Wednesday May 31st, 2017

The exercise:

I just realized how long it has been since last we worked with the random CD prompt. Just another sign of how busy life has been, I suppose.

At any rate, that's what we're doing on this, the final day of May. Go find a song as randomly as you like and make use of its first line as your own. Giving credit where it's due, let your inspiration and imagination take over from there.

Did a family trip up to Penticton this morning/early afternoon to get some errands done. Went quite well, with Miles falling asleep for a little while in both directions and Max being entertained by videos.

Strange to think that this is only day two of six before I return to work.

Assuming the strawberries don't all ripen up before then. Probably doing a pick on Saturday regardless, just not sure how many we should be expecting to get off the plants at that point.

Mine:

Sweet Disaster by Whitehorse

Galileo was bluffing.

He had to be. Who would believe anything that crazy old fool said? He was already under house arrest for his crimes against the church and common sense, what more did he have to lose?

His life? He didn't have much of one, it seemed to me. Nothing worth spending too much time or energy on, at any rate. It would have been kinder, I'd often thought, if they'd just put him to death and had that dirty bit of business done with for good.

No, there was utterly no chance that he was telling the truth. He hardly seemed to believe the words he was speaking himself. I think all the fight must have been out of him by then.

At any rate, it made my decision all the easier.

"I call your bet," I told him as I slid two stacks of my chips into the middle of his wobbly kitchen table. After a moment's hesitation (a fairly decent bluff on my part, I should think) I added another stack. "And I raise you by another hundred."

2 Comments:

Greg said...

I hope the strawberry pick is easy and goes well! Sounds like you're enjoying the extended time off -- is a good compensation for the extended time on though?
I really enjoyed the misdirection in your piece today, with the reveleation of the bluff being perfectly logical, fitting the text, and still a definite surprise. I also like the way you describe Galileo... though I'm not entirely sure he'd appreciate it :)

Building Steam by Abney Park
I, I've suffered long enough in this ghost town. The frogs are calling from the swamp on the outskirts and the crickets are humming madly in the bushes. Mary died two nights ago and there's only me left. I thought about burying her, but then I dragged her body out to the square. The coyotes took it fast enough. It might not be Christian for whatever values of that is left, but she's serving a better purpose. And if she's gone to better place then what does she care? (And if not, then isn't it what she deserved?)

I saw the walls, called their bluff and took them down. And sure enough they were dead behind them then as well. I should have worked it out weeks ago though: where were they getting water from? No pipes leading into the old schoolhouse, no well on the grounds, and Mary showed me the plans: the foundations were barely enough to keep it getting blown over in a strong wind. And still I hesitated, held back and waited. If she hadn't died I'd probably be waiting still.

When I think of all the time I've wasted, all the bitter pills I've tasted – I have to hang my head and frown. I, I've suffered long enough in this ghost town. I walked out to the swamp, closed my eyes and inhaled. The smell of salt was still there, faint but lingering. I opened my eyes - I'm not stupid enough to walk out into a quagmire with my eyes closed – and set out. Mud sucked at my boots like a long-forgotten lover and the frogs sat belligerently in my way as though daring me to make them move. Logs lay rotting in the water, but some of them might have been crocodiles. And I headed always in the direction of the strongest salt smell, towards the sea.
The sun was low and near to setting when the stand of trees finally emerged from the rising mist. Standing on firm land again was a relief: my legs trembled and ached and I kept wanting to sway over and try and keep a balance I was no longer losing. I took a moment to rest, stabilise myself, and then I walked over to the thin silver birch that was best aligned with north and ran my hands over its scaly, peeling bark. I found the rough edges quickly and popped open the little hatch that belonged in no living tree, reached in and turned the handle. It was stiff after all this time, but not stuck, and as it turned I heard the reassuring hiss of pressure changing.
It was time to unbury the airship Queen Magrethe and take to the skies again.

Marc said...

Greg - yeah, it made up for the 8 out of 10 days on. I'm happy to be back on 4 and 4 now though.

Hah, thanks :)

What a great opening line o work with! And all that followed it was utterly fascinating. Love your descriptions, as always, and that ending demands continuation.

Or maybe that's just me doing the demanding...

Anyway, I very much enjoyed this one.