Sunday, September 9, 2012

Revise/edit idea

Revising by hand is interesting but something I don't mind.  It helps me to connect to the story and see it from a different angle.  I've added scenes and taken out conversations that are extraneous.  I've never edited by hand before but it's one the best things that I've done.  Interestingly enough, the only reason I'm revising this way is because my laptop broke down and I don't have the moolah to replace it yet.  I tell ya though every manuscript should be viewed under this type of scruitiny.  Try it on your own works and see what you'll learn!!  :o)

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Acceptance

        The raspy voice from the lead singer of Seether bellowed through the hall… Careless whisper of a good friend, as we swayed to the music.  The swish of our skirts meshed together as our bodies got closer, my arms wrapping around Kenzie’s neck.  Everyone stared at us, looks of shock written all over their faces but  I didn’t care all I could see were Kenzie’s deep blue eyes set against her coal black hair. 
        “I wonder if one day, in the not so distant future, people won’t be so quick to judge when they see two girls dancing together.”  I stated, watching the people depart the dance floor.
        “Trish, it’s 2012, if they haven’t stopped judging us yet, they never will.”  She smiled and tucked a stray golden curl behind my ear.
         Kenzie’s eyes watered before for she rested her cheek on my shoulder, “I just wish I didn’t care so much, ya know?”
         I squeezed her closer to me and grabbed her hand and held it tight.  My eyes closed as I leaned my chin gently on her head.  Her hair smelled of vanilla and honeysuckle – her favorite shampoo.  I knew the thoughts that Kenzie was most likely letting run rampant and damned if I didn’t love her for it.  She worried enough for the both of us but being attracted to me, she lost more than I did – her mother.  The one person she was closest to, before the two of us met a few years ago, had disowned her. 
         A firm tap sent a trickling ache across my shoulder; with a flinch I steadied my eyes on the culprit. 
         “I think it’s time you two leave now,” Mr. Edwards declared firmly.
          I glared at the man who ruled over the school as our principal, in a month he would have no more power over Kenzie and I but tonight he did and it infuriated me, “We aren’t doing anything wrong, this is our prom too.”
         “You’re making some of the students uncomfortable.”
         “Yeah right, like their groping and prodding all over one another isn’t bad but two girls dancing is?”
         “I’m sorry but I’ve made my decision.”
         “You’re not sorry,” I growled.  “You just don’t want to deal with the racist parents that will inevitably contact you Monday morning.”
         Kenzie pulled my arm toward the exit, “Trish come on, let’s just go…”
         “Talk about not having a backbone,” I interrupted and squared my chin.  Everyone looked at the scene Mr. Edwards and I made some with disgust but most looked at us with sorrow. 
        “Trish, it’s no use,” Kenzie declared grabbing our coats from the back of the white chairs.
         “You’re right Kenz, once a bigot, always a bigot.” 
         No one uttered a word, even Mr. Edwards could not find his voice.  However Kenzie and I walked out of the hotel arm in arm as the last few sentences of the song, engulfed the place, So I'm never gonna dance again, The way I danced with you…

