Cold Comfort Farm

Cold Comfort Farm

Emily Moore - Year 13

Cold Comfort Farm

***Scratch scratch scratch… It was total whiteness white noise white sound suddenly loud and blinding then soft the skin burnt flaming still but inside the head not out then came the crashing of doors the swarm and disarray of faces clouding the black the death so close now the unobtainable aim she has succeeded at one but not the other the most important it was a failure she was left alone in the white to rock to rock with only the slow taunting of the faint beeping sound whooshing of air in and out her thoughts were her own for no-one to pry the viscous deluded shield of her solitary mind snatches of memories washing to the surface only to drown again…

She had arrived, that morning like a sweeping wind to rid the family of a tyrannical reign. It was a sport, no, more than that it was a way of life. She was an agent of change, constantly moving and stirring the whispers of people’s pride, subtly, like a tornado. Here was her next game, her next players, her turn. She knew what she did was right, to send them where they wanted, to scour away messes. The old Aunt would probably fight her, but she was silently crazy, hidden away. Not to be worked on, but worked around.

***Scratch scratch scratch… it had been months since she had been there depleting the stock the life clawing them individually from her grasp to send them this way and that it was for the best to leave one to be married one to preach one for the movies her beloved and most favourite and one for lunacy she had persuaded each one with sweet words and sticky trickery the thoughts contemplated themselves, walking through the room only to rub against one another and the sides and then there was the wedding…

She had arranged it all, the youngest girl to be married, not to the previously arranged weasel-faced man, but to the Duke. The moulding of the girl had taken some time, a pretty face, but too many opinions for a man to appreciate. The old Aunt had feigned an attack of madness, the seizures and screaming had echoed through the empty house, hitting against each wall like an omen The wedding was tomorrow, everything sent for, the flowers, roses naturally and the food, caterers from London. The whole house would be strewn with white paper chains and silk drapes. Once it was over she would leave, like a silent wind scattering the collected leaves, before blowing past.

***Scratch scratch scratch… it had to be today the slams of van doors had come and gone every passing minute the plan had to be executed chronologically and with no hesitation every second would count she would brand this into their memories everyone must obey even her the impatient hours ticked by soon all would be well again and she will have purged her followers of their combined evils the thoughts were louder now chanting almost calling out for her drumming inside her screaming out soon…

The ceremony had floated by without glitch or harm, every line, word and smile perfectly placed. The faultless couple triumphant and gleaming as if brand new. The wedding breakfast was to take place at the farm, all the family were to go straight after the service, the guests were to wait for cars to take them, a neatly accomplished plan.

*** Scratch scratch scratch… it was so close now they had gone it was time for her she drenched the drapes and paper chains in alcohol she would light them from a safe distance they would watch the decorations and party be engulfed in the licking tongues of flames they would never disobey again the thoughts liked this they were stampeding now rallying around her closing her in and off from her emotions herding her towards the room where it would all stop…

There were flames, but only after the family were inside, the hell- fire of sin engulfing them in its tender embrace. The old Aunt had galloped across the landing, in graceful splendour, rags of clothes billowing out behind her. She had sprang from step to step, wine pouring from her clasped hands, screeching as if in ecstasy or drunkenness. But her plan had failed, the dropped match illuminating her wine soaked dress. She rolled screaming hitting one of the paper chains with a fiery hand; soon all drenched decorations were alight. The burning house consumed all within it, except one, who was saved. The guests arrived shortly afterward only to find a smouldering heap and the stench of burnt flowers and smoke. A body was found whimpering among the ashes and rushed to a local hospital.

*** Scratch scratch scratch… she was alone now left only with her thoughts clawing her insides alone to sit scratching the walls of her smothering mind…