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Read an Excerpt
By Mike Toth
AuthorHouseCopyright © 2010 Mike Toth
All right reserved.
Chapter OneI'm sitting at the edge of the bed in my pajamas. My arms are wrapped around my legs as I stare at the fireplace with my blanket pulled up to my chin. The dim light from the ashes is almost out. I glanced across the room where my dad was tossing around. I noticed his comfort, made from 100% goose feathers, practically covered the whole bed. The room was cold. Dad banks the fireplace before going to bed so as to keep the fire from completely going out before dawn. I thought of easing myself over to the fireplace and putting several pieces of coal on the ashes to keep it going, but hesitated since it's a no no for me. My door hinges squeaked as the door eased open. Someone was there looking in. Whoever it was slammed the door with a bang and I heard footsteps going down the hallway. I looked over at dad. He was sitting up in the bed wondering what the noise was. I said nothing as I watched him get out of bed. He turned his head and looked out the window, then reached down and picked up his clothing and started to dress himself. Next, his socks and shoes, and he walked towards the fireplace and stood looking at the remaining ashes. He took a handful of coal and placed them on top of the remaining ashes and turned to see if I was awake. He saw me sitting up with my back against the wall. He came over and stood beside my bed. Suddenly, the bedroom door opened with a bang as it hit the end of my bed. Dad stepped back and in stepped a woman wearing a black fur coat touching the floor. She stepped closer to dad and put her arms around dad's neck glancing back in my direction. No smile on her face as she turned her glance back into dad's eyes as she pushed away from him. The fur coat dropped to the floor. She was naked showing her ass as she stood with her back to me. I eased down and pulled the blanket over my head and lay against the wall. Dad's bed began to squeak. I lowered the blanked from my head and saw her figure on top of dad. What were they doing? Moaning. I raised the blanket again and put my fingers into my ears. I didn't want to hear anymore.
"Koma, Koma!" I heard.
Silence. It wasn't long before I heard the bed squeak. I eased the blanket from my face and watched her get out of bed. She reached down and picked up her black fur coat and took her time putting her arms in the sleeves. She knew I was watching. Closing her fur coat, she walked toward the open door, dragging the black fur coat as she went. She gave a hard jerk as she pulled the fur coat free from the splinted floor. I heard her humming as she walked down the hallway and into the kitchen where she slammed the door shut. I looked over in my dad's direction and he seemed to have gone back to sleep. The comfort was pulled up to his neck. I lay under my blanket wondering what it was all about. Was this my mother?
There was a lot of opening and closing of doors. I heard a man's voice yelling
"Bitch!" I heard as a pot was thrown against the kitchen wall. "Go to work you son-of-a-bitch!" she screamed as the back door closed. Her bedroom door closed then silence. What was a "bitch?"
I must have dozed off. I heard dad moving around putting his clothes on. He looked in my direction without saying anything as he put his socks and shoes on while staring at the ashes. He stood up and walked to the fireplace. He stood staring down. He picked up the poker and jammed it into the ashes and sparks flew up the chimney as he poked and poked. He picked up a hand full of coal and dropped it on top of the ashes. He turned and looked in my direction. He walked over and pulled the blanket up closer to my neck and patted me on the head. I held onto the blanket shaking as dad was holding the poker in his left hand. He turned and stuck the poker into the bucket of coal and walked out the door. The flames got higher and the room lit up clearing away the darkness. The ashes flew up the chimney as the flames got higher. I heard footsteps walking through the dining room to the shanty. I heard dad's voice. Suddenly, a women's voice echoed through the walls and I pulled up my blanket again.
I heard a squeak coming from my bedroom closet. I looked on the floor and Kitty came to me and jumped on the bed. I pulled her under the blanket as she purred. I stroked her gently. She scrambled out from underneath the blanket and ran toward the closet. She slipped in and out of sight. I got out from underneath the blanket as I eased off the bed to see why Kitty left in such a hurry. I pulled the squeaky closet door open a little more so I could get in. I couldn't see her. I backed up and went to the drawer where dad kept the flashlight and eased back through the opening. I flashed the light back and forth until I saw Kitty. What a surprise. She was feeding the baby kittens. There were four kittens, grey in color. I sat down and watched. I thought of hurrying to the kitchen to tell dad about Kitty. I got up and backed out of the closet and put the flashlight back into the drawer. I pushed it shut and walked to the edge of my bed and sat down.
