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Janet’s Never Ending Day

November 18, 2012

I have no idea why a lot of my short stories are so violent and strange.  I have had a happy and relatively easy life so far.  I wonder if it has to do with reading a lot of  Stephen King?  I had an idea for a story and jotted it down quickly, so sorry if it’s a little confusing.  The ending might not make sense.

 

Janet’s Never Ending Day

 

 

Of course the car would pick this day to die. A horrible ending to a horrible day. A horrible week, actually. Every day had been a hellish endurance contest, and Janet almost hadn’t made it through. Now, she had to end the week by hauling her 180 pound body through this intense heat for an hour to get home. Her feet were killing her and sweat was dripping from her chin and trickling down her sides. Even in her discomfort, this was better than being at work. She worked in a day care center and the kids just about drove her crazy. She, Janet the child hater, worked in a day care center. It was almost funny. A person will do anything to make a dollar. She wouldn’t need to make the money if it hadn’t been for the bad luck of having a child herself. Four years ago, her worst fear had happened. She had become pregnant. Her husband, Dick, was thrilled. She had felt like her life was over. She hated kids. She would have ended the pregnancy, but Dick had threatened to leave her if she did. So, now she had a three year old brat to take care of. Luckily, her mom took care of Amanda most days, and she let Dick do the evening care.

“I don’t know why I care if Dick leaves me or not.” Janet said as she trudged along. “He really lives up to his name. He is a Dick!” She giggled at her joke.

After what seemed an eternity, she arrived at her house. She rummaged through her purse as she climbed the stairs to the front porch, looking for her keys. They weren’t there. She stood at the door, frantically opening one zipper after another on her purse and clawing through the contents in each compartment. No key was found.

“Oh you have got to be KIDDING ME!” She yelled, and threw her purse down. “I don’t need this shit today!”

She glanced at her watch. It was only 5:00 pm. Dick wouldn’t be home for another hour. She did not want to sit in this heat for an hour waiting for him. She had to get in for a cold drink and some ice cream. The thought of ice cream brought a smile to her lips. Dick didn’t like her eating it. He wanted her to lose weight. Since they had discussed her weight gain and possible health issues it could cause, she had made it a point to double her sweets consumption. He was not going to tell her what she could and could not eat. Screw him!

Then, an idea popped into her head. She could climb into the bedroom window. The latch was broken, so it shouldn’t be too hard to do. She grabbed her purse and went back down the stairs. She took a quick look around to see if anyone was outside. It wouldn’t do to have someone see her breaking into the house and call the police. The neighborhood was quiet. She went to the side yard to the bedroom window. Placing her hands firmly at the base of the window, she gave a mighty heave. The window would not move. She tried again, and it went up a few inches. A third attempt was successful and it opened all the way. She threw her purse into the room. Now, for the hard part. She had to haul her butt up and over the windowsill. The window was pretty low to the ground, so she was sure she could do this. Planting her hands firmly on the windowsill, she gave a few preliminary hops to get momentum, then a big jump. She didn’t jump quite high enough and her belly slammed into the windowsill and she bounced backwards, tripped and fell flat on her behind. She sat there a minute, huffing and puffing. Growling with anger, she got up and tried again. This time she made it over the edge. She wiggled and squirmed until she was able to fall into the room.

“Success!” She yelled as she stood up and brushed the dirt off her shirt.

“Now for that ice cream.” She said as she headed for the bedroom door.

Then, something suddenly caught her eye and she stopped dead in her tracks. Something was not right. Next to the door hung a picture that was not there that morning when she got up. It was a picture of Dick and Amanda. Amanda sat on Dick’s lap and they both had goofy grins on their faces. She couldn’t remember even having that picture. A sudden feeling of fear gripped her and she broke out in a fresh sweat. She had the urge to look around the room, but was terrified to do so. She slowly forced herself to turn around, her eyes taking in everything.

“This is not right.” she breathed, as she shook her head. “What the hell?”

The room was different. Her brightly colored bedspread was gone. It had been replaced with a dark brown one. Her rocking chair was gone, too. She used to sit near the window and read while Dick and Amanda did whatever they did. That was her hiding spot when she needed to be alone. Now, there was a small desk and computer where the rocking chair used to be. Instead of two large dressers in the room, there was only one.

“You have got to be kidding. He actually changed the bedroom today while I was at work? Unbelievable!” Janet’s cheeks turned red and burned. She was more than angry, she was livid.

“I can’t wait for him to get home. I am going to freaking kill him.”

As she made her way through the house, she noticed other changes. The living room furniture had been rearranged, and there was a new television where the old one had been. In one corner of the room sat a small white table with a bright pink chair. She took it all in, her eyes wide with surprise. What in the hell was going on? Had Dick lost his mind? Why in the world would he change things around while she was at work?

“My head is killing me. I’m going to eat my ice cream and then nap until Dick and his precious Amanda get home. Then, I’m going to kill them both!” She snarled through gritted teeth. She couldn’t remember a time when she had been this mad.

At least the kitchen was the same. The appliances were where they should be and the bowls and spoons were in there places. She opened the freezer, almost gasping at the refreshing blast of cold air that hit her face. She was so hot. After rummaging around through the assortment of frozen foods, she found a half empty carton of chocolate ice cream.

“Ha! There it is. Finally, something is going right today.” She said.