        The Spring fling over a month ago still overshadowed Kenzie’s happiness and I could feel her pulling away.  I couldn’t imagine my life without her but if she needed to leave, I’d let her go, so she could find out what she really wanted.  I was never one to care what people thought of me and I attributed that mindset to my mom who was as eccentric as she was a free loving hippie – maybe the only one left.  She was at this moment, off for a week of nature loving fun with her hiking group.  I pulled my blue Mazda in next to Kenzie’s mustang - yes, she was here, I exclaimed to myself.  
        “Kenz baby where are ya?”  I called as I entered the kitchen.  I fiddled with the silvery package repeatedly straightening the purple bow.  
        Silence spread out around me like bills to the unemployed.  “Damn her,” I said under my breath.  “Her ass must be listening to her I pod.” 
        With gift in hand, I scrambled to our room.  Butterflies tickled my stomach as I anticipated Kenzie’s reaction to her surprise.  “Kenzie my sweet,” I began the cold knob in my hand firm as the door creaked with distress as it opened. “Take out your earphones; I have a surprise for you.”
        The gift slipped from my fingers.  The thump echoed throughout the room, the only sound except for my muffled voice, “Oh God no”.  The room seemed to tip sideways as I ran to the bed.  My heart ached at the sight of her.  Her lips had a bluish tint to them and her skin – I had never seen skin look so pale before.  She lay in a fetal position, her arm dangling off the bed – her empty prescription bottle on the bed next to her.  I grabbed her hand but she did not move.  Fear tore through me.  Hands trembling I found my phone,   “Help me please. I need an ambulance NOW; I think my girlfriend is dead.”  A shiver sliced up my spine from her cold hand in mine.  . 
        Tears slipped down my face, making it hard to see.  My hands caught her shoulders, “Kenzie baby please… please wake up.  My Kenzie, please.”  I screamed the words at her, praying for a response to no avail. 
        “What?” I asked the voice on the phone, my mind too muddied to remember I was on a phone call.  My stomach churned and I placed a hand on my mouth.  I turned from the bed just as the contents of my stomach emptied out onto the floor. 
          My attention turned to the person on the end of the phone, wiping my mouth with the back my shirt, “Yes, 327 Tackett street – please hurry.”  I begged not waiting on the phone for a response.
          My trembling fingers rested just below her nose, I squeezed my eyes closed.  A single movement of air graced my skin.  “Oh God thank you!”  I pulled her limp body in my trembling arms.  Tears soaking her face as I held her against my chest.  Please, oh please – I’ll do anything, if you/re up there… Please don’t take her away from me.  I begged, choking on the air as I rocked back and forth, pain slicing through my cries. 
         My knees throbbed against the unforgiving wooden floor - her slight frame kept me pinned down but the pain kept me grounded in reality. Only now did I understand what a broken heart felt like – in this one defining moment.

       My fingers wrapped around Kenzie’s limp hand.  I squeezed my eyes shut and rested my head on our hands.  A scorching pain, like a sunburn blazed across my eyes.  Thousands of tears and a few nights later the beeping of the machines chirped like birds in the bland, unpleasant hospital room.  The only realization I cared about was that Kenzie had not awoken yet and no one knew if she ever would. 
     “Oh Kenz,” I said, as the familiar ache wrapped around my heart like a vise. 
     “How is she?”  A hoarse voice asked behind me.
      I raised my head and looked at April, Kenzie’s mother.  Through slitted eyes, her plump form, wrapped in a brown sweater jacket, stood at the end of the bed.  I had not seen this woman in two years but her style never changed it seemed from her pale skin and pinched lips to the tight bun in her hair – she looked like a dike.  Funny, I thought to myself.  Her hands clenched and twisted the straps of the purse she held her purse in front of her like a shield.
     Blood rushed through my veins, setting my heart pounding.  I would never like this woman, I was sure.  April came around the bed, opposite me. Her feet scuffed the laminated floor as her blue eyes locked on Kenzie’s still face.  Tears trickled down her flushed cheeks while her calloused hands swept over the tubes that protruded from Kenzie’s small form.
     “What happened?”  April whispered while she collapsed in a chair.
     “I find it shocking that you actually care.”  I said bitterly.
     “I’m her mother, Trish.”  
     “You haven’t been her mother in years you made sure of that.”  I snapped laying a protective hand over Kenzie’s arm.
     “A person can make mistakes – I’m sure you’ve made a few.”  She said her eyes avoiding my intent stare.
     “Yeah, like leaving her alone today.  I just don’t get it though.  This morning she was fine – writing her graduation speech – I don’t understand what would have made her want to kill herself.”
     “Oh my God, she took the pills because of me,” her voice whispered as April’s head fell into her hands.
     “What did you do?”  I asked my hands squeezing the arm rests.
    “She called me this morning, excited that she was valedictorian of her class and asked if I’d be there. I told her that I couldn’t support the person she’s become and not to expect me there or ever until she changed.”
     My mouth gaped open at the words she spoke, “How could you say that?”
    “I’m an idiot… I never thought she would… I would never want her to hurt herself like this.”  April cried her shoulders hunched over like an elderly woman as she sobbed against Kenzie’s hand.
Hot lava filled anger coursed through me, my hands shook with hatred as I stood up, ready to claw her eyes out.
    The soft monitor chirp stopped and one loud ringing replaced it, stopping me in my tracks.  The nurses across the hall rushed into the room pushing us aside. 
    “My God!”  April exclaimed wiping her face.
    “What’s going on?”  I asked as the nurses escorted us away from the bed.
    “I need a crash cart,” screamed the nurse as she rushed back into the room. 
     No one answered my question, we were invisible it seemed.  I watched in horror as the nurse pumped up and down on Kenzie’s chest.  Her lifeless form never moving – no sign of life radiated from her.  My stomach twisted as paddles were placed on her chest by the doctor that breezed passed us pulling a wheeled cart inside the room.
    “She’s in V-Fib, charge the machine.”  
    “CLEAR…” Yelled the blonde doctor, “Come one, girl stay with us” and with one loud jolt Kenzie raised off the bed in time with the zapping of the machine. 
    Three times they zapped her and each time her body convulsed in electric spasms by the fourth time, I fell to the floor my hand entwined within another - the last person I wanted to touch, Kenzie’s mom.  Her trembling hands held my hair while bile rose up in my throat.  Darkness faded around me as the last thing I heard the doctor say, “One more time - CLEAR………”

