Karen Brooks

Frightened Angel

It’s 3:45 on a Wednesday morning in the middle of a shopping mall and the Angel is creaking in the cold, frightened.

But since when do Angels get cold or frightened? I watch her from my hiding place, beyond the dripping fountain, trickling drops like sour sweets run down my spine. In amongst the dirty dustbins I realize I am in more trouble than I thought.

I watch, my breath stumbling and stuttering in fearful asphyxiation, as she glides noiselessly, searching and keening through the dimly lit shops. A noise, off to her right and my left, startles us. Could that be him? I look towards the Angel, pleading begging eyes, emotions thundering through the empty, vacuumed mall. For a moment, she turns, staring directly at me but quickly looks away. She does not hear me.

The sound off to our sides repeats itself. Louder now, it sounds like the cackling of the deranged, and I shudder.

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