In November, I wrote quite a few stories. One was a short story called Heartless and I'll be sharing it half today and half on the 20'th.
This story is very different then anything I have ever written before. You'll probably figure that out when you start reading.
Heartless Part One
By Mikayla H
Inspired by Beauty and The Beast and driven by Christs message of forgiveness; Heartless is dedicated to a girl who has yet to know this forgiveness. With this story I offer up a prayer that you may know him and his amazing gift of love.
There was nothing more annoying to seventeen year old Jackie Groff then the stern faced man who stood in front of her. It did not matter to her that he was her father, it only mattered to Jackie that he could harp on her wrongdoings like no one else she knew.
“I’ve told you at least a dozen times, Jackie, you cannot break my rules so flippantly.”
“Whatever,” She groaned, twirling a piece of her auburn hair around her fingers.
“If you’re not careful,” His tone was threatening “the Heart Mistress will be out here to speak to you about your behavior.”
“The Heart Mistress!” Jackie laughed “Dad, only you old people could believe in something so silly. No one has ever been able to prove she exists and I’m afraid you can’t use that fairytale as an excuse to make me obey.”
“It’s not a fairytale, she is real.” He said sternly.
“Whatever dad. Are we done with this interrogation? I’ve got things to do.”
“I’m warning you, young lady, you won’t be joking about the Heart Mistresses for long if you keep up with behavior.”
Jackie rolled her eyes and stomped back up to her room. Why did her dad have to be constantly on her case about such stupid stuff? And then there was his incessant believe in the Heart Mistress. Ha! As if there even was such a thing. Jackie was of a new generation, she knew better than her dad about such things. The only thing real about the Mistresses was that they were used as tactics to get little kids to behave. But it wouldn’t work on her, no way. She knew better then to submit to a fairytale. She’d keep on doing what she wanted; she was in no threat of being payed a visit by the Heart Mistresses.
Flinging her leather jacket off, Jackie went up to her computer. The little stand set up to project a little hologram of her screen had been nailed down to prevent her taking it with her. Jackie scowled at the nails. That was her dad; always making sure she couldn’t do things she wanted. Just because he was ‘afraid she’d do something she’d regret’ he had kept her from being able to take it with her. How much trouble could she get into anyway? The wireless at home annoyed her, it had a lot of sites restricted. Her dad probably didn’t know that she just hopped on her friends computers while at their houses. Well, when they would let her. In this day and age teenagers were really protective of their online privacy. Jackie wished she had some to protect but she knew that everything she did, her dad saw.
Clicking open her inbox, Jackie clicked open a message from one of her closest friends, Brice.
We’re going out tonight. Meet us at the corner at twenty-one hundred.
Jackie smiled, now there was something to really spend her night on. Instead of being cooped up in her room all night she could go and have some fun. Flicking off her computer again, she dimmed the lights by voice activation. Looking around, she made sure she hadn’t missed anything she’d need. She didn’t normally need anything for these nights with the gang. They usually just hung out in someone’s house, playing games.
Her door slid up at the press of a button and Jackie walked out and right into her Dad.
“Just where do you think you’re going?” He asked, crossing his arms.
“Out, dad, I’ll be back later.” Jackie shrugged, maneuvering to get around him but he stuck out his arm, pushing her back.
“No you aren’t.” He said.
“Oh come on, dad, I’ve got things to do. Let me go.” Jackie growled, attempting once again to push by, but not succeeding.
“No. For once you’re going to obey me and stay home.” He looked down at her sternly “You’re living in my house and while you are you have to obey my rules, and one of them is no going out past twenty-hundred.”
“Enough with your stupid rules, I wouldn’t even be living here if it wasn’t illegal to live on your own before eighteen. You’ve only got me here for another year.” She scowled.
“Jackie, can’t you see that I’m trying to do what is best for you? I don’t want you ruining your life. I want you to be happy.”
“If you wanted me to be happy, then why won’t you let me do what I want? Leave me alone, dad.” She cried, jerking away from his touch.
“Believe me, it may look good now to run around with these people, but they’re going to hurt you in the end. They’ll destroy what little true happiness you have left by getting you to do things you’ll regret.”
“Happiness? Do you think I have any real happiness in this place, Dad? Locked away from the world by you, only going out when I can sneak out, with restrictions on everything that I do.” She screamed.
“I do not have restrictions on everything.”
“Really? What don’t you restrict? You’ve got everything; my computer, where I go, who I see, how I dress, what is there left?” Jackie crossed her arms, waiting for a response.
But no response came. Her dad only sat there, silent. Jackie’s eyes narrowed as she saw one tear slid down his cheek.
“Whatever dad; just let me go.” Jackie sneered.
“No.” He said firmly. He took her arm gently, but firmly and led her back to her room. Jackie’s mouth hung open as she watched him close her door and heard the voice command for it to be locked.
“You can’t do this to me!” Jackie cried, going up to the door and pushing her button. It beeped, but didn’t open. He had locked it from the outside. “You think this will help dad!” She screamed, pounding on the door “Restricting my movements to inside me room. You’re horrible!”
