Sarahs Tragedy

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Literary Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic
Sarah's Tragedy is about a greiving pregnant lady, sarah the heroine of the short story. She is grieving for the loss of her Father while also dealing with the imminent divorce from her soon to be ex, husband Peter.
other characters also feature, her Mother and a few family memembers, Usually the ones you only see at weddings or funerals.
A sad and nice story which will hopefully catch the readers eye.

Submitted: June 09, 2011

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Submitted: June 09, 2011

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My Fathers death was sudden, more unexpected than a sudden shower on a boiling, hot, sunny day where there is nothing but a clear blue sky. I gazed at myself in the full length mirror and nausea flooded through my pregnant body. The black dress I wore stretched over my tight belly and my long black hair ran greasily down my back. It had been a week since his awful death it had also been a week since my husband had decided to divorce me.

“Sarah”

My Mum stood behind me in the doorway her reflection smiling at me in the mirror. She stood an inch shorter than me and in her short, course hair she had a clip holding back one loose piece of wayward dark hair. My usually rosy complexion was pale and my once full cheeks were gaunt. My blue eyes searched her grey ones for any answers. Why did Dad die? Had he had an underlying illness?

I turned around, forcing myself to smile back. “Time to go?” I asked. She nodded. As we went downstairs to join the rest of the grieving family a chill ran through my warm body, making it instantly cold. My uncle Steve locked eyes with me, but again his eyes lacked any kind of friendliness. We got in the car outside and I sat squashed next to my Mother clutching her hand. Trees whizzed past the window some people were talking but I could hear or see nothing my eyes glazed over and I shut them. My mind cast its self back to a week ago it was Saturday and it was Halloween.

I had been up all night on the Friday finalizing my divorce with Peter. He had been at the flat with me all night. It had been our flat for 6 amazing years, we had lived there for eight. I was eight months pregnant with our first child and my husband had met someone else.

“So,” said Peter, not before taking a swig of beer out of his bottle, “You can have the cat and all of your CDs, and the car.”

I almost laughed and I would have if the situation had not been so awful. Thankfully I had not met his ‘bit on the side’ and hopefully I never would.

“But I think we should sell the flat, you can stay with your parent’s until the money comes through, then you can get something else.” continued Peter.

“If we are splitting the money in two surely I won’t have enough for a new flat!” I said.

“You will get more in the final settlement Sarah” Peter looked at me as though I was stupid. Sadness and anger ran though me. He downed the whiskey he had in his glass.

“Right,” I said pulling myself and my bump up off the settee. “It’s nearly morning, I am going to bed.”

Peter put down the glass next to his three empty beer bottles and zipped up his last bag. He looked around himself to check nothing was forgotten and just left. He didn’t even say goodbye.

As I lay in bed that early morning, with Tiger the cat I tried to think what had gone wrong in our marriage but my tired brain failed me and I fell asleep.

The phone rang waking me. Grabbing the receiver I sat up and glanced at the clock, it was midday.

“Hello?” I croaked.

“Sarah.” It was my Father, sounding cheerful.

“Hi Dad.” I got out of bed slowly and went into the bathroom.

“You are coming today aren’t you?” He said.

“Yes of course I am.” I stared at my huge bump stroking it lovingly and then brushed my long hair.

“Good! See you in an hour!” he hung up. As I stepped into the shower tears escaped down my face and my heart broke, the silence in the flat told me Peter was really gone.

?

My Parents’ house was full to bursting when I got there an hour and a half later. My Mum saw me and danced over.

“Sarah” She kissed me on the cheek, and gave me a big hug. “How are you darling you look washed out.” She was dressed as a pretty witch, pretty because she was wearing all pink.

Saying nothing I hugged her back afraid I would break if I spoke about Peter. “So looks like a good party so far. What are you by the way?”

“I’m a fairy.” My mother said and did a twirl her net skirt swishing about. I quickly quashed the witch theory and smiled.

Dad came over dressed as a vampire. “Sarah you didn’t dress up!”

“I forgot.” I said and my parents’ made no comment they knew I had enough on my plate. “Right come on lets circulate” I said.

The sitting room was full of vampires and witches all in there late forties, early fifties. Yikes! Bridget Jones eat your heart out! I got myself some fruit juice and sat by the window desperately searching for some young people. Not that I was that young my self but anyone under thirty five would do. And then almost as though the Fairy God mother from Cinderella had heard. A tall, dark and handsome man walked into the room.

He was dressed as a ninja but he had his head piece off. “Simon!” My mum danced over to him in a rather drunken fashion and embraced him.

“Hi Mrs P,” he said to my red faced Mother and grinned at her attire, “Nice costume!”

“Oh thanks,” She said. “You must come and meet my daughter, Sarah.”

Oh god hear we go and I downed my juice wishing it had vodka in it. He looked over at me and I felt myself blushing which was ridiculous, but then since Peter I had, had no other sexual contact, not even flirting with another man. Peter, oddly enough as he was the one who cheated, hated me flirting. “Hi I’m Simon.” he stood over me.

“So how do you know my Mother?” I asked him.

