Fiction Friday – 11 January 2008

This Week’s Theme: Write a scene that ends with your character saying: ‘I never want to see you again.’

“You make me sick.”

There, I’ve said it. Finally. After all these years. This has been building inside me for months. No, I need to be honest. Years.

We haven’t seen eye to eye in so long. You hold me back in everything I do. It’s got to the stage where I can’t go anywhere, because quite simply, you embarrass me. The way you act, the way you talk, absolutely everything about you makes me cringe. I watch you and I just want the earth to swallow me up. I listen to what you have to say to people and it is such arrogant rubbish that I want to scream ‘shut up’.

“I… I hate you. It’s as simple as that.”

And it’s gone beyond the fixing stage. I can’t see any way back now. What little respect I once had for you has long since faded. We’re finished. I can’t do this any more. And you know what, I’m not even sorry. I’m relieved.

Your lip trembles, as does mine. I guess the truth is scary. I splash some water on my face, pat it dry, then recheck my reflection, before turning away.

“I never want to see you again.”

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9 thoughts on “Fiction Friday – 11 January 2008”

  1. Short and yes, as you commented on the WS site – bittersweet. It’s always difficult to write perhaps when there is more than a tad of fact in the fiction that we’re writing – especially something as gut wrenching for the ego and soul as this is.

    This was the first idea that came into my mind, when I was desperately trying to avoid cliched type love story trysts – but wasn’t really what I wanted to write (like I ever really get a choice in what I ‘want’ to write!) I’d love to know what your intention was when you submitted the prompt?

    And working backwards was a totally bizarre way of constructing a story – especially being given the final line … which is usually my favourite to write. Thanks for a real challenge Paul – its a real honour being part of a collective (of sorts!) with you!

  2. Ouch. I remember conversations like these, and they remain with you for a very long time. Well done, Paul. Charged with every bit of punch such a monologue should have.

  3. So does this mean he’s going out to become a vampire? (I thought of doing something light with a vampire who actually sees his reflection and yells the line at it because he’s a freak and ostracized by the other vampires, but… well, I’m not sure why I didn’t.)

  4. I really need to check my comments more closely — it’s “something” not “someone” – like this:

    definitely something I would write, as we often had a love/hate relationship with ourselves.

    (White on black is really hard for me to read, sorry for the mistakes”

  5. Jodi – yup, I wanted to avoid it being a love story, or a couple splitting up. It starts out sounding like that, but winds up closer to the short I wrote “Inquisitor”. As for the ideas I had in mind when I came up with the prompt… Keith’s first one is similar to one of the vague ideas I had in my mind. I also wondered about having the line addressed to an inanimate object (cursed?), or maybe an animal (think the song “The Cat Came Back”).

    Gautami – it took me a little by surprise just how viscious it came out!

    Keith and notfrommars – great minds think alike!

    Square1 – I’ve never had one at this level, but in the past there have been conversations with the man in the mirror, and they aren’t always happy ones…

    pjd – this is why I like keeping things ambiguous, to hear other interpretations of the work – although you always run the risk of the person doing the interpreting coming up with something far more interesting!

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