It’s the End of the World and I’m Just Fine

WordPress Daily Prompt – Descend

Shanna slumped through the mostly abandoned lab. This should have been the solution. Instead there was no one. Papers sat neatly stacked on desks, equipment was put away properly but not a soul was seen or heard.

“No offense Mrs. Finch but this place doesn’t exactly look like it was abandoned.” Her nose wrinkled at the young man’s voice. The dislike Shanna carried for him was fading, he had proven to be smart and capable, but she couldn’t let him know that. “Everything’s where it belongs right? Don’t ya think if they were rushing to get out during … ya know … it, things would be a little more messy?”

“Well Miguel, I don’t know. They are, or were, scientists.”

“I don’t know, my supplier was into science, chemistry and stuff ya know. He was messy as hell.” Shanna dropped her head into a hand.

“Language.” She hissed for the millionth time. If one could hear a person roll their eyes then Miguel’s would have flown from one spot to another and landed with a resounding thump.

“Look, I know you’re pissy about Kate and I’m sorry she didn’t tell you but it’s not really your business, she’s almost eighteen.” Every word from his lips stirred the dislike from nearly non-existent to full blown contempt. Shanna whipped around to face the man-child she had dragged along for the past three days.

“You have no idea how thin the ice you are treading on is. When we find my husband and he figures this out you will go to jail.” She fired every word into his smug face but Miguel seemed completely unaffected.

“If I go to jail so do you Mrs. Finch.”

Kate slipped into the room unnoticed by her mother or Miguel. Shanna stood inches from Miguel with pure malice written all over her face.

“So hey, sorry to interrupt, it looks like this going just swimmingly but I found a door that’s open.” Kate jerked her thumb towards the hallway. “I don’t know where it goes but there’s cold air coming from it so maybe something?” Shanna moved stiffly towards Kate.

“Sounds promising honey, let’s go have a look.” Her voice faded as she disappeared into the hallway.

“Yeah, what the fuck was that?” Kate was barely able to cover to the burst of laughter that bubbled up. “Oh, I’m sorry, laughing is so inappropriate but she looked so pissed, what did you do?” Miguel didn’t hide his loud laugh.

“In the words of your dear mother, language.”


The door was constructed from heavy steel and iron. At one point it may have been controlled by a code but the box had long since been destroyed. Miguel was able to pull it open enough for Kate slip through the narrow opening.

“Ok honey, are you ok?” Shanna peered through the slot. “Can you see anything?”

“Yeah mom, I’m ok. Um, there are some stairs that go down. It’s really dark though, we’ll need flashlights or something.”

“Oh, I saw some old school torches.” Miguel nodded enthusiastically. “Damn, it’ll be like we’re in the middle ages.”

“Language.” Shanna replied flatly.

“Mom!” Shanna jumped to attention.

“What honey? Are you ok?” Kate appeared in the small opening.

“I’m fine, but I really don’t think language is the biggest worry you should have right now.”

“She’s got a point Mrs. Finch.” Shanna’s gazed moved between her angelic daughter and the man-child.

“Let’s just get the door opened and then you can get the torches Miguel.”


Miguel stared into the tunnel of stairs. The cool air that wafted towards them beckoned Miguel forward.

“Anything is better than another moment of this desert heat.” Kate’s soft voice echoed off the stone walls.

“Just follow me.”

“If you started walking we would.” Shanna’s irritated voiced came from the back of the line. Kate’s small hand pushed on his lower back.

“Just go before she gets even more unhinged.” she whispered.

The stairs spiraled downwards in an uneven, uncomfortable pattern.

“I’m sure Miguel could have done a better job at these.” The young man at the front of the line froze suddenly.

“What the fuck is that supposed to mean Mrs. Finch?” Shanna shrank back at the echoing sound of his voice. “Look, I’ve been as nice as I can be. I’ve been respectful and you’ve been nothing but a bitch!” Miguel shouted over Kate at her mother. “I’m sorry you’re pissy that your drug dealer is banging your daughter but I fucking love her so that should count for something!”

As the last echo faded into the darkness it was replaced by something much less angry.

“Do you guys hear that?” Kate’s quiet voice interrupted the angry staring contest between her mother and boyfriend.

“Is that …. mariachi?” Miguel moved further down the stairs. “That’s definitely mariachi.” He looked back towards Shanna. “Your husband have a thing for my music?”

“Both of you stop it.” Kate hissed. “Miguel, keep walking, there’s gotta be someone down here.”

