Posts Tagged With: the speakeasy

Rowan’s Journal (Part 9)

He waited for an hour; Rolly tried not to be the kind of listener who just waited for their turn to speak, but the longer Rowan had gone on, the more the incredulity had loosened his tongue, til it was flapping about his mouth like a trout out of water and he could barely keep silent.

When Rowan stopped to take a couple deep breaths, Rolly shot his hand up in the air, quick as a pouncing cat. “Wait wait wait,” he said. “Before you go on, and I really want you to and I’m really sorry for interrupting you, but I have to ask you a question.” He took his own couple of deep breaths and glanced at Mara, who was looking at him with bemused encouragement, reaching her hand out to fold over his. “Did you keep a journal? I mean, like, a journal about all this stuff that was happening to you? Did you have your own Dreamer’s Chronicle!” The last question bulleted out like an accusation and Mara’s comforting hand squeezed his tightly in reproof.

Rufus beamed, his tutored pupil got the right answer on a pop quiz, and Rowan frowned at Rolly like an over-taxed older sister. “Jesus, what the hell are you yelling at me for? Yes, I did, in fact, keep a journal about the Nightscape. I was a regular old Martha fucking Stewart about it. If everyone already thought I was crazy, I can’t imagine what they would have thought if they had seen my construction paper nightmare collages.” She snickered at the thought, finding the discomfiture of others highly amusing as a general rule. “It was sort of like I had to. I couldn’t very well walk around with my nightmares running around my brain all day. The weird thing, well, like the eighth weird thing, was that after I would paste the freaky little bastards into my book, I never saw them again in my dreams. I mean, there were still, like, a gazillion monsters every time I had nightmares, but the ones I put in my journal never came back.”

She shrugged, her favorite default gesture. “I’d show it to you and we could all have a giggle down memory lane, but I lost it.” She thought for a moment, worrying her lower lip with her teeth. “Actually, I didn’t lose it, the damn thing disappeared one night.” Her shrug this time resembled more of a shudder. “It was really bad that night. It was, like, a monster council meeting or something. Some of scariest shit I’d ever seen. I’d never seen them look even remotely organized before, and here they were, standing around in a circle, talking to each other. They sure as hell weren’t speaking English, so I couldn’t understand their actual words, but somehow I knew it was about me. They’d noticed me, no matter how much I’d tried to stay hidden, and my nightmares were meeting to discuss me.” Her hollow eyes were aimed at Rolly. “You can understand why this was way more frightening than watching them rip each other to bloody pieces.”

He nodded mutely. Yes, he most certainly could understand that, very well.

“So I bit my tongue and pinched myself and dug my fingernails into my palms until I woke up. I was sweating something fierce, shaking all over, but I was determined to get out of bed and get as many of these dirty bastards pasted into my journal as I could, and hope I could make at least some of them disappear. Disband their council, and they can’t very well plan a war, right? It wasn’t there, though. My journal. I always kept it under my pillow, and it was just…gone. I don’t think I’d ever felt such disappointment as I did at that moment, my groping hand finding nothing but cool sheets. I gave up, I gave up and I gave in, and I cried until I sobbed and sobbed until I choked and choked until I threw up. My only weapon against my nightmares was gone.”

Rowan trailed off and sat back. Mara blinked back the tears pricking her own eyes, seeing the lost child with no hope left to cling to, shaking alone on her bedroom floor.

Rufus made an incongruous throat-clearing sound, and while it didn’t seem like much, Rowan zeroed in with a laser stare. “Oh, for Christ’s sake, Rufus. Did you take my damn journal?”

* * *
I think that this works, at least in part, as a stand-alone bit of a story, however – The Nightscape is the place where our demons and nightmares live. Rowan and Rufus are a part of it, on the outskirts, as no longer quite human. Rolly and Mara are a human couple that were pulled into it with no explanation, thusfar…

The Speakeasy is back in business after their summer hiatus, and I found that I very much wanted to get back in on the fun. This week we had a sentence prompt to use as our first line “He waited for an hour” and a photo reference: school-supplies-300x187

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Categories: Fiction, The Dreamer's Chronicle | Tags: , , , , , , | 15 Comments

Love Begins, and Ends

Love, a tour de force,

A phenomenon,
juxtaposed in nature,
it strives,
digs roots,
lazily reclines
outside its den,
it sleeps, and it wakes,
a beast and a bunny,
it dances and stumbles,
and dreams

