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The Doorbell

Rejection and fear of rejection are universal themes that plague the lives of all. As children, we desire not to have to fulfill certain obligations; we hope and dream that something will cause a disruption, that it will give us a pass from having to participate. The following flash fiction piece, “The Doorbell,” answers the question: “What if, as an adult, I chose something different?”

Her little hand would shake as her pointer finger connected with the button. Ding-dong!

She would pray no one would answer. The door would unlatch. The Watchtower and Awake! in her hand. A man or woman would grimace at the adult by her side, then look down at her and smile. Until the words of god dropped from her lips like rotten fruit on their doorstep —

“Not interested,” they would say as they slammed the door in her young face.

God never answered her prayers, the door would always open. Puberty came, then adulthood, and then homeownership. The doorbell would ring. Ding-dong! Her adult hand reached for the doorknob. She could hear the soft voice of the young child and the baritone of an adult on the porch.

She knew god wouldn’t answer the child’s prayers, but she could. She let go of the knob and walked away.

Thea Pueschel is a writer, multi-media artist, and filmmaker. Thea grew up Jehovah’s Witness and was excommunicated at age 21. Thea enjoys exploring the dark with light humor, and the light with dark humor. Thea believes that without the shadow, there isn’t a story. Thea’s work has been in The Abstract Elephant Magazine, Heritage Future, and Short Edition.

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