The Intruders – FSS #21

This week’s Story Starter teaser is:

Shaking, I grabbed her hand and said…

“It’s going to be okay, sweet girl.”

She wanted to believe me, but my shaking hands made her nervous and unsure. We were trapped in the house, and the intruders were outside. They were jiggling the handles trying to get in the doors, front and back. It was only a matter of time before they forced their way in. The windows were close enough to the ground that they could break one and come in. The phone lines were dead, and we had no way to call for help.

“I’m so scared, Momma. What do they want?”

I wished that I knew when she asked me, but I had no idea who they were or what they wanted. We had only lived in the new house about two months, and there had never been any signs of trouble.

“Maybe it’s a misunderstanding…the previous tenants may be to blame…I don’t know, baby.” I had no idea whose fault it was that we were hiding under a kitchen table waiting for intruders to snatch us from our new home.

As I finished my statement, two men came plowing evasively in the front door with guns in hand, and the back door exploded with a noisy boom. It was loud, and it made our ears ring. As we sat there beneath the kitchen table, we held our ears from the annoying sound. Screams left both of our lips, and my first priority was to save my daughter from these armed men. Two more had come through the back door.

“Who are you, and what do you want?” I questioned the man who seemed to be leading the pack.

His voice rang out through his mask, and he said, “Ma’am, I am going to need you and your daughter to come with us.” He sounded kind and helpful.

“I don’t understand…what’s going on?”

“We will explain everything once we get you out of the house. We need to go, NOW!” He flashed a badge as he finished speaking. “We’re CIA, and you both are in danger. Please, move fast!”

I was flustered by the invasion, but I gathered my daughter and my shoes. I collected all I could for the two of us, and we went with the men to the black SUVs out the front door.

I looked at my daughter as we sat in the back seat of the Escalade, and said, “It’s going to be okay.” This time I meant it.

She nodded her head to agree with me, and she batted her pretty blue eyes into my own. It was soothing to see her eyes filled without tears. We would be okay, and this memory would not leave us anytime soon.

The Lover’s Walk

This week’s Story Starter teaser is:

We had planned to meet under the bridge at midnight, but…

my heart was still so fragile from the night before. Deon and I had a terrible fight last night, and I had spent the majority of my night hugged up with my pillow and soaking it with tears. My heart was broken. It was hard to fall asleep due to the pain in my heart. If a sign would have addressed the state of mind I was in, it would have been a big, yellow HAZARD sign. My heart was up Shite Creek without a paddle when we fought or had a bad night, and I really wanted to meet him there under the stars. I would break every speed limit to get there, just to see his face and be in close proximity.

I could picture myself there, standing at the bridge, agog with excitement awaiting his arrival. He was one of those men that made your leg kick up slightly with just a peck of a kiss. He always smelled like the finest cologne, and he was so utterly handsome. When things were normal in our relationship, we would satiate for one another and be at one with our togetherness.

The problem was that he had been through so much in his life that his trauma ruled his life. When life went bad, so did he. When things were good, they were really good, but when things were bad, they were really bad. He would exude that trauma at me when I would least expect it. I tried not to blame him, but that was one of the hardest tasks.

Instead of meeting him under that bridge next to the ocean’s edge, I took all the money I had, cash and all, and I bought a one-way ticket out of town. He would come home to find a note folded neatly on the counter, and all it would say when his eyes found it was “Goodbye.”

© E.M. Kingston 2021

This post was written for Fandango’s Story Starter #20, The Daily Spur’s Word of the Day, Fandango’s One-Word Challenge, Ragtag’s Daily Prompt, Word of the Day Challenge, My Vivid Blog’s Word Challenge, Your Daily Word Prompt, and Three Things Challenge.

xoxo, E.M.

The Music Box

This week’s Story Starter from Fandango is:

There was something about a music box that always made me…

want to have one. I never received one of them in my younger years, but my sister had a white music box that popped up a ballerina in a pretty pink leotard and tutu. I don’t remember where she got it from, but I just knew that I never possessed one. The main thing I remember is that I would wind it up on the bottom with the lid closed, and when it was wound all the way, I would lift the lid slowly, peeking in to watch how it worked. The ballerina would emerge into a spin when I got the lid lifted completely, and I would try to see how far I could close the lid before the music and the dancer would stop.

I am not sure if she still has that little music box, but I think that every little girl should have one. I didn’t realize that until right now, and it makes me want to get one for my girls on Christmas this year, as well as one for my granddaughter. Music boxes are timeless, so it would be a great gift for all of them.

xoxo, E.M.

Moving On – FSS #18

This week’s Story Starter teaser from Fandango is:

When I first moved here a few months back, I couldn’t believe that…

I found a place that I loved so much. I remember being doubtful due to the horrific smell I encountered before getting to Hanford in the Bakersfield area. It smelled like something I had never smelled before, and later I realized that smell was the dairy farms. It was terrible, and I remember thinking, “Where are you dumping me at?” My ex drove me and my things here, and that putrid weird smell was overwhelming when I first arrived. However, as time went on, California was great in my eyes, and I felt like I was starting my life anew. Everything was different from previous places that I called home.

It was different than Illinois, where it was basically flat and full of corn and wheat. It was different than Arkansas in the way that it was missing all the trees, but I could see the mountains in the distance. That is still one of the most beautiful things in my eyes, to see the snow-capped mountains off in the distance when the sky is clear.

