For those of you who are following along. Here is part 3 of the story I picked last week. I really like where is is going and hope someone picks it up next week so I can see how it ends.
And on to Part 3 of the challenge. This is a tough story to continue, but I had to give little Delmar some hope.
Little Delmar played his fiddle and the clean lonely sound of it filled the house.
Momma called him scrawny with his skinny arms like the frame of a homemade kite and his shoulders that tilted in impossible ways. That’s what caught him and held him back that night.
After momma tucked him under the quilt, he snuck outside through the kitchen door to go to the pond and try to catch something. What he sought on these excursions varied; sometimes frogs, sometimes fireflies. Once, he snuck out to see the box of still blind kittens on the other side of the carport, near the brick pile.
But that last time, momma’d locked the door and Little Delmar, forever so named, stuck his head and twisted his spine just so to go through the doggie door. He’d done it before. But momma heard him.
She grabbed the claw hammer from under her mattress and ran down the hall, her nightgown flapping like a great and terrible angel. Delmar tried backing out and got his neck caught on the heavy plastic flap. In the dark, momma threw the hammer and knocked a nice chunk of the boys’ skull out of place.
Six months passed by and Little Delmer was confined to his wheelchair, forever staring.
The doctors told his mother he’d be a vegetable for life.
She felt so much guilt about what she had done she began to drink.
Her sadness could be heard from his bedroom at night as she’d drink herself to sleep, but it wasn’t that which bothered him.
It was her crying… it sounded like a howling coyote… and Delmer would mimic her softly as he laid in his specially-designed bed unable to sleep in the deep of night.
During the day, he was situated in front of the television with it going on all the children’s shows all day.
But he never watched it.
Delmer’s gaze would move slowly from the dancing figures on the screen to a box next to the mantle… his violin.
And he’d stare at it all day longingly…
…moving his fingertips in time with the music playing inside his head.
All day, Delmer would practice his violin in his head…
…while physically he couldn’t move a muscle.
He wanted to die…
The home health aids came in twice a week to help his mother care for him. They changed frequently, but one seemed to come back again and again with some consistency.
She was a large back woman with large spongy breasts that strained against her cheap polyester uniform. She often wore a worn grey cardigan that clashed with the tan of her uniform.
She would come and get Delmar into his special chair lifting his wasted body as easily as if he was a kitten. She would massage his legs and move his arms to help keep the muscles from becoming too atrophied and keep his hands from becoming more claw like than the already were.
And she talked to Delmar instead of around him as his mother and sisters did. She talked to him like he would answer her. This made Delmar smile and even laugh sometimes though you could not tell from his stiff facial muscles.
The day it happened Flora was singing to Delmar and massaging his right arm. From the box by the mantel came a soft sound of a violin string being plucked. Flora continued her massage as though it had not happened. But then there was another and another. And then one long soulful tone vibrating from the box.