10.13.2012

AW October Blog Chain - Otherworldly


Daniel

This story, right, makes me sound crazy,' he said. 'I get that, so don’t ... don't worry.’
I looked at him. ‘I’m not worried,’ I said. I sipped my drink. The barman had called it a Blushing Sunshine with a Twist, as if that classed it up. Hey, that’s not a problem with me. Vodka is vodka. I’m not an idiot.
‘Not saying you were,’ said the man, tapping the table with a finger. He was drunk – on beer, by the smell of it. Nice. Oh, a girl can dream.

He’d just sat down – half collapsed, honestly – and asked if I minded. What did I care? Having him here made things easier. No one likes a bar where a woman sits alone.

‘I’m not crazy,’ he said. He swayed. Very drunk, then. He won’t even remember me tomorrow.
‘So?’ I said, arching an eyebrow. Impress me, bozo. Let’s see what you've got.

He nodded, once, twice. He coughed. ‘I was just walking home,’ he said. ‘From work. Normal, honest work. I’m an accountant. I … I account.’
Drunken chuckle. Very sexy.
‘There was this girl,’ he said. ‘No. Not a girl. Woman. Wo-man. Let me tell you. Face like a  … like a doll. Legs you wouldn't believe. Man.’
I took another sip. So. A woman. It normally was.
‘Well, I talked to her. Not, not creepy, like. I mean in a nice way. In a friendly way. Asked her what her name was.’
‘Practically gallant,’ I said. Urgh. Men. Why were they always so clueless?
‘She was nice.’
‘You mean hot?’
‘I mean nice!’ he said, his voice getting louder. A couple at the bar looked over. I smiled at them. Nothing to see here. I got this.
‘Her name was Lana,’ he said. ‘The woman. She was a model. She took me home.’
I cocked my head. Well, this story went downhill fast.
‘No,’ said the man. ‘No, not like that. No! She wanted to show me something. We’d been walking for a while. She had something to show me.’
‘And what was that?’
‘Wait,’ he said. ‘No. Let me finish.’
‘OK.’
‘We went back to her house. But it was weird. Wrong. That house. I … I don’t know, if felt wrong. Even when I first saw it. You know the bank on Fletcher Lane? Next to the Donut Dive?’
‘Oh, yes.’
‘It was there. I mean between them.’
I looked at him for a second. ‘There isn't anything between them,’ I said. ‘The bank and the Donut Dive share a wall. They’re bang next to each other.’

The man practically started crying.

I know,’ he said. He dragged that last word out, like it was all he had to hold on to. He looked terrible, like some sad, lost puppy.

Oh, grief. Was that my mothering instinct? If this was a pick up line, it was the greatest play in history.

Well, the history of this bar, perhaps.

‘That house was bad, man. Like, evil,’ he said. ‘That’s all I know. I didn't want to go in. I told her. She just smiled. Come in with me, she said. I said, no, I was going home. Come on, she says. She pulled me. Her hands were like ice. She clawed at me. She scratched my arms!’
He rolled up his sleeve to the elbow. Nothing there. Big surprise.
‘No, no,’ he groaned. ‘She scratched. There was blood! But I said, no. I pulled away. That house was wrong, it was all wrong. And I guess … she slipped. She slipped on the kerb. And she fell. And she … and I saw …’
‘Yeah?’
‘She shattered! Like ice, but worse. Like glass. Like the safety glass in your car. Tiny, tiny pieces. Millions of them, spread out in the road like water.’
He laughed without smiling. I finished my drink, ‘And?’
He swore and reached into his coat. He dropped something on the table. Pebbles, maybe, but jagged, like diamonds. They were white, red, black, and some pink, the colour of skin. Lana, eh? The man was shaking.
‘I didn't push her,’ he said. I reached over and took his hand.
‘Hey,’ I said. ‘Hey.’
‘I didn't’
‘Daniel?’
‘Yeah?’
Didn't even ask how I knew his name.Wow. Seriously.
‘I believe you.’
He managed to focus on me. ‘Thank you,’ he whispered. Men. Hold their hands and what won’t they do?
‘Daniel, come back to my place,’ I said. ‘I have something to show you.’
He looked at me, straight on, for perhaps the first time. The bar was empty. I smiled, reached forward to stroke his cheek – so warm, by the way – and brushed the glass from the table.

*********
Other writers in the chain:


17 comments:

  1. ‘She shattered! Like ice, but worse. Like glass. Like the safety glass in your car. Tiny, tiny pieces.

    I loved that line, paints a clear and vivid picture, I can see it in my mind and hear it.

    Very good!

    ReplyDelete
  2. GREAT ending! I didn't see that coming. But now I'm wondering exactly what she has to show him.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Seeing it from the cold eyes of a predator really makes it stand out. You just can't stop until the end. Nice.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Oh, this creepiness sort of creeps up on you. Very nice. Lovely twist at the end. Well done.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Great twist at the end and I love, love your imagery here. Puts me exactly in the moment and leaves me wanting more. From the very first line I was hooked. Great piece you have here. Bravo :D

    ReplyDelete
  6. Interesting stuff with some memorable images! Definitely feels like there's room to explore the concept more.

    One suggestion: sometimes you leave a line between ¶s and sometimes you don't. I'd go ahead and firm that up (my preference is spaces between all ¶s of course :D).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Agreed about the paras! It's partly a formatting problem copying over from Word, and partly an attempt to prevent breaking up the flow too much of what was already a short piece. But yeah, I tend to prefer spaces in general. Thanks for input!

      Delete
  7. I love how you portrayed this drunk man. It is a very vivid depiction and it put me right there in the scene. Nice job!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Nice circle, taking the reader to the very beginning, fooling us. :megusta:

    ReplyDelete
  9. I always have trouble writing a short story that leaves a lot unsaid but still feels complete when you finish it. This was perfect.

    ReplyDelete
  10. I wasn't quite sure where the story was going, but AWESOME creepy ending. Well played.

    ReplyDelete
  11. An engaging read...great job of creating the setting/scene and enhancing it with interesting characters. Encore!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Wow, your character certainly has voice! Loved the story and great use of vivid images. Really great flow. :)

    ReplyDelete
  13. Very good, I like it. Just the right length to not tell too much but just enough to leave the reader wondering.

    Though I have to say... there's nothing wrong with being cold as ice ;)

    ReplyDelete
  14. Great job with the prompt. I really like it and I have the same problem with paragraphs when I copy and paste.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Nice! I love the way the creepiness . . . uh . . . creeps up on you. :-)

    ReplyDelete