Author: Mick Beville

In a loveless marriage Eleanor confronts her worst fear.

There was a definite spring in Eleanor’s step as she crossed the kitchen floor to fill the crystal vase with water. Today was her fifty eighth birthday and on the mantle shelf above the marble fire surround, stood a solitary card that read. Wishing you a very special day your loving daughter Nancy.
Eleanor took the large scissors and snipped the stem of each individual rose before slowly and deliberately placing it in the vase. She would phone Nancy later and thank her. After placing the vase on the mantle, she stood back to judge. Maybe the kitchen dresser, she thought, but then changed her mind again placing it on the dining table. Pleased with its position an idea struck her that she would capture it on canvas.
Excited she climbed the second stairway to the roof space. The easel and paints stood where she’d left them at the head of the stairs, but strangely her canvases had been moved to the farthest corner of the roof space. After moving each canvas in turn to ponder its size, she noticed a manila folder leaning against the wall behind where they had stood. The freshness of the folder caught her curiosity and looking at its contents, she saw several pictures of young people in different locations. They were the kind of pictures she’d seen on cop shows, surveillance pictures, private investigators and undercover operations.
There was a small note in amongst the pictures that read,
Re our previous contact I will await your confirmation at the usual mailbox.
Eleanor placed the note and the picture back in the folder, and with only a small amount of curiosity she placed all but the smallest of the canvases back in front of the manila folder.
She had descended the stairs to the first landing with the easel when she heard the alarm that told her someone was entering the property. She carried the easel to her bedroom at the front of the house where she had a clear view of the avenue of elders that lined the driveway. It was him� She shivered at the thought. The only reasons he would return in the day, was if he had a migraine, or worse if he was avoiding flack on Capitol Hill. Either way she knew he would be in a black mood.
I’ll bring the flowers to the bedroom and paint them there, she thought. She knew she would have to avoid him as much as possible but if she didn’t go down to greet him, it would be sure to inflame him.
When she arrived in the living room he was stood in front of the fire place reading the card. She would have moved it along with the flowers before he arrived in the evening but it was all too late for that.
“You don’t for a single minute believe she means a word of this,” he said throwing the card at Eleanor’s feet.
Knowing that anything she said would be spat upon; she started back up the stairs. He followed her. “She despises you, you do know that. She despises your weakness.” Eleanor stopped and turned to face him.
“No�” she growled. “It’s you she despises. Only she doesn’t understand why� I’ve despised myself every day for not having the courage to stop you doing the things you did to her. I hope you burn in hell.”
Eleanor knew from the sneer on his face that she had unleashed a monster, and in terror she turned and ran towards the bedroom. It was like a bad dream as she frantically turned the door handle only to find she was turning it in the wrong direction.

She could hear him behind her. She felt a painless blow as if a powerful gust of wind had hit her. The door suddenly burst open and she was being hurled onto the bedroom floor. Now on her knees she looked up to see him standing over her. She tried to speak, to say “please no” but before she could utter a sound she felt the full brunt of his kick strike her ribs. The pain overwhelmed her and she could hear her own pathetic efforts as she tried to plead. The body had shut down the luxury of speech. She tried to stand but he kicked her again this time the blow struck her face and for a moment she lost consciousness. Coming to she felt herself being dragged half onto the bed, the pain in her side pulsing as her lungs struggled for short gasps of air.
His hand was gripping the back of her neck and pushing her face deep into the bed cover. Twisting her face to take a breath she almost choked and immediately coughed blooded broken teeth from her mouth.
She tried again to lift her body but his weight was overwhelming. She felt him tearing at her panties and she could feel his disgusting breath on her neck “Fuck you, fuck you, bitch�” he kept repeating as he pulled her legs apart.

She felt his struggle and then the hot searing pain as his vile penis tore like barbed wire inside her anus. She bit on the blooded bedcover as he grunted and grunted his evil flesh inside her. Her destiny now complete she could see his retching shadow as it cast on the rose patterned wallpaper. The pain had turned to numbness and she thought of Nancy and how she must not forget to thank her for the flowers.
Breathing loud long deliberate breaths he stood behind and shook the last drops of victory from his deflating man hood. Eleanor lay as he had left her. Her pants were around her knees and her dress pushed up over her waist. “Look at you” he said, as if she was responsible for the display. “You’re just a disgusting creature� No� not even a creature. You’re just a disgusting piece of meat. That’s all you ever were to me, a piece of meat for my pleasure, and every time I look at you in the future, this is how I’m going to see you.”