His Mother Was Out – A Short Story written and solely owned by M. Taggart. Fiction.
Soap suds splashed onto his forearm as he scrubbed. Some reached his mouth and he could taste his dinner. In his mind he heard his mother say, ‘Not so hard.’ He scrubbed harder, with suds now reaching his forehead.
“A man will always help.” His mother said to him often.
His mother wasn’t home. She’d gone out.
“A man will always provide.” She’d told him.
His mother didn’t make dinner, he did. He cleaned the table, counter, and vacuumed the hallway. He washed his mother’s clothes this morning because she’d slept in again. And now he was cleaning the glass casserole dish.
Foam was torn from the water and cast above his head. He looked blankly at the door, should he lock it? Most nights she didn’t come home until three and often not at all. The noise of nothing was all around him, awakening him slightly, while alone in their small apartment.
“A man will take care of her. A real man would. Be a real man.” His mother had repeatedly said to him.
He felt he could eat his way through the dish without care. Picking up the dish, he looked at it in disbelief. There’s nothing here, he thought. He felt it rising, starting from his stomach, up through his heart, anger came.
The noise from the shattering comforted him. He saw shards of glass, from within his ankles and feet, trying to look back at him in awe. He watched as the blood ran from him, then through his toes, and onto the floor. Rocking back and forth on his heels, he enjoyed the warm swimming fluid. It was here. It was now.
His mother was out.