“Maybe the Earth is Mexican.” Miguel shot one last look towards Shanna as his girlfriend gave him a gentle push forward.

The music droned on, becoming louder and clearer with every step. Suddenly the stairs dead ended into a small room with another smaller, lighter metal door. A bright light emerged from underneath it.

“Let me go first.” Shanna pushed past Miguel and Kate to grab the long handle and pull the door open.

The room was bathed in bright electric light. Tables lined the walls and people, in varying stages of lab dress, stood around a stereo that pumped out mariachi music. The three visitors stood dumbfounded taking in the large underground room. It was Shanna that found her voice again first.

“What the fuck is going on here?!” One by one wide eyed scientists turned towards them.

“Shanna?” Her husband appeared from the center of the crowd and bounded towards them. “You made it!” His eyes landed on Kate next. “And Katie, baby, I’m so happy to see you!” Finally he turned towards Miguel. “Um … I suppose you’re welcome also.”


 

Rough first drafts are fun.

That Maze Called Life

WordPress Daily Prompt – Maze

Life’s kind of crazy isn’t it? Around every turn you can never be sure exactly what you’ll find. The love of your life? A new demon to battle? A success? A failure?

Who knows!

Will you wander through it alone? Do other people’s mazes look like yours? Are we all wandering through our own personal traps?

How often do you know which way you should go but you turn the other way? You do it out of a fear of the unknown. Perhaps you fear the success of finding your way so you constantly turn away from the path that will lead to you success. Maybe you are terrified of being what you always knew yourself to be, whether it be good or bad.

Maybe the crippling fear of embracing our own mortality keeps us from ever fully embracing the little moments of joy while travelling the maze. We’re so afraid we don’t bother to look around. Instead we fixate on the ultimate prize, never truly considering if there’s really a prize at the end of the maze or not.

Perhaps the prize is the journey itself. Allowing ourselves to get lost in the maze and discover who we are and what we want could be the greatest part.

It could be terrifying and exhilarating all at the same time. It could be the greatest success we’ve ever imagined and the hardest loss we’ve ever had to bear.

No one truly knows what lies beyond the maze and the dead ends, the failures, the mistakes are all just as worthy as the successes, the open paths and the perfect decisions. We have to embrace life and enjoy the journey.

 

Knackered

WordPress Daily Prompt – Knackered

“Well son, you done knackered your options.” Sheam, a giant man with one glowing eye crashed onto the bench with a loud clang. Instinctively he reached towards a massive knee and rubbed it gently. “I need some oil son, pass it over.”

“Knackered? What the hell does that even mean?” As Yanas passed the spray can into Sheam’s hand he noticed how it instantly went from a normal size item to something that more resembled a fun size toy. Sheam’s metal fingers gripped the can gently so as not to dent it.

“Wouldn’t want them puttin’ more oil on my books than I a’ready have.” He mumbled.

Yanas was still warming to the idea of Sheam as a cellmate. He didn’t know anyone that willingly wanted the extra large cyborg in their quarters. There were whispers of his ‘episodes’. That half breed robot could kill a man with a wrong swipe when he was human so what’d they do? Rearranged his brain! Now he’ll kill a man just for lookin’ wrong.

Sheam smeared the oil over his joints and tossed the now empty can towards the cell door. “It means …” He pushed his one flesh hand through greying hair. “It means tired out. Ya know, knackered, exhausted.” The half man laughed loudly. “Ya know, I never thought I’d say I was knackered. Not after they did this to me. But ya know …” Sheam’s one good eye focused intently on Yanas. “I’m fuckin knackered.”


I totally had to look up what knackered meant. 

Living Life in Harmony

WordPress Daily Prompt – Harmony

Another actual blog! Looky there.

In honor of today’s prompt and record store day 2017 I’m throwing out some beautiful harmonies and melodies that get me through.

Music has always been a huge part of my life. I was raised on the likes of Pink Floyd and Jimi Hendrix and I’ve delved into many realms since.

I’ve listened to everything from full orchestras to pure industrial like Skinny Puppy.

Music has had a profound and deep effect on me throughout my life. Whether it’s been through early memories or making me feel something when I thought I would be broken forever …

The right piece at the right time can truly save a person if you allow it to.

