I woke up frequently last night.
For most people, this would happen from a multitude of things. Children, loud neighbors, faulty alarm clocks...
The thing that kept me awake was not the creak of my house. It was not the voice of the wind as it passed through my window. It was not the crashes of waves upon the sand, nor the trees swaying and breaking off their limbs and hitting the ground to make my body jump, my heart thump loudly in my chest and tease my ears in the thoughts that some murderer was in my room.
It was my mother's wind chimes.
I consider myself to be a non-violent person. Although I will curse, throw my controller while playing video games, and occasionally scream in a pillow, I don't seek to harm anyone, never a-purpose.
Except that vile sound-driven piece of junk.
It's the type of chime you don't expect. While the wind blows, you don't really think about it, as it only hits the metal tubes once, maybe twice.
They sound like clanking metal glasses that you carry indoors after a very large party, rubbing against each other with the slightest amount of liquid you hope won't splatter onto you, but your hands are absolutely full, and it wouldn't surprise you if it did, and you certainly try to dodge it without prevailing in the least.
That sound makes my teeth grit. These chimes are evil. They will wake me from a dead sleep, whereas a house shaking thunder will not.
Now, I am a very stubborn girl, and sleep is basically my lover to life. The only thing better than sleep is the languid feeling of laying in bed. The peaceful quiet of the room, where only the sound of your breath can be heard. Not even your mind is fully functional--all it can comprehend is the feeling of comfort, of peace.
And there is hell to those that disturb it. Mostly because I'm also the type to lay in bed and not do a thing but curse whatever is keeping me awake. I quietly murmur to myself these curses, refusing to leave my sanctuary.
I begin to make deals with God.
"God, if you make that drunk college student go back to his room and be quiet so I don't have to yell at him, I will promise to remember to thank you for the good days rather than just complaining about the bad."
"God, if you stop that stick from clanging against that bucket, I won't ever think you are ever toying with my life."
"God, if you strike those geese dead right now, I will sacrifice and eat them in your honor at dinner tonight."
This was usually just a waiting game, the kind you have when you know the soda you are about to open has been shaken beyond belief, and you patiently take your time in opening it so it doesn't spray all over in a sprinkler in the garden fashion.
This was a horrible storm, however. The rain splattered through my screen on the window pane to dash across my face, despite the eave. The thunder boomed to thump the heart in my chest as if I were in the front row at a rock concert. Our hanging birdhouses spun in circles, their own carnival rides in nature.
And those damn chimes banged together, a marching band in it's own right.
There was no rhythm to their clangs. No music to soothe one to sleep by getting used to their demonic calls. They would stop, and my muscles would relax, my eyes beginning to fill with images that only sweet dreams can incur--CLUNK, CLUNK! ..... CLUNK, CLUNK!--no more telepathic powers that I was saving a dolphin with.
My normal tactics weren't working.
"God, if you bust the string on that chime, I will forever say a prayer to save the white sharks--maybe even send some money."
I leaned over my bed to try to pull the window closed. It got stuck. Not wanting to leave my bed, I got to my knees and leaned over the two feet and yanked as hard as I could--ripping the pane from it's track to smack down a glass on the nearby table.
Frustrated, blaming the wind chimes from hell all the while, I got up and slammed it all together, my noises competing with that of the storm.
I flung myself onto the bed, hoping the sounds of my fan would cause the hatred in my heart to calm to a slow beat. There was, instead, a clanging beat that made my heart rate sharpen.
I tore the covers from the bed off of me. Without a care to my being in my boxers and tank top, I strolled meaningfully through the hallway, through the kitchen, and toward the doorway.
My mother, playing a game on the computer, turned her head and saw my dark look that could start a fire. "What's the matter?"
I yanked the door open, ignoring her words, to where the wind chimes' screams were deafening. Water smacked my left side, instantly soaking. I glared at the loud device, stomped over, and took a hold of the dangling pieces--pulled down. Twice.
It was on a metal chain.
I made a noise that would have convinced my neighbors werewolves existed.
There were not chairs I could drag over, as they were unstable and heavy. Water splattering my face, I whipped at the chain, I jumped and whipped hard, forcing the loop to come off from it's hook. Five attempts later, and my body slightly shaking in the cold, the top portion smacked my hand in a fit of defeat, going as limp as dead flowers. I threw the mass of trinkets to the ground in the corner.
My mother turned back to me to stare at my disheveled appearance, the door shutting tough against the wind. I zombified my way toward my room. "You didn't break it, did you?" I didn't even shrug as I walked past.
I snuggled into my covers, a sense of peace wafting over me. In the morning, docks would be split from the waves. Branches would cover the roads. People would question where their garbage cans had gone to, and there would be a need for the insurance companies to come out and verify the damage to all of the houses.
But at least my sleep wasn't fucked with.