Friday, March 25, 2016

March Short Story - Dark Lies

Word Count:  1819
             More than a week had passed since my laptop was stolen from the new café.  New to me I should say, I’d only been there on one other occasion trying to find my footing when I gave the thief a crime of opportunity or was it considered an opportune crime.  I wasn’t sure.  Maybe that’s why my writing was terrible.  My only regret was all the failed stories of magic they might come across if curiosity struck which I doubted. 

                As I sat in the police station feeling stupid to be reporting said incident it occurred to me that said officer taking the report might be thankful for the paperwork disruption.  According to him crimes like this happened and if I really wanted it back I could hang out around sites like Craigslist until it eventually would post as a ‘used’ or ‘refurbished’ laptop. 

                “It could be worse,” the officer offered.  “There could be naked photos you floating around by now.”

                My eyes quipped.  “Why would that be?”

                He shrugged, “People with vendettas photo shop nasty images all the time.  Women especially.”  He didn’t continue.  And I wasn’t sure if he meant women were victims most of the time or the perpetrators.  I also wasn’t sure if this cop was intentionally looking for a write up of the suspension kind or if he was just had no filter for these sort of things.

                After a day I’d give up with checking the various sites it might appear on.  By the second day I’d lost any hope of ever seeing the laptop again and on the third day I drank to the stories I’d lost due to forgetting to back them up.  All signs pointed to giving up this writing thing.  It had shown not to work out and frankly I wasn’t sure if I was improving. 

                But then I was contacted by thief. 


                The thief wasn’t what expected but nor had the weather.  For days I dreaded the encounter.  Questioned my sanity, wondered if it was too late to get the police involved, would he show if I did… He’d never made any straight out demands which I’d found odd but when I saw the email –

I have your laptop.  I’d like to return it.  Meet me at the café.


I’m not sorry.


That last line always did it.  It was what made the part of me that wanted to be angry rage against a padded room, arms appropriately buckled down because I wanted to just lose it.  Why I had this in mind was probably a testament to my own mental standing but I figured it was better than wanting to harm him.  And in some scenarios I did.  I’d pictured how it’d all go down how the wind would whip just as I stepped.  Immediately I’d feel him watching.  He’d sit elegantly, my laptop in a bag near his casually propped legs as he took tentative sips from his mug.  Because I knew my thief would not fit some cookie cutter stereotype. 

In some ways I’d been right and in others ways I hadn’t.  But when I arrived before he did and on a beautiful sunny day no less, no wind to whip my recently blown out afro into it’s natural element and no overcast skies I had to rework my expectations.  I had to give chance to the possibility I would, without a doubt, be absolutely wrong about this entire encounter.  I might even find I was being pranked which had been a scenario but very low on the totem pole due to the amount of timing, lack of friends, and the fact I’d given more weight to the idea there was never a laptop at all. 

So I waited for him to show.  I stood at the front of the café for naught.  No one waved me down.  In fact there weren’t many people inside for a Monday morning, granted it was a town holiday so the hustle and bustle might happen later in the day once everyone was done sleeping in from weekend hangovers. 

I walked to the counter that was stationed with your typical run of the mill acne ridden teenage kid that had more of a D&D air about him rather than holiday on the beach.  It was a non event.  In a non event type of place.  On a non event type of day.  And this would be a non event type of event because my thief had a pension for jokes.  I pictured them reading one of my stories which undoubtedly had my contact information on the cover page and instead of just wiping my hard drive he preferred a bit of a fun.  So maybe he was here.  I looked at the family seated by the window, near the two seated table I’d imagine him at and thought that father definitely looks suspect as he battles his kid for the sippee cup.  Definitely a career criminal with his khaki shorts, hairy legs, and “World’s Second Worst Dad” chocolate stained shirt.  At least I hoped it was chocolate as I took a seat that allowed me to watch him. 

“Care if I join you,” a voice said.  I turn my head away and find a tall woman with dark wet wavy hair that comes to her shoulders.  She’s dressed simple – black cami and dark blue jeans with a newspaper tucked underneath her arms – and looking only at me.  I stare at her and I know she’s staring down at least early 40’s, maybe late 30’s but my eyes wander across her once more, the canvas of her and she doesn’t shuffle nervously but takes the seat aggressively.   “You took too long.”