I heard footsteps coming down the hallway as the floor squeaked. I jumped in bed and pulled up the blanket. It was dad. He stopped by the fireplace and kicked the grill and ashes flew up the chimney. He didn't put any more coal on the fire as he walked to the closet. My bedroom door hit the end of my bed with a bang. It was a women's voice. There wasn't much light in the room so I couldn't see who it was. Her head suddenly peeked around the door and stepped closer to the fireplace. She raised her hands to warm them. Dad was changing his socks as he threw the dirty ones into the open closet door. I wanted to tell dad about the kittens, but he seemed in a hurry as he walked past her and out the door. She turned in my direction and walked over to my bed. Who was she? Ok, I'll tell her. She turned and left the room. Dad had come back and went to the closet. He pulled out his sweater and turned to see her behind him. She held out her arms and hugged him while saying something softly in his ears.
"I have to go," he said.
He tried to lower her arms, but she held onto his neck.
She backed him against the dresser as she kicked the closet door shut. That must have scared Kitty. I hoped Kitty wouldn't start scratching to get out. She continued to kiss dad as I watched.
Again, he tried to lower her arms.
"Koma!" she said quite loud.
She turned from dad and walked over to my bed. Nothing was said as she turned from me and walked out the door.
Dad paid no attention to me as he walked past my bed and out the door.
There were loud voices. Another man's voice?
"Son-of-a-bitch!" I heard.
"Get out! she yelled.
The kitchen door slammed shut. Footsteps walking in the dining room towards the shanty.
"Koma," I heard from the dining room.
So dad was still home. Who was the other voice?
Kitty was scratching at the door. I went over to the closet and eased the door open for her. She was hungry. Dad always brings her a little canned milk before he goes to work. Kitty meowed several times. I picked her up and brought her to my bed and she purred as I petted her.
Dad was coming down the hallway. He must have Kitty's milk. Kitty jumped off my bed and ran out the door. Dad was walking in front of her holding the cup of milk. He placed the milk on the floor beside the closet door.
"Dad, Kitty ..."
I never got to say much more. She walked in the bedroom with her gown open showing her ... She walked slowly towards dad. She put her hands behind her back while taking a few steps towards dad. She glanced in my direction and stopped.
"What!" dad asked in Hungarian.
"Do you want bacon for breakfast before you leave," she asked.
"No, no time," he said in a deep tone.
The smile had left her face as she turned to leave, slamming the door quite hard. The poker fell to the floor. Dad just walked past it and down the hallway to go out the front door. But, before he got halfway down the hallway, I heard her call.
His heavy footsteps took him back down the hallway and into the kitchen where I heard the door slam shut. Then silence.
I sat staring at the ashes. Hardly any light, but the darkness of night was giving way to daylight. I don't know how long I sat staring at the ashes, sometimes dozing off in the silence of the morning. Then I heard laughter coming from the other room across from my bedroom. Now would be a good time to put a few pieces of coal on the fire to get it going again as the chill of the night was still in the room. Kitty was scratching at my door. I got up and let her in and she jumped on my bed. I ignored her. I went to the fireplace and picked up the poker and poked and poked until I got the ashes moved around. I then put several pieces of coal on top of the ashes and leaned the poker up against the wall and got back in bed and started to pet Kitty, not knowing that when I poked the ashes, I had forgotten to close the bedroom door when I let Kitty in. That was my downfall. I didn't know the noise carried to the other room where she was, and dad. Their talking got louder, her's especially was loud. I turned toward the wall next to my bed and put my ear close to the wall where I could hear their voices, but could not make out what was said in Hungarian. Her voice was getting louder. Probably nothing. Wish I knew what they were doing. The talking stopped. I thought I heard footsteps coming down the hall. I pulled away from the wall and eased back under the blanket. The footsteps faded into the dining room. I had a sigh of relief.
I eased the blanket off and wiggled myself to the edge of the bed and put my feet on the floor. It was cold, but I paid no attention to the cold as I had one thing in mind, to get the fire going while they were in the next room. So I thought. I walked over to the fireplace again and picked up the poker and stood in front of the fireplace not realizing that again I had left the bedroom door slightly open. I hesitated for a moment feeling that I heard footsteps or that I may get caught poking the fire as I have been told never to do. I waited a moment or two and stuck the poker again into the ashes mixing up what there was left, not realizing that I was making noise. That again never entered my mind as I thought they were busy making each other laugh, or something. I put several pieces of coal on the fire and sat the poker down and eased back into bed pulling up the covers while I sat with my back against the wall. My eyes became heavy and I dozed off.
I awoke when I heard my bedroom door being pushed open. The squeaky hinges were my alarm. The door hit against my bed. I pulled the blanket up to my eyes as I slid down under the blanket. Slowly, her head appeared around the door, she was smiling. The floor squeaked as she stepped towards the side of my bed. She opened her gown and exposed herself while smiling.
"Dad!" I screamed.