She was just getting ready to scoop some ice cream into the bowl when she heard the front door open. She glanced at the clock and saw that it was only 5:40 and he never came home before 6:00 and sometimes later.

She slammed the spoon down on the counter. “Of course he would come home early tonight! I need some time alone so here he is! I swear he just knows how to piss me off.”

She stormed from the kitchen to the living room, prepared for battle. What she saw made her jaw drop, and she stopped short. Dick looked pretty much the same, but Amanda didn’t. She looked older and bigger. Her three year old daughter looked at least five, or maybe even six! How could that be possible?

It’s the heat and the stress, she thought.

She felt a small finger of panic working its way through her. Something was very wrong here. First, she had no key and had to break in. Then, the furniture had been changed or replaced, all in one day. Now, it appeared her daughter had aged a year or two in the span of ten hours.

The panic grew as a memory tried to invade her thoughts. She felt that something terrible had happened, but she couldn’t quite remember.

“Dick?” she said very quietly. “What’s going on?”

Dick didn’t answer. He and Amanda continued their conversation as they made their way to the kitchen, almost running Janet over in the process. They acted as if she wasn’t even there.

“Let’s get some dinner.” Dick was saying to Amanda. “What should it be tonight?”

“Hot dogs!” Amanda yelled and then laughed.

“Again? We just had those last night.” Dick was smiling.

Janet watched the two of them as if watching a television show. It was as if she was invisible. Why were they giving her the silent treatment? Then, she remembered the fight they had before he left for work that morning. It had been over Amanda, as usual. Dick wanted her to be more of a mother and spend time with Amanda. Janet had reminded him that she had never wanted to be a mother in the first place and didn’t plan on being one now. The fight had been a particularly nasty one and the feelings she had for her daughter had turned from annoyance to hatred. That brat had ruined everything. She had destroyed Janet’s marriage and her entire life.

“Take Amanda to school today.” Dick had demanded. “Talk to her. Let her know you care. She thinks her own mother hates her!”

Janet watched Dick and Amanda happily fixing dinner while she seethed. She hated them. She especially hated that stupid little girl. How she wished she had never given birth to that horrible thing!

Janet stopped wondering why Amanda seemed older. She stopped caring that they were giving her the silent treatment. All she could think about was making Amanda go away. Nothing else seemed to matter.

Another memory interrupted her thoughts. It had to do with after Dick had left for work, leaving Amanda in her care. He had wanted her to take Amanda to school, but did she? It was kind of fuzzy.

Janet scrunched her face in concentration. Suddenly, it seemed very important to remember what had happened next. Had she taken Amanda to school?

“So, Dick left for work.” she whispered, forgetting all about her husband and daughter being in the same room. “I was supposed to take her to school, but did I? Dick left and I….”

Then it hit. She remembered what came next. She had just snapped. Dick closed the door and left her with a person she hated more than life. Janet remembered screaming. She ran across the room to her daughter and grabbed her by her arm.

Janet was shaking and sweating profusely. She crammed her fists into her eyes and shook her head violently. I don’t want to remember any more. I can’t think about it!

But the memory came anyway. Now that it had started, she couldn’t stop it. She had grabbed Amanda’s arm and twirled her in a circle and then let her go. Amanda flew through the air and crashed into an end table. She started screaming and that made Janet even more angry, if that was possible.

“Shut up!” Janet had screamed.

She walked over to Amanda and stood looking down at her. There was blood on Amanda’s head where it had struck the table. Janet had laughed. She loved seeing that blood. Without even noticing what she was doing, she plopped down on Amanda, pinning her to the floor. She wrapped her hands around her daughter’s throat and squeezed. Then, something had hit her on the head. She felt it, but it didn’t hurt. She let go of Amanda, and whirled around to see Dick getting ready to punch her again. She caught his fist in mid-swing and pulled his hand to her mouth. She bit as hard as she could.

Dick yelled and punched with his other fist, hitting her square on the nose. She remembered feeling her nose break, but didn’t remember feeling any pain.

The memory played on in her head and Janet was helpless to stop it. She saw herself get up and launch herself at Dick, biting and clawing at him. He fought back but she was so crazed, he couldn’t stop her. He finally managed to give her a big shove and she fell backwards. She could almost feel it as she remembered it. A feeling of weightlessness as she fell. Her head struck the same table that she had thrown Amanda into. That’s when the memory suddenly stopped.

Janet’s eyes flew open wide. She had hit her head and everything had gone black. She had no memory between that event and leaving work today. No matter how hard she tried, it was a blank. Something must have happened between the time she was hurt and now!

Then another thought crept in and Janet started crying. She knew exactly why she had no memory of what happened after their big fight and her head injury.

“Because I’m dead.” She said between sobs. “I died. This must be my hell.”

 

 

Of course the car would pick this day to die. A horrible ending to a horrible day. A horrible week, actually. Every day had been a hellish endurance contest, and Janet almost hadn’t made it through. Now, she had to end the week by hauling her 180 pound body through this intense heat for an hour to get home. Her feet were killing her and sweat was dripping from her chin and trickling down her sides.

 

After what seemed an eternity, she arrived at her house. She rummaged through her purse as she climbed the stairs to the front porch, looking for her keys. They weren’t there. She stood at the door, frantically opening one zipper after another on her purse and clawing through the contents in each compartment. No key was found.

 

 

 

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