Silence of Clocks: A Short Story

He silently watched the car shrink away, eaten up by the distance. Strange. Although his lips were unmoving, he had so much he wanted to say.

The good thing was that he’d learned long ago to hold his tongue, swallow his errant thoughts and words like creme soda. At that moment, however, the words had the same burn as a straight shot of liquor, nothing but fire upon his throat.

He clutched the time peace at his chest. Felt it tick beneath his sweating palm. Its steady cadence like a heartbeat. Time was precious and theirs was just about up. the clock in his hands would go still and history would continue to roll forward…or backward. In his case, it went in every direction, even sideways.

That was the way of the Ministry of Time. The linear view of years and moments no longer mattered. Somehow his new perspective didn’t make this part of his job any easier.

He sucked in a sudden breath, pressed his eyes shut and clutched the timepiece so fiercely he feared his hand would bleed. The sound of burning rubber on pavement, horns blowing in the distance like a band out of tune, and shattering glass danced around his whispered goodbye and the silence of the clock in his hands.

The clock had ticked its last tock. Her story had come to an end in the fatality of a collision. He ground his teeth as a tear slid down his cheek. He could have said something. But he knew the hell that would be paid if he had. So he remained silent…like the clock in his hands.

THE END

*Okay, I know this story seems a bit strange but every now and again, portions to a series I am working on come alive and I can’t help but write them. The Ministry of Time is mentioned in my debut novel, NEXUS GATE 4037: THE ANIMAL, coming soon. These are my results for MONDAY’S MUSE WRITING PROMPT MARCH 19th, 2018.

~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!

 

 

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Monday’s Muse Writing Prompt: March 12th, 2018

OPENING LINE (S): “I really can’t tell you what fragrance she wore, but I remember it was beautiful, and it was sweet, like jazz, on a Sunday morning.”

RULES: 

  • Using the above line and the picture provided, (Or a line of your own choosing) create a story (or even a poem) within up to 20 minutes.
  • Once you have finished your super awesome masterpiece, add a link in the comments section of THIS POST to your story for others to read, as well as a link on your page back to this original post for others to follow along and write with as well. In your “tags” section, add the tag “MondayMuse.”
  • To get the Above Image follow this LINK

If you do not have a blog of your own, leave me a comment and send me an email to icameforthesoup@gmail.com and I will post your lovely words here on my blog.

(PLEASE KEEP ENTRIES THAT NEED TO BE POSTED ON THIS SITE WITHIN A PG13 RANGE. THANK YOU)

~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!

Monday Muse Writing Prompt: March 5th, 2018

OPENING LINE (S): “They were still following behind. Good. Just a few more miles and all of this would be over soon.”

RULES: 

  • Using the above line and the picture provided, (Or a line of your own choosing) create a story (or even a poem) within up to 20 minutes.
  • Once you have finished your super awesome masterpiece, add a link in the comments section of THIS POST to your story for others to read, as well as a link on your page back to this original post for others to follow along and write with as well. In your “tags” section, add the tag “MondayMuse.”
  • To get the Above Image follow this LINK

If you do not have a blog of your own, leave me a comment and send me an email to icameforthesoup@gmail.com and I will post your lovely words here on my blog.

(PLEASE KEEP ENTRIES THAT NEED TO BE POSTED ON THIS SITE WITHIN A PG13 RANGE. THANK YOU)

~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!

Monday’s Muse Writing Prompt: February 26th 2018

OPENING LINE (S): “This wasn’t like the last time he’d kissed her. This time, something about the play of his lips against hers had changed.”

RULES: 

  • Using the above line and the picture provided, (Or a line of your own choosing) create a story (or even a poem) within up to 20 minutes.
  • Once you have finished your super awesome masterpiece, add a link in the comments section of THIS POST to your story for others to read, as well as a link on your page back to this original post for others to follow along and write with as well. In your “tags” section, add the tag “Monday’s Muse.”
  • To get the Above Image follow this LINK

If you do not have a blog of your own, leave me a comment and send me an email to icameforthesoup@gmail.com and I will post your lovely words here on my blog.

