Where To Hide

Being a crime fiction writer I tend to go to the dark places in my head, the kinds of places where people are killed, where evil lives, and where the unthinkable happens every day. It's a dark and scary place but it's where my creativity thrives. As I write I am happy to say the sun is shining and the birds are chirping. Unfortunately for Andrea that's not the case - a storm is raging. 

Where to Hide

Where To Hide | Does Andrea have to find somewhere to hide from the storm?

Andrea stood at the kitchen sink with bare feet, the cold tiles chilling her to the bone. She distracted herself from the cold by humming her favourite song, Eye of the Tiger by Katy Perry, and she swayed to the music. Picking up another heavy metal fork she scrubbed it clean with the brand new brush and rinsed off the soft suds. Rain tapped the window in front of her and she heard rumble over the clatter of the cutlery in the sink but that didn’t dampen her spirits, she hummed her song with a smile on her face and swayed like she hadn’t a care in the world.

After another rumble of thunder she heard a car door close outside and the smile dropped from her face. She stopped humming and swaying and quickly picked up a knife from the bottom of the sink, she scrubbed it fast, rinsed it, put it on the drainer and picked up another. The front door slammed shut, echoing the rumble of thunder and shaking the walls. Her heart jumped into her throat.

He was home.

She had her back to the kitchen door but she heard his shoes hit the marble floor tiles with a click and her stomach flipped. She forced a smile, trying to hide the shivers that had taken over her body, and turned to look at him, picking up the wet tea towel to dry her hands. 

He didn’t return her smile, instead his dark eyes burned into Andrea’s soul and his glaring red face made her heart pound the inside of her chest. She fought back the tears. As ever he was smartly dressed, his crisp white shirt complimented by the shimmering sky blue tie and navy blue blazer. Matching pressed trousers, turned up at the ankle, and pointed black shoes polished so much they reflected the halogen lights from the ceiling, completed his smart style. He stood by the kitchen door, hands on hips.

"You didn't clean the drive!” he spat.


Cold swept over her body and she felt the blood drain from her face. Hair on her arms stood on end and her knees went weak. He’d mentioned before he went to work that weeds were coming up through the drive and it needed clearing but she’d spent the entire day cleaning the house from top to bottom and forgot about the drive.

Without another word he spun on his heels and, leaving Andrea in the kitchen, his steps hammered into the thick carpet as he stormed into the lounge. She heard a clatter as he opened a drawer and she froze. Metal banged against wood, a sound Andrea had heard hundreds of times before, as he pulled his favourite belt from the drawer. The loud snap of the leather hitting his open hand made her flinch. 

Dropping the tea towel on the floor she darted from the kitchen and ran up the stairs, being sure to keep her steps light. She ran her hands over the hardwood banister to keep herself steady. At the top of the stairs she pushed their bedroom door open, snuck in, and closed the door behind her. It clicked loudly and she winced.

"Andrea!" his voice boomed from the lounge.

Her heart thudded in her chest, her heartbeat drowning out other sounds as she scanned their bedroom for somewhere to hide. She spotted the small wardrobe tucked away in the corner of the room, at five foot three she could easily squeeze herself into the back of it. She pulled open the doors and climbed inside, pushing clothes and shoes piled on the floor of the wardrobe aside. The doors swung towards her as she leaned out and tugged them and she held out her hand so they wouldn’t bang. Shuffling herself as far into the corner as she could she pulled the clothes around her feet onto her body and over her head, burying herself in clothes. She wrapped her arms around her knees, closed her eyes, and prayed he wouldn't find her.


While muffled she could still tell he was yelling her name, and he was getting angrier by the second. His heavy footsteps stomped from the lounge to the kitchen and her stomach did a somersault. He walked through the kitchen, his feet clicking against the tiles, and she heard the back door open. A second later the door slammed shut and he came back through the house.

"What is this crap Andrea?! Where are you?!"

He ran upstairs, his footsteps like thunder inside the house. Stars danced in front of her closed eyes as she prayed. She tried to remember he loved her, she tried to think of the times he’d been so kind. He hadn’t always been this bad. Like the time he bought her an expensive designer red gown and they went out to a fancy restaurant. He had taken care of her that day, holding doors open for her, pulling out the chair for her, and taking her hand when they left. Outside, as they stood by the Aston Martin he’d hired he got down on one knee, pulled a small box from his jacket pocket and asked her to marry him. She was so happy and said yes instantly. It had been a wonderful evening that she’d never forget. So she knew he loved her. He just had a hard time showing it. 

The bedroom door burst open. She froze and held her breath.

Please don't let him find me. Not again.

She peeked through the narrow gap between the wardrobe doors and watched as he walked around the room. Huffing, he pulled a bag from under the bed and it bounced as he slammed it down. He yanked on the drawers in his bedside table and the handle clattered as he let it go. She watched as he pulled underwear and clothes from the drawers, muttering something under his breath, and threw them into the bag. He zipped up the bag, threw it over his shoulder and stormed out of the bedroom.

The bedroom door slammed behind him and she stared at the closed door. Her heartbeat thumped in her ears. She listened to his footsteps hammer the stairs and heard the front door open. The walls shook again as the front door slammed shut. She waited, trying to hear past the thudding in her ears. All was quiet. No footsteps. No yelling. No shuffling.

Andrea stayed in the wardrobe, her hands trembling. Despite the storm outside in the quiet of the house if she were to move he would hear her crawling out. The confinement of the wardrobe was comforting, the heavy clothes draped over her body squashed her like a hug she hadn’t received in months. She squeezed her knees and nuzzled her head against her shoulder. The house stayed quiet and her heart rate dropped.

After a few minutes more she pushed the wardrobe doors open and crawled out. The clothes she had draped over her dropped to the floor and she left them where they laid. She looked up and saw clothes and underwear strewn over the bed and floor, things he’d left in his hurry to pack a bag. She took a deep breath and let it out.

As she walked across the bedroom the floorboards creaked and she jumped. She stopped mid-step and listened again as she looked around the room. Rain battered the bedroom window and the street lights were blurred by rain trickling down the glass. A bright white light flashed, blinding her for a second, and she jumped again. Thunder rumbled loud and seemed to vibrate the house. The storm overhead raged as she made her way to the bedroom door. She pressed down on the door handle, still trying to be quiet. The door opened and light flooded into the room from the landing.

She stood at the top of the stairs and looked down but saw no sign of Gary. She took tentative steps down the stairs, her shoulders tensed and raised. When the steps creaked she flinched and stopped, but each time there was no more noise in the rest of the house. Her foot landed on the floor at the bottom of the stairs and she looked at the front door, fearing he would burst through it having heard her come down stairs.

She turned her back to the door and walked to the lounge, hoping he would stay out and she’d get a quiet night in front of the TV, alone. The lights in the lounge were on and as she wandered through the door she stopped dead. There, in the middle of the lounge, was Gary’s bag. She wished the pit in her stomach would swallow her whole. Rooted to the spot her entire body shook. She looked up.

Sitting crossed legged on their two-seater black leather sofa, arms draped over the sofa back with the belt dangling from his right hand, was Gary. He smirked and leaned forward, resting his elbows on his knees.

"Hello Andrea." He said.

"He didn’t return her smile, instead his dark eyes burned into Andrea’s soul..."

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