Daisy Madigan's Paradise

When tragedy falls upon 15 year old Daisy Madigan, she escapes to the only place she feels safe, the cemetery of Abney Park. There, in the company of the dearly departed, she realizes she is changing, growing stronger and faster by the day. But in the darkness lurks a terror even she can't imagine facing.

Daisy Madigan's Paradise is a Morgan Sisters novella. Check out The Ghost of Josiah Grimshaw, the full length first novel in the series.

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4. Chapter 4

 

CHAPTER 4

 

A couple of hours later, Beau returned home on foot. He didn't say a word, he just dropped a couple of hundred pounds on the coffee table in front of her before turning to walk away.

'Dad? Dad please talk to me. It's been weeks now... Mum wouldn't want this to go on, she... she...' the words struggled to come out of her mouth as she watched her father from behind. His shoulders slumped forward as he stopped and listened.

He turned and she caught her breath as she saw his eyes were filled with tears. But he could barely look at her.

'Dad... please,' she begged, standing up. 'I need you now...' she sobbed, but Beau couldn't take it. With his lips quivering, he shook his head and turned away.

Daisy fell back onto the sofa and let the tears fall down her cheeks as she heard the front door slam. She listened to the sound of his footsteps as he walked down the road.

After about an hour, she stood up, took the money and walked upstairs. The pain in her back returned and reminded her of the strange etching that had appeared there. Stripping down to her underwear, she stood in front of the mirror once again, stretching to try and read the words. How had it appeared there? What was it? How could someone have tattooed her without her knowing about it? It was impossible. She wished she could ask her dad, but she knew now that wasn't going to happen. He could barely look at her, let alone talk to her.

Reaching into her desk drawer, she pulled out the orange coloured camera she'd got for Christmas a year earlier. With some difficulty, she managed to take a snapshot of her back. Pulling on her jeans and sweater, she then placed the memory card into her laptop and clicked on the image.

The tattoo was identical to her father's. The only difference were the words that were placed beneath it. Hers read Semper Fidelis whilst her father's had something completely different... not that she could remember now.

A knock on the front door made her jump. Her first instinct was to hide. Since her mum had died, she hated having to talk to people, so she tiptoed to her window and gingerly peered out. Two men stood waiting patiently as they knocked for a second time.

When one of them looked upwards, Daisy flattened herself against the wall, holding the blue velvet curtain over her face.

After a few more minutes, she watched them as they shrugged and walked away. They climbed back into their car and drove away.

Rushing downstairs, she crouched to pick up the letter they'd pushed through the letterbox. Opening it, she gasped. They were being evicted from their home. The house she'd grown up in. Where would they go? What would happen to her?

Later that night as she sat curled up in front of the TV, the electricity went off. Not because of a problem down the line or anything like that. No, it was because they hadn't paid their bill.

She stood up angrily and kicked at the coffee table. To her amazement, the table was lifted high into the air and crashed through the wall into the dining room.

Standing still, her face went white as she realised the destruction she'd caused. But moments later, she lifted the tall glass vase, the one her mum had always filled with a bunch of daisies every Saturday morning and hurled it at the wall, shattering it into tiny pieces. Next, without even thinking, she picked up the television like it was a piece of cardboard and tossed it through the same hole in the wall, smashing it to the dining room floor.

She tore the beige velvet curtains from their pole and sat, ripping them apart as if they were nothing but pieces of paper. The simple act of making a horrendous mess somehow made her feel better... albeit temporarily. But she continued her trail of destruction until the entire bottom floor of the house looked like it had been hit by a tornado.

Standing at the foot of the stairs, Daisy surveyed the mess she'd made before her knees buckled beneath her.

'Mum... I'm sorry. I'm so sorry, Mum. I'm just so... so... angry. I don't know what to do. Where are we going to go? Oh Mum... why did you leave us?'

Some hours later, curled on the floor in the darkness of the late afternoon, Daisy watched as a tiny light in the distance began to slowly move towards her, becoming brighter and brighter until she had to shield her eyes with her arm.

'Daisy?' whispered a voice.

'Y..yes?'

'Daisy dear, it's me. Nanna.'

'Nanna?'

Daisy removed her arm and lifted her upper body off of the floor, so that she sat cross legged looking into the light.

'Yes dear, your Nanna. Oh deary me, whatever has happened here, my love? I know you're feeling angry but this is no way to handle it. You mustn't take out your anger on things like this... or on people, my dear. You must learn to channel that anger. You're so strong, my dear. You're just like your mother in that respect. And that's why you need to pull yourself together. You need to look after your father. Beau is a good man, Daisy. He just can't take the pain. He can't take the loss. Your dear mother was like his backbone and he's lost, so very lost without her. You must be strong, Daisy. You must help him through this... that's the only way you'll be able to help yourself through this.'

'Nanna?'

'Yes dear?'

'Is Mum with you? Can I speak to her?'

Daisy watched the light as it began to lose its sparkle and the faint outline of her grandmother appeared in front of her.

'Now Daisy. Your mother is resting with all of the family that went before her. She's not quite strong enough to see you or your father. She wanted to, of course she wanted to, but we didn't feel it was a good idea. Not right now. Not yet, my dear. It's too soon.'

Daisy's bottom lip quivered.

'Now now, my dear. I know you're terribly sad but you must understand that you will see her again. At some stage we will all be together again. But now is not that time, do you understand?'

Daisy slowly nodded.

'But Nanna. How can I see you? Are you real? Am I dreaming?'

Her grandmother smiled and held out her hand. Daisy felt a warm feeling on her cheek, the same kind of warm feeling she'd got when her mother had touched her.

'You're not dreaming, my dear. I had to come and reassure you that all will be alright, eventually. As long as you stay strong. You're a very special girl, Daisy and I believe you've already received a sign about that. It comes from your father's side of the family, my dear. At some point you will understand what it's all about and why you have it.'

'What Nanna? What are you talking about?'

'Semper Fidelis, my dear, Semper Fidelis.'

And then Daisy was alone again, curled up at the foot of the stairs in the darkness.

For the full version of the Daisy Madigan's Paradise novella, it is available free from major online retailers

 

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