Dreams of tomato ketchup

Both her parents had had noble intentions when they had left their island and their offspring. She was the sole fruit of their union but they had had others; her father had had two after her, her mother had had three before her and four after her, but the latter four would be born later in the foreign land where juice came in big glass bottles like Heinz tomato ketchup, and she would only know these siblings when she was an adult woman seeking a truth in the haunting whisperings of her soul.

She had first listened to these low murmurings when they had breathed into her a sense of urgency that brought her to leave her home island. She did not travel far for she was a timorous child grown into a timorous woman, so she went south to the island next door. The murmurs had grown stronger, becoming in time a thundering roar of the river that had cast her out into the sea.
This is where she found herself every night, dangerously close to drowning in the rivulets of sweat that drenched her cotton panties and the cotton sheets of the single bed that she slept in, in the three bedroom apartment of the single-parent, three-kid family where she lived as an au pair and university student struggling through the delicate quagmire of the modern french letters.

She woke up every night in the same manner, the small spring bed vibrating as her body convulsed into the soft mattress, the sound of her breath sharply drawn in, hitting the narrow walls of the room, her arms stretched out, warding off the invisible attack of an assailant only she could see.