She wasn’t sure how long she had been staring straight ahead. It seemed as if days and days had passed, but she knew it hadn’t been more than a couple of hours. She could feel the weight of the baby in her arms but didn’t want to look at it. She kept her eyes forward. She didn’t move.
It’s not like he’d been mean about it or even really forceful. He had simply opened the door and told her to get out without making a scene. She was more stunned than frightened and found herself opening the door and almost floating from the car, like someone had filled her full of helium. Her head felt all tight and her ears where buzzing. He caught her quick glance at the now-silent babe, and told her to keep moving.
They were his now. He would take care of it.
Her husband had never said that to her. He had never “claimed” her in any way. She knew her husband didn’t love her, but she couldn’t help being in love with him. She had fallen for him right away and she knew he was THE man for her. After the first month of his late-night phone calls and visits, she was pinching herself at her luck. He was just so perfect! When she found out she was pregnant, she was worried. But he surprised her with a quickie wedding only telling his parents afterwards. She was so excited to have the family she longed for. Instead, she got silence.
She would’ve been happy with one hug – from any of them. And he never touched her anymore either. She longed to be loved, just to be wanted and appreciated in any way. That’s all she truly wanted.
She thought the baby would help, but it just cried all the time. Her husband told her she was a bad mother. Why else would a child cry all the time?
The baby stirred revealing a crescent of drool on her bare arm, which caused a shiver to run through her. She inwardly cringed at the fear of his attention.
After quickly handing her the baby, he had been focused on driving for hours without saying anything. She couldn’t believe this was happening to her. There was no explanation for her idiotic behavior. What was wrong with her? She could’ve run out into traffic and desperately waved a car down for help, screamed in his face, remembered to put gas in the car…
She hadn’t done any of those things – hadn’t even fought. To be honest, she wasn’t afraid.
He had said they were his now, he would take care of them.
The baby woke up and began fussing. She instantly felt overwhelmed with the knowledge she didn’t have anything to offer it, not even a fresh diaper. She could tell the child was hungry and needed a change. Her husband would’ve pulled her aside by the arm and given her a real talking too, using his loud voice so others could hear. The last time he had was in front of everyone, and the child had cried harder and harder. He told her to “take care of things” and to “get that crying child out of here.”
She was embarrassed as a tear slid down her cheek. She was worried he would think she was crying about what was happening, not because of a memory of something between her and her husband.
While slowing the car he carefully reached over and put his hand on the back of her neck.
*This weeks prompt was all about character development. Do you know what you want most? Does your character?