'You stupid girl, where are you now?'

A sentence I'd been hearing a lot throughout my childhood.

'You stupid girl, where are you now?'

I was tired of hearing Mother's screams and my buttocks were aching from sitting on the hard ground in this uncomfortable position for so long.

'I'm coming, mother,' I said.

I hardly felt the beating I recieved afterwards. I was grateful to God for my numb buttocks now. Apparently Mother wanted mug of ale and I wasn't around to get it for her, so she had to go herself. Indeed, she couldn't be my mother, I did think I was really a changeling. Father though, he wasn't too bad. Father was friendlier, but Father was gone.

'You stupid girl, where are you now?'

I was asleep, but I could never tell. I tried to make myself as flat as possible under my covers, knowing that it was of no use, but trying anyway. Reverend Mother would either find me while she was making my bed, which, unlike that of the other little girls, was never made, or she would see right away that I was hiding.

'We'll start mass without you, you know! And then you will burn in hell for sure!'

Ah, what did she know of hell? I was 10, I was no child. I'd read the Bible from front to back, from back to front, upside down and downside up, inside out. I knew it by heart and I could point out people who were clearly going to Hell. People like the Reverend Mother, who only thought of themselves.

The covers were pulled off me. I blinked in the sudden light. Wait, no, I didn't. It was two hours past midnight.

'You disgraceful, sinful girl, you truly are a changeling!' Reverend Mother screeched.

I grabbed the brass candlestand next to my bed and hit the woman over the head with it. She screamed in pain as I hopped out of bed and ran off. I knew that she'd start shouting about the Nook, as we children called it, or Repentance Room - a small room where you could only stand on your knees and pray, for hours and hours, without food or drink, only one candle which often burned out before you could get out.

'You will be sent into the Repentance Room, you know!'

Not if you can't find me.

The End

31 comments about this story Feed