She packed her pillows and stuffed animals under the blankets, shaping them into what she thought was a semblance of her body. The bed, pushed into a corner, was small but took up a good portion of the room. When the door was open, it hid the head of the bed.

Pushing with her feet between the mattress and wall, she was able to create a small gap, just big enough for her to slip behind. In the makeshift haven, she had secreted a small pillow and blanket, along with a flashlight, a few of her most cherished plush toys, and some small books.

From beneath, she pushed the bed blanket up to hide the gap, hoping that if he looked into her room he’d just think she was asleep. On the far side of the bed, the blankets hung to the floor. She prayed it was enough of a curtain to shelter any glow from her flashlight.

Lying in the darkness, clutching her blanket, she read. Transported away from this fearful life she led. The flashlight, wedged into the slats under the mattress began to shake. She knew he was home and would be in her room soon. The thunder of his boots echoed down the hall.

Quickly turning off the light, she closed her eyes tight and drew herself in to a tiny ball. Holding her breath, she heard the click of her door opening. Waiting, she listened for him to walk into the room, but he soon left without a word.

Scooting toward the edge of the bed, she cautiously lifted the hem of the blanket to see that he was gone and the door closed. Rolling back to her safe spot, she stretched out, allowing herself to fall asleep, hoping she would wake up early enough to get back into bed without anyone noticing she had been gone.

Rule of thirds

Trifecta, a weekly one-word prompt, challenges writers to use that word in its third definition form, using no less than 33 words or no more than 333. The week’s prompt is: Thunder [noun \ˈthən-dər\] 3: bang, rumble

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I believe all good fiction includes an element of truth, and all good photography includes an element of fantasy. In this journal I hope to give voice to the stories swirling around in my head, and to capture the images I see through my camera’s lens.

19 thoughts on “Thunder

  1. Such a sad tale, but such a tough, smart little character. I feel hope for her in the future … she has the resilience one hopes will carry her through. I surely wish she’d find somebody to tell, though, rather than carrying that big, scary burden all by herself.


  2. Thanks for linking up with Trifecta this week. I like how the tension of this piece is created by splicing together all of the little details. I like how much you say without saying much at all. Nice job with the prompt. Hope to see you back again soon.


  3. I remember doing the same thing for different reasons (I just liked small, hidden spaces when I was little), which just made this all the more chilling.


  4. This is so well written. It made me so sad. I can really picture the girl escaping into her books. I hope she wakes up early enough too.


  5. Oh, dear. I could see that all so clearly; the secret reading that so many big-reader kids do after bedtime, but for a much darker reason. Well done.


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