“My Dad works with her.” He drank some wine and glanced at me, rather nervously.

“Cool “ I said. “So what do you do Simon?”

“I work“Hi, Sarah.” I moved over and he sat down next to me.

in computers, nothing exciting. How about you? I see you are about to have your hands full” he grinned pointing at my bump.

“Yes I am. I left work about a month ago. I worked in fashion.”

“Wow that’s cool”

A few more ghouls and warlocks arrived and my Mum dashed about pouring them blood red punch. I waved over at Dad who had retired to his favourite arm chair. He was rather red in the face, even in this dim light I could see how flushed he was. My Mum had shut all the curtains and put red bulbs in all the lamps so their living room looked more like a brothel than a witches den.

“Are you planning on going back?” Simon looked not at me but at my huge, tight

bump.

“No, “ I said simply.

Simon nodded and poured himself some more wine from the bottle sat on a table next to us. My Dad’s eyes were shut and his cheeks were pink. The music suddenly seemed louder and my Auntie Susie was dancing madly around on the carpet with Roger, the brother in-law. Susie is Steve’s wife and Steve is Dads older brother.Excuse me.” I said and pulled myself up. My Dad looked strange almost like he was unable to move. A spilt glass of whatever he had been drinking lay on the beige carpet, it’s contents seeping into the fabric.

Braxton hicks got me and I had to sit down as I rang for the ambulance

“Can I help?” Asked Simon sitting next to me. Nodding I handed him the phone. I began to feel very dizzy and everyone around me was a blur. My uncle motioned people out into the kitchen while we waited for the paramedics.

“Sarah drink some water” My auntie Jean, Mum’s younger sister handed me a tall glass.

I drank it unable to speak and almost powerless to swallow. I let me eyes wonder over to my Dad who lay there motionless, my Mother was crying the room was almost empty now and finally the paramedics came in.

Shivering on the cold, plastic hospital chair I felt sick.

“Here.” Simon draped his warm woollen coat around my shoulders. As he sat next to me I inhaled his after shave and felt nostalgic for Peter. Not because I missed him but I craved for the love you get when you are a couple. I had not been in to see Dad yet, the doctors wouldn’t let me. Mum had been in but now she stood at the top of fake lit hall way. “Can I get you something?” Simon asked me. “Tea ? Coffee?”

I shook my head trying not to cringe as another Braxton hicks took hold of me.

Finally A doctor came out of the room Dad was in he looked grim faced. I stood up, fear constricting the breath in my mouth and went to join Mum. She clutched my hand tightly her face whiter than the whitest sheet.

“I am sorry, we did everything we could.”

I heard these words emanate from his mouth but did I imagine them? This is the horror you see in films not in real life. A cry escaped my Mothers mouth and she fell to the floor almost pulling me with her but I resisted her and ran down he hall way out into the foyer. I had to get outside and breath in some fresh un-stale air. “Sarah!” Simon followed me.

Outside it was blissfully quiet and dark. Standing on the cold, stone ground I sighed. Tragedy surely couldn’t strike twice in one day? My Dad, my divorce what next? Stroking my firm bump I silently prayed for my baby to be perfect.

“Are you ok?” Simon asked. He stood next to me his breath only inches away from my shoulder. “Sorry stupid question.”

I shrugged, “Not really.” I jumped as an ambulance pulled up near us and two paramedics rushed out an old man lie fighting for his life on a trolley. After they had gone inside I went and sat down on a bench, drawing my woollen coat around myself.

“See “I said pointing towards the A and E entrance that’s when my Dad should have died! When he was eighty five, not fifty five!” Simon nodded sadly, unsure what to say. I stood up and walked away not looking back to meet his caring and confused eyes. As quickly as I could I walked to my car and got in. Simon had followed me and banged on the window.

“Are you sure you are ok to drive Sarah?” He said as I wound the window down and cold wind blew in my face.

“Yes I am fine, thanks though.” I said a bit more softly. “I mean it Simon, take care.”

“Will I see you again?” He asked his eyes full of worry.

“Of course,” Simon said, also standing in case I needed any help.

I walked over to my Dad “Are you ok?” I asked him.

“I think so.” he said and opened his eyes briefly, but he was breathless. “I seem to have a pain…” he fell forward landing on the floor.

“Dad!” I screamed and motioned for my Uncle Pete to turn off the music.

The room suddenly fell into an eerie silence and someone turned the overhead light on. My Mum rushed over falling to her knees she crouched next to him. Other people gathered around as my Dad lay on the floor clutching his chest.

“Sarah call an ambulance!” my Mum cried holding onto my Dads free hand. I rushed around in a blur grabbing the phone, dialling 999 and clutching my tight bump.

“Maybe.” I said and began to put the window up as tears ran down my cheeks. The wind was growing stronger outside and angry rain began to fall.

As I drove home I let the tears continue to fall down my already drenched cheeks and plans began to fill my fuzzy head. I had so many things to sort out. But all I wanted to do on this cold, wet night was to get home and go to bed. Eventually I pulled up outside my flat and gasped. Black bags littered the damp street, a big suitcase, mine lay on its side and several card board boxes were lined up. Peter stepped outside the front door looking diligent. I got out of the car and walked as fast as I could towards him.

