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PROMPTuesday #124: Where Do You Go Now?

October 4th, 2010

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Oh Autumn, my Autumn. How you dredge up images of misted lakes and overgrown roads. Of beany soups and plastic princess masks that stole my breath. I will never forget your drifting leaves and crackling fires. Your dry hay swirls and new schoolbooks. The way you make me want to tell stories.

 

And hear them.

 

So PROMPTuesdayers? Seems I’ve really missed my story starters. I don’t know, I guess I got a little lazy and take it easy on you all. So now that the Fall calls our imagination, let’s get down to the business of creating, and gird our writing loins to finish the story begun below.

 

The sheets blew forward in a sudden blast of air, rattling the clothespins and setting Leota’s nerves on edge. But that strange wind was hardly the least of it. She wasn’t at all prepared for what came next.

 

Please start your tale (or finish it) with the lines above and then post your story in the comments OR post in your blog and leave a link to your blog in the comments.

 

First time to PROMPTuesday? Read a bit about it here. Want to see what’s been written in the past? Catch up on the PROMPTuesdays archive here.

 

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On October 4th, 2010, Tweets that mention San Diego Momma » Blog Archive » PROMPTuesday #124: Where Do You Go Now? -- Topsy.com said:

[…] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Sugar Jones and San Diego Momma, Laura Vivoni. Laura Vivoni said: RT @sandiegomomma I want to hear stories. Stories. Stories. Today's writing prompt is all about the tale telling. http://bit.ly/cAkEXo […]

On October 4th, 2010, ms picket to you said:

I was.

I knew who was coming.

The Sheriff would come, but others too. Men in fancy clothes from Birmingham. Men with guns and machinery. Machines to dig and machines to see what they couldn’t dig.

There are only so many places to hide, and I was done with her evil doing.

###

THANKS!

On October 4th, 2010, Lori Pace said:

The sheets blew forward in a sudden blast of air, rattling the clothes pins and setting Leota’s nerves on edge. But that strange wind was hardly the least of it. She wasn’t at all prepared for what came next.

It was as if he appeared from no where. Entering with confidence yet looking so needy. It had been a year and it took her breath away to see him again, standing tall and tan, wearing the sweater she was sure she’d given him.

She didn’t want him here. Did not want him in her sights, much less her memory. She did not want to hear his voice.

“Hi Leota.”

She wanted to run, hide, act as if it were not happening. But where could she escape? To a cold, empty house behind her? Rocked by death and destruction? A house with a soul that weeped for it’s losses? A house that was no longer a home?

He came closer, the smell of his musk permeating through the air, drowning the scent of the clean laundry, flailing in the wind, whipping its self dry.

“How are you?”

How was she? Did he really care? Or were formalities the only security he had left?

Sad. Scared. Bitter.

“What are you doing here?”

She didn’t really care, honestly, but habit took over, betraying her need to not hear him speak again.

“I’ve missed you.”

“I can’t say the same.”

Her retort took him back. Rendered him weak. Revealed his true self.

“I know you are angry. I…”

She watched him fumble, reminding her of the day he left. Off to ‘find himself’, ‘redefine his life’, ‘see what else was out there’. Her hatred rose. Daring her to squash it for yet another year. He seemed lost. She welcomed him to her world.

“You have no reason to be here. Go away.”

“Please Leota, give me a chance! I’ve missed you.”

She wondered what he meant by those words, “I’ve missed you.”

What had he missed? Her laugh, her smile, her scent? Her character, her moods, her insecurity?

Or had he really missed the normality? The safety? Not having to try anymore?

She wanted to scorch him with what he had actually missed. Her Mother’s death, her Father’s desertion, the miscarriage. She wanted to scream from that gusty porch that his need to leave and create something for himself sent her world crashing to the ground. That her hatred for him masked the true love she only allowed herself to yearn for when she looked down the neck of a bottle. That her heart ached for him while her brain plotted against him.

No way to live for a young, beautiful girl. But the only way she knew how to live anymore.

“Go away. There is no place for you here. Never was.”

She could see his eyes wanting to argue but change their mind. Her steely, cold resolve too thick to explain through.

He turned to leave, slowly, unhappy that he had not accomplished his goal of smothering his rough beard in her neck. His own heart breaking with the realization of what he had created. Knowing full well he would never see her again. Praying that she would be OK.

She watched him walk away, dust kicking up with his heels. Every step a stamp on the footsteps he had left before. The distance becoming a comfort she was oddly relieved to feel.

The laundry was dry now. Sun kissed and crisp from the gusty winds. She would get it later. When she needed it.

As she walked around her old family homestead and into the cottage in the back, she heard the baby, waking from his nap, certain to be hungry. He was the one that hung on. The one that defied the odds. He’d stuck around on when the other wanted to go to God.

She cuddled her son now, opened her shirt to feed, and her heart to love. Pushing aside the knowledge that he had his father’s eyes and cleft in his chin, she relished in her motherhood.

The guilt of sending him away subsided. This is what it is all about, she thought. A boy and his Mother, on a hot, dusty, country day. Feeding and rocking to the beat of the rattling clothes pins.

Never to be bothered again.

My first shot at Prompt Tuesday- probably pretty predicatable ;)

On October 4th, 2010, granny mam said:

I thought this story was awesome, and so realistic. dang, hate it when they make me cry, I felt sorry for him and her, him, because he was a fool when he left the first time and has to ” sleep in that bed”, her, because she still loved him but her pride would not let him back in. Good stuff!

On October 5th, 2010, Mama Mary said:

Not sure if it was your mention of beany soups or the gust of wind but all I can think about is farting. That’s all I got today. xo

On October 5th, 2010, melissa said:

ok, mine is up. http://www.rockanddrool.com

On October 6th, 2010, Kel said:

Fall. Crisp, clean, cool fall…oh how I love thee…let me count the ways! :) (October birthdays help make this month oober special too!) ;)
~K

On November 3rd, 2010, Julia said:

so I broke the rule about the time limit…it took me almost a month hahaha, that’s longer than 10 minutes, and also it’s way longer than 150 words. So be it. IT.IS.DONE. Now I can rest…http://jtcricket.blogspot.com/2010/11/gift-of-flight-much-later.html

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