    “Mom”, I heard a frail voice say as I woke up.
    I looked across the room as Kenzie opened her eyes, her mother beside her their hands clasped. 
    “Kenzie my baby,” April said elated.
    I sat there and watched I could not interrupt even though I wanted to run to her and kiss her. 
    “Mom, I’m sorry.”  Kenzie said her voice trembling.
    “No, don’t you say that,” April demanded sitting on the bed next to her.  “I thought that I could guilt you into being straight.  I believed being a lesbian made you less of a person – Kenzie I was wrong, so very wrong.  I’m supposed to love you without conditions or judgments and I failed.  The thought of you…..”  April trailed off and cleared her throat while she tucked a few stray hairs behind Kenzie’s ear.  “I just hope that one day you’ll forgive me.”
    “Momma, I already have.”
    Kenzie and her mom clung to one another.  Kenzie beamed at me, her eyes peaceful for the first time since I had known her.  I smiled back as I rose to take her hand as she mouthed the words, I love you. 








* This is a short I entered into a writing contest - I'll let you all know what comes *   =]






Sunday, January 1, 2012

A Reverie

My body felt like dead weight. Each foot seemed to weigh a ton as they trudged up the creaky wooden steps. I mouthed I love you to my parents, grateful they did not notice the dark bags under my eyes. My nighttime ritual speed rapidly increased as I barely made it to bed before my weighty lids closed me into darkness.

Out of the murky depths of blackness, his piercing eyes appeared moving unhurriedly toward me. The sensual heat of his gaze scorched my skin. I was weightless, stranded within the surrounding darkness with no conceptual feeling of gravity. Wisps of fog tumbled around him shading his face from view but I knew who it was, William. His indigo eyes haunted my nights as his impenetrable stare bore into mine.

I knew his essence we were the same somehow, body and soul. I could not tear my eyes away from his as the proximity between us shortened. He was inches away, my heart pounded in my chest - my body yearned for his touch. The blackness was overwhelming, seemingly to have its own pulsating erotic energy. He disappeared within the swirling vapor that cascaded around me. The mist encircled my frame, coiling around me. It twisted through my fingers and caressed the back of my neck. The sensation was heavenly sensuous. I could sense him, his invisible energy touching me, gliding over my skin like water. No longer could I breathe as electricity instantly rushed throughout my being, dousing me with intense pleasure and pain.

