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Scientists say that rain is the most misunderstood weather element.

It is complex and powerful. It is the collision of two vastly

different energy sources. Rain is formed by the violent meeting of a

high and a low-pressure system. Each with different intentions,

these pressure systems when combined, result in a release of energy.

Unimpressed, I straighten the knife.


. My eyes dart towards

the kitchen, and with them I feel the rest of my body move in a

frantic stride. I open the dishwasher. The hot steam finds my face,

and I can feel my skin give in to the pressure of the heat. A single

drop of sweat forms in the black bags under my eyes and begins to

fall slowly. It eventually joins the others that perch in the bridge

between my nose and upper lip. I pull the warm plates out and place

each down on the kitchen bench with a soft, but hurried


. I look

to the clock, then briskly to the plates. And back to the clock,

realizing that I had looked, but not closely enough to comprehend

the time.



Twelve minutes



, check on the pie in the oven and the eldest,

finest wine in the cupboard.


, make what is a complete mess of

myself, into someone elegant. Someone that would impress even her.


, cover the monstrosity that was my face.


, ask the kids to

brush their hair and clean their teeth.


, demand that the kids

brush their hair and clean their teeth.


, tell Dave to demand the

kids brush their hair and clean their teeth.


, check on the pie in the

oven, and the eldest, finest wine in the cupboard.


, polish the

cutlery so that I could see the same clear image of a tired, stressed and

worried woman looking back at me.


, light the candles, so that the

warmth could shower her nastiness.


, pat out the creases in my

dress and find the centre part in my hair. It usually fell to the side and

put up a fight as I pushed it to where I desired.


, breathe in and let my chest protrude far from my body.



close my eyes and let out a large breath. It would be the last one for

the next few hours.

Ding dong

. I have lived in my house for years now, and had become

very familiar with the chiming of the doorbell each day. But tonight,

it scared me. The sound lingers and carries a threatening quality in

its tone. I wait for a couple of seconds, before opening the door to let

in the squalling night air. It was bitter. The wind whistles as Mick,

my brother, gracefully steps through the doorway. Not far behind

him is my high-spirited mother, Karen. The wind roars and with


Meredith Rule

Isobelle Carmody Award

for Creative Writing

Overall School winner