(PLEASE KEEP ENTRIES THAT NEED TO BE POSTED ON THIS SITE WITHIN A PG13 RANGE. THANK YOU)

~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!

Monday’s Muse Writing Prompt: February 19th 2018

OPENING LINE (S): “I’m not lost, I just don’t know where I am. I’m not lost, I just don’t know where I am…yet.” He whispered his mantra several more times over, hoping that if he said it enough that the words would become true. Still, the panic that tightened around his throat like a noose would not give.”

RULES: 

  • Using the above line and the picture provided, (Or a line of your own choosing) create a story (or even a poem) within up to 20 minutes.
  • Once you have finished your super awesome masterpiece, add a link in the comments section of THIS POST to your story for others to read, as well as a link on your page back to this original post for others to follow along and write with as well. In your “tags” section, add the tag “Monday’s Muse.”
  • To get the Above Image follow this LINK

If you do not have a blog of your own, leave me a comment and send me an email to icameforthesoup@gmail.com and I will post your lovely words here on my blog.

(PLEASE KEEP ENTRIES THAT NEED TO BE POSTED ON THIS SITE WITHIN A PG13 RANGE. THANK YOU)

~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!

Left in the Dark: A Short Story #AmWriting #Monday’sMuse #Drama

He talked with his hands, specifically his pointer-finger and his thumb. She couldn’t stand a man who did that, still, she smiled and nodded as if she heard what he was saying. 

In reality, she heard nothing, nothing except the last words he’d said to her nearly eighteen years ago. Sure, she was being petty, discrediting the man that he probably was because of the sins he’d made as a boy. And he’d been nothing but a boy to her girl back then.

She was two years ahead of him in class. He’d started his college career after taking ‘sabbatical’ from institutionalized learning in order to study the ways of the world, and he was worldly. That is what had drawn her to him even though for months she had brushed him off.

But like he clearly was in business, he wasn’t a man to take no for an answer when there was something he wanted, something he was told he could not achieve.

She hadn’t known then that she was nothing short of a prize, proof that his charm could win the heart of even the most prude of prudes. She had won herself the unintended label back then.

Sad thing was, she had allowed him to tarnish it … she allowed herself to tarnish it. Owning her mistake was one thing, listening to him tell her how it wasn’t that serious and that she just needed to lighten up was another thing.

The memory of how his pointer-finger and thumb pinched together those many years ago as he dictated to her all of her social failings and the reasons he would no longer be considered the ‘one’ in her ideal ‘two’ still bruised her insides. He’d gotten more than the prize of her company, he’d gotten a bit of her soul, and then he rejected it.

“Did you catch those numbers?” He said, pulling her out of her painful revery, the heat of his hand upon hers made her rear back as if he’d burned her. She batted her eyes, pressing the tears away, and forced a plastic smile, all while hating herself for still feeling the sting after that many years.

She was better than this! She had prayed about this. She had rejected this ache and yet facing it seemed to slice open the wound with the efficiency of a brand new blade. More than facing it proved the problem it was the way he spoke to her now with ignorance, as if he didn’t know her, didn’t remember how much she’d loved him.

That hurt.

She felt the muscles in her face bending into a hateful scowl but faked a cough instead. She had to comfort herself with some credit she owed him back then. He had left her, humiliated her, broken her heart into a thousand pieces, but he kept the extent of their coupling in the dark where they had once laid.

No one knew but them.

She pasted on another smile and swiped away the tears, blaming the water of her eyes and the pink of her face on the non-existent tickle that had assaulted her throat.

He stared at her curiously for several silent moments before splaying his fingers across the table top, his eyes turned down. When he returned his gaze to hers, the man of nearly forty was gone, but the young man she’d hidden and left in the dark was there, his eyes solomn.

“Marlow, I’m sorry.”

Her iron-clad ways, the stoic woman who cut deals and left others to rot with purposeful percision refused to show her face. She wouldn’t come and play pretend, not while his mask was off, pointer-finger and thumb no longer pinching together as if to cut off her sense of reason.

