Libations: #Blogbattle Short Story, Cosmic

Happy Tuesday, Lovelies! Tis’ Blog Battle Tuesday, hosted by the glorious Rachel Ritchey, (Click HERE to see her blog and a list of rules for participation) and the Word for this week is “Cosmic.”

“So, are you going to take part in the libations?” Claire stared at the goblet in the man’s hands. Hank, his name was Hank, and for a person of his caliber-all Merlin-esque and yet some how chic-his name just didn’t fit. It was somewhat of a distraction.

1419452295uvri3Claire shifted her jaw from left to right, and sucked in her lips. It was a force of habit, that, and the itchy throat that led to a series of seemingly uncontrollable coughs.

Cause of such foolishness and displays of discomfort? Decisive decision making.

Decision to be made? Entering into the Surrogacy Witness Protection Program.

Hank cocked a surprisingly perfect, arched eyebrow, gave a quick glance at the goblet before letting his gaze slink up and down Claire’s face. It almost felt like a caress which made Claire cough all the more.

“You won’t be able to keep it down for a second, let alone the months it will take to reach full gestation if you keep coughing like that.” He smiled.

Did he even want her to do this? Claire batted the tears from her eyes. What choice did she have? Funds were tight, she was out of work and this was a good cause. Besides, she didn’t see being a mother anywhere in her near future. This was probably the closest she was going to get.

More tears pricked her eyes, this time not from the coughing. She forced them down. No self pity, Claire. Pull yourself together. “I’ll be fine. Its just something that happens when I make a big decision.”

Hank considered her answer and his eyes swept her face again. He set the goblet on a near by table. “I can give you something for that if you’d like.” He leaned back and a random beam of light sliced across his face making his features look even more mystical, maybe even creepy.

Creepier still, Claire found it attractive.

She shook her head. “No, it will pass. I just need a few minutes.”

“Take your time,” Hank offered, smiling again.

“Thank you,”

“But not too much time. It can’t stay in this state for too much longer. It needs a host.”

“Right.” She gave a curt bob of her head. “I understand.”

Hank excused himself for a moment leaving Claire and the goblet alone for only a few moments. She suddenly felt herself relax and some of the moisture that had begun to collect on her palms dissipate. She took that moment to study the room. She had not given her mind the chance to do so before. Signing on the dotted line for the program had been like a punch to the brain. She could only manage one thing at a time.

The room was dark, far too dark for an office but then it wasn’t a typical office. It was the SWPP. It moved around on a daily basis for the safety of its clientele, seemed virtually bland from the outside and even more obscure on the inside-most everything was bathed in darkness.

Claire would have been freaked under other circumstances, being shut in a room with a creepy stranger called Hank, offering her a goblet whose contents glowed in the dark…

Her attention drew back to the goblet that she was expected to drink upon Hanks return. The lights within shown purple and white, blue and green and just…swirled with cosmic wonder. Staring at it was like being drawn by a magnet. She lifted the goblet, as if not of her own volition, and stared into it, her eyes widening.

A verse from the bible popped in her head, and almost sang to her with an urgency she had never heard before, “Do not gaze at wine when it is red, when it sparkles in the cup, when it glides down smoothly.  In the end it bites like a serpent and stings like a viper. Your eyes will see strange things. Your heart will utter perverse things.”

“Proverbs…” She whispered. She felt her pulse began to race and her breath sweep from her the more she stared into the swimming liquid, reasoning to herself that it was not red she looked into, so the warning could not hold the same.

Starlight burned her eyes without scorching them, and galactic wonder seemed to sweep her away. She felt completely intoxicated, and she had not even taken the goblet to her lips. That was a mark easily remedied and one she found herself hungry for.

She raised the goblet to her lips only for Hank’s hand to cover its opening and pry it from her grasp. She stared at him angry, her hand subconsciously rubbing across her abdomen, the place the galaxy would grow inside of her, protected from whatever it was that wished it harm.

“Are you certain this is what you want, Claire?” He sat back down across from her and nodded for her to do the same. She did. “You understand what it is you will be doing?”

“I signed the waver.” She didn’t want to seem greedy but it had seduced her into want.  She couldn’t help herself. “The goblet, please.”

Letting out a long breath, Hank slid the goblet towards her. Eagerly she drank it down, only to immediately regret it. Flashes of light assaulted her eyes as a bizarre thrumming kicked at her stomach until Claire felt as if she was turned inside out and floating on nothing, floating away.

Something swam past her, heading in the direction she had somehow come from.  Touching her, it sent her into violent convulsions, so terrible that she was certain she heard Hank say, “She will hold your place for nine months as you hold hers. Should Claire not survive your world, you will remain her with SWPP  for good. Do you understand?”

An unfamiliar voice answered him, “I signed the waver.”

“Good. Welcome to Earth, Claire.”

THE END

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32 thoughts on “Libations: #Blogbattle Short Story, Cosmic

    1. HAHAHA! I promise, you are one of the few people in this world who has the ability to make me laugh out loud with very little effort! As far as Hank, I think I was weirdly or as Claire put it creepily attracted to him as well. Maybe that’s what it takes to be a SWWP agent.

  1. This story drew me in more and more; I kept wondering what Claire was getting herself into, with the goblet tempting her so. Will there be a part 2? I want to know what world Claire ended up in and if she’ll survive!
    Oh and Hank sounds creepily attractive. Just saying. 😉

    1. 😀 Hank is creepy attractive, indeed. You know after I finished writing I thought about what could happen next with Claire and Hank and the Surrogate Claire from wherever it/she came from. Maybe I will write a few more installments to bring closure to the story and not leave readers with a cliff hanger. We shall see what happens. Thank you for your feedback.

    1. Thank you very much! I think I enjoyed this prompt word more than last week’s and I really liked last week’s. Now the pressure is on! I shall put my mind to the muse and see what happens with Claire and Hank and other-Claire. I am glad you liked it and utterly amazed that Hank has gotten such a fan base in the ladies.

      1. Creepy-suaveness, I like that. My muse has already started kicking up ideas for that word. I tend to let things marinate until Tuesday when I write the stories out. Pressure tends to make me more decisive with telling a story. No coughing fits occur though, which is a good thing.

  2. Creepy-suaveness. Love the description too.
    I wonder what/ who Claire will deliver. Rosemary’s Baby played in my head, but Claire drinks cosmic wine not raw liver. Still, a second installment is a fabulous idea. I want to know more too, 😀

    1. Ah you made me laugh with the cosmic wine vs raw liver and then the scene from the movie played in my head. I have been mulling over the possibilities today especially since there is Claire and the “other” Claire that is a result of the cosmic wine.

      1. Oh NO! well you have all the tools within you to find it in your writing 😀 I do not fancy myself a romance writer but I have decided to make it a point to write romance. Also I paint LARGE canvases so I purchased a load of tiny ones just to challenge my creativity. I totally think you should take the fantasy leap. Who knows, you may be an incredible fantasy writer. Maybe try fantasy for next week’s word: Madness.

      2. May—be or maybe, horror first. Haven’t played with that one yet either. We shall see. Thanks so much for the discussion. I’ve enjoyed our back and forth. 🙂

    1. AHAHAHAHHA! DON’T DRINK GLOWING GOBLETS OF WEIRDNESS FORM CREEPY MEN CALLED HANK! I have officially made that a rule. I am really glad that you liked it. Due to request for a part 2 I am mostly decided that I will use these characters in next week’s blog battle…hopefully it will be just as entertaining.

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