Wednesday, September 29, 2010

And the Walls Came Tumbling Down - a tragedy

Her hopes, her dreams, her future; gone. Everything was ruined. She couldn’t feel her body. Cries of the helpless barely registered. All she could see was a small patch of sky where the roof had collapsed. Sky the color of blood. The massive weight of the shingles and concrete was making it increasingly difficult to breath. She felt completely and utterly alone. Closing her eyes she willed death to claim her.

Images of the disaster flashed behind her eyelids: Nate kneeling on the ground, a ring in his hand; the bomb striking; Nate knocked down, lost in the rubble; the wall leaning, falling on top of her. Nothing seemed to matter anymore. Nothing except the pain, but even that seemed to be lessening as she floated farther and farther from the land of the living. Pain wasn’t the only thing that lessened, she noticed. The weight of the debris seemed to be lightening as well. Someone seemed to be calling her name. Nate? Yes, Nate, clearing rubble from her shattered body. A portion of wall was lifted away and there he was. Tears had created pathways through the grime down his cheeks.

He managed to extract her from her prison. He pulled her close and cradled her. “Jessie,” he said hoarsely, “you can't desert me. Not like this.” His despair was plain to see.

Jessie reached up and cupped his face in her hand. A face she’d dreamed of seeing every morning for all her days; a gentle face that portrayed such love and compassion. Never would her dreams be fulfilled. She was dying. “I love you,” she whispered. She wasn’t aware of the
tears streaming from her own eyes until Nate softly whipped them away. “Don’t leave me,” she pleaded.

Nate distraughtly opened and closed his mouth over and over, but no words came out. He features changed and he became angry, “Don’t be saying your goodbyes, Jessie. You’re going to live a full life, you hear me? A full life. I’ll take good care of you. Nothing will ever separate us,” his voice became quieter, the anger disappearing just as quickly as it’d come. “I love you Jessie. I can’t go on without you.”

A sudden calm overcame her. It wasn’t from Nate’s words. Death was imminent. She felt it closing around her like a vise. But she felt only peace. She wanted to share her peace with her love. “Nathan, I’m dying.” He opened his mouth to interrupt, but she overrode him. “Accept it. I’m going to be gone and you’ll need to move on. Please try.” Her voice was weak and she was unable to add more. She made one final request, “Will you sing to me Nate? That song you used to sing when we kids?” She held eye contact with him until he nodded. She closed her eyes and let his voice run like silk over her skin.

“The river flows, soft and sweet,
Gently ebbing forth to greet,
The brand new day, the summer sun,
Even when disaster come.
Amid the storms, though great and strong,
It travels on, it sings its song.
The rains bring on its strongest power,
Even in the darkest hour."

Jessie was happy. She felt amazing. All her pain had disappeared. She opened her eyes and saw her long dead mother beckoning.

Nate stopped singing. Jessie was gone. There was no doubt. He took a deep breath and pushed the fierce pain away. He looked up at the blood red sky. Just as he was about to look away a plane flew across the sky, a bomber plane. Most likely the very one that had caused him to lose Jessie. Confusion split his thoughts as he recognized the insignia on the bomber. It was one of the president’s own elite force jets. Why would the president bomb one of his own cities? Nate mulled over the question. A plan began to form in his mind. He had no purpose for remaining in this place of memories. He welcomed the opportunity to go search out the reason for this great betrayal. He wouldn’t rest until he solved the mystery and avenged his love.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

The Unforgettable Truth - A Salute to Vampires

“Why can’t you be what we want you to be?” the echoes of Vincent, Chief Ellison, and the other islanders chased him through the dark corridor. Doors along the hall wouldn’t open to let him in. One solitary door remained open. He charged into the room and slammed the door shut. Sounds of pounding fists emanated across the solid oak. He stumbled back, struggling to escape the hold of the voices. An unseen thing on the floor tripped him up and he went crashing to the ground. He turned and his heart jumped to his throat. Kaylynne was sprawled out on the floor in a pool of her own blood. She was gasping her last breaths. “Blake,” she called, tears streaming down her cheeks. An overwhelming desire begins to overcome him. “No!” he screams. “Never again!”That life is gone. Her scent fills him and he finds himself leaning forward, bent on consuming her . . .

Blake jerked awake. He was alone in his room, away from the voices and the horrible truth. His clock read 4:00 a.m. No way he’d be going back to sleep any time soon. He slid out of bed and pulled on a hoodie over his rumpled shirt before slipping out of his crummy apartment. Dense fog shrouded the neighborhood: a perfect white screen to project his dreams onto. He walked down the silent street until he reached the park. His vision of Kaylynne dying was still fresh in his mind. But worse than that had been his dream self’s reaction. Blake thought he was strong enough to resist the desire. Now he wasn’t so sure. He collapsed on a bench and pushed away the thoughts that threatened to consume him.

His sensitive ears picked up the sound of someone approaching. The person’s gait was as familiar to him as his own. He didn’t look up as she sat down softly beside him. A curl of desire twisted in his stomach. “What are you doing here, Kaylynne?” he asked, resigned.