With a start, I awoke, dripping with sweat my hands grasping for him within the shadows of my bedroom, only to fall limp as I remembered I was alone. A dream, I sighed - the same one that recurred for months. I sat up and raked my hands through my hair; the dream had been quite intense tonight. The sexual desire emanated from my pores. I slowed my breathing, closed my eyes and hoped he was in the darkness waiting for me again.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

The Decision


     I am here again, in the same room, at the same time with the thoughts that haunt my every night.  Darkness filled the sanctuary of my bedroom.  My hand slipped across the bed to touch his arm.  My fingertips grazed along the bumpy fat, so warm.  How many times had I longed for his touch?  He never denied me in all the many years we spent together but now, it was I who pushed him away.  Ethan with his stubborn streak and wild hair was my beautiful disaster.
     The whine of the bed echoed in the silence between his snores as I brought my legs over the side of the bed remembering the fateful conversation just weeks before. 

     “So, what’s wrong with me doc?”  I queried biting my lower lip.
     He flipped through the pages of my chart perplexed as he approached the bed.  Over his glasses that slid down his nose, he peered at me with an agonized stare.  My pulse seized as he placed my limp hand in his, “Rebecca, it’s not good.  With your symptoms of muscle weakness, spasms, mobility restrictions and fatigue I had my concerns, as you are well aware.”
     My mouth went dry and I wanted to scream at him to blurt out the bad news already but I kept my mouth shut tight and shook my head in acknowledgment of what he said.
     “From all of the tests we conducted we found no root cause for your symptoms and have ruled out anything similar to the diagnosis I am about to give you.  You have ALS Rebecca, I am so very sorry.”  He whispered sweetly while his hand squeezed mine.
     “Oh my God, are you serious?”
     “Unfortunately I am, are you familiar with the disease?”
     “Somewhat, isn’t it called Lou Gehrig's disease?”
     “Yes, here are a few pamphlets…” 

     Water fell in drops down my cheeks as the memory faded.  I planted my socked feet onto the hard floor, the window sill I used for balance.  My muscles cramped with every languid step I took toward the closet.  My hand grappled with the cold knob as I swung open the door looking for the sacred book.  I snatched the small Bible; I hid in the back of the closet, and held it against my chest.  Ethan never knew about this small token of Faith I kept for if he did, he would surely brow beat me with his atheist ideals. 

     My body slumped against the paneled wood…. “Dear Lord, please help me.  I can’t do this on my own.”  My hand convulsed and the Bible fell to the floor, open.  I picked up the book and read the passage from Ruth: “Wither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge: thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God: Where thou diest, will I die, and there will I be buried: the Lord do so to me, and more also, if aught but death part thee and me”. 

     My heart hammered in my chest and I breathed a mumbled, Thank you.

 

***********************************

 "Hey mom, can I come home?”  I whispered in the phone. 

    “Always, what’s wrong?”  She questioned through her cotton mouth.        “I can’t stay with Ethan…”  I began looking sorrowfully at the rise and fall of his chest.  “I found someone else.”
    “Well, I’ll be here, when will you be coming?”
    “Now.”
    “Be careful and I’ll see you in a few hours.”
    My finger hit the red button and slid the cell into my pocket.  I could not tell her of my condition over the phone.  I needed her arms and warmth when I broke down.  I picked up my bags, grabbed my keys and left a scribbled note of goodbye on my pillow.  The gravel crunched under the weight of my feet as I turned to look at the house one last time.  I loved Ethan as sure as my heart beat but the love for my soul was greater.  In a few years I would die, that was certain but not before I returned to the house I had left years before; the house with the steeple standing proud atop its roof where my gateway to everlasting life waited for me. 
         
