JD Mader has an amazing weekly creative excursion on his blog, Unemployed Imagination. Many authors gather and free write there, and it goes down every Friday. It’s called “2 Minutes. Go,” and for 2 minutes, you write, let it flow, let it go.
So much fun, and this (past) Friday, I went over 2 minutes, just tapping away, trying to share what I could so vividly see. It wasn’t the direction I thought it would go when I started, but here it is, raw and unedited, possibly amateurish, but … just the release we creatives types need every now and then.
Enjoy! (I think?)
The restaurant seemed to fade to black. It felt as if they’d survived a fire, or explosion. They were flammable; they should’ve had bright yellow toxic hazard warnings on their foreheads. Yet they’d been equipped with the blessing and curse of stoicism, like some fire retardant substance in their veins.
They’d seen it all, been to hell, kissed the flames; they saw the nightmares in one another’s eyes.
And there they sat, staring through one another, across a table which seemed to have doubled in length with every second. They were close enough to touch, yet too far to see; that’s the way it had always been. Maybe every since the day he’d been born.
Mother and son, sharing the same amber eyes — empty amber eyes.
Leaning forward, moving her glass aside, she squinted her eyes as she spoke: “Hero? You want to be a hero? And who would you save? You men kill me. You want to save the world.”
Her eyes scanned him. His eyes fell. He looked as if he’d cry. Instead, he chuckled, and spoke so low it was nearly a whisper: “This is what I expected of you. And I never said I was any kind of hero.” He waved the server over. “You don’t get it, Sylvia.”
“Sylvia,” she mocked. She looked at him as if he smelled of a corpse. “You men, so you call yourselves. You wanna’ save the woman next door from her midlife crisis with a one-night-stand, you think you can save the guy at the next cubicle’s marriage with your worthless advice, you wanna save the chick from the guy who beats her just to leave her all alone, want to step in and take you damn kid to the park and act like you deserve Superman’s cape.”
“Cape? I don’t even have a kid.” He laughed, again, this time awakening something dark in his mother’s eyes. His smile faded as he cleared his throat.
“You’re all liars,” she said, through gritted teeth. “You save the world, and you let yourselves rot into the monsters you’re rescuing. You’re all monsters practicing good deeds when the sun’s watching, murdering spirits when the clock strikes midnight. You’re nothing. You’ll always be nothing. Laugh at that, you spoiled little shit.”
Taking one last sip of wine, Sylvia stumbled to her feet.
“Love you, too, Sylvia. Mom. Mommy. Mommy, please, don’t go …”
She started to hold up her middle finger, hesitated, and parted her lips to speak. Nearly losing her balance, as the wine clouded her ability to stand without swaying, she said, “You’re so selfish! You think I don’t get it? No, you don’t get it! I don’t want them to call me and tell me that you … I don’t want to lose … if you go — enlist — you’ll die, and I’ll lose you, just like everyth –“
She felt his arms around her, pulling her into an embrace. Her voice trembled, as did her body, “Don’t leave me.”