Writing Prompt: Day 2

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Day 2 of 365 Days of Writing Prompts: Your character in yesterday’s post is justified (…at least to some extent), make us trust their goal is positive.

Erin: “How did your Christmas go,” Rosa asked sipping at some sort of brown liquor in her glass.

Leah stirred her coke, the ice cubes clinked on the sides of the glass. “Same old, same old.”

“What did they say now?” Leah could see all of the day’s happenings in Rosa’s eyes. Her mom asking her if she fell off of her diet. Her sister trying to convince her she would be happier if she found the right guy. Her dad presenting a few job options she could consider “if she wanted a career change.”

“Pretty much that my sister is doing everything right, and therefore I am not,” she pulled her straw out of her glass and pushed it back through the layer of ice.

“Your sister can take her 20’s housewife life and go back to Kansas,” Rosa said pouring her straight liquor into Leah’s glass. She could see her own control spilling out and over the rim.

“No,” she pulled the glass away and her friend’s drink poured straight onto the bar.

“You need to loosen up,” she insisted grabbing a small bar napkin and soaking up as much as she could. “If I were you I wouldn’t be calling my mom every day trying to get my family’s approval. I would cut them off,” she slurred the last few words and asked the bartender to top her off again.

The bar erupted as the glass ball dropped on the screen. Leah clinked her friend’s new drink and took 3 long sips. The alcohol felt warm entering her system and she felt warm around Rosa. Around her the whiskey felt safe, and around her whatever came of the night and of her life seemed fine. “You’re right, this year I will finally drink more and talk to my family less.”

Shannon: “You need to break out of your shell,” was the constant critique running through my head for the past few years of my life. I could never seem to meet enough new people, go to enough strange places, or test out enough out-of-the-norm activities. After all of my efforts to please my critics and better myself, I came to one conclusion: I miss my shell. This last year I spent so much time trying to break free from my shell that I left it so far behind I started feeling like I might never get it back. Sure, changing things up once in a while feels great, but I don’t want to lose my comfort zone again just to explore a new one. That’s why my New Year’s Resolution is to spend more time in my shell. I want to spend more time with the people I already love, more time in the places that bring me peace, and more of my days doing the activities that make me smile. Life is too short to spend free time not doing exactly what I enjoy most. So if anyone ever needs me, there’s a good chance they’ll find me happily in my comfy, cozy shell.

Day two built off of the simplicity of day one. Share your stories in the comments, and we’ll be back tomorrow!

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2 thoughts on “Writing Prompt: Day 2

