7/12/10 Winner of the Daily Flash Fiction Challenge.
|Jenny heard the front door slam and knew he was home. Every muscle in her body tensed as she automatically began to tiptoe around.
“Hello, dear. Did you have a good day?” she asked, hesitantly.
“Sure, dummy. I had a great day loading and unloading rich people’s furniture. What kinda day you think I had?”
Bumping her on the shoulder as he breezed past, he headed toward the bedroom. “I gotta get some sleep, and you better keep the noise down. I don’t wanna hear a peep outa those kids today!”
“Don’t worry. They’re playing a game outside today, dear. Sleep well.”
As the bedroom door slammed shut, Jenny quietly sat down on an old brown chair with stuffing popping out all over. She looked around at her tiny, rundown apartment. With no room for storage, her children’s toys littered the well-scrubbed floor. She did have to give Doug credit for that. He wasn’t stingy about toys for the kids. Anything to keep them occupied.
Jenny walked to the window and saw her two children playing in the street. That Danny could really hit a baseball.
While daydreaming at the window, it happened. Glass shards soared through the air as the baseball made a path through the clutter of bikes, helmets, and roller skates coming to rest near a skateboard by the bedroom door.
Jenny’s hand flew to her mouth as she heard the bed creak. The outside handle fell off the door as Doug yanked it open. Jenny could see the veins pulsing in his beet red face. Cowering down on her knees, she prepared for the blow. She didn’t see Doug’s foot land on the baseball. Her head snapped up at the sound of the thud. All was silent as a little smile crept onto Jenny’s mouth.