                   

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Seduction

A low growl emitted from deep within his chest as he pulled me close to him and crushed his lips on mine.  Need rippled through me as I tore at his shirt furiously.  His hot sinewy body finally slithered against my own flesh.  My fingers slid throughout his shoulder length hair, pulling his head toward my jugular.  My stomach clenched in anticipation as his mouth settled over the spot that beat in time with my heart.

I could feel the hot wet heat surround me as I strained my hips toward his probing hand.  Ecstasy exploded throughout my body as the razor-sharpened teeth plunged deep into my vein.  My guttural moan sounded foreign, like the sound was from someone else entirely.

With increased yearning, I arched my back to get closer to the feel of his body against mine.  Torrents of pleasure seized through me, as if tiny electric sparks pulled on every nerve in my body.  His hands grabbed at my shoulders violently - my body lost in wondrous ecstasy as he drank more of my essence.

The seething heat from his body radiated through me as he released his teeth and began to kiss my sweaty face our dance of lust done for we both fell asleep soundly in eachothers arms.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Short story - Can you guess what it is?

   My dark unemotional eyes turned toward the quarry where the voices lilted up over the canyon walls.
   Could it be? I wondered hope lifting my spirits.
   I turned, now my body on the right path to see who disturbed my night. No one ever dared this far out beyond the city lights onto the deserted land that I called my home. Home, such a beautiful word when you haven’t been there in months. Traveling always did that I noticed. Longing pierced my heart as I stealthily came upon the lost travelers.

   Huddled together, there were three. Their forms shivered under the midnight moon high in the sky. I never paid much attention to the bitter cold nights, it didn’t bother me. A fragrant tinge tickled my senses, blood. One of the travelers was injured and broken. Overjoyed I felt an odd sense of happiness at their distress. The injured would be my first meal.
   How many days could they last without the sustenance they needed to survive? I did not care, they were mine now, and all I had to do was wait.

Liberation

Then

“What if I can’t?” I asked with bated breath.
“You have to.” Jared murmured fiercely.
“Why’s that?”
“Because, Melinda, I said so.”

I rolled my eyes at his statement and snorted out a gruff laugh as I slid the last piece of steak into my mouth. We sat in silence for the remaining portion of dinner. I could not force myself to look at him, let alone speak to him. I placed a soft gentle hand on my abdomen. I could not feel anything yet, it was too early for that, but I knew my baby lay inside me, forming.

“Jared, couldn’t we keep it?” I asked, as I got to my feet and picked up the dishes from the table. “It’s just a baby, nothing horrible.”

His hand whacked against my cheek as I reentered the dining room. Pain sliced through my jaw and up my temple as I fell hard against the wooden floor. My eyes watered but I refused to let him see me cry anymore. All day I had been wondering how to tell him, hoping he would not be mad but I guess that was a lost cause now. I was speechless but I had enough strength to pull myself up. How could he hit me when all I wanted to do was keep the child we had made together?

“I told you Melinda, I don’t want kids so you better get rid of it or I’ll get rid of you.” Jared said as he stormed out of the room.

For years, I had put up with abuse from Jared but now I was different. I fought for a little piece of me that had yet to see the light of day – I fought for my unborn child to live. With my decision made, I waited.

Now:

The rain came down in sheets, pelting the ground in a violent undulation that made me shiver with cold. How many times did I look up and down the street, hoping I would never see his face? Maybe it was something that I never would be able to stop myself from doing. Hell, it made me feel safe. Therefore, I checked the tree-lined street once more before I raced across in the pounding rain to the building and swung open the doors in a frenzy.

There I watched her, my daughter Nina. Such a beauty from her blond curls to her high kicks and swings. She was great at martial arts and I made sure of that. At 13, she had Jared’s nose and eyes, much kinder eyes of course but the same color blue. She had no idea who her father was and I was content with that. I allowed her to grow up unfettered without the strict hand of tyranny. Freedom that allowed her to become a wonderful young woman without having to answer to a man that wanted her dead before she even had a chance to live.