That Which Was Not Forgotten

Lady Magdalena, hated by her mother, hated by the world, that hated them back with a passion that would smother the flames and ash of Vesuvius.


1. Forgetting the Family

Floorboards cracked beneath the stilettos, that raped its foundations; splintering them as though they were nought but flesh. Wounded and cracked, the floorboards whined and creaked beneath the feet of Lady Magdalena. Her black clothes draped across the floorboards of ebony wood, catching on the splinters that jutted out at unnatural angles from the boards. She drew a worn, cellulite-ridden hand from her sides and pulled the curtains apart, letting in sunlight that crept across the carpet. It was warm. The worn woman sat on a chair of embroidered stiff material, signs of skilled craftmanship crushed beneath her rear. She gazed out the window, and saw nothing but the fields, fields dyed red from that of familial war. She drew a trembling hand to a glass, then to her lips. The wine slipped down her throat, leaving a bitter, cheap taste in her wake and the feeling as though an inferno was raging in the pits of her abdomen. As though already hazy, she gazed out to the blurry blades of grass and pondered their colour at all. Though she and Richard had stripped the garden clean of grass and rolled out fresh grass, she sat and pondered whether the blood had truly been cleaned. Whenever she would walk past, the stench would wrestle her nostrils, and she would be forced to bring an aged hand to her nose. Richard claimed he could smell nothing at all. The mirror opposing her, depicted an almost elderly woman. Limp hair that was faintly black hung by the sides of her gaunt cheeks, and once bright and boisterous eyes had grown dull with age. Supple skin had faded to that which was loose and easily torn, like tissue pulled taut, and her teeth were not yet, but would most likely rot away. Her lips were cracked, and her face was a network of spiderwebs, tiny and neglible but forming a thin layer of age. Lady Magdalena was no longer young and beautiful. Age and pain had brought her to age. Her son had dyed those once green fields red, clogged up her hopes and dreams with the stench of blood and mauled flesh. There was nothing left for Lady Magdalena. "Mother always did hate me." Her voice trembled like her hands did as she struggled to hold the light wine glass to her lips. In hate and jealousy, her mother had died, gazing upon the fresh new life she had created, that had taken her own away. She had gazed upon Lady Magdalena's bright blue eyes, and had snarled with jealousy, bringing up bloody hands to her soft, newborn cheeks.

"I hate you," she rasped, eyes crazed and hateful upon gazing upon the life that had taken hers swiftly from her hands, no matter how she clawed to grasp it. "I hate you." The nurse had gazed in worry, taking the young child from the womans hands, nurturing the new life that was softly weeping, unlike the heinous cries that babies often screeched upon birth. "I am not sure your baby is well, she is quiet." The woman sat up, bed sheets stained with her own blood, pain and sweat. "I don't care!" she snarled, scrabbling at the nurse weakly for the child. "Pass her to me!" Softly, the woman lowered the baby into the new mothers arms. They trembled, and the nurse saw that she was in the depths of delirium before death. "These may be your final words," the nurse muttered. The mother looked upon the bundle of life she had created with distaste. She would have felt the unbridled joy that her fellow housewives spoke of, had this child not taken her own life. Patricia had been so sure that this baby would be her life, and yet, now there was no life. There was only the childs, and Patricia was left with nought but a bundle of breathing flesh and muscle, that sobbed and sobbed as though wounded. "Magdalena." The nurse nodded slowly. "Her name?" Patricia nodded in confirmation. "Magdalena. Like the whore she is."

Today, Lady Magdalena sat in her own estate, earned with her own money, and contemplated, why not, in the depths of delirium of death, could Patricia not feel the slightest shred of hope or love for her child? "Perhaps, Mother hoped for Magdalena's future." The curtains closed, and the elderly woman looked upon herself; her crooked joints, her gaunt structure, her overdrawn guts and most of all, her pain. There was nothing. In this yard, lay her son, deep underground, with maggots having long ago devoured his flesh, and now, only his battered bones remaining, scorched. She had sought acceptance, and yet, she had witnessed the death of her own the same way she had witnessed the death of her mother. She breathed. A weary smile crept up on her face, as she fiddled with a draw, pulling it open and clearing through the various items, before coming to a gun. High calibre. Lady Magdalena coughed. "I am Lady Magdalena. The whore. The lady who sold herself for silver. I will too, be the lady who created future. Clear, beautiful future." The woman felt fat tears drip down her cheeks, and she brought the barrel to her chest. "Not here. Never here." She pulled the trigger, and she felt her heart convulse, the muscle tearing and pumping blood that seeped into her clothes. She fell onto the cream carpet. As she lay on her back, Lady Magdalena saw the blood that stained the wall behind her, and she felt the blood drain from her, seeping into Richards precious ebony floorboards, shipped all the way from Africa. But alas, she couldn't care. The mahogany door lay open, and there stood the man. Yet, there was no words she could muster, not even in death, to spite him. He stood there, in full suit-donning glory. His eyes were filled with an unrecognisable emotion that she didn't care to decipher, and he stared upon the blood that lay around her, seeping into his floorboards, and that which spattered the floorboards and walls like a child flicking paint off of a paintbrush. "Magdalena," he choked out, his voice cracking as he did so. "Magdalena, I..." He shook his head, as though shaking off thoughts that clung to him like insects. "I... Christopher... Our son... I loved him too. I didn't mean to do this... I was in a rage... and what if the sheriff were to see what I had done? There would be nothing left... for the both of us... I..." She saw his eyes glinting, light refracting off the water that threatened to leak out of them. "I never meant for this to happen..." Desperately, she wished she could reach for the gun and kill him too, take him down like he took down her son. Like how he pushed Christopher into the pit of maggots and mud, she wanted to push him into the depths of despair. Yet, her cursed arms would not move. Speechless with pain and anguish, she brought a sharp gaze to him and snarled. "Your hatred bred more hatred, and hatred killed us all. Go to hell." Hazy in her final moments of mania, Lady Magdalena spat blood at him. Staring into his eyes, she coughed and she hacked, and her heart spasmed a few final times. The blood had drenched the floor. The whore closed her eyes to a world of hatred and blood at long last, a world she hoped to never return to.

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