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The House of Broken Dolls [ PIC2016 ]

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posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 05:31 AM

The House of Broken Dolls

Sophie remembered the tall trees in the winter time, bare blackened branches stark against the snow filled sky. She heard them rattle and scrape their spiky branches, sounding as if they were scratching and ripping at the cold winter clouds that December, almost two years ago, when she first arrived at the big mansion house. It was a long journey to get there, in more ways than one. The house was set away back behind the woods, completely secluded and most people would not have known of it's existence at all. She had been bumped around a few children's homes and orphanages before ending up here at Hope Manor House for Girls. Her case worker had arranged a place for her here and had been very optimistic that she would be adopted out to a good family. But that was two years ago, and she was still here, still waiting.... and all the while getting older and less adoptable.
Hope Manor House was regimental in routine. Awake at 6am, chores and cleaning duties for two hours and then breakfast. They had to be in the class room for 830am when lessons would commence, a 15 minute break for lunch at 12.30 pm then further classes until 4.30.
Dinner was at 5pm clearing up began at 5.30 followed by more cleaning and housekeeping duties until bed time at 9pm, lights out at 9.05pm.
The girls were responsible for laundry, cleaning and general kitchen and garden duties. It was a large mansion house split into two separate wings and needed a lot of upkeep even though the entire west wing was closed up. There was a long dark corridor behind the main staircase at the entrance to Hope House and at the very end of the passageway a tall set of double doors which were always locked and secured with a heavy chain and padlock. This was the internal entrance leading to the West Wing and as long as Sophie had been here she had never known it to be opened. The corridor was strictly out of bounds for all of the girls, although the girls who had swept and polished the long corridor spoke of hearing music and people talking.....and sometimes late at night the muffled sounds of crying from behind the padlocked doors. The House Mother kept a large band of keys fastened to her 'punishing' belt which she wore around her waist and she was only one that had access to the West Wing. Or so they said.
There were lots of stories about the west wing. Stories that were told only in whispers and only after the lights went out in the dormitories.

Day to day, nothing ever changed at Hope House..7 days each week the routine was the same. The staff were cold and distant, even the tutors showed little enthusiasm and rarely engaged with the girls at all. It was very easy to feel like a shadow within these walls. As if you didn't really live and breath.
They called themselves The China Dolls because they only time they really came alive was on the last Sunday of each month, when it was Visiting Day. On Visiting Day they were taken out and looked at and if they were lucky, maybe admired a little. Then after the visitors left, they were put back upon the shelf, until the next time.
So here she was, one of The China Dolls at Hope Manor House and tomorrow was Sunday, the 30th, Visiting Day.

As always they had to lay out their special dresses the night before, always white, and scrupulously cleaned and starched, they had to bathe and brush their hair until it shone and they had to be on their absolute best behavior during the Visit.
All of the girls here were orphans with no extended family to take them in, some had been abandoned as babies, most had been kicked around the system for a long time before arriving here. Sophie was one of the older ones at 13...she and the other older girls had been through many Visiting Days, and they took it upon themselves to help the little ones and make sure that they were presentable and ready. It was better that they helped because if anything was out of place or there were any mistakes made, punishment was severe and indiscriminate at Hope House. The House Mother, Ms Chalmers was vindictive and enjoyed beating the girls, the little ones especially. She would make sure that she never left marks on their faces, and any girls who still had fading bruises on their bodies were excluded from attending Visiting Day.
Once all the girls were ready and gleaming in their pristine white dresses they were to assemble either side of the large curved staircase,with the smaller ones at the bottom of the stairs near the large statue of an angel in chains. Once they were all in their assigned places they resembled an evangelical chorus ascending up each side of the staircase.

Ms Chalmers would remain at the base of the staircase standing right beside the statue and call out each girls' name as she presented them to the Visitors.
Sometimes a certain girl would appeal to one of the Visitors and Ms Chalmers would immediately have the girl escorted into the large drawing room, where the Visitors could sit and talk to her for a while before they decided whether they would adopt her or not. This had happened twice to Sophie, but each time after answering a few questions she had been dismissed by the Visitors and had returned to her place on the staircase. She always tried her very best to smile and look special but regardless of her efforts she remained at Hope House. An unwanted China Doll.
Today she was going try extra hard, smile extra big, be extra special. She did all of those things while she stood in place on the stair case, and finally it was her turn, Ms Chalmers called out her name and she began her descent down the staircase, counting the stairs down in her head while holding tightly onto the curved, polished banister..... as she reached the Angel Statue at the bottom, Ms Chalmers told the assembled Visitors that she was 13 years old, could play violin and excelled at languages and had just began studying classic English literature.
She heard the Visitors' murmuring among themselves, and caught the words " too old " and " maybe damaged " and then "not really what we made the trip out to Hope House for " And she stood there, cheeks burning, while the Visitors performed their appraisal. But even through the humiliation and shame, she yearned for a few kind words. To hear someone say that they would take her as their own and love her. It was all any of the China Dolls wanted. To one day be taken off of the shelf and taken home.
Sophie knew in her heart that this was not that day, not for her. Someone within the group of Visitors cleared their one spoke, then finally Ms Chalmers took her by the shoulders and guided her out towards the dining room and told her to wait inside until Visiting day was over. This had never happened before on Visiting Day.
Sophie sat and waited and as she did her fear grew......what would become of her now ?

[continued below]

posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 05:34 AM
The House of Broken Dolls [ continued ]

After what felt like a long time, almost a whole day, the big doors to the dining room swung open and Ms Chalmers swooped in amid a rustle of her skirts and aprons and a jangle of heavy keys.

' Sophie my dear, arrangements have been made already for you. Your time at Hope House is coming to an end. As you know girls of a certain age are terribly difficult to place and we have decided that a transfer is the best option for you at this time.'

