Monday June 15th, 2015

The exercise:

Write about: the last chance.

I am, once again, horribly behind on replying to comments. I will try to get going with that in the next couple of days.

Spent the morning weeding in the garden, the afternoon hanging out with Max, and the evening... hanging out with Max while he should have been sleeping.

Back out to the garden tomorrow morning to harvest peas and raspberries for local orders.


"Take me back, baby - please!"

She looks at him for a while, watches him squirm. Her face is impassive, her eyes dry. She says nothing.

"Come on, you know I love you!"

It is difficult for her to resist rolling her eyes at this, but she manages. She has heard this before.

"Look, I know I screwed up, okay? Big time! I'm sorry. I'm so, so sorry."

Her jaw tenses for a moment before she is able to force it to relax. He is being unwise. She does not want to be reminded of his transgressions. It would be in his best interests if she never thought of them again.

"I'll make it up to you!"

This has her attention. She arches an eyebrow, cocks her head to the right. A single word escapes her lips.


The words come tumbling out now, seemingly racing each other out of his mouth. She listens. Eventually he stumbles to a halt. He waits, his expression pained, hopeful. She considers what she has just been told, a little longer than absolutely necessary.

She smiles.

"One last chance."


Greg said...

You're not too badly off with comments; I only have to go the next-to-bottom post on the second page to find the first one you've not responded to :) I figure it's my own fault for not writing anything interesting in them anyway!
Hmm, your protagonist seems to be very sure she's in control; she comes across as the kind of person who'd manage any situation to her own advantage. I am sorry we don't know what she's been offered for that last chance – I bet it's interesting, and I didnt' think she was going to give in!

The Last Chance
The knife, really just a sharpened piece of flint with one end wrapped in wool, sliced across his forearm. For a moment there was just a coldness, as though the wind had blown across it, and then little red jewels rose on the surface and ran together. As the blood seeped through the broken skin and started to drip on the floor the pain flared, a sharp sensation that twisted his stomach.
"Don't worry," said a light voice. It was soft enough to feel like a caress, but there was humour in it too, which seemed inappropriate. "Let the blood run for a minute and then wipe it away. The skin will have pulled back together then. Just don't go punching anyone for a couple of hours."
"Like you?" he tried for anger, but the bone-weariness he felt infected his words as well and he sounded... well, even to his own ears he sounded resigned.
"Sweetheart, as if."
"Why cut me? Why not kill me and be done with it?"
"Look down."
He did, and found that at some point she'd drawn a circle around him. Droplets of blood had fallen on the circle's boundary and it had started shimmering, infused with power. "A summoning circle?" he asked.
"Not quite," she said. "A focusing one. One that knows your blood."
"And that matters why?" If she was bleeding him out he'd have understood; his death would have powered the circle to enable her to do almost anything, briefly. But just droplets... what more than a tracking spell could she be after? She seemed to read his mind.
"Not tracking you," she said, and laughed. It was pleasant to listen to. "Tracking the rest of your blood. I want your whole family dead."
He started laughing, probably because he was too tired to control himself. Anger now entered her voice.
"You'll see." She muttered the words of a spell, and the precision of her tone made him sure that she was reading it. It was something she'd found then, not something she understood. That explained... well, everything.
"That should have worked," she said, hesitantly. "They should all be dead, but... nothing seems to have happened."
"Wait for it," he said. A moment later she collapsed, blood draining from her face. He stood up.
"Rebound," he said. "You and all your family die instead. No, don't try and speak. You missed something important; I'm the only one of my family left, so the spell couldn't work on me. I am, you see, the last Chance."

Anonymous said...

I’m on the edge of the world, no time to think,
No time to wish for a fuck or another cold drink.
All I can think of is you and what you did to me,
Kissing her in public, just to make me flee.
I gave you a chance, the last one I had
To take me home, to make me glad.
That letter I sent was supposed to bring you here,
Supposed to bring you to conquer my fear
That you had indeed left me for good with no
Thought toward the status of being friend or foe.

I’m on the edge of the world, no time to think,
Just to stand there in silence, staring at the brink
Of eternity. There’s nothing left for me to do
But to take a deep breath and follow through.

Marc said...

Greg - yeah, almost two weeks... bleh. But now I'm back around a week behind, so that's... better!

Thanks. Perhaps I shall continue this another time and fill us all in on the conditions of her beau's final chance :)

That is an excellent scene, I really enjoyed reading that. And that ending, with its twist on the prompt, well... only you, sir. And I mean that entirely as a compliment :)

Ivy - that's some great work. I think the first two lines are especially powerful, which makes for a great start to the poem. The rest follows strongly in their wake, really conveying the emotions of the narrator.