The thought of living anywhere else never crosses my mind. I love it here. California is my home, and I always say that I was born to live here.

The Surprise in the Darkness

This week’s Story Starter teaser is:

I heard a voice calling out my name from inside the house, and when I opened the door…

my hand navigated the darkness to find the light switch on the wall. I recognized the voice beckoning my attention, but I was oblivious to why my daughter was sitting in the house at night in the dark. The usual when I got home from work was loud televisions with every light in the house on, so my nerves were on high alert. I did not know what I would meet when the lights shined into the room. Would it be good, or would there be something sinister lying in wait for me to walk in the door?

As I flipped on the light, the loudness of cheers and singing delightfully surprised me.


I saw many faces I knew and had not seen in ages it seemed. Tears of happiness filled my eyes with the sound of joy and celebration in the room which now was filled with light. I was fond of many of the people that made it to my home on this special day.

My daughter had invited everyone over to celebrate my 45th birthday, and I could not have been happier than I was at that very moment.

This was written for Fandango’s Story Starter #17 and Pensitivity101’s Three Things Challenge #763, and I used the word challenge (hand) from the Daily Spur.

xoxo, E.M.

2010 – Story Starter #16

Fandango has a weekly Story Starter to get us writing some new goodies on our blogs, and it’s a great way to get a story started and be inspired to write.

This week’s Story Starter teaser is:

It was in the spring of 2010 when I first realized that I could…

free myself from the grips of a man who will never like me, let alone love me. I had thought in the beginning that he was the perfect one for me, but I could not have been more wrong. He was toxic, and I knew I needed to get away from his narcissisms. A chance came about where he went to jail for not paying his child support, and I made the attempt to keep him away. One of my friends drove all the way from Michigan to come and help me out. He had left me financially broken, which was not something that was new. I never had my own money, only his. That’s another way of many that he controlled me, with money. The other ways were with cars and forcing me to take drugs.

I had many different vehicles that he sold or trashed that belonged to me only for short moments. When he bought a vehicle for himself, it would be a manual transmission, since he knew I could not drive a stick. It required too much coordination, and I was not a fan of shifting gears. I was more of a put it into gear and go kind of girl. This disadvantage of mine, he used to his advantage to keep me home like a hermit. My only refuge away from the loneliness was my online gaming and social media. That wasn’t so bad, I guess. I got to interact with people who I found to be decent people, but I just had a small group of friends that could never save me from my solitude. It was what it was, but I knew I needed to get away or push him out.

As if the control with money and cars wasn’t enough, he then started bringing home drugs and telling me I was so fat that I needed to do them. When you are under control of another person, the manipulation of your mental health is easy, so I complied due to my self-hate that I already had about myself. He used my own issues with myself against me, and I did what he said. He brought home meth, and I either snorted it or smoked it. It would keep me up for days though, which was almost a good side effect to the drugs. I’m not proud of the fact that I did not have the willpower to not do them, but they saved me from a lot of sexual abuse while sleeping. If I wasn’t asleep, he couldn’t get at me like he normally did. I embraced that fact about the meth. It saved me a little bit from more abuse.

When he got put in jail, everything was a little less heavy, and I went to visit him to tell him that he was not allowed to come home. At this time, we were not legally married, and I owned the house and land that we lived on. My mom gave it to me in an attempt to keep me from ever being homeless. My friend, who we will just call T.G., helped me with a few bills and finding my love of coffee. He showed me another world. Sadly, it was short-lived because I was scared of my ex, and I didn’t want T.G. to get hurt or for me to get hurt either. I sent him away and took the loser back when he got out of jail. I was too scared. I failed at this attempt to leave him or push him out.

There would be three other attempts, with third time being a charm, to get away from him. That is how I ended up in California. He moved onto the next victim. I still feel like I failed at escaping him sometimes because he got rid of me, but it was the best thing that ever happened to me. I found myself here.

If you have ever been in this situation or are in a situation like this, get out! There are many resources to help you, and I never knew about them. There are shelters that hide you from your abuser, and there are people that will help you get free. Don’t let them abuse you like I did. You may fail the first attempt at freedom, but keep trying until you succeed.

xoxo, E.M.

E.M.’s Story Starter #15

I think I might be a day late on starting the story, but Fandango hosts a weekly Story Starter. He gives an inspirational sentence to help us write stories, poems, etc. It’s a really cool teaser to trigger some creativity, and this is my first time attempting this prompt.

This week’s Story Starter teaser is:

She was shocked when she opened the envelope and saw that it was…

an acceptance letter to law school. She had worked so hard at studying and building up to getting her law degree, but it had always been just a dream rather than a reality. Now, with this letter, she was one step closer to doing what she loved to do. Amy had a benevolent heart when it came to helping people, and she was not the typical student. She was in her forties with three children, and she had a hard time throughout life trying to figure out what she wanted to be when she “grew up”. She had finally figured that out when she made the move to California and met a man that would change her views of the world around her. A man that made her see through all the red tape that is put up to keep people out.

He showed her the gray hazy area that is injustice and discrimination in the criminal justice system, so she set her path to become a paralegal, thinking that would be enough to help people. She finished two degrees in less than two years, and she graduated with honors. She became a leader in her community, and she kept pushing and striving to be better than the person she was the day before.

Her dreams were all that she had left at times, and this envelope was the confirmation that she needed to remind her that she would be able to change the world one life at a time.