As Sophie sat on the large chair in the corner of the room she could not stop the tears falling as she listened to Ms Chalmers.

' Oh lets not have waterworks my dear, there is really nothing to be gained from the dramatics, you know that after two years there is little chance of anyone wanting you, and we cannot afford the expense of keeping you clothed and fed. And of course you are taking up a place that another girl could have. So it is decided, you will be moved tonight, into the West Wing. '

Sophie stopped sobbing as Ms Chalmers revealed the details of her intended transfer for Sophie and her sadness was replaced with fear. The West Wing....the place of their night time stories and spooky suspicions.

Almost at once two of the attendants joined Ms Chalmers in the dining room, with Ms Chalmers leading the way and they took Sophie's arms to lead her out of the room and down the long dark corridor behind the curved staircase.

'Please please...don't Msss Chalmers pleeease, I pppromise I will be ggood...I will ...I ppromise. I will try harder, I swear I will. Don't put me in there '

But all of Sophie's pleading did no good and was met with a stony determined silence. This particular event had been played out many times before with other girls, the staff were immune to her pleadings and suddenly the padlock was unlocked, the chain fell away and Ms Chalmers pulled the heavy doors open. Although the corridor leading to the West Wing was dim and dark, the space behind the door was even darker and as they stood there with Sophie propped up between the two attendants a tall figure appeared out of the gloom.

' Good evening Ms Chalmers, who have we here ? ' the man was tall and very thin, with a sickly pallor. Sophie smelled the strong unpleasant fumes of cigar smoke emanating off of this man in waves.

'Good evening Mr Chalmers, this is Sophie, she is 13 and is ready to join the West Wing residents. She will give you no trouble and I have no doubt she will be a favourite resident for some of your more demanding guests. Sophie is special. She should earn a high price.' then Ms Chalmers giggled with a disgusting..... 'I will leave her in your capable hands'

Mr Chalmers reached out and grabbed Sophie's arm with long skinny talon like fingers and roughly pulled her further along the passage inside the tall doors, into the blackness. ' Goodnight Ms Chalmers, lock up the doors now '

And as she closed the doors shut and got the chain ready, ' Goodnight Mr Chalmers, you know I always do ' and the door slammed closed. The jangle of Ms Chalmers keys could be heard through the heavy wooden doors.

Mr Chalmers strode out down the corridor all the while clutching hard onto Sophie's arm and as he neared the end of the passage the darkness diminished and was replaced by a gloomy light coming from some wall sconces that lit up a black framed mirror covered in dust and cobwebs. Mr Chalmers stopped there for a second to straighten up his tie.

' We must look presentable for the paying guests you know Sophie, this is an exclusive establishment. The Visitors here pay very well to indulge themselves, you will get used to it in no time and will finally begin to pay for your keep. You may even get to meet some famous people, we have some very distinguished visitors, from politicians to TV stars. You will be surprised '

But as they both stood before the old cracked mirror, Sophie her eyes wide in terror and Mr Chalmers with his twisted grin, Sophie could see nothing. She had been blind since birth, the very reason that her mother had abandoned her outside the first children's home. Probably the reason that no one would ever adopt her.

She was a China Doll, beautiful and precious and unwanted......but in no time at all she was to become a broken doll.

The End

edit on 13/4/16 by cosmickat because: (no reason given)

posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 06:19 AM
a reply to: cosmickat

Poor Sophie!

So good!

Thank you!

posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 06:58 AM
a reply to: TNMockingbird

thank you for reading

posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 08:27 AM
a reply to: cosmickat

Wow nice writing!
I feel bad for Sophie

posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 08:43 AM
a reply to: Quantum12

thank you for reading

I am glad you have sympathy for my main character, but don't a later chapter she escapes after killing all the villains !

posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 08:47 AM
a reply to: cosmickat


posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 11:07 AM
a reply to: cosmickat

That was really good cosmic!

Very descriptive and detailed...and truly frightening.


posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 11:57 AM
a reply to: jacygirl

thank you for taking the time to read and comment Jacy !

posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 03:32 PM
a reply to: cosmickat

That was heartbreaking because it's not so far from the truth. You are such a great writer cosmic, that even though I didn't want to read, I couldn't stop reading. Take that as the compliment it was intended as.

Poor wee Sophie, I'm glad she'll get her revenge.


posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 04:08 PM
a reply to: beansidhe

thank you for reading..I was disturbed writing it tbh and did think twice before posting...but I am glad you took the time to read and reply

posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 05:42 PM
a reply to: cosmickat

It was well written , with good detail and pace. As an old retired social worker who dealt with the horror and pain suffered by many children it was hard to get through it. I have wept many tears for the innocent. Thank you for sharing.

edit on 06/02/2011 by grayeagle because: (no reason given)

posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 08:18 PM
a reply to: grayeagle

thank you for reading and commenting.
Something about the last pic just invoked some dark thoughts about the most awful elements in our society. As another member commented there is a sad similarity to the truth within the story.
I am truly sorry if the story upset you...this is the world we live in, at times it is horrific.
But thank you for F+S what was a difficult read.

posted on Apr, 14 2016 @ 09:53 PM
a reply to: cosmickat

I want you to know that things like this do need to be be exposed. I often write about the sad side of life. It is the world we live in. People used to ask me what I did for a living and I would tell them they really didn't want to know because it is worse then you can imagine. Thank you for being part of this writers community.

edit on 06/02/2011 by grayeagle because: (no reason given)

posted on Apr, 27 2016 @ 09:03 PM
Well done!

Sad and traumatic with plenty of creepy gothic elements.

- AB

posted on Apr, 29 2016 @ 05:44 AM
a reply to: AboveBoard

thank you for taking the time to read

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