Rainbow Sundae 1.31

(Trigger warning: Domestic Violence and crappy pose player work.)

December 29th, 12:31AM. Grofield Residence.

000

Caroline rocked the infant in her arms. Her older daughter stood by her side and fidgeted in silence. The baby cried. She knew the children were cold, but she had left the house in such a rush she didn’t have the chance to wrap them up.

“Ssssh, it’s okay, Sweetie,” she whispered to her infant daughter.

She was still wearing her evening dress and the cold winter breeze cut right through her. Her fingers were numb as she rapped on the door to her sister’s home.

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Anita dragged herself out of bed and pulled on her romper. Who in their right mind would be knocking on her door at this hour? She peeked through the snow frosty window of her front door, then threw it open when she saw her sister carrying a baby.

“Caroline!” Anita exclaimed. “What are you doing here? Oh god, the babies! Get inside!”

Anita took her older niece’s hand and guided her into the house. Caroline trotted in the house with a deadened step.

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Anita and Caroline set up the baby up in Anita’s bedroom. They moved into the living room once the baby was warm and asleep. The child plopped down on the couch next to them.

“I’m assuming there’s a reason you decided to visit at midnight,” Anita asked.

Tired lines made heavy bags under Caroline’s eyes. She looked older than she was and Anita could see the heavy weight on her younger sister’s shoulders.

“Oh Annie,” Caroline said in a long whine.”

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Caroline couldn’t find the words to express what was wrong. She instead became a mess of tears and mascara.

Anita regarded her sister with care. She didn’t know what was going on. Was this just a rash act from her jealous minded sister’s hyperactive imagination or was something really wrong. She moved her hand over to Caroline’s knee.

“Keep crying,” Anita said tenderly. “Let me know when you’re ready to talk.”

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“I’m glad I have you, Anita,” Caroline said after the sobs subsided. “I wouldn’t know where I’d go otherwise.”

“You know you and the girls are always welcome here,” Anita said.

“Thanks Sis,” Caroline said and wrung her hands together. “Do you think it’d be alright if we stayed a while?”

“Of course it’s fine,” Anita said. “I’d love the company. Aiden’s out of town for work.”

Caroline’s eyes widened a little. “He left you all alone out here?” she asked in shocked. “But you’re pregnant!”

“Sheldon went on a business trip while you were pregnant.”

“Yeah, but I have neighbors. You’re out here in the woods, all alone.”

“That’s not true. I have Candy and Mint. Not to mention, Aiden left me a present.”

“I don’t know, Annie–“

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Anita frowned. She squeezed her sister’s knee. “Cara, this is not the time to debate whether my pregnancy renders me incapable of staying home alone,” she said in the way that meant: Drop it. “Why are you here?”

Caroline sucked in a ragged breath and was silent.

Anita’s expression softened. “Cara, what happened?” She asked in a whisper.

Hesitation was a heavy shadow on Caroline’s face. She chewed her lower lip.”Sheldon and I had a fight,” Caroline said finally.

Anita tried not to sigh in annoyance. She figured. Just a lover’s quarrel.

“He hit me…” Caroline whispered.

Anita’s sigh turned into a gasp. “What,” Anita said in a near scream.

“It’s not the first time,” Caroline said and started to cry again.

Anita wrapped her arms around her younger sister and cradled her as she cried. Anger bubbled in her stomach. It churned deep in her. A bitter bile rose into her mouth. How long had her baby sister been suffering? How was it that she hadn’t noticed? She petted Caroline’s back and made a comforting shooshing sound, but Anita’s teeth were clenched in frustration.

An hour later, Anita convinced Caroline to sleep. The worn out woman and her daughter took Anita’s bed. Anita wouldn’t have it any other way. Anita assured her sister that the bed was too uncomfortable for herself now that she was pregnant. Caroline was too tired to argue and went to bed with her daughters.

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Heavy footsteps clopped up the wooden porch and an even heavier knock pounded at the door. It had only been half an hour since everyone had went to bed.

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Anita continued to sleep. She was used to thumping sounds in the night. Her dogs made more than their fair share of noise and there was a symphony of noises each night from the woods around her house.

special_007

It was Sheldon. He stewed in rage outside Anita’s home. His fist pounded on the door again.

special_012

Caroline hadn’t been able to sleep. She had tossed and turned as a convoluted mess of depression and apprehension. Her jaw was sore from where Sheldon had hit her and her heart ached from his betrayal. And if her emotions weren’t enough of a problem, the eerie sounds of frogs serenading her chased sleep even further away.

The knocking at the door sent a jolt of fear down her spine. It was Sheldon. She knew it. She opened the bedroom door and peeked out into the living room. Anita was still asleep. Poor thing… Caroline felt so awful for making her pregnant sister sleep on the couch, but Anita was stubborn. Caroline’s eyes glanced at the front door and her fears were confirmed when she saw her husband outside.

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Caroline put a hand on the door. It was cold. She could feel the tears well in her eyes. “Sheldon, go away,” she said in a wavering whisper.

“Open the God damned door,” he said through the glass.

