.

I remember because I was so scared.

I remember the whispers under my bed.

I remember being wide awake.

I remember looking under the bed.

I remember screaming.

I also remember mum and dad coming to my aid.

But I do not remember what I saw under the bed. And I can’t, no matter how hard I try.

Mum searched under the bed. She found nothing at all. I wasn’t quite convinced, but I felt safer because she decided to squeeze in with me in the tiny bed.

And that was it.

The cab stops. I hand him a tip as I step out and walk towards my old home. I feel eerie.

Calm down, I tell myself.

I smile and wave at the relatives gathered but all I really want to do is go to my room and solve the mystery once and for all. I feel like a child, although everyone keeps reminding me about how I’ve grown up and how tiny I was when they last saw me. I resist the urge to comment that they saw me a week ago in the supermarket and excuse myself from the crowd.

I stare at the room. I wonder what’s under the bed.

I walk past the dressing table, or at least where it used to be. The wallpaper’s old and dusty. The bulb on the second wall has been replaced by a tube light.

The bed is intact.

I walk towards it, dreading every step. I breathe. I bend down.

I look under the bed.

Nothing.

I walk back to the door. For a while I’m confused. I stare at the fourth wall, my face blanker that the wall itself. I turn to see the dressing table.

The cream colored door is gone.

It was never there.


This doesn't even feel like my room anymore.



Written by WaveDivisionMultiplexer
Content is available under CC BY-SA

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