I think I want to say sorry.  I think I probably should say sorry for my blatant ogling and I think I might even be but my mouth only hangs open before finally offering, “okay.”  The woman shuffles things about reaching beneath the table and leaving with her wallet in hand.  She goes to order a drink with her newspaper still tucked beneath her arms.  I watch as she places her orders, stand off to the side and massages her shoulder before unfolding the paper to read a tiny bit.  She sips hesitantly as she makes her way back over to me, her eyes glued to the article.  Her body collapses so effortlessly it’s as if she’d never been erect. 

The bell rang signaling a customer entry and it brought me back.  More so the gentleman that walked in brought me back.  I watched him, felt drawn to him and the black bag slung over his shoulder.  He met my eyes once and a smile formed before he turned away.  I heard the woman across from me snicker and noticed her eyes were no longer buried in the article but wholly on me.

“You’re not very good at poker are you?” she asks leaning in and I notice how warm her chocolate eyes are against her olive skin.  How inviting yet so sinister they are, her lips are quirked as if she’s heard my thoughts and she mouths a words so slowly I’m not sure I’m seeing things. 

“I’ve never played,” I answer honestly.

“I believe you,” she says drawing back and taking another sip of her coffee.  Fighting my eyes, fighting the desire to stare at her with that cup pressed against her lower lip I look back to the front for the guy.  But he is no longer there.  I start to look around when she leans in again and the action alone demands my full attention. 

“What did you come here for?” she ask me and the question catches me off guard, “what do you want?  Anything up there you like specifically?  I’ll get it.  My way of apologizing for being rude earlier,” she smiles. 

“I’m fine.”

“That’s a lie.”  Her eyes are wild.  “What do you want?”  The air stills.  Steam billows from the front, utensils clatter, an order is yelled, and my shoulder is tapped.  She smiles.  I turn and it’s him.  Smiling down at me. 

“Sorry to bother you,” he says never looking away from me.  He adjusts his black rimmed glasses and ignores the woman sitting opposite me.  I feel her eyes on me all the while.  “The guy at the front said you forgot this,” he had a pastry in a bag. 

“I’m sorry.  I didn’t order anything.”

“It’s mine,” the woman says reaching between us to grab it from his hand.  “Thanks sweetie.  Run along now.”

He smiles at us both, nods, and then walks away.  What just happened?  What’s happening?  “This is for you,” she says handing the same pasty bag over to me.  “Take it before I change my mind about you.” 

I shift in my seat and make my way to stand.  She laughs.  I pack up my things in a hurry as her laughter bellows.  A few people turn in our direction but no one steps over.   World’s Second Worst Dad offers a tepid smile as he wrangles a knife from the child that’s more mobile. 

I swing my bag over my shoulder, abandon my drink, and exit the café vowing to never return to it.  I get to my car and throw my things into the passenger seat.  The warmth of the sun beating down on me, reminding me the day is too beautiful to be filled with such darkness.  It doesn’t match me.  It doesn’t match my twisted insides.  It doesn’t feel natural.

And the woman just sits there, in all her beauty watching me.  Her smile still riding her lips.  I don’t see the guy anymore, the one who fit my bill, the one who might’ve had decided to return my laptop if not for her.  She is looking at me more intently, curving her finger beckoning me to come back.  I get in my car and slam the door.  Squealing out of the lot I hit the road at a menacing speed and it feels good. 

I’m racing down.  I want to stop feeling.  I want to just tap out.  I want the magic of my stories to be real.  I reach over into the seat to find the cigarettes I vowed to give up only to hear the rattling of a pastry bag but aside from that is the solidness I hadn’t expected.  I swerve to the side of the road, throw the car into park and pull out what I suspect I already know.

I know.

I know. 

Pulling out my laptop I spot the yellow stickie with an elegant script with three simple words scribbled onto it-

Thanks for breakfast.

I toss the note and see there’s something on the other side.  And that’s when I notice my wallet is gone.  I look over to the note, it’s staring at me and I know. 

I know. 


I’m not sorry. 