Still smiling, she stood up. Her gown was open and her things were hanging. She sat down again and put her hand towards my blanket where she pulled it off me and it sailed to the floor at the end of the bed. I lay helpless in my shorts, shaking and I began to cry. She forcibly pulled me to her where she put my head on her chest, pressing my head on her body. I tried to cry out again, but she held my head tightly against her breast. She eased her hand from my head and put her hand over my mouth.
"Shhh," she said.
She told me in Hungarian not to cry out. I shook my head, ok. "Did you poke the fire?" she asked softly in Hungarian.
I felt her hand slowly creeping up my leg. She was smiling. I tried to move, but couldn't get far enough away. I started to shake and cry.
"Dad!" I yelled, but she immediately put her hand on my mouth and repeated "Shhh," while showing her yellow teeth and little grin.
Again, she asked, "Did you poke the fire?" smiling again.
"Yes, I was cold and the fire was out." I said in somewhat broken Hungarian.
"Ok, your father wants to talk to you. He is in the kitchen eating his breakfast. Go to him," she said while helping me out of the bed giving me a pinch on the butt. "Never mind your pants, go as your are," she said pointing at the bedroom door. I glanced at the closet door as she helped me out of bed and I hesitated to tell her about the kittens. Where did Kitty go? Did she go back to her kittens? Or run out of the bedroom and into another room.
"Hurry, your dad is calling you, she said softly pushing me toward the door. "Close the door when you leave," she said standing, watching me leave. I hurried down the hallway and opened the kitchen door. Dad was drinking his morning coffee. He turned when he saw me enter the kitchen.
"What?" he asked.
"Why are you out of bed?" he asked as I walked towards him. I sat down on his lap and asked if I could have some. He said no.
"What do you want?" I asked as I looked up to him.
"The woman said you wanted to see me," I remarked as I attempted to take the cup from his hand.
Dad let go of the cup and helped me off his lap.
"I wish you would get your story straight. What are you doing here?" he asked.
"Koma! Koma! Come quickly," we heard.
"Koma! Only this time it really was loud like a scream.
I heard "Koma" again as dad pushed me aside and ran towards the kitchen door, opened it and hurried to where the smoke was coming from, which was my bedroom as I noticed when I got to the hallway then stood in front of my door watching smoke go over my head. The small fire in the middle of the room began to build up a lot of smoke and dad began to cough. She was coughing and screaming.
I saw dad kicking the hot coals toward the fireplace, but she was also kicking them to other parts of the wood splintered floor. They also started to burn and more smoke was filling the room. She screamed, "Get water!"
I moved out of the way when I saw dad coming towards me. He picked up speed as he headed down the hallway and through the kitchen to the back porch where water was stored in tubs. She couldn't see me watching from the thick smoke as she was using the poker to kick the hot coals to other parts of the room, even under the bed! I moved back as dad came rushing back with two buckets of water. He sat one down and threw the other on the hot coals. The water traveled along to the hot coals under the bed. He sat the empty bucket down and picked up the full bucket and washed away the remaining hot coals. He went for another bucket full of water just to make sure all of the fire was out. I moved to the opening of the door and she came towards me with her fists folded ready to strike me. She stepped back as dad came up the hallway and entered the bedroom with a bucket full of water and sat it down. Dad stood in the middle of the room, coughed several times and watched her move towards the bedroom door where I stood watching. She grabbed me by the hair and pulled me along with her towards dad. Dad had his back to us as he was attempting to check the bed for any fire damage. She gave me a hard smack to the face and the noise turned dad's head in our direction. She immediately bent down and pulled me towards her chest kissing my head, then looked up at dad. I wanted to say something to dad, but she held my face to her chest causing me to fight her to get my head free. She held onto me as I looked up at her face. Spit was dripping from her mouth as she smiled, trying to put on that everything was alright in front of dad. Her eyes widened as her closed mouth showed she was ready to smack me again. Her long stringy hair had fallen and how she tried in vain to keep it back behind her ears. It frustrated her until she didn't bother.
She turned to dad with her open gown and screamed, pointing at me, "I'll get you for this you son-of-a-bitch," she yelled at the top of her voice, you little bastard," expressing herself as she made a step towards me as I had backed away towards dad.
She reached for me, but dad cut her off pushing me behind him.
"What did I do!" I screamed from behind dad.
"She did it!" I said as I pulled on dad's shirt.
She stepped up and pushed dad aside and caught me by the neck. She slapped me across the face and blood started to drip from my mouth. "I didn't do ..."
She slapped me across the face again and I fell against dad's bed. I took a few steps toward dad for his comfort when she caught me by the neck again and tightened her grip. I tried to scream. I kicked her and surprised her and she let go. She stepped back.
"See he kicked!" she yelled.
Excerpted from Godmother by Mike Toth Copyright © 2010 by Mike Toth. Excerpted by permission of AuthorHouse. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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