Running for as long as her body could take, Dorothy slows down to catch ber breath. Heaving long sighs she grips onto Toto before sitting down on a dry patch of grass. She brings him in tight and coddles her fingers between his tangled fur.
“We’ll be over the rainbow soon. There’s more for us than this life, I promise.”
Hearing voices from the distant it piques her interest, just beyond the hill a large gathering of people take place. A sort of carnival, flame eaters catch the sight of wide eyed children. Some sit behind small booths with games to play. Homeless people drift through hoping to catch pity coins so they can eat. An inviting aroma of food tickles her senses, her stomach rumbles in a fury. It’s been ages since a real meal has hit her belly.
Dorothy decides to head down and see if any scraps of food could be found in the trash. Coming up behind a booth she places one hand on a wall and peers the corner, a huge heavy set man with wild looking hair walks by paying no mind. She walks into the crowd and bumps into another man, being elderly and seeming to suffer from some kind of condition his body looked stiff. He mumbled something and turned to walk, well as best as he could.
Different aromas lingered and her stomach begged her for anything at that point. She didn’t want to get caught or seem desperate so she distanced herself from the main booths and noticed one just on the edge of the vicinity. Near the woods was a black carriage on wooden wheels. The paint was chipped and faded, a gust of wind danced through it and made it shake lightly. On the side were sun bleached letters that spelled out PROFESSOR MARVEL.
“Professor?”, Dorothy said aloud.
“More of a fortune teller ma’am.”
Startled she turns around to see a slender man walking by who overheard. A black patch over one of his eyes, he looked at her with his good one, “He’ll tell your fortune for you. Ain’t ever been wrong either.”
Easing back slowly she responds, “Oh I’m fine. I don’t have any money anyways.”
The man chuckles, “Don’t take money, but he does have a price. Shame, you look a little lost. He could of helped.”
He then tips his hat and walks away merging into the crowd.
Dorothy wonders what he meant by that, his words hanging in the warm summer air. She decides to go up and knock on the door.
“Come in child. I’ve been expecting you.”, is heard from the other end of the door. She pushes the door open as Toto tenses up letting out a low growl.
“Behave Toto.”, she enters the shady room trying to adjust her vision to the suffocating darkness. A ball emits a dim glow from atop a round table.
“Have a seat child. I won’t bite.”, his voice was husky and deep.
Against her better judgment she pulls the chair out and slides into her seat. A face comes into view, an elderly man with deformities. His face swollen with lumps of overgrown bone pushing from various areas. The majority of his teeth missing with a sour body odor spiraling into her nostrils. Her gag reflex is halted by a fist to her mouth being played off as a cough.
“Dorothy is it? I’ve expected you. You my dear have great things to come.”
Lowering her fist, “I’m sorry do I know you? How do you know my name? I was told that you could he-”
“Professor Marvel knows all!”, he interrupts, “I won’t waste time by proving myself with different examples, for trouble is on its way. You will be tested, you will be broken, more than your aunt and uncle have done. Heed my warning, you must not give in.”
He extends a crooked finger towards her soft cheek. She jumps back getting nervous and turns to run out, “I’m sorry for coming in here, please leave me alone!”
Dropping out onto the dirt floor she regains her stance and begins to run. Standing in the doorway the man yells, “Beware the witch!”
He shouted some more words through his broken smile but Dorothy didn’t hear it. Her mind was focused on getting home and taking her chances. He scared her more than what her aunt and uncle have.
Running up to her house her legs shake and begin to turn muscle into layers of jelly. It was a s**t hole but the real world was full of more psychos obviously.
Walking in through the front door she quickly realized no one was home. Auntie’s liquor bottle halfway full on the coffee table. Uncle’s photographic magazines half turned in the restroom. A pot of beans still boiling on the stove, someone left in a hurry.
Hello?”, she shouted. Silence was her response. Interrupting the uncomfortable quiet tone was a television blaring in auntie’s room. A news reported giving warning to any residents that a tornado was forming not too far away.
Dorothy runs out of the house heading to the storm cellar. Two foil doors held by stripped screws held down the pathway to safety. Bending down with one arm she tugs on a door while holding Toto in the other. She turns red in the face, beads of perspiration glowing off her cheeks and forehead.
Her arm aches with burning sensation crawling up to her shoulder. She lowers down yelling, “Auntie please open up! Uncle!”
The ground just past the crops begin to swirl into a frenzy getting picked up in a whirlwind.
With all her might she pounds on one door, “Auntie please!”
“Leave Dorothy there’s no room for you!”, finally a response is heard but not the one she expected.
Dorothy kicks the door, “I hope your soul is well done in Hell b***h!”.
She’s never had the backbone to talk back to either her aunt or uncle, but with death almost being promising in a few minutes, what could hurt.
Dorothy makes her way to her room and crawls under her bed, Toto still in a tight grip under her thin arm.
“I love you Toto. You’re my best friend. My only friend.”, she kisses him on his ragged hair. He seems to almost understand as he looks up with soggy eyes and licks her face. The wind becomes more turbulent and furious, taking everything apart. Boards of the house snap back, furniture slides out scraping against the wooden floor. Dorothy’s window frame shatters sucking backwards, she slides out while trying to grip onto her bed.
Her lower body is picked up into the air while trying to hold on. She feels her fingers begin to give way, she tries to squeeze tighter but Toto is sucked out into the chaos of broken debris. She reaches out for him as he makes contact with a board riddled with nails.
A laughter is heard in between the sounds, Dorothy feels her heart lacerated into two halves. Her mind goes numb, her feelings in a mix of confusion, anger, and fear. She lets go of the bed while the house gets lifted into the mess. Dirt blasts into her face with punching winds knocking the wind from her lungs. The house spins in circles knocking her around the room violently.
The process seems to drag on until suddenly she feels the ground erupt in a sudden stop. Her weight slams against the bent boards. Her head dizzy and light, she hears a voice somewhere nearby, “She’s f*****g dead! Look there’s someone in the house! Bring her to me, I want her skinned alive!”