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Back to Somewhere - Prologue

I am tired and have some writing related things to say but again I'm tired after attempting to make Mexican gumbo tonight then doing meds and cleaning... Yeah I just want to pass out with a book in my hand. 

With that said I figured I'd share some bits from B2S for a day such as this.  Hopefully I'll get to the short story for this month and since it's my bday month I'll torture myself by posting TWO stories this month.  That's the goal at least.

At any rate, without further ado the very rough 1st draft of B2S prologue -

Prologue:  The Last Time


                I was nowhere at all.  I hadn’t gotten as far I liked and yet I felt I’d come closer than I ever had in shaking it. 

                I had a habit.  Several of them actually but the most disturbing were the ones that put my body in cruise control to the point I didn’t realize how I’d ended somewhere until my mind decided to register the surrounding.  There were many times I found myself back in this basement having sworn off returning to it.  It’d taken so much of me already.  I had so much trouble with everything and everyone the more the time passed.  There were days I couldn’t tell what was real anymore.  Those were the worst. 

                “I’m real.”

So much time had passed since I’d seen him.  Felt his touch as it lingered along the delicate curves of my body.  I dreamt of those lips that teased in their hesitation as they hovered over my most sensitive parts.  I wanted him still.  His was a presence I sought time and time again.  Even when I was there it was never enough. 


Watching really wasn’t my thing.  Without meaning to it became my thing despite my own feelings when I was under inspection.  But here I found myself again at the coffee shop, observing the people from behind a carefully placed book.  I was reading, when I remembered to, but it was a book recommendation from a friend and those couldn’t be given too much consideration.  And this one wasn’t holding my attention as much as wondering about the lives of the people at the present moment. 

The people here offered me the temporary escape from my mind, my work, my life... from me.  I couldn't keep doing this.  It needed to stop.  This thirst for constantly escaping grew more into a problem with each passing day.  I turned away from the people, away from the desired reprieve, and placed the book on the table.  My eyes dropped to the coffee mug clasped within my hands and I stared into it, the rich blackness not offering much of a reflection. 

                Every year it was the same.  I didn't know when it would stop.  The missing part, the 'it' hurts' sequel that was my life.  I had an idea for a fix.  But that's all it was, an idea and I wasn't sure if it would work.  My notes were spread out in front of me but I had no real idea how to approach this endeavor, how much I might be risking but I couldn't deny how much I needed it. 

My mind filled with all the responsibilities that kept my body physically bound.  Most of all I couldn't leave her.  She might not need me and while I could picture myself leaving everyone else behind, I couldn't do it to her. 

Sighing I looked out the window and the dreary weather.  It was supposed to be sunny today, blue skies, and warm temps.  Instead there were flashes of heavy rain that seemed to move in between reasonable to ridiculous.  It was what kept me longer.  My morning routine of coffee and people watching before work had expired but I held out the hope the rain would lighten back to reasonable.  Long enough for me to get where I needed to go.  Except ten minutes into waiting this still had yet to happen.

The weather was moody, atmospheric in a brooding way whenever the rain did let up a little.  It was this weather that kept me from truly wanting to escape because this was real.  This was life.  And you could drown in its misery or smile at its complexity.  To me it was an either or situation.  

When another couple minutes passed I began to make an effort to get up when a town car pulled into the parking sport directly in front of my window seat.  I continued to sit, watching, waiting, curious about the life. 

I gave my mind two.  Two scenarios were allotted and I could spin these tales then leave.  I couldn't afford to stay any longer because the sadness was settling in me.  My bones ache but it was the tightening in my chest and the long blinks which told me I leave now or risk an emotional public breakdown again. 

Just as I began to imagine a pair of combat boots stepping out of the fancy black town car my phone buzzed in my pocket.  Checking the time I was due to hear from her.  True to form the "Are you here?" text was right on time.  "Or are you there again?" she followed up.  My eyes was glued on the screen when the car door slammed and I found myself staring at an elderly woman stepping out of the sleek town car.  I smiled.  I liked surprises  Returning back to the screen unsure of how to reply.  It was the first time she'd followed up with such a question so I answered the way I always did and tried to play for nonchalance by adding an emoji when I sent my "No, I'm not there... :) " 

She didn't respond which was nothing unusual.  Sometimes it was like that so I tried not to dwell even as the guilt for not answering her other question covet my brain and any other thing I could be bothered to think about.  Gathering my things up I headed for the counter and the room grew still.  So quiet.  My phone buzzed again.

