175 Words Plus A Sentence

We’re getting a new professor over at Master Class 2013.

In addition, k~ asked me to this week refrain from writing about dead people or people seeing dead people – maybe even try something life-affirming for a change…

These modifications of course, make me nervous. So much so, that – as you probably guessed from today’s title – I totally blew my usually self-imposed 150-word limit.

No worries though, I’m still Times New Roman, double spaced and one inch margined, all ’round.

So, understanding that this week’s twist is fitting the prompt sentence somewhere within the body of the text (versus being at the beginning or the end) below is week six’s submission for Master Class 2013:

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Seeing her smile, he felt like a safe cracker who – partly by luck – had sussed out the first digit in a lengthy, arduous combination. She was more of a puzzle than she was a safe of course. But in the idea of locating the first two pieces to match, you just don’t achieve the same sort of satisfaction. Or so he imagined. Oh hell, he had no idea what he was trying to describe.

But that’s the way it was with love, now wasn’t it? He was unsure, as he had never felt this before. Not True Love at any rate.

He could hear his soul nudging him, “Shut up and talk to her already, you fool!”

Working up the nerve, he met her vacuous gaze while nervously scratching out a hello of sorts. All while his trembling body gave hint that – upon hearing her response – it might very well simply fall apart at each and every seam.

Before she could speak however, the gruff voice of the store manager intruded forcefully from behind, saying, “Sir, I’ve told you before – you frighten the other customers away, when you talk to our mannequins like that.”

•••

Shannon chose for this week, from Lev Grossman’s “The Magicians.”

Yeah, I just went there.

I didn’t

Today’s Friday Fictioneer photo prompt was difficult for me to write for. Some might say that, in the final analysis, I didn’t.

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copyright-David Stewart

Searching deep within the lines taut across his fear-filled face, I realized that the story had already been told.

It’s a story that no human should ever have to endure, though so many hundreds of thousands have. A tale of fear, welling up in your throat forcefully as you try desperately – and in vain – to outrun a Death that is larger, warmer, and oh so more quick than you will ever be; a Death that flagrantly belches itself out across the land.

Weeping gently, I placed my pen aside the unused sheet of paper. There would be no story today.

•••

Daily News

As the song pumps through the air, my body once again aches. But not with the same ache as last time.

No, last time it ached pleasantly as I traversed the ever-tightening circle of sweaty bodies and hair dye. Swerving through the crowd, I rode the various waves of mutilation, as the tune thumped through the overhead speakers of the dingy club. A club that could have very well been called “Club Whatever You Do, Do NOT Use The Restroom Here.” Regardless, much like “Rocky Horror Picture Show,” it wasn’t the actual art that was the thing; so much as it was the community exercise that built up around its existence.

We were a family of people, all who had no family – or at least family who truly “got” us. We were Tribe. Brothers and sisters, many of whom shared benefits – often times out of convenience, and other times due to sheer lust-love. I can’t think of too many people who would turn down a beautiful, slightly overweight, shapely Goth chick with crazy “Robert Smith” hair and a smile to die for. One who was a wonderful kisser, and down for just about anything under the sun. Well, the moon would be more appropriate, I suppose. I mean, she was a Goth, after all. We were stupid, brash, brazen and accidentally beautiful, and we were going to change the world whether it knew it or not. Not by jumping into The Game and becoming The Man either, no sir. Rather, we were going to make The Man come to us.

Bow yer head, Bitch. We HAVE arrived!

I think of all this as the song plays again, years later, from my tinny little iPod. No “Man” is at my feet however, and no Brave New World awaits me as I listen. Nope, it’s just me. Speed walking on my mother-in-law’s treadmill. In my basement. The basement of the house that sits just on the outskirts of Suburbia. A suburbia that sits just on the outskirts of “Where The Rich People Dwell.” The pain this time isn’t resulting from joy of camaraderie either. No, the pain this time is of a mortal who is one year past being The Answer To Life, The Universe And Everything. A mere mortal who needs to get his non-punk rockian weight back down to a reasonable number, so that his wife might again find him attractive. Or barring that, at least allow him the good health as to live long enough to see his grandkids get married. I mean, he’s got to have at least one, right?

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The Tribe is long gone, as I walk in my basement briskly to nowhere, staying in the same exact spot, regardless of how many miles I tack on. Don’t worry; it’s a life analogy that I am painfully aware of as I write this, just one that I don’t want to address here. You know, to help me avoid breaking into tears, much like a two year old who’s just been found with a soiled pull-up, and no one to blame but herself.

The Tribe is gone, but the song remains. As do I. Life isn’t what I thought it would be. I’m sure you can say the same. Some of it is worse than I was hoping for, and there’s quite a bit that’s much better as well. I’m glad the song stuck around to remind me of a past that I enjoyed and a present that I know now I never will.

Such a power for one little song to have. And to think, all these years later, outside of the chorus, I’ve no earthly idea what Wattie and the boys are even talking about…

Briefly…

And here I was, upset that in ending my 100 Words tale (yes kids, it’s finally ending), I was going to have to leave “Clive” behind.

Fortunately, along then came Donetta, who provided me with the perfect prompt to send him on his way as well!

That being said, and with a (somewhat at least) imaginary tear in my eye, here’s this week’s 100 Word Song.

And here’s a little ditty that I’m thinking “Clive” could’ve most likely benefited from listening to at some point in time, had he the inclination…

150 Words Plus A Sentence PLUS

I’ve always wanted to combine two or more prompts into one. I don’t know why, it just seems like all the good, cool writers do this at one point or another.

Well, I finally did it, but not because I’m necessarily good and/or cool. No, it had more to do with my wasting one post this week entirely on pissing and moaning instead (thanks for allowing me to punch the wall for a bit, kids).

So, with that being said, here’s my “mash-up” for both the folks at Friday Fictioneers and Master Class 2013 (whose twist this week included that we end with the prompt, versus starting with it). I hope you enjoy it enough to tell me what I can do better next time, and I hope you decide to jump in on the fun.

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A19.

There was something about that damned gate and me. It seemed as if every time our paths crossed, I was sure to have to endure at least some sort of fuckery during my flight. And not the same sort of fuckery that usually occurs.

No, with A19 in the mix, I’d seen passengers die unexpectedly, brawls ensue over in-flight magazine possession, and even once a smoker – after getting trashed on overpriced airline booze – being arrested when we landed, for yanking out the toilet’s smoke alarm.

This last time however, was the kicker. I’ve no idea what happened, but as the plane was landing, it careened out of control, slamming right into the side of the building. The A19 side, of course. The side that I was dawdling in, waiting to board a flight that instead boarded me.

And now here I’m stuck, presumably forever, haunting stupid-ass gate A19. Oh well, maybe that’s the way it’s supposed to be.

•••

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(148 real words, 1 made-up word used twice, 2 dashes, and a sentence.)

This weeks story prompt was brought to you by Judy Blume’s “Tiger Eyes,” musical accompaniment by Mr. Frank Sinatra, of course.