“I couldn’t sleep,” her voice quavered. She was afraid of him. “I saw you walking and I thought, you know, maybe you might want some company . . .” She let the sentence hang.

Blake glanced at her. Even as she sat stiff and rigid, he couldn’t help but be amazed at her beauty. “You shouldn’t be here,” he mumbled softly, keeping a tight rein on himself. When she made no move to leave he stood and started walking away.

Kaylynne jumped to her feet and went after him. She snatched his arm and suddenly they were only inches apart. Blake couldn’t move. She had him right where she wanted him and he was helpless to refuse. She edged forward slightly until their lips touched. Flames coursed through him, flames and something else. Her taste left him intoxicated. He wanted more. He had to have more . . .

Blake pulled away from her, astonished at his weakness. Kaylynne was watching him, her face a blank slate. It was becoming too dangerous for him to stay much longer. He would need to skip town, maybe even the state, anything to get away from her. “Kaylynne, I’m sorry. I can’t—”

Kaylynne cut him off abruptly, “I know what you are!”

Blake reeled back in horror. How was it possible? She couldn’t know. “What?” he managed to gasp.

“I know what you are,” her words were barely above a whisper. Tears pooled in her blue eyes.
Blake was just able to take hold of himself, “So what am I?”

An exasperated sigh burst from her lips. “It’s completely obvious. All the signs are there. I’m not stupid you know.” She stopped and waited for a response. When one didn’t come she murmured, “You’re a vampire.” She seemed slightly embarrassed now that she’d expressed her thoughts aloud.

She became even more so when Blake burst out laughing. “You’ve been reading too much Stephanie Meyer, sweetheart. Ain’t no such thing as vampires.”

Shamefaced, Kaylynne asked quietly, “Then what are you?”

All the humor drained from Blake in an instant. Fine, he thought dryly. If she really wanted to know, he would tell her. Perhaps then she’d leave him alone. “I’m a cannibal.”

A Dream Come True

“Wow,” I said, “I’m likin’ that!”

Everyone in the room started to laugh. My cheeks flushed in embarrassment at their unexpected reaction. This sort of situation tended to happen to me a lot. Something would come to mind, and I’d find myself saying it aloud.

Tom glanced over at me and smiled his perfect smile. His green eyes sparkled at me, deep emerald pools that captured my very soul. I was, of course, talking about him. He looked away and proceeded to take his seat. I buried my face in a book, but I could still able to feel the pointed stares of my classmates.

After what seemed like an eternity, the bell rang and I fled from the classroom. I all but ran to my locker. I leaned my head against the cool metal. I was probably just paranoid, but it felt like everyone’s eyes watched me. I jerked my locker open and grabbed my books. I slammed door shut and started running to my car. Instead, I ran straight into Tom. We fell to the ground in a jumble of arms, legs, and books.

If I was embarrassed before, now I was completely humiliated. I felt like a tomato. I scrambled to gather my books from the ground. I went to grab my notebook and found Tom’s hand over mine. I froze. Tom picked up the rest of my books and helped me to my feet.

“Are you okay?” he asked. His voice laced with concern.

I couldn’t talk. My mouth gapped open like a loser. I nodded dumbly.

He smiled at me. My heart began pounding loud. I was certain he could hear it. I reached to take my books from him but he shook his head. His arm slid until it draped around my shoulder. Surely I would fall dead on the spot.

I stood there like a fool waiting for him to leave. I still hadn’t managed to say anything. I just wanted to go home and cry. I plucked up my courage and mumbled a small, “Thanks.” I moved to open my car, but he placed his hand on the door preventing my escape.

Suddenly he was real close to me, his face mere inches from my own. He placed his hands on my waist, adequately preventing me from collapsing dead on the spot. His head moved till it was right next to her ear.

BEAP, BEAP, BEAP! BEAP, BEAP, BEAP! My eyes shot open and I found myself in the darkness of my room. The time on my alarm clock read 6:00. I groaned and stuff my head under my pillow. Time to wake up for another day of school.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

(1619) section 1

Great Britain 1619

“David Foster, you better tell me what this is about?” Elizabeth asked in frustration. He had been pulling her along for upwards a quarter of an hour through the dense underbrush of the forest. Her skirts had become tangled and torn. Her mom would be hysterical when she saw their state. Hair fell around her shoulders in curly disarray. It felt as though more than one bug had found home in the tangles.

David momentarily paused and looked over his shoulder at her. He flashed her that infuriating half smile of his before turning and continuing his trek. “It’s just a little farther, come on,” he called. She angrily swept a curl from her face before allowing him to resume dragging her along.

She should have expected something like this from him. The gleam in his eyes she saw when she’d found him leaning casually against the barn that morning spoke clearly of mischief. In fact, somewhere deep down she had suspected something. But this was David. For some reason she had never been able to say no to him, much to the dismay of her mother. At 18, she was the bane of her mother’s existence. She could only resist suitors for so long before her father would force her into marriage with someone she might not find as agreeable as others. Some were pleasant enough to be around, but then David would turn up and show her a grand adventure. Elizabeth wasn’t ready to let go of him just yet. Father would not agree to their union. As the youngest of three sons, he had not a penny to his name. He scavenged what little money he could doing odd jobs for local farmers. She herself was also the youngest of three having two older brothers. A match between herself and David was not to happen.

