***Warning: If scenes of a violent nature are triggers for you, please do not read any further. Another excerpt will be posted soon.***
Twenty-three Years Ago–Northwestern Ohio
“Come back here, ya lil’ bastard! Yer’ no better than that whore y’all call mama!”
The young man watched as his furious, drunken father tore with crazed determination across the expanse of the backyard, intent on catching his younger brother. The long stitch in his hand said more about their father than any words possibly could. That piece of the weeping willow tree was only one of the ways their dear old dad punished all of them.
His mama, long gone from the cancer that mercilessly ate through her already abused and battered body, came on fast and hard, taking her in a short six months. But it wasn’t soon enough for her husband. He repeatedly beat her for having the nerve to get sick and cost him even more of his drinking money.
“Wasn’t it bad enough that you had those two brats? Worthless as tits on a boar! All of ya!”
His words were always emphasized by the crack of whatever he could get his hands on and using it to smack, spank, club or whip all of them with seemed to bring him immense satisfaction. In the wee hours of pre-dawn, the house would finally fall silent except for the annoying sound of snoring coming from their father’s recline in the living room of their dilapidated and crumbling farmhouse. Each night he’d prayed that the booze or God or some other stroke of karma would kill the old asshole, but the unfortunate sound of his disgusting sperm donor’s breathing night after night told him the man would never die. They’d never be free of his clutches.
His mother, however, took her last breath on his twelfth birthday. While his father was off drinking in a bar, the brothers had held her until a kind neighbor who came to check on them each day, found them draped across her lifeless body and sobbing. It took the strength of the neighbor lady and her husband to pry them away from their beloved mama. Each of them begging to go with her—begging not to be left alone with the monster they were forced to have as their dad.
Five years later, the older of the two boys knew the asshole wouldn’t stop his terrorizing behavior. Ever. He’d be damned if he was going to get his hands on his young sibling again. Just shy of eighteen, he knew he was his brother’s only hope and he took matters into his own hands. Grabbing the flathead shovel that stood propped against the garage, he took off after them knowing only the two of them would survive or their father would. Either way, they’d finally be free of his drunken clutches.
“Leave him alone! Why don’t you come at me, dick? Take on me!”
“Oh, big guy has a shovel. I’m shakin’.” His father took a swig from the whiskey flask he always had in one hand. “Fuck you, you little prick. Think because you’re almost an adult you’ve got balls all-a-sudden? You’ll never have the balls to leave here. You’re just like your mama; weak. Weak and pathetic.”
His father’s breath was hot and nauseating. It reeked of the sour booze and beer mixture that he always drank. The young man fought the urge to spit in the abusive drunkard’s face. The wobbling man poked him in the chest with a nicotine stained finger, jamming it with each word.
“Ya think yer’ better ‘an me, boy? Think I’m a monster? We’re all monsters on the inside. You’ll do quick to learn that, son. You ain’t shit. It’s about time you get that through that rock solid head of yours. I own you. I own him. I will beat that into your stupid, skinny asses if it’s the last thing I ever do. Now, go home and mind your own fucking business, punk. I’ll deal with you later.”
The seventeen-year-old kid watched as his father began to unbuckle his trouser belt, strutting towards where the boy was hiding in some brush. Another whipping would come with the long leather strap to whatever body part was within his clammy reach. But he watched as his father’s belt flew out of his hands and landed in a clump, causing a small cloud of dust to rise on the narrow, dirt path. He stood, frozen for a moment in horror as the man shoved his filthy pants to his ankles, bent down and pulled his screaming and screeching youngest son by the pantlegs out of the weeds. On some level, the older of the boys knew his father had reached a level of depravity that had not yet been reached in the past. Absolute terror was about to befall his small, wiry twelve-year-old brother and with silent swiftness, he charged at the drunken, disgusting man.
One loud whack of the shovel to the back of the asshole’s head and it was over. The monster never saw it coming. He’d never hurt anyone again. He hadn’t been able to save his mother, but he hoped she’d somehow see that he’d had no choice. If he had known something so sinister had been happening, he’d have taken care of the dick a lot sooner. From then on, he knew he’d always save his brother. They were all each other had.
As he stood over his father’s lifeless body, Mason knew he’d never truly be free of the man. He had his blood in his veins and on his hands. Was it even possible for someone to get away from something like that? He wasn’t sure. But Mason knew he’d spend the rest of his life running if he had to.
Release Date: 4-5-16
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