It was a Saturday not unlike any other quiet Saturday in their peaceful midwestern lives. The family would stay around their home. Mother busied herself with her new son and housework while Father attended to the more strenuous chores.
Laura was sent outside to play so that her little brother could be lain down for a nap. Laura was accustomed to entertaining herself outside, and rather enjoyed the places her imagination usually took her.
Today there is a hose in her hand as she inhales the smells of summer. Turning the faucet handle, she releases a steady stream onto the adolescent robin stumbling around by their home’s foundation.
The metal screen door clatters as Laura’s father emerges from their house. He rounds the corner just as the robin’s wings increase their frantic spasms.
“I’m giving my pet bird a bath,” she squeals.
Laura recoils her hands as her father rips the hose from them and turns off the faucet. Her eye brows raise and her eyes widen as she turns her head towards him. His face scowls and the hose lands at her feet when he turns to walk away.
Frozen for a brief moment, the bird is still enough to receive a single stroke of Laura’s hand. Her declaration of love is interrupted by the sound of the screen door slamming shut again.
The deep bang of the kitchen door gives the child permission to seek answers. Inhaling silently, her nose fills with the landing’s scents of dirt and moisture while her hand gives her tongue a dash of bitter salt.
The sounds of rushing water and clanking glass drown out any sounds made by her mother. Although, the boom of her fathers voice slams through the noise.
“You’re not going to believe what your daughter was out there doing…She was out there trying to drown a bird … I don’t know, a frickin little bird … She had the hose on it and was trying to drown it… hell if I know why…. Your daughters going to to be a damn psycho…. That’s how they get started, torturing animals … She’s not right in the head”