White Shoes ~ 1000 Words

By now, you should know the drill, y’all! Linking up with the lovely, awesome and totally tubular: Megan Eccles! Once again, one photo, 1000 words, minimal editing, all that lovely jazz! 😉 Let’s get to it, shall we!? {Word count 1125} I couldn’t stop! Sorry…it was getting good. lol

alejandroescamilla-white-shoes

Photo source unsplash.com

The shoes were new, but the reason for them wasn’t. Once again, Jack had left a bruise and these where the gift of contrition. But this time, this last time, Lily didn’t want to take them. Taking them meant she accepted his apology. And she didn’t. One too many times he’d laid his hand on her, last night was the last time he’d lay a hand on anyone.

LILY!! Curtain CALL!” The bellow of Sid, the stage director yelled at her door.

Putting the final touches on her makeup, she stood, and looked at herself. Really looking. There stood a girl with shattered dreams hanging on by a thread, daring to dream she could do what needed to be done to Jack. Time enough for that after this show. The final show. So many final things and thoughts running through her mind, seeking to make her crazy. Not now, not now, I have to go out and sing like it’s the first time.

***

Standing on stage with the bright lights shining in her face, singing ‘Ave Maria‘ in a clear, light soprano. The last words echoing through the theater, and a long pause. Then thunderous applause.  Smiling, bowing, holding the hands of those in her troupe…thinking of nothing but the pure joy of being on this stage, forgetting everything and being the star. She was made for this.

Walking off of the stage, getting hugs from all, and ‘atta girls’ by even the quiet stage hand and rope boy. Never before had a performance gotten her such adulation and she liked it. She wanted it all.

“Lily, that was the best performance yet, m’girl! We must chat about another roll for you!”

“Lily, gorgeous voice!”

“Lily, Lily, that was amazing! You MUST contact me for a roll on Broadway!”

On and on the cheers and comments rang in her mind. Until she shut the door to her dressing room.

“Lily”

Quiet like a viper, he sat in the corner. “Lily…you got the shoes.” His voice like a grating of sandpaper against her skin, irritating, rough and leaving marks.

“Jack.” Her tone impassive and without feeling.

Moving to her dressing table, careful to shield his view of the contents of the drawer, she slowly and methodically removed her makeup, in silence.

Finally, he spoke again.

“Will you wear them for me?” Soft, but with a deadly undertone.

Hesitating to answer, she took a deep breath and said,

“They really aren’t me, Jack.”

Long moments passed and suddenly his face filled her view, as he’d wiped her chair to face him, his but millimeters away. The face was one she knew well. It wasn’t the nice and contrite Jack who’d come to the theater.

****

Shots were heard from Lily’s dressing room, and those still around rushed to her door, pounding and yelling her name. The deep sound of mournful crying came from behind the door, the sound so chilling it caused those outside her door to look at each other in fear and start pounding harder. One of the stage boys ran to get a battering ram, a hold over from a previous play. Though not real, it was hefty enough to do the job, if there was enough weight behind it. Several of the men gathered around the ram, holding it tight, and smashed that door down.

Everyone stood still, in shock at the scene before them.

****

“Sir, calm down…I need you to tell me what happened tonight. How was Lily acting before the play?” The officers voice commanding yet encouraging as well. Trying to get the information from these people was very difficult work. Many still seemed to be in shock, and others couldn’t stop talking long enough about their own issues, to help with the investigation. He tried once more with this fellow.

“Sir, I need a statement from you. Was Lily acting any differently than normal tonight?”

Hands ringing, and feet not staying in one place, the stage manager couldn’t keep his eyes from darting too and fro.

“No, sir…Officer. She was normal, brilliant performance of her career actually! I just can’t believe this…I don’t understand why?!”

“Sir, we’re going to try to get to the bottom of this, but I need your full cooperation, and anyone there back stage tonight.”

“Officer…I hate to be pessimistic, but I don’t think we’ll ever get to the bottom of this nightmare tonight.” The resignation from the stage manager was thick and palatable.

****

The boy ran down the alley, panting with the fear threatening to swallow him up whole. The feeling of being followed was real, there was a man after him. Looking this way and that, he desperately was looking for a place to dump the bag he held in his shaking hands. Spying a hole in the brick wall down a ways, he dashed to it, thrusting the dirty bag into the dark hole, he looked for something to hide it, noticing a tin trash can, he moved it to conceal this spot, he continued his anxious race down the alley and into the murky, dank night. The sounds of footsteps following him, haunting him all the way.

****

“He was just down this alley, and disappeared, Sir.” The young officer told the detective.

Both men were at the entrance to the alley, with a few other uniformed officers and various hanger’s on. The night was near it’s end and the sounds of people beginning to get out and about could be heard. The senior officer knew that the time to solve this case was ebbing away from him. The eyewitness had fled and no one seems to remember where he lived. The other two occupants from the lady’s dressing room couldn’t be reached for some time, on what happened.

Sighing, he told his partner, “It’s okay Johnny. We’ll scope the alley out, maybe there will be something there to help us. Lets start out slow and methodical. You take the left, I’ll take the right. Let’s go, and Johnny…keep your eyes pealed.”

They started their search as the twilight made the skies lighter, and therefore the alley too. They had to comb through trash, and rubbish. They’d need a shower when this was through.

****

A little while later, Johnny suddenly yelled out, “Sarg! Here! I found them.”

Trotting over to the young man, he looked at what the young man was holding.

A bloodied pair of white heels, one with a heel completely broken and missing.

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