‘Bitch!’ He roars at her, the words turning to slurry in his mouth, pouring out and filling my ears. ‘I should fucking kill you!’ The sound of a slap echoes, rebounding and surrounding me. My knees are starting to hurt from crouching in the wardrobe, when another slap worms its way through the cracks in the door.
‘I’m sorry, I’m sorry, I’m sorry.’ She’s crying, she’s screaming. I can see her, a glimpse through a crack in the door, clutching to his leg as he stomps around. I can see the wreckage of his tantrum strewn around him, the broken glass on the floor where he’d smashed the tumbler. ‘I won’t do it again, I’m sorry I’m sorry.’
He kicked her off into the glass. ‘Shut up! And get this shit cleaned up. I need this room for poker night.’ The shards crunched beneath his tan work boots. ‘Get a fucking move on. I’m getting a drink.’
His footsteps fell quiet as he moved towards the fridge. Her eyes meet mine through the crack and I open the wardrobe door ever so slightly, just to see her shake her head, red curls grazing the ground as she stares into the chaos on the floorboards.
‘Jenna! Where’s your fucking kid? We’re out of ice.’ He shouts, slamming the stainless steel door of the fridge. He clutches a can in his massive fist, a child’s toy in that monstrosity. He strode amongst the stars on the floor, crouching down to look at her face. He grabs her chin with his left hand, taking a long drink from the can. ‘I said, where’s your damn brat?’ The signet ring flashed in the evening sun as it connected with her face.
I couldn’t take it any more. I knew what was in the wardrobe. I picked it from the ground, felt the heft of it. ‘You in that wardrobe, boy?’ He yelled. I felt the wood beneath my fingers. I was ready.
He put his eye to the crack in the door. I could smell the booze on his breath from there. ‘I need some ice, boy. Or do I have to hit your mum again to get my point across?’
I felt my eyes narrow to slits. My fingers tightened.
The Idiot in Tin Foil