A Crime


Her own house was a dream she always cherished. Renae drove her car into the countryside. The road forked into two , She took the road to the left. Green trees shaded the two sides of the road , the road was smooth. She glanced back now and then to make sure if the cartons had not fallen off.
“ I had a dream so big and loud ,I jumped so high I touched the cloud ,aw oh oh o oh oh oo ”, the song blared on the radio. It was a fine Sunday morning , everything was falling into place. She had a glow to her face as she tapped her foot to the music.
She pulled the car into the drive-way of her rural home, slamming the door after getting out of her Sedan. She surveyed the place before unloading the cartons on the door-step.
She took out the keys and unlocked her home. The room smelt of home spray , the furniture was cloaked in white as if they were ghosts. A few empty cans of paint lay on the sides. She made a mental note to put it away.
She carried the cartons one by one into the kitchen .She opened the windows to let the sunlight streaming in. The air fluttered her brown hair.

“ Welcome home Renae” she told herself .She got busy with unpacking the cartons and storing the grocery. By 12 she was done with the kitchen.
Her stomach rumbled , she reached into the shelves and picked a pack of cup noodles. She put a glass of water to boil in the oven. She propped herself on the table nearby while waiting for the water to boil.
She checked her phone , there were 8 missed calls from her Dad. The phone ran again and she cut the call. The oven beeped ,she kept away the phone and put on a glove to take out the glass of water.
She took the cup of noodles and went out of the kitchen. She slurped on the noodles as she sat herself on the couch. A yellow newspaper on the floor caught her eyes. She grabbed the paper and skimmed over it. Nothing caught her attention and she balled it and threw it away.
Renae finished her lunch and got up. It was then that she saw the trap-door on the ceiling “ I never saw that before “ she mumbled . She left the cup on the couch and moved closer to examine it.
“ Cool , wonder what stuff is in there?”She wanted a ladder to climb on top. She went to the spare room where she remembered to have found a ladder.
She propped it near the door .The door creaked as she slowly opened it. Her eyes ran over the photographs on the wall. The dust in the room smelt of her childhood , the days of innocence. Intrigued she entered into the attic. It was dark except for the slant of light through the hole in one of the walls.She fumbled around for a switch in the dark. An eerie yellow glow spread the room when the light came on. The photographs on the wall became clear. It somehow beckoned her to come closer. She moved closer to have a better look.
A man about mid 30s was holding a girl in his arms. A smiling lady had her arms wrapped around them. A cosy family scene . The rest of the family scenes though have a missing link. The Mother was missing from the rest of the photos. She was transported to her childhood. She remembered the taunting of other children.
Her fate as a motherless girl. A rocking horse stood still watching over the movements. The dust somehow haven’t covered the wall of photos.  Losing her Mother was too much for her, it was like losing a part of her soul. She blamed her Father for her loss. She used to lash out at him, saying things she never should have said in the rage of hormones. She had left home to fend for herself.
Her Father never shouted at her despite her wretched behaviour. He always cared for her. The photos seemed to depict the life she might have had if she never left him. The father-daughter in the photographs seemed to be taunting her, for the crime she committed.“

Renae climbed down the ladder and ran into her bed room. She took her tote bag lying on the bed. She rummaged through the bag , to find an unopened letter. It had come to her last month and she had vowed never to open it.The letter read

Dearest Renae,
I don’t know why you hate me. I have never committed any crime against you. I have always loved you throughout. Your Mother‘s death was never my fault . She was suffering from a tumor that took her life. I still grieve for her , I miss her more than you think I do.
I was happy that God left you with me to share my life and sorrow. Ren , I love you and always do. You will always be my little girl.
By the time you had read this letter perhaps I would no longer be in this world. I am diagnosed with lung cancer which has metasized . I hope you will see me one last time.I am sorry if I ever did you wrong. I have only wished you the best . I never wanted to leave without wishing you a happy life ahead. May God be with you.
Love you always
Tears streamed down her face, “ You never did wrong Dad , it was me all the while.” She mumbled between the sobs as reality struck her. She dialed her Dad’s number.
The phone was picked up on the third ring.
“Hello, Dad, I’m sorry”
“ Miss Wintersun?” spoke a young male voice.
“ Yes , who is this?”

“I’m Dr Gregory”
“Oh Doctor , I need to speak with my Dad.”
“ Miss , I’m sorry that can’t be”
“Why ? I need to. It’s urgent.”
“ Miss , he passed away last week.”
The floor seemed to pull away from under her feet.
“ We tried to contact you Miss. He had left certain properties which you need to collect.”
The phone fell down from her hands , “ Miss, are you there?” came the voice from the phone.
She sat motionless on the bed and perhaps a trickle of tear fell down her eyes.

© SV


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