I opened the door and crossed my arms at once.
"Here we go again," I thought to myself, sadly.
"Anna," I called out to my teenage daughter, who was staring at the computer with those horrible disc-like things around her ears.
She continued to stare at the computer, ignoring me.
I gasped at her attitude.
"Anna!" I screamed angrily.
"Wha?" she cried shocked and turned around to look at me. As always, her hair was messy and fell over her eyes.
"I told you to study, Anna!" I screamed at her. Sometimes, it disappointed me how she ignored my orders.
"What?" Anna replied, loudly.
"I told you to study!"
"Whaaaaaat? I can't hear you!"
Just as I was about to hit her with anger, she took off the weird device from her head.
"Sorry," she muttered, smiling "I was listening to music. I couldn't hear a word you said."
I groaned. Angrily, I turned my back on her and started to walk out of the room.
"Mom, wait," she called out, following me "What did you want to tell me?"
As she stood up, a wire disconnected from the computer and next thing I knew, the room was full of screaming words that modern kids call "music"
"I wanna finally take the road less traveled, I wanna run away from anything typical, I want the world to see the life I'm living and call it uncommon. Uncommon." The screams came from the computer.
"Ooops," Anna said, quickly pressing a few buttons on the computer. At once, it went silent. "So what were you saying?"
"Nothing," I snapped, coldly at her "Keep up your precious work. Who am I to tell you to study? Of course, you're the princess, aren't you? Little Miss Princess really needs to use the computer! After all, I'm the mean idiot who keeps telling you to study! Look at the other girls! Look at Madison! She helps her mother all through the day and still gets full grades! Do you know how many times I've wished Madison was my daughter?"
Turning my back on her I muttered "I wish I had a better daughter."
I didn't stop then. I went straight to the kitchen and closed my eyes. Oh how I wished I had a daughter who would help me around in the kitchen, speak to me nicely and get better grades. Whenever I talked to any of my friends, they would show off how their kids topped the class or got scholarships. What could I say to them? That my daughter dresses like a boy, hates school and is lazy?
I rubbed my eyes and then turned to the pot. I stirred the vegetable and meat gravy I was cooking. Outside, some sparrows chirped in the trees. It distracted me enough and I went back to cooking.
"Madison, huh?" My mind rushed with angry thoughts "Of course, Madison. Madison, Madison. She's the favourite, isn't she? Oh Mom, you just love her, don't you? The neighbour kid will always be your favourite. Ha! I'd like to see you handle a day with her! She abuses her little sisters, yells at her dad and she's the laziest person I know. Hey Mom, did you know Madison lied to you about her life? Did you know she's actually an average student and an abusive daughter? Mom, did you know I'm ten times better than her?"
My cheeks turned red as the thoughts disturbed my mind. I sniffed loudly to hold back tears.
"Why does she hate me?" I thought to myself, staring at the door "Why doesn't she love me?"
I sat down back on the computer and started to turn it off. My hands shook with sadness as I did. As I opened "start" I realised that my song was still playing. I pulled on the headphones to listen to the ending lyrics.
"Let the world see the life I'm living and call it uncommon. Uncommon. Call it uncommon. I'm done with the easy way out……"
Done? Already? Oh, why are the best songs the shortest? I turned off the computer and then made my way to the bathroom. Inside, I pulled out the cardboard cutter from my jeans pocket. I had bought that cutter to cut paper sheets but somehow it found another purpose with me. Oh, don't blame me! The credit goes to my parents for teaching me so much pain.
I ran my fingers along the sharp, cold blade. So beautiful! I rolled back the sleeve of my left hand.
I raised my hand with the cutter above my head.
"You broke my heart, Mom. You know I hate Madison!" Thinking that, I brought the blade down with a force. For a moment, nothing happened. I waited, the sound of my breathing echoing in the bathroom. Then…one drop…two drops. I smiled a wicked smile as blood started oozing from the cut.
I sighed with relief. Cutting always helped me relax. I raised the blade again.
"I hate you, Madison," I slit myself again.
My arm hurt but I couldn't feel the pain. What really hurt was my heart.
"Oh Mom, Dad, don't you know I suffer from depression? I can't work until I'm cured!" Another cut follows.
"I'm depressed!" Another cut.
"I'm depressed because you don't express your love for me!" This time, I gashed myself.
"Oh, Mom, Dad, I love you. Do you love me?" I lowered my head into my hands and sobbed quietly.
I set down the bowl and sat down myself.
"Anna, pass me the bread," my husband said.
"Me, too!" my younger daughter chirped.
I didn't speak to her. For one reason, I was still angry at her and for another, she should know that I need the bread too.
"Here," she said, handing everyone a piece. Then she sat down, completely still.
"Have some gravy, son," my husband said to Anna, who himself hadn't taken any gravy yet.
"After you, Dad," she replied, softly.
He snorted and started to take spoonfuls of gravy.
"You try to be nice to someone and they snap back at you," he growled, taking two pieces of meat instead of one.
"I was only showing manners, Dad," Anna said, rolling her eyes.
"Don't answer me back," he snapped at her.