“What is going on?” I yelled, exhaustion and grief rushing through me.

“I am sorry Sarah, but I need the flat. you will have to go and stay with your Parents.”

I slapped him as hard as I could around the face then spat on him. “My Dad is dead!” I yelled. Two passing trick or treaters glanced at us but kept walking while sniggering cruelly.

Getting back in my car I drove off leaving behind all my belongings and leaving behind my old life for good.

*

My cousin Sophie passed around canapés and Mum dashed about refilling peoples wine glasses. Again my uncle Steve‘s eyes, Dads older brother, lacked any kindness. As he glanced quickly in my direction I had to turn my eyes away from him. He stood leaning against a wall, which was lined with some of My Dad’s favourite pictures deliberately letting his greasy head bash on them every time he laughed at what ever it was Susie, my Auntie was saying. Steve and My Father had never got on I don’t know why. I had asked, but they said it was a ‘private matter.’

My Gran sat next to me sipping cold tea she had been holding the white china cup for about forty minutes. Glancing at Steve I vowed never to speak to him again, just in case. Why would a healthy fifty five year old man who has never smoked, hardly drinks and eats healthily have a heart attack?

Fat and miserable I sat pumped up by cushions listening to the chatter of my rather odd family around me. My other cousins, Chloe, George, Rebecca and Fred were now downing the dregs of their wine and pulling on their coats, keen to leave and hit the pubs. I locked eyes with Simon, who had come to the reception and not the service and I couldn’t resist smiling he had a very infectious smile. He walked over and sat next to me on the spare seat of the old, three -seater settee.

“So how are you?” He asked me.

I wanted to say, I’m tired, constipated, depressed and lonely but that all soundered far too negative. “Oh you know I’m getting by, I’m coping.” I lied.

The service had been awful my Mum, obviously sobbed throughout , my Gran had stood there motionless, my Aunts and Uncles were also very quiet and my cousins also subdued. I was unable to cry at the Ceremony even though inside I felt like I was dying. “So what now?”

“Um?” I said, Simon was looking at me, canapé in one hand and beer in the other. The sitting room was almost empty and people were finally going home. “Oh, “ I said. “I will live here with my Mum and have the baby.”

He nodded and downed the rest of his drink. “Here, “ he handed me a card, “Here is my number, work and home. Just in case.”

“In case what?” I asked. He stood up and slipped on his coat.

“In case you need a friend.” He lent down and peaked me on the cheek his stubble rubbed against my damp face. Which I didn’t realise was wet until I brushed away a tear.

“Thank you.” I said, meaning it. I watched him say goodbye to my Mum he glanced at me before he went, smiling again. Inside I now felt warm. Pulling myself reluctantly up from the comfy settee I joined my Mum, who had gone into the kitchen. She was pale and drawn but gave me a weak smile and put her arm around me.

“Simon’s nice, “ she said.

“I know” I said.

“So are you going to see him again?” She asked and poured hot water onto her tea bag, which I noticed was in Dad’s favourite mug the one I bought him when I was eleven. It had a picture of Garfield throwing a ball to Jon.

“I might.” Suddenly a huge wash of pain flew over my abdomen and I yelped loudly.

“Sarah!” My Mum gasped.

“Oh no!” I said looking at the floor, “I’ve wet myself!”

My Mum smiled grabbing her keys and handbag. “No you haven’t your waters have broken, it’s time.”

?

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Six months later

Simon gazed at Mia and then looked at me as I applied more red lipstick on my already full red lips, they were both beautiful he thought fondly. Simon continued to gaze lovingly at his recent family.

“Ready?” I asked and picked up my bag. Simon nodded and cradling Mia the three of us went outside and got into the car. We were off to look at a house and the house was to be a new home for all of us. Once in the car with Mia safely in her car seat Simon passed me the urn. For the whole journey I held onto it tightly as before house hunting we were off to scatter my Dad’s ashes.

We soon reached the location and while Mia slept with Simon watching her. I got out of the car and walked into the Pub garden straight past lunch time drinkers and towards the roses that stretched high across the hedges. And below the pink flowers sat a bed of petunias. Taking the lid off the urn I threw the ashes over the flowers and shut my eyes, not even moving when dust from Dad’s dead body flittered over my face. Memories of child hood danced through my mind. And they were memories from this pub. The four of us, including my older brother Terry who lives in Australia now and sadly due to work couldn’t make it to his own Dad’s funeral, would sit around a table. Our parents drinking wine or beer and Terry and I slurping on bottles of coke and munching crisps.

I opened my eyes and looked at the pink and purple flowers my Dad already vanished into the foliage. Turning around I expected stares from the other customers, but people were unaware of me and lost in their own chatter. On a table near by I smiled at the four family members who sat there in the afternoon sun, two adults and two children. They too were enjoying their drinks and eating crisps. Back in the car I sighed almost in relief, as now it was time for me to enjoy my own family and to only look forward, not back.

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Copy right of Kate Ransom 2011

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