The Reaping

This is a just desserts type of response to the six-sentence story prompt of the week, which is ERUPTION. This follows an unnamed first person narrator, and her ongoing interactions with that jerk, Clay.


My mother always told me to be nice to people, that sometimes they might be going through something you can’t see, and while I agreed with her most of the time, I knew deep down that Clay was just a jerk.

He had friends, a good family, played sports, did okay in school, but he was one of those guys that if you were just the least bit better than him in something, you would live to regret it.

He never hurt anyone, not really, but he played jokes, spread rumors, and just picked at you until you started to think that getting the top grade on the math test wasn’t actually worth it.

I tried to rise above it, help him out here and there, and I even spent the better part of a term trying to become his friend in 5th grade, but it was pretty much hopeless.

So 6 years later, when Clay was assigned to be my lab partner for chemistry, it became the class I dreaded going to, until he went to far, until the day of the magnificent eruption.

I tried to tell Clay that he was making a mistake, that those were the ingredients to two different experiments, but I gave up, taking cover when he dropped the sodium cube into the sulfuric acid, and I felt a little guilty for the rest of the year at the relief I felt from never having to see that guy again.

Wreckage

There was recently a rather large storm in my area, which took out a lot of trees, and a few houses, which is what inspired this weeks response to the Friday Picture Prompt Challenge on the Writer’s Mess. That and apparently a preoccupation about getting what you deserve, that will return again later in the week. This is the story of a woman whose life has fallen apart, but in the end things might not be quite so bad as she thought.


She sat in the car, in the pouring rain, looked out at the remains of her house and started to laugh. Wasn’t just the perfect representation of her life right now?

Her husband of 15 years had left her, having knocked up the secretary, and he had the gall to blame her for it.

He had tried to claim infidelity on her part, and that was what had hit her the hardest. She had always thought that he understood what he was signing up for when he married an openly ace woman, but it turned out he was just waiting for her to change her mind.

When she hadn’t, he assumed that she she was seeing someone else, and that it was only fair that he get his own action. He said he wanted kids that were actually his, and not her lover, and the blows kept raining down.

He said he knew that she would want kids eventually, and had completely ignored her warnings that she had no intention of reproducing. She had finished out the day staring across the room at a stranger, and let him win.

She signed away the house, she got her stuff, some money, and her dahlia’s from the front garden. As she sat there staring at the wreckage from the storm, that used to be their house, she couldn’t help but laugh.

The only thing untouched, her front garden, where a single red dahlia bloomed. It seemed she had won after all.

Inspiration

This is a response to the six-sentence story prompt of STROKE by girl on the edge. I wanted to go bright and happy on this one and then, something happened at the end.  I don’t want to spoil it, but it’s weird. See afternotes for more details.

________________________________

Maddie was smiling so hard that her face was starting to hurt, this was it, everything was coming together at last.

She wiped the sweat from her brow and giggled as she felt the wet smear from the back of her hand, and God there must be as much on her as the canvas, but she didn’t want to stop now, not while she was the zone.

Her agent said she had enough pieces, but Maddie had wanted a big one, a show stopper, and so she was working through the weekend to get this one, the centerpiece done for Monday.

It was going to be perfect, her first gallery opening, all of the friends and family who said that didn’t believe in her, said that she wouldn’t amount to anything, they were going to see how far had she had come, and she couldn’t wait.

She wished Matt would be there, lovely Matt, who made up for all the crappy guys that had left her over the years, was almost perfect, except for the part where he took a business trip the week of her first opening, but it was okay, he loved her, and he would be there in spirit.

She leaned over, dipping her brush in the pool of red, making another long stroke across canvas, marveling at the vibrancy of it, wishing she had thought to try this before, and as she wet her brush again she met Matt’s empty eyes, and she wished again that he could have seen it.

_________________________

So I just heard the song The Red Means I Love You, by Mads Buckley.  Which is what was playing when I wrote this and probably why it took such a turn at the end….  If you haven’t heard it before, give it a listen.  It’s…fitting

Suspicion

So this one is from the prompt “A man walked into a bar” and the image below. It is the answer to a few prompts, and a story idea that has been bouncing around in my head for a while now. You watch TV, and people can’t remember an event and people tell them the story, and they just accept it, but what if you can’t. What if it feels like there is more to the story than you are being told?


There comes a moment where you feel like your life is a joke, and it feels like the ultimate punchline then when your story starts “A man walked into a bar”.

It’s kind of where my life fell apart actually, before that everything was great. I was probably the most boring guy on the planet. I had a 9-5 job in middle management, that I don’t want to bore you with the details of, a lovely husband, Dylan, a nice little one bedroom apartment that we could only afford because of rent control, and a tiny dog named Lucy.

Then I walked into a bar, a literal bar, like ouch, he should have seen it bar, and everything changed. I don’t remember the bar, all I remember from that day is a picture of of an umbrella tree, I don’t even know where it was, and then nothing.

I wanted to brush is off, but when Dylan told the story, the smile never matched the look in his eyes, and it gave me the tiniest niggling doubt of what had really happened.

I pulled away little by little, and he let me. Six months after the accident we were divorced, and 12 years of marriage effectively ended the day I walked into a bar, or the day they say I did.

Now here I am, sitting in a bar, divorced, homeless, dogless, telling a complete stranger how my marriage fell apart, like a complete schmuck. How’s that for a punchline?