"Are you here or have you gone back?"

This was unlike all the other times.  Just the idea of it caused beads of sweat to form atop my forehead as I stared at it.  A chill swept pass my neck and I swiped at the phantom crawling sensation that followed. 

  "You're there aren't you?"


Was I being watched?  My skin prickled in odd places.  Places I could reach and others I couldn't unless I intended to strip and molest myself in front of an unsuspecting crowd of functioning members of society.  I looked up from my phone expecting to see all eyes on me because of course she knew.  She knew even when I didn't. 

  There were times days had passed.  So much that I hadn't known that I hadn't measured when one day ended and the next began.  They should've been in sync, I thought they were but I still never placed them.  Everything rolled one on top of the other like wave upon wave, they came in sequence without an indication of an interruption. 

So when came to me I was surprised after I'd come up for air I was happy to have something.  Something waiting for me.  No, not something but someone.  A lunch date was even better.

  It was another overcast day.  In checking the time missed it was clear in truth I hadn't missed much once again.  Little things like that made it easier to justify my actions.  As I walked the familiar path to the pub and observed a father jogging with his toddler in a stroller or the young woman struggling to manage her array of dog breeds I felt the reality of what I 'missed' further solidified.  The world moved on without so much as a blink. 

Arriving at the pub I waited to cross the street.  I hated this street.  I hated the people that were always in a rush.  I hated the street for all the bad moments that always seemd tfind me when I was there.  I hated what it robbed me of.  I hated most for the lives it'd taken. 

The moment I was given the clear to cross I sprinted across the street and instead of going inside, I walked directly through the wrought iron patio gate and spot her immediately despite the strange updo and sunglasses covering those familiar eyes.  She's here before me as usual.

She senses me before she sees me.  The frown weighting down her features lifts momentarily as she stands, sacrifices a pathetic smile to the Gods, and wraps a wimpy arm around my body.  I think it was meant to be a hug.  And if it were any other day were I was down too, it'd be a perfectly acceptable one but I know better.  This isn't her.  At the time I hadn't given much thought to a lot of how she was had been in direct correlation to my choice to stay.

"Hi, how are you?"

I looked at her.  The conversation seeming weird already with the stilted pleasantries.  "Is something wrong" I ask rather than waste time.  She offers me another one of her false smiles and I match.  Let's rumble I think jokingly but when she squares her shoulder I wonder what I'm in for. 

I can see her overthinking.  She's choosing her next words carefully and with an exasperate sigh she lays it in on me, "You can't keep doing this."

I open my mouth to respond but she interrupts before I can speak.  "It's not healthy anymore."

                This again I think.  We've had this discussion before.  "I know there's thing you're trying to do, to figure out but I was never fully sure this was the route and now I think it's become a problem."  She removed the sunglasses from her face and the deep circles outlining her eyes told me I was seeing myself reflected.  Were those not the same eyes I'd seen countless times before staring back at me.  "Your in denial," she continued.  "You've always been."  

"I'm still me," I interject.  "Nothing's changed."

"No, that's the problem things have changed.  How long were you gone this last time?  Do you even keep record of it?"

"I'm still me," I repeat deciding I'm not quite ready for the world yet.  The waiter comes to our table just then and starts to reach for his pad, "I'm fine," I say getting up to go.  I know this I wrong.  This isn't the mature thing to do.

"You have a problem."

Her words follow me home.  Echoing into the empty space and I stare at my work.  I want to escape.  I want to get away.  Because in the silence everything finds me.  He finds me.  And I can feel him.  He's coming up behind me.  HIs smell is intoxicating.  I lean into him and feel as he strengthens his grasp around me body.  Where have you been he asks.  Why have I gone so long without seeing him.  It hasn't been that long but the time here is so different.  This is real I hear him whispering into my ears just as hot air warms my neck.  He places a peck there raises his lips back to my ear, "I'm real." 