Lost in her musings, Elizabeth nearly crashed into David who had unexpectedly stopped. He glanced at her and she was able to discern the mischievous gleam lighting his emerald eyes. He pulled aside a branch and the foliage opened up before them. Elizabeth gasped and pushed her way past David into the clearing. A magnificent waterfall spilled, almost gently, from a large rock face into a pristine lake. She was unable to describe the emotions that engulfed her. This lake, along with its surroundings, was the most beautiful thing she’d ever seen. She stumbled to the shore and dropped to the ground. Fish of every color swam unafraid in its depths. The water flowed slowly past her into a small river she hadn’t noticed before. She reached down and skimmed her hand across the surface making small designs with the ripples that were then carried away downstream. The sky was a deep blue she’d never seen before.

“Elizabeth?” David’s quiet voice tugged her back into reality. She looked up at him and was surprised to find tears making silent tracks down her face. “So, what do you think?” He was watching the ground and couldn’t stop fidgeting.

Elizabeth stood up and walked over to him. She wrapped her arms around him, and after a moment of hesitation he did the same. “I love it,” she whispered.

He was silent a moment. Then, so quiet she could barely make the words out, he said, “And I love you.”

A shiver ran its way up her back. She stiffened and took a step back. He met her eyes and she could see that he was, for once, completely serious. He began to lean forward, holding her prisoner with his eyes; his green, green eyes. Soon she could see nothing else but those two deep pools of emerald green. That’s when she broke the chain that bound them and fled.

She could still feel his hot breath on her lips from their almost kiss as she ran through the trees. This wasn’t supposed to happen. She was supposed to marry the first born son of some rich man. Not the poor, hired help. Her thoughts were jumbled; she couldn’t think. Branches tore at her face and clothes. Even the pain couldn’t take away the green haze that covered everything.

Before she knew it she was out of the woods. She bent over and gasped for breath. She was gone from the secret lake and the promises it brought with it. Before her stretched the town of Leeds, where she had been born and raised. Its major export was wool and there was never a lack of chores to accomplish. Father would be furious with her for being gone as long as she had. She looked back at the forest for a long while and felt a lump rise in her throat. She spun on her heel and headed for home.

When it came in sight, Elizabeth felt dread curl in her stomach. She could see her mother pacing back and forth in front of the window. Elizabeth knew there would be no chance to sneak in and clean up before facing her. Elizabeth took a deep breath and walked calmly towards the house, brushing off her dress as she did so.

Her mama happened to glance out the window. A second later, the front door swung open. Every inch of her mother was etched in fury. “Elizabeth Miller! Where have you been?! Just look at the state of you!”

Her mother stepped aside as Elizabeth walked inside. The door slammed shut behind them.
“Well?” her mother demanded, her foot taping in that annoying way.

Elizabeth sat down heavily on the chair.

“You were with that Foster boy again, weren’t you?!”

She didn’t give her a chance to answer.

“Elias,” she called, “I think it’s time!”


Her father walked into the room and gave her a once over. He sighed, “Yes, Mary. I think you’re right.” He looked at Elizabeth. “Sit down sweetheart.”

She gave him a strange look. “I am sitting down.”

“Oh, yes, I see that.” He seemed flustered.

“What’s going on Papa?”

He knelt down in front of her and took her hands in his. “Sweetheart, what do you think about America?”

“That stupid land across the sea for greedy old men?”


“What’s there to think about it?”

Mama decided she’d had enough beating around the bush. “Elizabeth, we are sending you on the next ship to America. It leaves in two days.”

Her mouth dropped open. “But . . . but . . . Papa!”

He nodded his affirmation.

“No,” she yelled, “I won’t go!”

“Yes,” Papa said softly, “you will.”

She looked at him for a moment, aghast, before leaping from her chair and running outside.
“She’ll be back,” She heard him say as the door slammed behind her. The sad part was she knew she would be too.

She didn’t know where she was running to, only that she had to get away. As she ran down the lane she saw someone walking towards the farm, but through her blurry vision she was unable to identify who it was.

She heard the person call her name as she rushed by. It was David. He was the last person she wanted to talk to.

Elizabeth ran until she found herself in a field of flowers. She collapsed and cried some more as sobs tore through her body.

Next thing she knew, David was lifting her from the ground and wrapping his arms around her. Elizabeth didn’t care anymore. She needed comfort.

She buried herself in his embrace.

“What’s wrong, Elizabeth?” he asked softly.

“America!” she screeched. “My parents are sending me to America because they don’t want to have to deal with me any longer!”

That shut him up. She continued crying and David held her tighter. His eyes shed a few tears as well.


Two days later, Elizabeth stood with her parents in front of the ship. She was dressed in her finest cloak and skirts. A crewman had already taken her bag up. She didn’t see David anywhere. They hadn’t had a chance to say goodbye. Without a word, she hugged her parents and walked onto the ship; into her nightmare.