The Door by A. Kirana
‘Come,’ a silken voice intones, awakening me from my slumber.
Without thought nor protest, I rise to follow.
My perception dims, as I walk blindly down the path I’m shown.
Candles flicker in my wake, briefly illuminating my way.
Shadows dance before me as laughter hurries me forth.
Racing down the darkened hallway, I’m startled to find a doorway barring my way.
Tentatively, I reach out, as it looms before me, beckoning me.
Cold to the touch, I recoil as if burned.
Turning to run, insistent voices urge me forward.
Rooted in place, a feeling of apprehension encompasses me.
A gentle breeze caresses my skin, attempting to sooth me.
With my fears assuaged, I glance around bewildered.
Facing the door anew, I ask in a quiet voice, “What am I to do?”
From the shadows, a voice replies, “Enter, child.”
In a moment, the door stood ajar, inviting me in.
Taking hesitant steps closer, I peer inside, only to retreat.
Mournful cries of pain and anguish reach out to me from within.
Fear clutches at my heart, as the cries bring me to my knees.
“It is time,” a voice urges me, as shadowy wraiths encircle me.
“No,” I sob, crawling through the shadows, futilely attempting an escape.
Unseen hands reach for me, gently leading me toward the door.
Struggling in vain seems only to tighten their hold on me.
Ceasing the fight, I resign myself to my fate, allowing myself to be led.
Standing in the doorway, I reel in horror as I watch familiar scenes unfold.
Straining against invisible bonds, as I choke back my terror, I cry, “Why?”
In a sorrowful tone, a voice replies, “You must face this, child.”
Sobbing, as my strength ebbs away, I feel a gentle tug upon my wrist.
Looking down, I find myself staring into the eyes of a child.
Seeing the depth of sadness within those eyes made my heart ache.
Angered, I cry out, “A child’s eyes should be filled with wonder not pain.”
Silence mocking me, as I continue, “What has been done to this child?”
A long moment passes, before a voice queries, “Do you not know?”
Turning to face the child, with my anger now sobered, I gasp as I finally see.
Falling to my knees to take the child into my arms, I attempt to ease her pain.
Weeping as I hold the child, I gasp for air while memories flood my mind.
A myriad of forgotten pain and emotions cascade into my being, filling an emptiness.
A strangled cry escapes my lips as I try to brace myself for the onslaught.
Tightening my embrace around the child, I am startled to find my arms empty.
My eyes quickly search the mist-shrouded figures, to no avail, the child had vanished.
Staggered by the whole experience, I collapse from weariness.
The door closed loudly behind me, jarring me back into consciousness.
Shivering, I listen to the anguished wails around me, not wanting to witness the cause.
A piercing cry for help cuts through the din, sending chills racing through me.
Frozen in remembrance, my tears fall silently, achingly.
“There is more to see, child,” a voice, filled with pity, softly said.
“No more,” I rasp, unable to endure.
“You must,” the voices cry in unison, as images began to change and swirl around me.
“I can’t,” I cry, shrinking back from the flickering scenes that enveloped me in their midst.
Reaching through the span of time, shattered reflections stare lifelessly back at me from yesterday.
Sobbing, I recall the oppressive pain brought by silence and the overwhelming fear of truth.
Nightmarish specters howl their fury as they immerse me in their vicious games.
Screaming in terror, I watch childhood end with one swift blow.
Shuddering with remembered pain, shadowy tendrils of forgotten fears find their mark.
Embracing myself for comfort, I ache as I witness the walls being built.
Enshrouded within the shredded remnants of life’s tapestry, I mourn all I have lost.
Suddenly, mirthless laughter fills the room, as icy fingers of trepidation hold me in a viselike grip.
Paralyzed, I find myself staring into the cold blue eyes of one whose intent shone cruelly.
Unable to flee, I cower before his lecherous grin.
Helpless, I shriek wildly as innocent blood is spilled, staining all I see a livid red.
Shocked by the brutality, overcome by guilt, I watch as I was shamed into silence.
Embittered by the memory, as I listen to my cries, I long for retribution.
“No more!” I plead as the shadows converge, blurring the scene.
Plunged suddenly into darkness, I cringe, listening to the continuing songs of lament.
As the cries reach an agonizing pitch, I steel myself, afraid of what was to come.
Light flares, momentarily blinding me, as memories began to reform.
Wrapped within my defenses, I coolly face the thinning shadows.
In a voice tight with anguish, I whisper, “Not this,” as my defenses shattered.
Aching, I reach for the memory, futilely screaming my protests, to no avail.
“Forgive me,’ I whisper hoarsely, as I witness life being bled from me.
Like a blow to my heart, guilt staggered me, crippling me.
Unable to bear witness, I crawl blindly through the carnage of what was.
My tears fall endlessly, as I desperately search for an escape.
Relief washes over me, as I stumble into the door.
Rising upon unsteady legs, I make my final plea, “Please, no more.”
“But you must face this child,” a voice replies sympathetically.
With my head in my hands, I cry, “I cannot. I am not ready.”
The howls around me grew frantic, pleading to be heard.
“You may never be ready, but you must face this one day.”
The door finally opens, releasing me from my prison.
Sobbing, I close the door behind me, knowing one day I must return.