  1. Kate:
    Behind me the young man moaned lamely, twitching and mumbling some prayer that wouldn’t do him any good. There was a bitter taste destroying someone left in your mouth. In the distance a line of broken trees clawed their way toward the dying sun like so many corpses. As I watched the ghost of a sun fell away and the skyline deepened from dull russets to deep reds. Watching the world die, as it did every night, I brought out my silver lighter and lit up a smoke and took a long drag. The smoke curled up, sparkling in the darkness, tinging the air with the sweet smell of tobacco. Relaxing, I leaned back on my motorcycle, to clean the dried blood from my fingernails with my favorite curved blade. Slipping the dagger back into my belt I listened to the comforting screeches of ravens, black as night, circling my victim. They yearned to pick the flesh from his bones but wouldn’t dare touch him without my permission.
    After a few more calming puffs I crushed the cigarette into the ground; the frosty mist dissipated before my eyes. Bending down I reached for my bag, which was slumped against a petrified tree, and threw it over my shoulder forcefully. Feeling my supplies digging into my back I did a quick inventory as the pitiful wailing continued; a small kit of polished silver instruments, a burly rusted cleaver, couple packs of smokes, a small jar of nails, my shiny set of knives, a few lengths of chain and my lucky hammer. Eyeing the man bleeding under the scorched night sky, bones sticking out at odd angles, I could almost feel sorry for him. But he knew what he’d done.
    Turning towards my bike, her chrome chassis shining in the dim light, a loud gurgle called back to me. When he coughed I could hear the blood dribble down his chin and his breath wheeze against the broken ribs painfully. “Pl-” he tried to plead. I turned, dropped the canvas strap of my bag to my knee and started towards the brute. With every step I took he squirmed and attempted to protect himself with any limbs he could move; he was petrified of what I was going to do.
    As I came to stand over him he squealed and tried, again, to speak. The vocalization that came this time sounded as though he was drinking a milkshake, though he was really choking on his own blood and bile. “Please don’t leave me,” he begged through split lips and chipped teeth spilling over with sludgy blood. The body before me reeked of rancid gore and urine. Hot rage at this piece of crap asking for help ripped through my veins; I lashed out at his stomache with my steel-toed boot and walked away. His screaming was soon drowned out by the engine revving into the lonely night.
    Before I drove away, though, I lit up another fag and gazed at one of the pitch ravens wheeling impatiently overhead. As though we’d spoken the tiny flock descended on the body amid inhuman, guttural shrieks of terror. Between the birds arose a victory cheer as they ripped his flesh from bone.
    The wind whipped my long hair in a tangled mess as I rode through the dark lands in the dark. All through the night I didn’t meet a single soul until I crossed into the city. Brightly lit bars and hotels flashed neon to attract lost souls and empty hearts. But I coasted into the darkened lot of my favorite watering hole gently and relieved my steed of her heavy burden. Walking up to the door I knocked loudly and a hush fell on the occupants.
    Beside the door hung a muddy, once-ornate mirror with more chips than reflective surface. When I stepped before it a tall woman in a patched leather coat glared back at me. The scar across my eye nearly glowed silver in the lone electric lightbulb. Here and there splatters of a sickly red substance clung to the woman’s clothing and hair but she didn’t seem to care; she wanted to look tough. “It’s me!” I bellowed in my deepest voice.
    By the time Joseph, the barkeep, got to the door I was about ready to put my favorite hammer through someone’s eye socket. I strode past him before he’d even fully unlatched the door and threw him a dirty look before joining a flashy blonde in five inch heels in the booth in the back. Ali’s nose was planted firmly in her phone checking out a particularly scrawny killer on a hog when I snatched it from her fingers. “Screw you, Tara,” she spat as I fumbled with the flimsy piece of metal and glass.
    Sneering at her I slid the phone back and unbuckled my bag. Jo brought ‘round a straight vodka with an irritated sigh towards my bloody bag on his bench before he went back to cleaning the filthy counter. When I pulled out my phone, a chipped and beaten metal box, Ali gasped. On the drive home I’d sent a message back to the Den, where I work, that I’d left the guy for dead and hadn’t extracted any useful information for the client. The Den took people who’d run afoul of the law and gave us licenses as contract killers for wealthy clients.
    I’d been found guilty of killing a guy for getting handsy, so my punishment had been turning off the emotional part of me or I would’ve gone insane. Ali had been for me through the tough but she didn’t get it. “Tara, you need to actually kill them sometimes,” she huffed in her cute little way. Glancing around she lowered her voice, “The Den’ll get rid of you if you don’t start delivering,” concern spread from her eyes. Gently she touched my hand, careful not to touch the dried blood splotches, and looked up into my scarred face.
    “They wouldn’t dare,” I growled, taking a long swig of fiery alcohol.
    Fixing her hair, Ali talked in the voice of reason I always needed, “You are supposed to kill them personally. Them’s the rules. I won’t bail you out again.” Packing up her belongings she shot me a convincing look.
    Another mouthful of vodka and I sighed, “Fine. I swear, by the binding promise of the sacred New Year’s Resolution, that I will kill people more often.” Even if it was the end of July I got a smug smile outta her as she sauntered out into the blinding light of night.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Russell:
    The blaring alarm needled my ears as I rolled around uncomfortably in my rubbery bed. I slap my hand down on the table, missing the alarm and knocking over my plastic night lamp. Tumbling up, slouching as I made my way to the bathroom. A familiar tired face greeted me, heavy lidded eyes and straggly thin beard barely that’s worth mentioning.
    Undressing, I step into the shower and turn the tap. Nothing. The cold apartment air bites at me as I try turning the tap back and forth. Stepping out and putting on my bathrobes, I walk back to the kitchen and look at the pile of letters splayed across the counter. “Due return deposit”, “Late fee” “Please pay now.” I looked away, instead picking up my old phone and listening to saved messages.
    “You have 5 new messages!” The electronic voice chirped.
    “New message!” – “Hey, It’s me. Li-listen…that um, get rich quick scheme didn’t do so well and I’m out of luck right now. I was wo-wondering if you had some spare ch-change? An-anything for a friend? Gi-give me a call back wh-when you get the chance.”
    “New message!” – “This the Royal United Bank of America reunited. You currently have several late fees stacking up and you must pay them by the end of the month or you shall face legal repercussions. We advise you to comply with our terms and talk with us about finding a way to pay your debts to us. Thank you. Have a nice day.”
    “New Message!” – “This is Hydro America East. We have turned off the water to your home because of late fees. Please pay the late fines to continue having our services. Thank you.”
    “New Message!” – “You had a lot of nerve showing your face back at my place Ronald. You know I can’t get dragged into this! I can’t help you through all your problems. Solve it your self!”
    “New Message!” – “I have job for you. We’ve met in prison before, you might not remember me. Alex. My boss heard you’ve been robbing small joints just out of town. We can help you with that. Give me a call back with this number.”
    I blankly look at the phone in disbelief. Alex? Could it be him again?
    I look up at the calendar. December 31st New year’s. I take a glass out my cabinet and pour whisky, leaning on the counter. I would have preferred some ice. This wasn’t hard choice really. What choice did I have left?
    I lift my drink in a lonely toast. “This new year’s, I’m going to rob more banks.” I downed the liquid fire before dialing back Alex for potential work.

    Liked by 1 person

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