And thus here they are. I thought this was a fun prompt considering the day. Though, I must admit, I gave up on NaNo in the first half of the month. Now, I want to say I have a pretty good reason (it’s a cool reason, that I hope to share with you soon) but, well, I’m also a bit of a procrastinator…
But that’s beside the point. These are the finalist:
Now, read these fabulous entries and get to voting. Winner’s announced at 9:45ish tonight. Assuming I don’t fall asleep like I did last week…
“This is weird.”
I looked up from my laptop to find Lex leaning in the archway to the living room, a strange expression darkening her features.
“What is?” I asked. She crossed to sit on the couch next to me.
“I’m used to seeing you captive to your paintbrush, Kelle, but writing?” She slid the back of her fingers along my cheek, eyes searching mine.
“It’s catharsis,” I whispered. She frowned and I turned the screen towards her, letting her read the dedication, watching as her lips parted at the import, then scrolled to the end and let her read the last sentence.
“Oh, Kelle,” she breathed, sliding her arm around my shoulders, tucking me against her. I set the computer aside and burrowed into her.
“I know I’ve kinda disappeared over the last month, but I had to get it all out,” I said, pursing my lips against the pulse fluttering against her skin. “It helped,” I added, lifting my eyes to meet hers.
Lex cupped my face in her hands. “I’m glad,” she said, leaning in to press her lips to mine ever so tenderly. “Do you want to do anything with it?” she asked and I blinked, the rush of blood to my nerves distracting me from her words.
“I don’t know yet.” I leaned into her, seeking her lips again, and she chuckled.
“Something tells me you’re distracted,” she murmured against my lips and I chuckled.
“You could say that.” A month of nothing but writing and dredging up a decade of old baggage. I craved her touch, her kiss, her fuck. “Take me, Lex,” I begged, “make me yours.”
“Always, baby,” she answered, tugging me into her lap, letting her kiss take the sharp edge I’d come to need. “And you’ve always been mine.”
‘But my fingers are bleeding’ Taslu whimpered, unable to raise her head where it hung inches from the old fashioned metal typewriter. The letters & numbers were worn off the keys, the levers and cogs inside dirty and cobwebbed, but also dripping in dried, congealing and fresh blood; he’d forced her here, hour upon hour, day after day, to write for the last 30 days.
‘Type it, type ‘The End”, he calmly and quietly instructed.
She didn’t know if any of it would make sense to anyone, it certainly didn’t make any sense to her anymore. Her mind was a jumble of confused feelings, but mostly no feelings at all as she felt broken and empty; he had taken everything from her when he stole her from her home & locked her here in this dark place with only his voice, not even his face, for company.
Would he free her now that it was finished? She didn’t know and she didn’t care. She belonged to him now to do with what he wished, she was devoid of desire for anything but for the writing to stop; and with that, she typed with shaking, cold & blood streaked fingers, ‘The End’.
“Your deadline is the first,” the voice on the phone said.
“The first of the year, right?” Alex’s fingers tightened on the receiver. Please let it be January or even February. Heck, July was more feasible.
“December first, Alex. We’ve been waiting for the new manuscript for months. I loved the outline you sent, but there’s been nothing since. Is everything okay?” Her voice sounded wary. It usually did when she was afraid that Alex wasn’t going to produce another novel.
Was everything okay, though? Alex looked away from the wall she’d been staring at. Her house guest was right where she’d left him, reclining on the couch. His green hair caught the light from the desk lamp, shimmering like dew on a pine tree. No, she decided, everything wasn’t okay. Not so long as a demon was holed up in her house.
A demon that ate almost every word she wrote.
“I, ah, I don’t think I can write a whole novel in a month, Carrie.” Alex admitted and cringed when she realized her slip.
“You haven’t even started on it? Alex, I have to have something by the first or the contract will be voided.”
Alex looked at the calendar. She had thirty days to write a novel. All while Titivillus was trying to destroy her work. “I’ll do my best.”
“What was that about, chickie?” Titivillus frowned, picking up her frustration as the phone slammed back in its charger.
“Looks like we’re going back to work.” She rolled her chair back to her desk and pulled up the file that only contained two words, the title of her new novel.
“Oh goody!” A large bag appeared in his hand as the demon skipped over and took up his spot on the floor next to the desk. “Use some big ones, I’m feeling peckish.”
“Ah Jaysus! are you just going to ignore me?”
“I’ll be with ye in a sec.”
“What’s going on here, we never communicate anymore, we barely even talk to each other.”
“I’ll talk to ye in a minute, I just need to finish this.”
“Yeah right, I could stand here with my tits hanging out and you wouldn’t even notice.”
“Sure I would.”
“Can you not even look up from that stupid computer while we are fighting.”
“Look at me for fuck sake!”
“Please just let me finish this chapter and I’ll do whatever you want.”
“It’s too late for us, I’m walking out that door and I’m going to a bar and I’m going to fuck the brains out of the first guy who buys me a drink. What do you think of that. I’ll bet he’ll be a better fuck than you.”
“Hm hm, nearly finished.”
“I want a man who’ll appreciate me, one who’ll look after my needs. Take me to dinner, buy me flowers and presents. I want a man who knows how to give me an orgasm, is that too much to ask?”
“I’ll do what ever you want, I just have to get this book finished in a month.”
“You and you’re stupid bloody book. Look at me, I’m gasping for it, I’m not even going to wait to get to the bar. The first man I see can have me.”
“Oh go fuck off. That’s it, I’m going.”
“Sorry, dear, nearly finished. What were you saying?”
It wasn’t easy, but she’d finally did it. And after reading the last sentence, she smiled. Her story was complete. Took her thirty days, but she’d finally done it.
Michelle wrote about what happened to her over ten years ago. Ok, so Adrian doesn’t know why she couldn’t make it to the train station to elope with him…
“Well, he will now,” she smiled.
“Know what?” Novia called from her placed curled up on the sofa with her laptop.
“You know that nanowrimo thing I was telling you about?” she asked.
“Yeah. You never told me what you were writing about,” Novia responded.
“It’s the story about us. Where we’ve been, what we’ve done this las decade,” Michelle sighed. “Adrian wouldn’t listen to me and understand the reasons why I never came to meet him. Well, now the world will know.”
She entered her words, all 70,000 of them into the win box on the website and submitted them. She felt more than a winner for doing this. But, not only did she submit it to the writing contest, she also sent them in an email to Adrian. She managed to get his email address from off a business card he gave to Novia.
After pressing send in her email, she muttered, “And now…so will he.”
Novia shot up, nearly dropping her laptop. “What!”
She ran over, looking over Michelle’s shoulder. “You didn’t! You couldn’t!”
“I could, and I did,” she sighed.
“B-b-but, why? Why did you do it?”
Michelle shrugged. “Well, he needed an explanation, and I needed to get it out. Writing it all down has really shown me how crazy I was all those years ago to let him leave without me. Sure, my parents threatened to disown me. But, in the end, not only did I lose them anyway, I lost him.”
Novia rubbed her friend’s shoulder comfortingly. “So, he needed the story. He needed my teenage reasoning. But most importantly…”
A lone tear escaped from Michelle’s eye. She tried to wipe it away with an unsteady hand. Sighing, she finished, “He needed to know that I did love him…that I still love him. Ten years could never change that.”
Novia nodded. “And if he doesn’t forgive you?”
Michelle shrugged. “Didn’t ask for his forgiveness. Why, when I can’t even forgive myself? Our happiness shattered…and all because I was too young to deal with love. I can now…but much too late.”
Sighing, she stood and went to her room to be alone.