She continued screaming threats, thinking it would get him to open the door, but after ten minutes she realized she wasn’t getting anywhere. Fuming, she gave the door one final kick and turned around. The only window in her room was high up and too small to get out of. Still, Jackie climbed on top of her metal framed bed and hit the glass, hoping to shatter it, but it held firm. Pacing like a caged lion, Jackie tried to think of anything to get out. Brice came to mind so she rushed to her computer, thinking she could message him to come over and break her out but when she turned on her computer it said the internet was out. It was probably her dad. Jackie slammed her fist down on her desk, he hadn’t left anything unattended to. After pacing for a while more, Jackie realized that she really didn’t know what there was to do in her room. She had spent as little time in it as she possibly could in the past three years. There was always a more exciting place to go. She wished she had been allowed to move out early, like some of her friends had, but that required parental consent and her dad wouldn’t give it. She couldn’t understand why he couldn’t be like her other friend’s parents. Brice’s parents had practically begged him to move out, giving him consent and even paying part of his rent for the first year. Why she had to be saddled with the strictest dad in the city she did not know.
“You really are determined to break all your ties aren’t you.”
Jackie screamed at the woman’s voice behind her. She whirled around and there stood a woman in a flaming red dress, her hair was the same color, and her eyes were a dull grey, but they stood out very distinctly among the red.
“How did you get in here?” Jackie cried.
“I came how I always do.” The lady laughed.
Jackie’s eyes widened, “Who are you?”
“I’m the Heart Mistress, and I’m here to give you a warning.”
Suddenly Jackie relaxed and fell into a fit of laughter “Okay, I get it,” she said between laughs, “my dad got you to scare me into being better.”
“Your dad didn’t send me, Jackie,” The lady said, very seriously.
“Alright, I’ll play along; what is it you want to tell me?” Jackie said, still laughing.
“You, Jackie Groff, are headed for a miserable future unless you turn your life around.”
Jackie was about to laugh again, but the lady stared straight at her and her eyes seemed to be repeating the warning and suddenly she could not laugh.
“You are headed for unspeakable evil, and something that will make this place that will be the past look like a perfect fairytale. If you continue to go on the path you are on, you will not even be able to speak a kind word again.”
As Jackie stared into the lady’s eyes, she seemed to see the horror the Heart Mistress spoke of. It was vague, but horrifying none the less.
“You must turn your act around, or you will be set in your heartless way before your eighteenth year.”
“Heartless?” Jackie echoed in an awed voice.
“Heartless,” The lady reaffirmed “void of joy and love, never to be able to grasp them again. Once you are heartless there will be no going back. You will never be able to get your heart back. There will be no hope for you, but there will be pain; unimaginable pain and torture. You will be void of the good and left with the bad. Remember.”
Jackie gasped as the Heart Mistress disappeared; vanishing into midair. For a moment, Jackie thought perhaps it had all been a terrible dream, but then she looked on the floor and there sat a little red heart. She bent down and touched it timidly, almost thinking it was part of the dream, but it was real. It filled her palm and radiated warmth onto it. Gasping, Jackie stared at it.
The reality of the whole incident seemed impressed on her all at once. Flinging herself onto her bed, Jackie sobbed as if the world was over, but still clung to the heart. Jackie was accustomed to giving threats, not receiving them and this one had shaken her.
After all her tears were spent, Jackie fell to pacing again, as it was where she got the most thinking done. At first she was dealing with self-pity that anyone would hold her happiness over her head for such a stupid thing as breaking the rules. Then she switched to anger over the same problem, plotting in her head how to find the Heart Mistress and exact her revenge on her. Then, when the walls had heard threats worse than anything that should be spoken aloud, Jackie finally calmed down a bit. Now having spent all her mental and physical energy on anger by both having too many violent emotions, and punctuating her threats with wild jabs at the air, Jackie laid down on her bed and stared at the metal ceiling. Now that she had gotten through all the angry emotions, she began to really think logically about the issue. She rebelled with almost every fiber of her being to complying with someone’s wishes to try to make her better but there was still a piece of her heart and it wanted to be good. With a new battle to fight, Jackie fell asleep determined to do better, and not be victim of the Heart Mistress if she could help it.
The struggle came sooner then she had imagined; for at six in the morning her alarm went off, informing her that it was time to get up and start a new day. Her first reaction was to slam the alarm with her pillow, just as she had done for three years now. But what the heart mistress had told her came to her mind; and her pillow stopped mid slam. She tossed it away, and carefully turned off the alarm. After that she changed into some relatively clean cloths and pushed the button for her door. This time it opened without trouble and Jackie sped downstairs, sailing into the kitchen with the smug look of one that has just done something you would never expect them to do. Mr. Groff had seen that look all too often and it was even more disturbing then outright anger, for you never knew where Jackie was going to strike next. So he wisely remand silent as he fixed his meal and watched Jackie with quick glanced every few moments.
“I'm off to school.” Jackie announced as she finished her meal.
“Now wait just a moment, young lady, we have a few things to discuss before you go off.” He said, crossing his arms.
“What is it now, daddy?” the irritated question escaped Jackie before she could stop it.
“First off: No going anywhere else then school and you'll come right now, understand?”
“Yeah, I get it.” Jackie forced herself not to roll her eyes.
“Also, no borrowing anyone’s computer, and I don't want you speaking to Brice.”
“What!” Jackie cried, “You have got to be kidding me! Brice is my friend, I am not about to ignore him.”
“You’re not even in the same classes, it should be easy enough for you to stay away from him. Understood? I don't want you talking to him.”
Jackie took a deep breath, this was harder then she had imagined, “Yeah, I get it.”
But as she walked out the door, Jackie sneered at her dads back and up in her bedroom, forgotten entirely and shoved under her bed, was a bright red heart and a tiny piece of the heart fell to the ground and turned to dust.
The second half will be posted on the 20'th.
Please comment below with your thoughts!