Woman wearing glasses
Photo by Richard Jaimes on Unsplash

I couldn’t leave the house that way. Torn, tattered. A bruise over my right eyebrow. I’d put on my good dress and try to cover the marks with a little makeup, if only I could get to the bathroom.

Where were my glasses?

My eyes were no good in the day, much less in the utter darkness she’d left me in. Most of my good things were hidden in the nooks and crannies I found in the big old house. She’d destroy them all if she knew I had them. What was her problem, anyway? She seemed to think that I would steal her glory–that she could only shine by eclipsing me entirely. Shaking my head, I clawed into the air, searching for something to hold on to.

I needed to find my glasses.

I had never been able to see very well, but it had gotten worse. Neither of us really knew it, or acknowledged it, but I was legally blind. The strength of the prescription I needed was so strong that no one could borrow my glasses, even for a moment. They would see nothing but a blur, with their better-functioning corneas.

My hand struck the desk.

I cried out, clutching my fingers. They stung horribly, but at least I had a sense of direction. Grabbing on to the edge, I pulled myself up and felt around for my flashlight. Just a little light would help me make my way over to the door without hurting myself again. Darkness always made me lose my sense of orientation. The ceiling may as well have been the floor. I’d be okay once I flipped on the light and found those glasses. I needed them to get out of here. To get help. I needed to get away from this place, but how could I do that if I could barely see my own hand in front of my face?

I found the flashlight and hurriedly switched it on.

Nothing. It was dead.

I would have to crawl around and find the door. My step-sister’s room was nothing like mine. It was like a maze with a million and one obstructions. That’s probably why she dragged me in here before beating me within an inch of her imprisonment for life.  She knew that I couldn’t see my way out in the dark. And finding the switch for the lights was no simple feat for me in an unfamiliar room. I had never been in her room before. Nothing was familiar, and I knew that crawling around would only hurt me more than I already was. But I had no choice. The bitch had left me with a dead flashlight in a room with only a sliver of light to work with.

And no glasses.

I dropped to my knees, ignoring the sickening crunch echoing in my ears. The tears fell faster than I could brush them away. No, I couldn’t cry. Not then. I needed to find a way out of here.

A sharp pain shot through my consciousness. Something was stuck in my knee.  That crunch. Wait a minute.

I touched my knee. It was warm, and sticky. Bits of glass were stuck to it.

My breath caught in my throat. I frantically patted the ground around me, trying not to think the worst. My hand curled around a familiar frame.

But it was no use to me now, warped and bent, with its lenses stuck to my skin.