She frowned and then helped herself to some gravy when he was done. I noticed how she took only vegetables and avoided the meat.
"I worked hard for hours to make that gravy and if you just wanted the vegetables then you could've told me. I wouldn't have bothered working so hard," I said, grumpily as I continued eating.
She bit her lip and lowered her head.
"Look at Madison. Her mother doesn't have to run around begging her to eat. Instead, she cooks for her mother!" I scolded.
"Madison has a cook," she replied, squeezing her piece of bread.
That was enough. I stood up and snatched her plate.
"Get lost!" I screamed "If you can't eat like a human, get lost! I'm not feeding you!"
That ungrateful brat stood up and left the table.
After dinner, I didn't bother looking for her. I didn't bother feeding her. She deserved that. Teens are supposed to be a helping hand. They earn, cook and clean for their parents. And here, I have an ungrateful and useless daughter.
"Goodnight, Mom," my younger daughter said as I tucked her into bed that night.
"Goodnight, my dear," I kissed her on the forehead. After that, I prayed for her and blew on her.
"Goodnight, Mama," my younger son chirped, too.
"Goodnight, baby," I kissed him too and blew on him too.
"Mom?" my daughter spoke as I was about to leave the room.
"Yes, dear?" I turned around.
I frowned at her question.
"Where did Anna go?"
I stared at her confused. Then turned around to look at Anna's room. The door was shut.
"Probably asleep. Anyway, stop thinking so much about her. Your sister is a bad person. Be a good girl and make Mama proud. Don't be like Anna. She's a bad daughter."
With that, I went to bed.
I woke up a few hours later with a bad feeling. Somehow, I had the feeling that someone was walking around the house. But then I shook off the thought thinking it must be Anna, sneaking to the kitchen for a snack.
Slowly, our bedroom door opened.
"Mom? Dad?" my daughter whispered, entering. My son followed.
"Hmmm?" I said, sleepily while my husband woke up.
My daughter and son ran up to our bed. I noticed they both were shaking with fear.
"There are angels in our house," my daughter stammered.
"What?" my husband said, rubbing his eyes as he sat up.
"There are angels in the house," my son echoed.
"Oh, sweetie," I said, smiling "Angels are good. They protect and help you."
"Not those angels," my daughter whispered "They're bad."
"Angels aren't bad," my husband said, taking my son into his arms. I wrapped my arms around my daughter. "They're very nice actually."
"No, they're not!" my son protested, with tears running down his eyes "Anna saw them too!"
"Anna?" my husband cried "So she's been scaring you?"
"No!" my daughter said at once "She saw them too. They-"
"Honey, I've told you before not to listen to Anna," I told my daughter "She just enjoys scaring you."
"But she wasn't scaring us," my son said, sadly "She told the angels-"
"Enough," my husband snapped. "Look, there is no such thing as a bad angel. And Anna is a liar. She was probably trying to scare you."
"No, she wasn't," my daughter protested.
"How can you say that?" I said, angrily. I never expected my younger daughter to support her terrible sister.
"Because….because Anna went to Heaven….and then the angels ran away," my daughter lowered her head and started sobbing quietly.
I could feel the blood drain out of my face. I looked up at my husband. He looked as stunned as I.
"What…what happened to Anna?" my husband whispered in fear.
"When the b-b-bad angels came, they tried to take Mama's jewellary and Dad's money. And then the angels tried to hurt us. But then Anna told them to go away. So they were angry and….then….Anna fell asleep. So t-they left." My son, stammered, crying.
I felt my body go lifeless as I jumped off the bed and ran outside the room. My husband followed at once.
The living room was almost empty. The TV and the decorations were missing. The sofa was slashed in different spots.
"This is a dream," I told myself; shaking my head "This is a dream. In a few minutes, I'll wake up. Everything is alright."
Trembling, I walked slowly to Anna's room. My husband followed.
"Let her be alright," my husband was praying in a scared tone "Let her be alright."
The door was ajar. We peeked inside…..
"Is Anna gonna wake up again?" my son, who had followed us inside the room, asked innocently.
LOCAL NEWS: A brave teen lost her life in an attempt to save her younger siblings.
According to reports, robbers entered a local house last night at around 2:45am. As they were busy packing valuables, the two younger children of the family discovered them. The robbers tried to silence them but the oldest child of the family came to the rescue. She fought the robbers in an attempt to save her siblings but was killed in the process. The robbers fled the scene at once.
The older child, who was aged 16, died from repeated stabbing. Police have insvestigated and found fingerprints as well as blood samples of the robbers.
"It seems that in an attempt to defend herself, the teen injured the robbers and we found their blood samples on the carpets." The police say "We will send these samples for a DNA test and will be able to find the wanted people soon. That brave teen made it easy for us to solve her own murder."
A neighbour and friend of the teen, Madison, speaks: "Anna's death really shook me. I'm gonna miss her a lot. She worked in charities, she acted as a therepist and councillor for all of us at school and she never let anyone feel alone. She was very friendly and cared for everyone. Even my mom used to tell me to be just like Anna. But I guess I can't be a perfect daughter like Anna was."
Anna's funeral will be held this Monday. She will be missed dearly.