Archive for August 17th, 2011

17th August
2011
written by amber

Freedom

Although she couldn’t see anyone, she knew she was being watched. It was impossible to do anything in this city without being observed, recorded and brought to task. Yet, she did not stop what she was doing.

For her entire life, she’d been shy, meek, the ‘good’ girl. When she was small, her parents had endlessly compared her with the children of neighbours, friends, even their own relatives.

“Melinda would never behave like that,” they’d say, and there had been a time she’d glow with pride when she heard this, but over the years, a thought came squirming into her brain, and the thought was – what if I did?

In her early teens, the secret longing to be defiant, unreliable, the ‘bad’ girl never left her, an internal voice almost like a demon, a second self eager to break out but held in check by the veneer of niceness she’d hidden behind for her entire life.

Even when she finally made friends with the wild crowd, she couldn’t bring herself to do more than observe their many transgressions, and among them her reputation for prudery became a fond joke that trapped her once again.

But tonight she had found the key.

“I slipped something into your water bottle,” Darryl had whispered, and so she was free without having to cross the boundary of her own volition.

She didn’t know what the something was, but she followed it with other somethings, never enough to dull her appreciation of her unchained self doing all the things she’d longed to do for so long.

She kissed Darryl with wild abandon, right in the middle of the street, then picked up a rock and hurled it through a shop window.

The Story 365 project is a year-long marathon of short story writing, with a new story posted every day on this website from May 1, 2011 – April 30, 2012. Stories must be a minimum of 200 words. Please help me by adding first line suggestions in the Comment section.

This is the second story inspired by a first line contributed by Marilyn Snyder. Thank you, Marilyn.

17th August
2011
written by amber

The Secret

She had kept the secret for a long time but now she would have to reveal it.

Lacey had to learn the truth about the man she loved so much. But Marcie wasn’t sure Lacey would be able to understand what she was about to tell her.

“Honey, you know that I’m very ill, don’t you?” she began.

“Yes, mother,” Lacey said impatiently. She’d just arrived home from work and Marcie knew she was anxious to get to her computer. Marcie looked at her daughter’s pink cheeks and sparkling eyes, and she nearly changed her mind. This would be so cruel. But heartbreak was coming for Lacey, one way or another.

“Honey, you know I won’t be around much longer, don’t you?”

Lacey fluttered her hands, denying the painful message, the way she always tried to push away unpleasantness. “Let’s just talk about happy things, mother, please!”

“Honey, just sit down for a minute. I have something to tell you.”

“It will have to wait, mother. William’s message is waiting for me.”

“No, it isn’t, honey. That’s what I have to talk to you about. After I die, you won’t receive any more messages from William.”

“That’s silly. I told him you were going away, and I told him I’d be moving into a home, and he said he’d still be able to send me my messages. He said he’d still love me, even if we can’t ever be together.”

“Lacey, your brother is going to be your guardian when I’m gone, and he’s decided that you should know the truth about William.”

“I know everything I need to know about William. And, mother, William loves me and he’ll get messages to me, even if mean old Frank tries to stop him. And don’t you tell me any different!”

The girl advanced across the room and angrily rained blows on Marcie. She was so much stronger than her mother now, and stressed by Marcie’s terminal illness even though she tried to ignore it. “Honey, honey, stop! You’re right. William will never stop sending you messages. They might not come by a computer. You might not be able to have a computer in the home, but he’ll smuggle notes to you, I know he will.”

I’ll find a way, Marcie thought to herself, I’ll write a thousand love notes and bribe the housekeepers to smuggle them in. I’ll find a way.

The Story 365 project is a year-long marathon of short story writing, with a new story posted every day on this website from May 1, 2011 – April 30, 2012. Stories must be a minimum of 200 words. Please help me by adding first line suggestions in the Comment section.

Thanks to Marilyn Snyder for suggesting this first line.