Marlow touched her brow with chilly fingertips and forced herself to nod. She had no words, not at that present moment.

She didn’t know what to say. Better, neither did he.

A RELUCTANT FIN

*These are my results from Monday’s Muse Writing Prompt July 3rd 2017. Twenty minute time limits cause for a break in the thread. I say that this is a reluctant end because these two truly need closure even after nearly two decades. Thanks for reading along.

~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!

The Right Time: Writing Prompt 1 Results

Writing Prompt: “3rds” Song: The Right Time, by Warren Barfield (Click the song title to read lyrics and hear the song.) Album:“Red Bird” 3rd line in 3rd verse of 3rd song: “We were barely getting by” Note: From my view, I have chosen to count the chorus as a verse. To view the original Prompt & Rules, click HERE.

The Right Time

“We were barely getting by. Carlos liked to believe that everything was just fine, but me, I knew better. Seven days straight drinking cold water and wearing underclothes that were so filthy they could stand up straight on their own was not fine.

“Life’s too short to be gripping all the time.” Carlos managed to throw that line at me every time I looked like I was going to wage a complaint. In all honesty, there wasn’t anything that Carlos could do that he wasn’t already doing to make things any better. We had a roof over our heads, really it was a tent he had managed to pinch from some local store a few months back. He hated stealing, but he hated being cold more than that.

More than just being dirty, finding our stomachs growling louder than any conversation we could seem to have, what seemed to bother me the most was his optimism. I suppose one of us had to be the optimist. One of us had a whole long life to live and the other…well the other of us was on precious borrowed time, time that should never be spent with complaints, no matter how much clay gets caught underneath your fingernails.

Apart from the stealing, we did other things that weren’t always on the shining side of the law. All of it was harmless. Just two kids out pocking a joke or two with no cares in the world besides seeking a good laugh and make believing we were a pair of lost boys on Neverland.

That was mostly true.

There wasn’t much to care about besides living in that moment. At least I let Carlos believe that I believed that. That is what friends are for, to laugh with, cry with, and run away with when it seems there is no hope.

Homes for the un-adoptables. What is it that makes a kid unwanted, unable to be placed? What does being unadoptable even mean? Did it mean that Carlos and I, and a slew of others, were broken, mistakes, unfit for love?

Carlos somehow managed to not think so. He said it meant we were born free. It meant we were created without confines and made to live in the dreams that others would never get to live.

I had always been the realist, not so much a pessimist, but a guy willing to look at the facts and call a spade a spade. We weren’t wanted because we were too old. Thirteen isn’t cute and cuddly. Carlos said if age had anything to do with it then what made us not cute when we were babies in the system?

I kept the hard truth to myself. One of us wasn’t wanted because of sickness and a quick expiration date on life. Parents didn’t want that. They wanted to be grandparents. That meant their kid had to grow up. If they wanted to watch the beginning and end of a life in less than twenty years they would get a puppy, not a thirteen-year-old old boy.

That is why we ran away. That is why I ran away and I am so glad that I did because if I hadn’t done so, ten years ago, I would have never gotten to see Carlos reach the height of his life. I would have never come out of my shell and anger. I would have never been able to tell his grandmother, seven months after he passed, what a great kid he was. I would have never been adopted by her and become the man I am today if it wasn’t for Carlos.

THE END.

I really enjoyed writing this and seeing how the story unfolded around that first line, “We were barely getting by.” I felt like I was taking a risk, hitting on a subject that is so sensitive to many, being an “unwanted” child, lost in the system. I hope I was able to bring the short tale full circle and create a tale that is uniquely its own apart from the song that lent its inspiration.  Thanks for reading, and I will be posting my BONUS round next week!

~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!

Turn around the Ballroom: #Shortstory #Amwriting #Writing

Turn around the ballroom“Let this be the last time we have this conversation,” Malcolm spoke through clenched teeth. His mother sat gracefully in her wing-back chair, her hair in a perfectly tight coiffure, her mouth and the lines surrounding it even tighter.

