Robert sat on his bed, slowly flicking through the pages of Eclipses life, it was more than a little sad, to say the least. Early school reports told of the young Eclipse as, 'hard working, amazingly bright, but still refuses to join in group activities with other students, preferring to be left to her own devices, we are concerned this behavior may lead to difficulties, socially, in the future!'. Robert scanned the documents, her name had been removed from the all the papers, 'Eclipse' having been inked in, in its place.
He noticed her school reports ended only three years into her first school, Robert flicked through the next few sheets, looking to see if there were any references to why? He kept flicking through, until he came across a report marked, Thames Valley Police, incident report, the date, time and once again, names, had all been removed, Robert began to read.
14 Years Earlier
She was pushing herself as far under her coveres as she could, trying to lay perfectly flat and still in a hope he would leave her alone, maybe he'd think she had run away? The sound of the television had died a few minutes ago, he would be on his way upstairs soon. Eclipses tiny hands began to shake furiously, her little body trembling under the covers. Her fingers found 'bear', he was tucked up under the sheets with her, she pulled her soft toy close and hugged him tight, as if the stuffed animal could somehow protect her from her father.
The sound of creaking floor boards, under heavy footsteps, reached her room. She could hear him coughing and spluttering, years of chain smoking had taken its toll on her fathers health, so had the cheap whiskey he was could always be found necking from the bottle, in front of the television. Eclipses mother had died two years earlier, her family had had a history of weak hearts, and after a serious attack at her work one day, the police had come to visit Eclipse and her father, to break the news that she had died shortly after arriving in hospital.
Eclipse couldn't remember crying, just taking her fathers huge fingers in her hand, and telling him everything would be OK, that he still had her! Unfortunatly, the death of her mother had an extreme effect of her father, he started drinking to much, leaving work early of just not going in at all. After the factory he packed biscuits in had fired him, Eclipses father had suffered a break down, withdrawing into himself for days at a time, meaning Eclipse was left to fend for herself, but this was nothing compared to how he treated her at night.
It had started after the first six months of his wife being dead, he had started coming to her room to tuck her in for the night, at first Eclipse had been grateful of the attention, she missed her mothers stories and kisses goodnight, they way she had tucked the covers right in, under her legs and body, making the bed seem snugger, warmer. Her father had just sat there at first, watching her, smiling at her, stroking her hair, then one night, Eclipse asked her father to tuck the covers in the way mummy always had. He obliged at first, but then, as the nightly visits continued, she became aware of the fact he was lingering under the covers, his hands moving over her in places they didn't need to. Her mind reminded her of special lessons at school, when a visiting police officer, a woman, had told them stories about a boy named 'Mark' and a girl names 'Sally', she had told them both of times when, Mark and Sally, had been alone with adults, who touched them in places they shouldn't have and then told a teacher or police officer, who had stopped them hurting children, but those stories had been about other teachers and strangers in the street, not about someones daddy!
She heard he rather reach the top of the stairs,
"Pleaaaaasssseeee, go to bed daddy!", she begged the footsteps coming up the corridor, praying they would continue on, past her door, to the main bedroom. Eclipse lay as flat as she could against the matress, even holding her breath in a hopeless attempt to go forgotten or unnoticed. Her father reached her door, she could hear the sloshing of whiskey in a bottle as he took a long draft.
Eclipses whole body was convulsing in terror, the footsteps hadn't moved on, and she could hear the sqeak her door knob made, when it was being turned. Even though her eyes were closed, Eclipse could still feel light against her eye lids, it was getting brighter by the second, in a few moments it was almost burning her eye lids, trying to force them open,
"Ssshh!", came a slurred, husky voice from the doorway, "Itz OK Angeeeel, Itzzz only daddy!",
She could smell the whiskey already, he would come and sit on the end of the ned first, and rub her legs, he always did,
"S'OK babyzz, daddyszz gone' a tuckzz you in!",
She felt the bed dip as he sat down on the end, she could feel the weight of his hand searching for across the top of her covers, Eclipses head was screaming a thousand different ways to try and get out the situation, scream, ask daddy to stop, run! The fear was changing to, she was getting angry as well, why was daddy making her feel like this? Had she done something wrong?
"Come erezz babyzzz, comezz outta therezzz for daddyzz!",
Eclipse felt him grab her ankle, run his fingers along, and then she felt hot, so hot, her whole body felt as though it was about to burst into flame. The duvet edged away from her head, a large hand grabbed her shoulder, and he turned her to face him,
"openzzz ya eyeszz babyzz!",
Eclipse opened her eyes
Roger Dixon, a middle aged man, wife and father of two, was walking his faithful old terrior, Trixie, around the park, just as he had every night for last fifteen years, he looked down at the little dog, she really was getting old now, but still she happily greeted him from work, every night, sat on his feet while he watched television and ate, the carried her lead, which was far to heavy for her now, into the living room to remind him to walk her.
He looked around the park, the swings, climbing frame, telephone box and even the grass, had been vandlised by the local 'children',he sniffed,
"Children!", was the even the right word anymore? They seemed to grow up so fast now, smoking, drinking, having their own babies as young as twelve, TWELVE!! And which was worse these days? Little boys could always be gobby and rude, even when he was a child, but the girls always showed respect to grown ups, NOW?! He couldn't go ten feet down the road without someone telling him to 'F Off!' or worse!
He stopped as he left the park, via a small gate built into the black railed fence, he looked up at the house in front of him, he liked the little girl who lived there, she was polite, pretty and always stopped to pat Trixie. She'd been through alot, alright, lost her mum, dad a waster drunk, who looked after her all night? While her old man was down the pub?? He looked up to the front bedroom, he knew to belong to Eclipse,
"She must have snuck out of bed and turned the t.v on!", he giggled to himself, "little rascal!". Roger continued watching the flickering light on the wall, sometimes bright, sometimes faint, like a t.v picture, he was just about to walk away, and return home, when he heard a voice, a man's voice, he sounded distressed, and it sounded, like it was coming from Eclispes bedroom!
"WHAT ARESZZ YOU DOINZZ??!!", it was her father, Roger could hear him clearly now, he sounded terrified,
"PLEASEEZZZZ BABYZZZ< DADDYSZZZ SORRRYZZ!", and he was drunk!
Roger tied a yelping Trixie to a lamp post, the terrior was jumping up and down, yelping and barking at the house,
"Quiet Trix!", he called, "I'm just gonna see if our little friend is OK, alright?!", he turned to face the front door, walked across the small path, leading between two small patches of unkept grass, and reached the front door, raised his finger to the door bell, considered what he would say when the father opened it, and pressed down.
Half a mile away, two joggers are enjoying the still night air, getting ready to finish their run, and head home. They pass a bottle of water to each other, when one of them drops it, his eyes opening wide and mouth falling slack,
"What's gotten into you?!", the second asks, and his companion points, over his shoulder. From half a mile away, the entire night sky is filled with the brilliant, bright, white light....of a massive explosion.