So, instead, I'll wish you all a Good Sunday Evening!!! I hope you've all had a great weekend! The weather is has been so unseasonable warm, it doesn't seem like the end of October. It's been beautiful!
Here's a peek at Sassy Brit's Sunday Story Starter (I, as usual, added an image.... ). This morning's SSSS was inspired by Chuck Collins (who's also offering a copy of his book, The Collectors, as part of Sassy's Spooktacular Celebration).
Life (and Death)
by: Dottie Taylor
word count: 500
Bethany watched for the white terrycloth to reveal the truth. It was a race, in the midst of her terror, which would arrive first, the soak of red or the pain. How could something so normal go so horribly wrong, she thought. The morning was nothing like the night. It had been quite routine. He was gone. Too bad, he was fantastic! Now, his could very well be her last human touch. The pool arrived, fast and uniformed around the small hole. But she did not see it, nor feel the pain. Her fading thought was of the cell phone in her hand, 9-1-1, did they hear me? Did I scream?
She slid slowly down the wall, sinking to the floor, cursing, her thoughts fuzzy, her brain oxygen deprived. The blossoming pool spread, growing with every heartbeat as she pulled the sulfuric air into her burning lungs, each breath an arduous exercise. She heard a small thud, her useless phone laid next to her on the floor. She managed to draw another lung full of air, her head swimming with dizziness as she struggled until it became too much, easier to stop.
Bethany reached the limits of her waning strength. She slipped sideways, her hair loose and flowing freely across the edge of the pool. It danced and swirled her blonde to a rusty brown. She was so tired, she needed to close her eyes, for just a moment, dying was exhausting work.
She knew she was dying, knew even if help came, it would come too late. It was all a waste of time, then what was life but a lesson in futility, it all ended in the same way, it all ended with death. As soon as you were born, you started to die, a little more everyday. She managed one more breath, and suddenly, everything stopped. The clock quit ticking, she couldn't even hear her beating heart. The only sound greeting her ears was the song of a siren off in the distance.
Bethany's vision narrowed to a fine bright tunnel, she felt so light... as if her body was weightless. Her head cleared a little, she thought maybe she could stand. Reaching out to steady herself, her fingers clung to the white wall and she pushed herself away. She took a hesitant step toward the tunnel... was that her Saint Bernard? Lucky? She whistled, and Lucky burst into the light, woofing out his bellowing bark. She laughed, how could this be? She glanced up to see Ryan striding through the light, holding out his hand. She started to run, but turned back for one last lingering gaze at her home, and her eyes fell upon a terrycloth robed body. Hers.
Ryan trailed his fingertips down her soft flesh, making her shiver. “Come on, Beth, everyone's waiting.” He bent down, kissing her full ripe lips.
She leaned into Ryan's quite strength, rubbing Lucky's furry head as his tongue lapped her hand, God she'd missed them. She started down the lighted path, away from life. She squinted as the sun broke over her ivory skin, warming the cold seeping into her pores.
Boom! A piercing pain halted her. Boom! She jerked and spasmed with intense agony. Boom! Again, doubling her over as she cried out. Ryan tugged her hand, but something snapped Bethany back, ripping her from his tightening grasp.
Bethany opened her eyes, a paramedic stepped back. “Thought we'd lost you.” He smiled, slamming the doors of the ambulance.
Bethany's eyes bled bitter tears, wasn't it ironic? First she longed for life cursing as it slipped away, now she longed for what only death could provide.
Again, Sassy made me struggle, I knew what was going to happen, but it was so hard getting the words to come out right, and I'm still not sure I was able to express all of what was going on in my head. And I cheated just a little, the prompt was so long (111 words), that I wrote 500 of my own words, letting the prompt stand alone. I have to say, it's an excellent prompt...
ps: Remember to stop by Sassy Brit's for her Spooktacular Celebration everyday all the way to Halloween, giveaways to be had, winners drawn November 1st.
And of course, I'm looking forward to seeing you tomorrow for another Monday Morning Flash Fiction Challenge!!