She kept her hands loosely folded in her lap. Her face displayed her displeasure, but her hands . . . her hands showed she was not at all truly troubled nor threatened by Malcolm.

Her expression slowly melted into a placid picture of motherly grace. The corners of her red lips rising slowly. Her eyes, however, remained sharp. Her gentleness was not to be misread. She would have the last word and Malcolm would honor it.

“Darling, there is no need for you to behave so distastefully, nor to speak with such harsh tones. Please, do sit. You flutter my nerves when you are so anxious.” She patted the side of her head and her fingers trailed down and traced the line of her pearls as she lied.

She somehow took pleasure in the trouble she caused her son. She couldn’t help it. He looked so much like his father, his real father–Abbot Gray, not the man she had married. He had not let her be happy with him. She hated him.

Reticent, but wanting to show some level of respect for his mother, Malcolm acquiesced, taking the farthest seat in the parlor. Tension settled on his shoulders like a sodden wool blanket. He stretched his neck, his blue eyes staring sharply into his mother’s.

In the beginning, he had not understood all the years of hell she had raised around him. As a small child she had adored him, but when he had turned thirteen, as his voice and body began to give way to the changes brought forth by time, his beloved mother’s soft expressions and gentle touches transformed into cutting gazes, stiff hugs that were few and far between, and harsh words that could raise the dead.

He had begun to look too much like a person she hated. Malcolm thought things would settle and ease if he did whatever she asked of him, and he had. But nothing, nothing had ever pleased her. He had long since ceased the attempt.

Now armed with the knowledge of Abbot Gray, knowledge she had no inkling of him having, he would not dare bend to her whims again. He would not pay for another man’s sins nor his mothers. He would have Elizabeth and no one would keep him from that happiness.

Mother gazed out the window for only a few seconds, but long enough for a glint of satisfaction to spark in her eyes. That shine always came when she aimed to wound him.

“I have already sent word to the girl that there will be no wedding. I told her clearly so as to leave no room for misunderstanding that she was nothing more than a fleeting play, a turn around the ballroom of a man’s desires, and that you had not the heart to tell her the truth.” That is how Abbot Gray had made her feel.

Her jaw muscle ticked. “I received her response just this afternoon.” She let her gaze fall upon Malcolm again, hiding her own inner wound.

Malcolm’s face was stone. “Did you now?” Were the only words he could manage. They seemed to satisfy his mother. Pink crept through her pale color and flooded into her wrinkling cheeks. Her cruel heart had aged her greatly.

“I did. You left me no choice in the matter.”

Malcolm stood again and found his place near the fireplace he stared in to the flames. “Did you take the time to read the response. Mother?”

“No, darling. I waited for you to do so.” Her voice was light as if she were sighing. She was satisfied. “Shall I do so now?”

Malcolm glared hard at the back of her head. He skirted around her chair and stood only a few feet away from her. He wanted to see her expression when she read. His heart drummed against his rig cage as each penned word became married with sound.

He bit down hard into his lip stifling his own smile, no, laughter. Watching the color drain as she read the letter, his letter, penned by his own hand, notarized by the Parson, Abbot Gray, who had wed him and his beloved made him want to dance.

Balling the paper with white-knuckled fist, she sneered at her son with blood red eyes, her words somehow choked from her by the string of pearls around her neck.

Malcolm cleared his throat. “It is a pity, Mother that you could not have been there. Elizabeth was a dream in robin’s egg blue. Parson Abbot or should I say, my father, did a wonderful job with the vows. He did ask me to give you his regards.”

THE END

Not too sure where this came from. Vindictive mother’s, absent fathers, lies and revenge…Malcolm and his mother.

*This story was originally writing January 31, 2014, and has been revised.

A Sound Like Locust: Future Novel Excerpt #Blogbattle “Horde”

Tuesday has come again and with it the all enjoyable Blog Battle, hosted by fellow blogger and author, Rachael Ritchey! The keyword this week is “Horde.”To check out her blog and other entries, please click HERE.

