Genre: literary fiction
I fought my soul’s toughest battles within earshot of the strangers who knew me best. Smiling for the cameras, pretending to be some rock ‘n’ roll beauty queen – it’s an empty endeavor when you’re frozen on the inside. Sometimes I wondered how I pulled off being Heather Montgomery when I felt so removed from myself. I mean, it's easy finding ecstasy in the mind-blowing release that occurs delivering aural sex to a sold-out arena of screaming fans, but long nights on a tour bus become even longer when you’re afraid of what your nightmares and drunken ramblings might reveal.
I envied my son the innocence and serenity that cradled him when he drifted into that realm of twilight I had grown to fear so much. That fear goaded the nagging impatience inside me when the lights of St. Louis proper fell within my sights. After spending the past 13 months on the road, we were finally coming home long enough to unpack our bags.
And not a moment too soon.
I’d started punishing myself with the guilt of missing so many opportunities to hold Elias as he drifted into the serene lucidity of sleep. Even in ill temper, the four-year-old angel napping in my arms calmed my inner turmoil. His sweetness kept me from dwelling on why I couldn’t find peace from the hell of that little farm I left outside Brayton five years earlier, a hell my fatherless son prevented me from pretending never happened.