He Who Loves

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shorty
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He Who Loves

Postby shorty » Fri Jun 20, 2008 1:26 pm

newest writing. read if you like.

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She smells, sickly-sweet, of pink bubblegum. He looks down at her hands, painted nails, with wrinkles betraying a life of hardship, holding a book she intends to purchase. It's a paperback thriller, a quick jaunt into a world of intrigue, a fix of the interest she'll never be able to find for herself. He offers her a smile, and a few words of encouragement, as she hands him the bills. He looks into her eyes and loves her, loves her, loves her. She takes the change and turns. His eyes are filled with a heavy sadness as she walks, out of the store, out of his life.

Away, sideways, up and over, a boy nearly a man looks across the room and finds himself lost in eyes of a girl. He can't think straight for the next hour. He musters courage he'd never had before and walks up to her, before she leaves. He says something, hardly paying attention to the words. She laughs.

The bell above the door rings.

She is awkward, freckled and bespectacled, and she thinks these things matter. He watches as her hands fly through the records with a deftness that will one day be noticed by someone who can show her what she looks like in their own eyes. Now, though, she is myopic, and as she brings a variety of indie music to the counter, he looks at her with caring tenderness. His sight is lost in her self-image. She pays, never raising her eyes, not seeing the smile on his face as he hands her the receipt. She leaves, with as little fanfare as possible. When the door shuts, he weeps for her.

Move away, and a man steps into the street a moment too early. The sedan hits him from the side, and he lands belly up in the street. She jumps out of the car, runs to him, heart racing. She's the first thing he sees when his eyes open, and he smiles, his injuries a distant concern.

The bell above the door rings.

She steps carefully, used to children underfoot, to the shelves where the oldest books reside. As she browses, he listens to her soft humming. He can't place the melody, but enjoys it nonetheless. It reminds him of summer evenings, the smell of freshly cut grass, watching the last clouds of the day float lazily by. She thumbs, carefully, through the books, and pulls out a classic child's picture book, and checks the copyright page. She smiles serenely and brings the book up to him, and he watches, as she clasps it with both hands and stares at the cover. She places it lightly on the counter with her payment, and he listens to her hum as she walks out of the door. It closes, cuts off her humming, and he is left with half of a daydream. He sits, and buries his face in his hands, desperately clinging to that bit of a song.

Another place, another time, and a young man dials the number, hands trembling and clammy, the phone an unbearable weight in his hand. She answers, and for a moment, he's afraid to say anything, he's going to hang up, this was a terrible idea, but he says hello all the same. She exclaims his name, joyfully, and now he's pacing in the room, gesturing frantically, deeply embroiled in a conversation with the woman he doesn't know he loves just yet. She is laying on her bed, and thinks, idly, of what kind of flowers she'll have at her wedding.

The bell above the door rings.

She browses for a long time, eventually deciding not to buy anything after all, or admits to herself that she never intended to. As she leaves, he wonders at the bruises, not quite covered by the makeup, and he wishes, so hard it hurts, that one day she will help herself. His shoulders are racked by a single sob.

Elsewhere, a woman sees a man she used to know, sitting in a dimly lit corner table. She asks the bartender to send him that drink, the one he ordered back then, before circumstance had demanded that they be apart. When it arrives, he looks up and sees her, then marvels at second chances. This time, he'll take it. He motions her to come sit with him. She does.

The bell above the door rings.

She walks studiously, with notepad in hand, to the writing guides. He watches as she flips through one, then suddenly drops it and begins writing furiously on her notepad. A bolt of inspiration, she ends it definitively, with a sharp rap on the paper, and picks up the book again. There is fire in her eyes as she pays for it, anxious to return home, to begin her work. She leaves, striding. He knows she'll make it, pleased to have played some small part in her success, knowing that's all he'll ever have, and left wanting for more.

Simultaneously, a boy gives a flower to the girl who just moved in down the street. She takes it, and smiles. Years later, neither of them has forgotten.

The bell above the door rings.

He loves them all, and they all take a piece of him with them. In the end, he is unloved.

Elsewhere, others fall in love, and achieve his happiness.

The bell above the door rings.
A paranoid is merely someone who is in posession of all the facts.

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OMGBEES
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Postby OMGBEES » Fri Jun 20, 2008 2:55 pm

Interesting, I like it stylistically. What is the intended message?

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Postby hobokenbob » Fri Jun 20, 2008 4:58 pm

I really liked it. There's some seriously poetic lines in there that sounded great.

the whole thing kinda works out to make the protagonist sort of a reverse succubus, just shy of actual fantasy but that's the vibe i get.
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shorty
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Postby shorty » Sat Jun 21, 2008 7:10 am

hobokenbob wrote:I really liked it. There's some seriously poetic lines in there that sounded great.

the whole thing kinda works out to make the protagonist sort of a reverse succubus, just shy of actual fantasy but that's the vibe i get.


basically, yes, though I hadn't thought of it in those words.
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nobody_important
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Postby nobody_important » Sat Jun 21, 2008 7:17 am

I like the way you use the bell to divide the story up. Very cool.
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shorty
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Postby shorty » Sat Jun 21, 2008 7:58 am

yeah I liked that too

honestly, aside from some layout issues (I think I need to move around a few paragraphs), it's probably the best story I've written in months
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