I was home again.  Home was always an odd place because it was the place I felt most like me but it was always where I wasn't.  Where I had permission to not be but she'd been right then, now, and tomorrow.  I wasn't solving the problem.  I just managed to circle the issue without ever handling it.  I knew this last time would be it, had been it.  And I knew what needed to come next as much as it hurt.

         Part of moving on meant letting go.  I need to do this, to stop justifying the pictures I kept for the memories and lying about for whose benefit they still clung to walls for even if I'd began to believe the lie.  I knew the truth and so did she.  There were too many enablers in my life.  That a step, right?  To admit that.  To confirm the denial.  To recognize the problem was saturated in everything about this house. 

I hadn't finished though.  I'd come close.  Part of me, the part that was likely feeding the need was deluded by the idea of just 'one more time'.  That's what it always amounted to really.  Just one more time.  And then I could give it up.  I could let it go.

But you never do.

No.  I never did let it go.  I might go without but I eventually came back to this place, to this idea that I could so on that first day I made a plan to break it down, take it apart.  I would no longer be a victim by my own hands.  Satisfied with the what the plan I laid out I settled into my office  Looking around at the colorful room and the random items that decorated the wall.  Large black and white photos of family, movie posters, and random articles framed that we'd approved of.  It was there I noticed the apartment, the one I had whenever I was there.  The articles weren't just there for their scientific value, these basement walls was a living breathing vision board. 

Despite knowing this I could feel my body sweating with the want.  The need to escape to that place. 

For just one more time. 

No.  No more.  That was it.  I wouldn’t.   I looked over to the erect pod.  It was in stand-by daytime mode.  It wasn’t how I’d left it.  I tried not think too hard on why it was no longer horizontal and why it seemed primed for me.  Just waiting for me to make the decision like it knew I always had before.  If history was any indication of behavior this was the moment.

This was the moment I sigh and drop my hands into my head in defeat. 

This was the moment I said “I’m not going to do this to her again.”

This was the moment I would think of all the reasons why I shouldn’t.  And all the reasons I wanted.  And all the reasons I would.

This was the moment I felt him guiding me from my seat.

This was the moment he nibbled my neck, my ear, and whispered, “I’m real.”

This was the moment my body remembered the light kisses from my neck to navel, navel to hip, hip to…

This was the moment my mind swam with thoughts of the sensual overload I was denying it.

This was the moment my mouth sighed, my back arched, and my hands clutched riding the phantom orgasm.


This was the moment I always decided…  This was going to be the last time.  The last time I gave into my habit. 

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

March Day! Resolutions Update Post

After finishing the draft for B2S last week I've been just trying to relax.  I did adjust the date for draft 2.2 of MD to the end of April I believe.  However seeing as I did finish the one draft last week after a bit of a winter storm knocked my power out I was able to use the time to finish up writing once it was back on.  And now I need to find a chaise.  Which I said I'd reward myself with once I finished since my back would definitely appreciate it. 

At any rate it's March and I had though to work on a short story tonight but seeing as I'm still recovering from a book AND tired from sweeping/mopping I'm thinking I'd rather read for a bit before passing out. 

With that said I thought I'd at least sort of look at where I'm at with resolutions and post an update:

1. Complete the revision for another novel (TYW or OTTM/TMO) - In Progress
2. Complete the first draft for an open project (i.e. the revenge deity story, faux immortality story, porch story, or mistress for hire)
3. Aim for 10 - 15k / per month (daily goal will be 500) - In Progress
4. Pay off 2 additional debts (most likely two credit cards) - - Hoping to take care of this during the month
5. Self publish a work
6. Write 15 short stories - 1/of 15 so far
7. Visit/travel to a new place
8. Learn something new (tap class, 10 Mandarin character/per mth, or ...) - In Progress... Skating thought I didn't go last weekend and the weekend prior I was still traumatized from the week before then when I fell and hit my head
9. Read 40 books - In Progress... 10 of 40 so far
10. Watch 10 new movies (half while still in theaters) - - In Progress... so far I've caught "The Peanuts Movie", "The Fifth Wave"', "How to be Single", and "Deadpool"

That's all for tonight.  Going to mosey off and hopefully get through two more books this week.  Finished "Me Before You" yesterday and hoping to at least read two more before digging back into MD.  And hoping that when I do it'll be from the comfort of a cozy chaise.