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Anita stirred from her sleep and sat up. The anger she had went to sleep with had mixed with her morning sickness. She felt sick and grasped her stomach. She looked up and noticed Caroline at the front door.

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“Caroline, what’s wrong?” Anita asked as Caroline unlocked the door.

Sheldon burst into the house.

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“What the fuck do you think you’re doing running off with my kids?” Sheldon asked in a scream.

Caroline flinched back. She stuttered, “Shel… Shel–“

“Shut the fuck up and talk, you stuttering bitch,” Sheldon said.

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Anita shot out of her chair in a bolt of lightning. Sheldon continued to berate Caroline. Caroline’s childhood stutter was out in full force. She couldn’t get a word out.

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Anita stomped over to Caroline and Sheldon.

“Get your shit together,” Sheldon said. “We’re leaving.”

special_019

“She’s not going anyway,” Anita said. “Get the fuck out of my house.”

“The psycho sister,” Sheldon said with his voice dripping with sarcasm. “Stay the fuck outta our business.  You’ve got no right to stick your nose in this.”

“I don’t think so,” Anita said. “This is my house and my family. You can get the hell out of here and get lost.”

special_013

Caroline’s older daughter heard the voices outside the bedroom door and woke up. She rolled out of the bed and checked on her baby sister.

“Ssssh,” she whispered to the sleeping infant. “You just keep sleeping. It sounds like Mommy and Daddy are fighting again. Don’t worry, I’ll fix it.”

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The little girl walked out to where her parents and aunt argued. She plastered a forced smile on her face and greeted her father.

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“Hey Dad!” the little girl said.

Sheldon looked down at his daughter and scowled. “Hey Kiddo,” he said as he tried to keep the anger out of his voice. “Go get your sister. You and your sister are coming with me. Your mother has decided she doesn’t give a shit about our family.”

“What?” Caroline’s daughter said in panic.

special_024

“I don’t want to go without Mommy,” the little girl cried.

“Honey, just go back to the room,” Caroline said with only a tiny stutter. “Mommy and Daddy are… we’re… we’re just talking.”

“Don’t listen to her–” Sheldon said, but Anita interrupted him.

“Go on to bed, Sweetie,” Anita said. Her voice was calm and there was an iron will to it. “I’ll bring you some milk and Oreo’s soon.”

The little girl looked around in confusion, but nodded and shuffled off to the bedroom.

special_025

Sheldon grabbed Caroline as soon as their daughter closed the bedroom door. “We’re gonna talk this out?” Sheldon asked with a laugh. “There’s no need to talk. Just pack your shit and get in the car.”

“I– I’m–” Caroline stuttered.

“You’re not what?” Sheldon asked.

“She’s trying to say she and the girls aren’t going anywhere,” Anita said through gritted teeth.

Sheldon shoved Caroline down into the pile of presents left over from Christmas and turned his attention to Anita. “Listen,” he said with spittle of rage flying from his mouth. “I’ve had it up to here with your shit, Bitch. Stay the fuck out of this!”

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Anita dove for the pile of presents. Candy put herself between Caroline and Sheldon. The mastiff growled defensively.

The presents had all been ransacked on Christmas day and their boxes empty, except one. Aiden’s extra present for Anita. She remembered her exasperation at the gift.

“Why on Earth would I need this?” she had asked Aiden in shock.

“Listen Babe, my line of work isn’t exactly safe and if someone tries to come after you to get to me… I need to know you have something more than dogs to protect you and our kiddo,” Aiden had said.

Anita’s fingers closed around the cold steel and she smiled glumly. She couldn’t have imagined that she’d need to protect herself from someone that should be family. Anita tightened her grip on the handle and stood up.

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Anita watched the shock register on Sheldon’s face as she pointed the gun at him. “I said Caroline and the girls weren’t going anywhere,” Anita said. She flicked the barrel of the gun towards the door. “The only one leaving is you. Get the fuck out of my house.”

She kept the gun fixed on him as he retreated out of the house and got into his car. Her grip on the gun only relaxed as his car disappeared into the distance.

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Anita put the gun down and locked the door. The pounding in her heart subsided and threw her arms around Caroline as soon as she could. The sisters sobbed together in relief.

“Don’t worry, Baby Sis,” Anita said. “I’m always going to be here to protect you.”

Caroline sobbed in a panic. “I love you so much,” she said. “I can’t believe you pulled a gun on him. Why do you even have a gun?”

Anita let a half chuckle escape her lips. “It was a Christmas present from Aiden,” she said. “You know how I said Aiden is a video game programmer? That’s not exactly true… He’s a hacker.”

Caroline gasped.

“I’ll explain everything in the morning,” Anita said. And she did.

Caroline and the girls spent the next month staying with Anita until they found themselves a new home without Sheldon.

Author’s Note: Wooo…. that was a super heavy chapter. That wraps it up for serious drama stuff for this generation. I don’t know why, but Sheldon was just a creepy dude in game. So I figured he was actually a monster.

4 thoughts on “Rainbow Sundae 1.31

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