When love came to roost,
to make a home,
as it were,
the predators
circled around,
sunk claws
into soft spots,
and found the heart

it fluttered for a moment,
magnificent in its struggle,
then wilted and lay still

~~~

As soon as I read the prompt line for the speakeasy #159, for some reason I immediately had a vision of love as a wilting flower ( Shakespeare’s birthday, mayhap? ). Hahaha, I meant as an influence, not that I channeled The Bard in my nonsense 🙂

Categories: Poetry | Tags: , , , | 17 Comments

The Bone Brigade (part 2)

Without a word, she dropped to the ground. Loo laughed, imagining that the doctor had thought himself quite clever to have nestled in such a forested area. Apparently he hadn’t realized that the same trees that sheltered him from prying eyes could also shelter spying ones.

As she rubbed dirt and bark from the palms of her calloused hands, she thought about the last time she had climbed a tree. It seemed a pastime prone to revelation. The last time she had monkeyed up a tree trunk, the day after her tenth birthday, she had discovered something unusual about herself. This time, she’d uncovered something unusual about her psychologist.

Unusual.

Holy shit.

As the she truly began to comprehend what she had just seen, Loo folded her legs and collapsed gracelessly to sit on the grass.

Dr. Brown flew away. He flew away. He flew. Away. No matter how she framed the words in her head, the concept didn’t make any more sense. No wings. No jet pack. No cape wrapped around himself as he bellowed up, up and away. He just…flew away.

The place in Loo’s head that had occupied her thoughts while she was supposed to be in session was still sloshing around the corners of her mind. When he had drawn her back to herself, her surroundings had seemed subtly different, muted colors, an echo to every other syllable; something about time felt a half beat off. The doc, too, had seemed different. Maybe just preoccupied, but just maybe there was a shiny little glint in his eyes that had alerted her subconscious. Enough so that upon leaving, she decided without thought to stick around, to hide, and to watch.

Good catch, brain, she congratulated herself. Home. Home was the place to mull over the possibilities. And food. God, she was suddenly starving. With a hand pressed against her rumbling belly she started towards her car.

*~*~*

Setting a bowl of spaghetti and an entire loaf of garlic bread on the scarred end table, Loo took a moment to appreciate her own couch. When you snuggled deep into the corner it was like being welcomed home.

She tore off a hunk of garlic bread, swirled it through the noodles and sauce, chewing as she tried to list any reason she could think of that Dr. Brown could fly. Vampire. Norse god. Demi-god. Sorcerer. Mutant. Superhero. Oh, maybe a super villain? Maybe freaking leprechauns can fly, who the hell knows.

She closed her eyes as she dipped and chewed and swallowed, the entire loaf of bread gone before she even picked up her fork for the pasta. Her eyes darted back and forth behind her lids, watching a slide show of images from the afternoon.

He’d walked out the back door into the parking lot like any regular human. No furtive glances, no worries at all. Stopped in the middle of the parking lot, adjusted his grip on his bag, looked up to the sky, and poof, he was up in it, lost to sight in seconds.

She was unconsciously rubbing her cheekbones, rhythmically, back and forth. When she realized what she was doing, her eyes popped open and she pulled her hands from her face and tucked them under her thighs.

‘Bony thighs,’ she muttered with a shaky laugh. ‘Stop it. I don’t want or need your help.’ She turned on the television and gave her full attention to polishing off the heaping helping of spaghetti going cold.

– : – : – : –

( Hopefully a stand alone story, but is also a direct continuation from https://thesqueakywheelblog.com/2014/03/31/the-bone-brigade/ )

Categories: Fiction | Tags: , , , | 11 Comments

Cleansing Fire

Midnight hair and lantern jaw, gentle in speech if not appearance, he spread his hands wide and, reaching them towards the bonfire, spoke an unbinding spell.

'What once was ours
Is now yours, and mine.
I release you from your vows.'

Tendrils crept out from the ring of stones, smoke snakes curling through the grass to encircle her ankles. She made a little moue of distaste and visibly stopped herself from stepping back and shaking them off. Interrupting the ritual now would nullify everything they'd already done.

He was sad, though not heart-broken. This was his fault; he had mistaken rigidity for strength. While strength was malleable and capable of spontaneity, rigidity snapped like a thawing icicle at the slightest provocation.

Better to start his search from scratch than to cross the finish line with the wrong partner. Through the clarity of retrospect, the obvious conclusion surfaced: things don't always turn out as planned.

***

I've wanted to try the Speakeasy for a while now, having read about it on Suzanne's blog http://lucidedit.wordpress.com/ and because I really love the name Speakeasy and its connotations. So, here's my first attempt, and now I'm going to go read the other link-ups for inspiration to get better because so far the writing I've seen here is way above par.

Categories: Fiction | Tags: , , | 27 Comments