“Please stop, it hurts!” pleaded Tanya, tears beginning to stream down her face. “I’m sorry. Please let me go.”
“What did I specifically tell you not to do?” Tanya’s mother asked her sternly, a fistful of her daughter’s pony tail in her wrinkled hand.
“You… you told me… not to play… with the boys… in the park,” replied Tanya in between sobs.
“And what did you do?”
“I played… football with them… but they said… they would take away Teddy if I didn’t!” she explained.
“Then you should have let them! It’s always Teddy this, Teddy that, for chrissake, you’re already twelve and still carrying that smelly toy around!”
“But… but… he means… so much to me!” Tanya burst into tears. It wasn’t her fault she was attached to her childhood toy. After all, that’s what she grew up with. And it was the only thing left from her late father who had passed away during a fire in their old house.
“That’s still no reason to play with the boys!” said her mother. “How many times do I have to repeat myself? This isn’t the first time you’ve disobeyed my direct orders.”
“I know… I’m truly sorry… I promise never to do it again,” said Tanya, whose knees and neck were sore from the awkward position she was being held in.
Her mother sighed. Ever since her husband died, life had taken a turn for the worse. Her days and nights were barely discernible. They bled into one another. She spent more time in bed than in the rest of the house. It felt like she only rose from bed just to yell at her children. No wonder they despised her.
Tanya’s two siblings disappeared last year; which left her, the youngest one, to take care of her mother. Tanya believed because of that, her mother was extremely paranoid of people outside the house. So Tanya spent a lot of time by her side, making sure that she was alright.
However, she still got to go to school on weekdays – her mother didn’t want to chance it with the authorities showing up at her doorstep lest they took her or Tanya away. Tanya could lead a normal life, all she had to do was come back home each day before the sky got dark so she could cook dinner for her mother. It wasn’t too difficult, but Tanya made a mistake.
Today, when she was walking home after school, she was teased by some cute boys by the park. And while they didn’t force her to play football with them (that was a lie she had told her mother), she wanted to get to know the cute boy with the brown hair a little better. Having a little too much fun getting to know him, she had lost track of time and rushed home in a sweat. She didn’t have time to clean her shoes before she stepped in the house and was greeted by her mother. Which was how she ended up kneeling on the ground at the mercy of her mother’s grasp.
Tanya felt her mother’s hands let go of her pony tail. She turned around to see her mother walking away from the front door into the kitchen.
“Mommy?” she called out.
Tanya put her school bag down, stood up and brushed her sore knees. She wiped the tears from her face when she heard her mother call her from the kitchen.
“Tanya, do you remember what your brother and sister said to me before they went away?”
“No. I don’t remember you saying anything…” responded a puzzled Tanya as she walked towards her mother. “What did they-”
The girl was cut off mid-sentence as she turned the corner into the entrance kitchen. Tanya felt a sharp pain in her chest as she saw her mother standing right in front of her – with a grin on her face and her hands gripping onto what appeared to be a knife that was now half-buried in her body.
“Mommy?” Tanya’s vision begin to blur as she felt the pain in her chest growing in intensity. “Mommy!” she started yelling. “What are you doing?!”
Tanya couldn’t believe what was happening.
“Your brother and sister said the same thing as you, except they put up much more of a fight!” laughed her mother maniacally as she retracted the blade and plunged it into Tanya’s chest again. “You’re such a pathetic little girl!”
Tanya screamed, flailed her arms and tried to push her mother away. It was no use, she had the strength of a wet noodle. She felt her consciousness and life fading away as the blood drained out of her body into the puddle at her feet.
“Mommy…” she whimpered. The knife dug deeper into her body. “Mommy…”
Tanya felt the knife leaving her body again, this time when it re-entered her, it was in her throat. The little girl started bleeding from her neck.
“It’s okay, all is forgiven,” she heard whispered in her ear as her mother pulled her close.
“Mommy…” the girl managed to mutter out, her body now limp in her mother’s arms.
“Hush, hush, mommy’s gonna eat you now.”
Writing Prompt from Reddit: Hush, hush, mommy’s gonna eat you now.