Before you read this story, be aware. It's not fluff and light. It's dark and sad and may contain triggers for suicide. Also, I promise, I am fine. Not thinking of hurting myself, just because I'm writing about suicide. If you are having thoughts of suicide, please talk to someone, call the Suicide Prevention Hotline, 1-800-273-8255. Don't leave, you are needed.
And now for Dark. This is copyrighted, and may not be used without my permission. Steal my work and I'll feed you to the grizzly bears in my backyard.
The baby was crying again. She rolled over to look at the clock, the only light in the room. 3:17. Her head turned to look at her husband, motionless beside her. Of course he wasn't going to hear the whimpers, he'd drunk himself into a stupor again. She sighed and pushed the covers back.
Walking through the dark house, hearing the hum of the refrigerator, the light of the microwave flashing. The power must have gone out again, she thought to herself. Reaching the baby's room, frowning to find the door closed. She turned the handle, expecting to see the crib highlighted in the soft glow of the nightlight.
More darkness greeted her, and silence. Perhaps the baby had woken when the power flickered and then gone back to sleep? She shuffled carefully to the crib, not wanting to make any noise. A thin blade of light fell through the curtains. She reached the crib, hands gently patting for the sleeping infant. She'd covered the interior twice before it registered that the baby was gone. Gone.
Reality intruded, the fog of sleep and dreams drawing away abruptly. The baby was gone. Forever gone. She sank to the floor, screams strangling her, unable to breath.
After a time she struggled back to her feet. She slowly made her way back to her own room, the sleeping form of her drunken husband still unmoving. She passed the bed, closing the bathroom door behind her silently. There was no need for a light, the bottle was right by the sink where her husband had left it. It was full of pills. She took them two at a time, not stopping until the bottle was empty. She carefully put the lid back on, returning the bottle to it's original position.
Carefully sliding back into bed, she could already feel the first tendrils of sleep and calm snake across her mind. There would be no more waking to the cries of her missing child. No more waking every again, just dark.