Extract One- from chapter one. Doris’ husband John has left her for her best friend Lisa on Christmas Eve. Doris gets drunk in the bathroom. The extract includes a refrain used throughout the book (in italics) to convey Doris’ destructive habit of drinking heavily when life gets tough. This habit affects her judgement & leads to John leaving her. The title of the novel is derived from her impaired judgment caused by depression & drinking. (323 words)
Her voice has walked out and left her too; carried itself down the stairs to someplace else where it might be listened to. ‘Your fucking wife! That’s who it is, love.’ That’s what she should have said to John, but she’s never been good at thinking of a comeback on the spot. Besides, she has no courage to fight back, to admonish, because she is a damp firework.
If she could speak to them, she would say they have exploded her heart, released firecrackers through her senses. She wishes she could call the police, the ambulance, the fire brigade, to arrest and anaesthetise and waterboard the bastards.
If she screws up one eye, she can see the colour of the glass rolling pin on the bathroom tiles. It’s a noisy one because it was expensive, carefully chosen by Doormat with the aid of an assistant in Tesco called Freda who had a nasty twitch in one eye. Freda’s twitch got excited when Doris loaded her shopping trolley with twelve bottles of wine, four colours of each hue. She and John used to go on alcohol percentage and special offers but Freda opened her eyes to the aromas and blends and whatnot.
They make her drink. Guzzle until her stomach is a well, so full it begins to pour over the top and trickle down Utkinton Street, a red rivulet, an S shape all the way to the corner shop and back. They still make her drink, sip it if she has to, faces at the bottom of the glass. She keeps drinking, swaying, and they are still watching. Then it is dark, the colour of a drinker’s liver.
This hurt is like a lit cigarette dabbed across the ribs. A grenade in her chest. Cock John and Twat Lisa stir cocktails with the linchpin. She breathes air through a damp handkerchief. Delirious, she lies on the cold tiles; sleep wants to take her.
Louise is the author of ‘Distorted Days’ and ‘Rachel’s Garden of Rooms.’ ‘The Entrepreneur’ will be available later in 2020. ‘The Thief’, a short story published by Park Publications, is available to download Louise Worthington’s website.
Before writing full time, Louise worked mainly as an English teacher after getting a degree in Literature and later, studying business and psychology at Masters level.
Louise grew up in Cheshire and now resides in Shropshire.
“Louise’s characters, without exception, are skilfully wrought which make the reader genuinely care for them.”