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for The Sunflowers Cassette

5/1 c1 8Mislav
Very creepy and dark. Great character work and attention to details. It is especially disturbing to read about such things from the children's POV; from the victim, no less. Eerie how you intercut it with that lullaby. Good touch with the spider webs in the bedroom. This part was especially disturbing: "He screamed my name louder than a lion's roar, and everything shook. I could hear the vases ringing and the plants drifting gently. It was like an invisible earthquake, but I was the only one who was shifting and everything else simply vibrated in response. Then daddy stomped over to me. I thought that the house was going to fall on us. The sounds would break all the glass, and the violent movement would make the walls crumble.

"Fine, let's sing it together then. Ready?"

Daddy grabbed at my arm and yanked me across the dusty floor. I was confused, and his touch hurt. The scariest thing was, when I started screaming and crying, he didn't seem to notice. I called out to mommy, but she never came. He pulled a cord dangling from the ceiling, and a staircase fell open like a drawbridge to an ancient dungeon. Up he carried me by my arm as I struggled. He told me later that I didn't struggle hard enough. That I was nothing that he couldn't handle. I was weak."

I figured early on something awful would happen to the mother. But I definitely didn't expect the father to violate his daughter. Horrifying. I wonder is the story meant to be the victim reminiscing on it all as an adult, or if she is still a little girl trapped in that horrible place by the time the story ends. The ending was devastating: "Your sunflower is wilting, mommy. I stopped growing. I wish you could come to water me. Please wash away the dirt that sticks no matter how hard I scrub. He is haunting me, even though I'm safe now. I still sense his presence at night when I lean into my bed. Will I ever face the sun again, mommy?"

Keep up the great work. I will definitely read your other stories.
4/30 c1 104CitrusChickadee
Ouch, this one really hits. The tape sounds like a cute little thing at first, but once more details come out in the story, it just gets depressing... And the contrast between the tape and the rest of the actions makes both of them hurt more. Very effective for the tragedy of the situation.

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