A Sound Like Locust

A smile spread across his face, but could only be seen in his near obsidian eyes. Aiolyn shifted his mouth guard, pulling it down to his chin, exposing milk white teeth.

“They are hale, just as was reported,” He peered through his spyglass, watching the herds-women of Tamier, and let out a shrill laugh that was only inhibited by the gust of wind that had rushed up the hill side, and over the long grass that hid the Ibrian army.

Chorus, Aiolyn’s eldest brother gave him a sharp, warning stare, one which Aiolyn ignored. He was far too excited. “And they are pretty, too! Not a muckmaude among them. Here, see for yourself. I prayed to the Father King for a pretty mate. He has certainly honored me!”

Chorus shook his head. Aiolyn ever the vain one, using the derogatory term “muckmaude,” not even realizing he was insulting the Father King by referring to ones He had created in such a manner. The young man would find out soon enough that beauty wasn’t everything. Heart,  character, faith, they were what truly mattered. Loyalty.

He looked ahead again, keeping that nugget of wisdom to himself. Chorus had had to learn that truth the hard way, as would the young men behind him.

He chanced a sweeping gaze around at them. A sea of Ibrian men, fresh out of their youth, having only just passed the threshold into adult hood by means of war, and now waited for his command, waited for Chorus to give the signale for them to descend upon the inhabitants of Tamier and claim its land and women as their own.

As was the Ibrian way.

What was not the Ibrian way was for a man of Chorus’ age, 33, and status to be among them. He had taken two brides already one of Ibrian decent who had died far too young. Another from the land of Velah who had killed herself only moments after Chorus had killed the man she laid with. She had been so desperate not to be his.

Anyone but his! Her hateful voice echoed through the corridors of his mind.

Chorus shook his head as if dusting off the shame of the memory. His thoughts needed to remain clear. He had not wanted to come to Tamier, but he had agreed to the Chieftains terms; to claim a new bride, one for himself and another for his youngest brother, Thaylon who road out to war upon the sea at the side of Chorus’ twin, Argaso.

Chorus was thus charged to lead the youth. Stretch out the boarders and the ways of Ibria, and trust in Heaven’s King, the Almighty Father, to honor him with a worthy mate.

“Go on, look, Chorus!” Aiolyn thrust the spyglass into Chorus’ large hand. Letting out a conceding breath, he took a quick peek. The women were hale and…pretty.

Having looked too long, Aiolyn said to him, “Finally glad you chose to lead us aren’t you?” He winked before thrusting his mouth guard back into place.

Before Chorus could give his retort, strong wind tickled the back of his head and caused his jaw muscles to tighten. The wind would carry their scent to the flocks below. Their loss of ease would alert the people of Tamier of their presents. There was no more time to spare. Their moment had come.

Raising his massive arm in the air and blowing through the intricate metal weaving of his face guard, Chorus let out a hissing sound similar to that of a Locust, a sound the other Ibrian’s also began to release. The unified call rose higher and higher and vibrated against the hillside.

The raid had begun!

With movements less like a horde and more like the regimented swarm, Chorus and his men descended upon Tamier like a rushing wave, overtaking their scent that was carried by the wind.

THE END FOR NOW

I hope you enjoyed a little peek into the life of Chorus and his younger brother Aiolyn. There is certainly more to come in the form of a full length novel. These characters have lived in my head and imagination for a couple of years now, and every now and again, they , like others, reveal a bit more of their story to me. When I read this week’s word for the Blogbattle, this jumped in my mind and I had to write it out. 

I will assure you, that the Ibrian’s, though they are conquerors, have a way about them that is truly honorable even though they do, well…conquer. Their culture and “Way” which is something that Chorus holds very sacred and dear, is so rich and is actually not one that is abusive towards women…although having one’s world turned on its ear would suggest otherwise. 

I will just have to get the story fully written for you to understand my meaning. 

Cheers!