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Monster

By Joe Evans

Monster

I was a different monster every day of the week, except for Sunday. Every morning I would wake to the sound of Mother calling me and I would sit up in bed and wonder what day of the week it was, so that I would know which monster I would be.

On Mondays I was a vampire. My teeth would feel all pointy and I would bite into the end of my pencil during Art, leaving the same marks that a vampire would leave on the necks of his victims. When it was home-time and Mother came to fetch me, I would sweep my coat around me like a cloak and shield my eyes from the terrible sun. Mother would make blood-juice from the blender and watch TV with me in the dark cave-like tomb of my bedroom. Sometimes we would play shadow puppets with our hands, making the shapes of bats swoop across the walls. Eventually it would be bedtime and Mother would kiss my forehead and she would let me kiss her on the neck, like a vampire would.

The next morning it would be Tuesday and I would be a werewolf. I would mess up my hair so it would look like fur and stop to talk with all the dogs I saw on my way to school and I would growl and snarl at the other children in the playground if they came near me.

If there was a full moon that night then I would sit at my window with Mother. We would wait for gaps in the clouds so that we could see the clear round shape of it and then we would howl at it. We would howl at the moon and keep on howling even when the neighbours were shouting and banging on the walls. I would only stop howling when Mother stopped howling and Mother would only stop howling when she began rolling around on the floor laughing. Though one time she stopped howling and started crying. That was after I had asked her what kind of monster Daddy was.

Wednesday was the day we went out to the sports field at school, even if it was raining. We would play games like hockey or rugby and I would get home covered in mud and bits of grass from where I had been pushed into the ground too much. Mother would say that I looked like a swamp monster. She would pour me a deep, hot bath with lots of bubbles and I would lie in the dirty water for ages, watching over my swamp.

I had taken a packet of matches from Daddy’s coat. There were eight matches inside. That’s when I knew Thursday was when I was a dragon. With my matches in my pocket I could set fire to anyone who tried to hurt me, just like a fire-breathing dragon might. There was one big boy at school who I especially didn’t like.  I imagined finding out where he lived and dropping a burning match through his letterbox. His whole house would go on fire. The next day he would come to school all cracked and black like burnt wood and shrunken by the flames. It would be so funny to see him like that, but I never found out where he lived.

Daddy came home at weekends. He would get home very late on Friday. It was always past my bedtime so I didn’t see him. On Saturdays he was mostly at the pub all day until late at night or I was in my room keeping my distance, so again I didn’t see him. Mother was different at the weekends. She was very quiet like people are when they are thinking lots, but she didn’t seem to be thinking anything.

That’s how she was on Fridays when all she did was drift around the house, sit on her kitchen stool and wait for Daddy to come home. She was like a zombie, so becoming like a zombie was what I did on Fridays, too. I would look like I was thinking when I wasn’t thinking and I would walk very slowly around the playground. I would tilt my head so the dribble went down one side of my mouth and I would get ready to eat the other children if they crossed my path.

Mother always told me it was best to keep my distance on Saturdays. I would stay in my room, or if I moved around the house I would do it very quietly, like a ghost. I wasn’t sure if ghosts were monsters or not but Saturday was definitely the day to be a ghost.

One Saturday, Mother had packed a suitcase of clothes, like people do when they go on holiday. She called up the stairs for me to come down. But I didn’t. She said that we were going to run away together and there wouldn’t be any monsters anymore. She looked in my room for me but I wasn’t there. Mother searched up and down the stairs and called out my name. I was being a ghost and hiding with the towels in the cupboard in the bathroom.

Eventually, Mother gave up on finding me. She sat at the foot of the stairs and cried. I imagined that I was the one making those whimpering, sobbing sounds, because I thought they were the sounds that a ghost might make. I stayed hidden in the cupboard and Mother unpacked the suitcase and went back to sit on her kitchen stool.

On Sunday I wasn’t a monster at all. Daddy was home. He would sit in his armchair, smelling of all the beer and smoke from the night before. He would call me to him and groan at me with words I didn’t understand. Then he would start to get angry with me. He would rise up from his chair like a huge... and he would make me call him Daddy even though that wasn’t his real name.

Then Mother would come into the room and take me to sit at the dinner table. There would be Sunday roast, which would make Mother cry and there would be shouting. We would finish our Sunday roast in silence and I would wonder why Daddy would come to see us at all if he didn’t like us.

I would have to go to my room then and I would be pleased that it was nearly Monday and Daddy would be leaving and I could be the monster.


This page was amended on 30/05/2014
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