All of Heaven Away


s_tamsine_icon.gif nightmare_icon.gif

Scene Title All of Heaven Away
Synopsis Tamsine is visited by the Nightmare Man again, but her daughter brings her a message.
Date January 22, 2010

Tamsine's Apartment, Greenwich Village

Angels fall like rain

and love is all of heaven away

Inside you the time moves

and she don't fade

the ghost in you

she don't fade

On cold, dark nights like this, Tamsine feels the bitter solitude of her tiny apartment. How can 1,000 square feet feel so vast and desolate a space? She sits curled up alone on her sofa, staring at the television with unseeing eyes. She hasn't felt very well the past couple of weeks — a fact she's tried to hide from Len. Right now, she misses the giant who takes up so much of that empty space around her, but he had to work late tonight and early in the morning, so driving to Greenwich just didn't make sense.

With a heavy sigh, she uncurls herself from her little ball of melancholy and heads into the kitchen, setting her tea cup in the sink. A glance at the dark window above it reveals a pale and drawn Tamsine, her hair pulled back in a sorry bun, dark circles under her eyes from a lack of sleep and not enough food. It's time to go to bed.

There's nothing more lonesome than going to bed alone when one is already feeling sad. Tamsine puts it off until the last minute on such nights — but eventually her eyelids droop and she can fight off the inevitable no longer. After washing her face and brushing her teeth, she climbs into the bed. The Queen size bed, much too small when Len shares it with her (his feet dangling off the edge), seems like a plain of solitude tonight.

Sleep does come, and swiftly, for she is operating on only a few hours of sleep. But it is not a restful one.

A baby's cry pierces the night, waking the woman from her sleep. Her eyes open and she rises from the bed, one foot in front of the other until she goes to Lily's room. Lily was never a baby in this house, and yet, in her dream, there is a crib silhouetted in the center of the room. Nothing else is clear — shadows hint at toys and books upon shelves, but as she nears it, the crib seems to be spotlit as if on a stage. The baby cries, but when Tamsine reaches the crib, there is nothing but silence.

"No," Tamsine whispers. No. She can't lose her again.

She begins to rifle through the blankets and toys in the crib, but clearly there is no one there. The crib mattress is cold to the touch, no baby's body having warmed it recently. She sinks to her knees and leans her head against the crib. Her shoulders shake silently as a tacit sob rocks her body. She is alone.

Utterly, horribly alone.

A moment later — or is it a year? a decade? a century — the cry begins anew. She stands, swiftly and eagerly, to reach into the crib. This time, the mattress is torn, ripped, blood streaked and most of all — empty.


She will not accept it. "Lily! Come back!" The sound of the plaintive cry comes again, but once more, when she looks into the crib, the baby is not there. Instead, Tamsine sees a worn pink notebook, but no baby. "Lily?" she asks, turning and looking around. She picks up the notebook, flipping through it. Girlish handwriting fills its pages, but these are no class notes or homework assignments. A journal.

"Lily? Where are you?" The redheaded woman calls, moving from the crib. A laugh sounds down the hall — the laugh of the teenager that once lived in this house. She follows it, holding the notebook against her chest as she chases the unseen ghost through the hall. "Don't leave me, Lily! I just want to see you! just for a second. Let me see you! Lily!"

"You can't, Mom," the girl says, the exasperated voice of a fourteen year old bittersweet to Tamsine. She would take every single fight and rebellion a teenager goes through, eagerly, just to have her daughter back in her life, in her home.

"Why, baby? I just need to… let me see you…" Tamsine protests, her voice as querulous as Lily's. "I miss you so much." Her eyes fill with tears as she stare at the place down the hall that her daughter's voice seems to come from. She feels so close, and yet so far away — an inch, a mile, a universe between them. Space has no meaning in grief. Lily will forever be too far away, and yet painfully close at the same time in a bittersweet paradox.

"You'll just tell me all the things you should have done better and those things don't make any sense to me now," the voice says in a matter-of-fact manner that cuts painfully into Tamsine. "Where I am — what happened to me here feels far away, like a dream. Mostly a good dream, but still a dream. You need to quit talking about the things you didn't do and should have done and could have done, and do them."

Tamsine stares, her dark eyes wide, trying to see something in the darkness of the hallway, some glimpse of Lily, but all she sees is black. "Please, Lily, don't go. Just … talk to me. Tell me what it's like for you there?" she pleads, her voice tremulous.

"I can't," the girl's voice says quietly. "It's not for you to know, and it's too far away. I can't explain it. You'll know one day. Do what you need to do. I have to leave you now."

"No!" Tamsine cries, rushing forward toward the voice. But there's a sudden cold feeling that permeates through to her bones, and Tamsine knows she is alone once again.

Alone is where Tamsine wakes, standing in the hallway outside of Lily's room. It's morning, and the hallway is no longer black but gray, lit by the light that filters in from her bedroom windows. Her hands hurt. She glances down, seeing her hands scratched and bloodied and clutching the pink notebook from the dream. Her stomach does a flip of shock and confusion. But it's not real. Tamsine flips through it, seeing it to be just what it was in the dream — Lily's journal. With a gasp, she steps back into her daughter's room. She had left the room untouched after Lily's death, feeling that changing or disrupting anything was a violation of the girl's memory. Now, the room looks ransacked — apparently she found the journal while dreaming. She sits down on the bed and begins to read.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License