Without further ado, here’s some music I love:

Pink Floyd: Wish You Were Here and Pink Floyd: Meddle – Although I grew up listening to Pink Floyd these albums were my first intentional experience with them as a pre-teen/teen

Jimi Hendrix: Blues – This is a compilation album of blues songs that Jimi sang/covered. Some are live versions, some are studio versions. Some were unreleased. They’re all pretty fantastic.

The Jimi Hendrix Experience: Axis Bold as Love – Essentials.

Joy Division: Unknown Pleasures – I love Joy Division.

Skinny Puppy: Too Dark Park  and Skinny Puppy: VivisectVi – Because Skinny Puppy.

Speaking of Skinny Puppy and industrial music

Nine Inch Nails: The Fragile – My first NIN album

Muddy Waters – All of it.

Speaking of Muddy Waters and Rollin Stones and Catfish Blues ….

Robert Petway – Thought to be the earliest recording of Catfish Blues, though possibly not the first person to sing it (there’s a whole history there, look it up, very interesting).

Black Rebel Motorcycle Club – These guys are an incredible part of my life, I have to credit them for reminding me that I wasn’t broken forever. I would recommend any of their albums *even Effects of 333*

Break of Reality – I originally started listening to them because I heard some of their covers but their original music does not disappoint either.

The Dead South – A bluegrassy type band that hasn’t disappointed in the time I’ve been listening to them.

I’m going to wrap it up here because I could literally go all day.

In Every Life

WordPress Daily Prompt – Prudent

“It’s all fake.” He whispers in my ear. “All of this, the memories, the feelings … none of it’s real.”

His scent pulls me closer, aftershave and tobacco, as he runs his fingers through my hair.

“Just come with me and I’ll show you. I’ll take you back to where it all began. A second chance, isn’t that what you wanted?”

His hazel eyes scan mine, the dark waves of his hair brush my cheeks.

“Think about the future you could have. We. Think about the future we could’ve had.” He rests his forehead against mine, his eyelashes are gentle against my skin.

“I loved you then. I love you now. And in every life I’ll love you again.” His voice, thick with desire, fills my mind.

“Just think about it. Think about you and me.” His laugh echoes through the darkness. “Think about the kids. Oh, they’ll be great.”

The grip around my waist loosens as the darkness shrouds him.

The scream catches in my throat. I know I can’t stop what we’ve already done.

“In every life, remember that. I’ll love you again.”

It Comes with the Territory

WordPress Daily Prompt – Territory

Today I’m breaking the mold. I’m writing an actual blog.

Creative writing is my territory, I’ve been doing it for as long as I’ve been able to write I guess. While other kids were playing barbies and trolls (child of the 80’s/90’s folks) my mom was hauling home boxes of recycled copy paper for me to scrawl little stories across.

After a while I got really savvy and started stapling them into legit little copy paper books. I’m pretty sure my mom still has them.

I remember in one of them a family went on vacation. The two little girls in the back kept asking that dreaded four word question, “are we there yet?” In fact, they asked so much that when they tried to get the parents attention to inform them of an actual issue like, ya know, luggage falling off the top of the car, the parents ignored them.

They finally arrive at their destination to find a trail of spilled suitcases in their wake. Classic. I even drew little pictures. The people were stick figures but come on, I had just penned a masterpiece, the pictures were not my concern.

I did this for years, I wrote stories any time I figured I was about to fail a class. Inevitably the teacher would say I had great talent and pass me. This may explain why I have no firm grounding in math yet am half way through a master’s degree in economics (with a 3.7 thank ya very much).

I never took any formal creative writing classes until my senior year of high school.

Imagine my shock when I barely passed.

How could that be?! I was good at writing! It was the only thing I considered myself to be good at!

I was good at writing but absolute junk at editing. In fact I don’t think I had ever consciously edited anything I wrote. And grammar, commas, semi-colons … oh my. Let’s not discuss those.

The point to all of this is something that has been on my mind pretty heavy lately. That is living with passion. Passion for who you are, for what you’re doing and how you’re doing it.

There is nothing more attractive than that passion for life, for music or art or whatever your poison of choice is.

Everyday we make a conscious choice. We decide, over and over, how we’re going to live; what path we’re going to walk. That choice affects everything, not only ourselves but the things we interact with.

Call me a hippie, I’ll own it, but we’re connected in every way to each other and to the universe around us. We may not fully understand it yet, we may live our entire lives wondering just how exactly it works but there’s no denying that we are.

So my call to action today is this. Own your territory. Find it, love it, embrace it and be passionate about it. Use it for the better, use it for others but most of all, use it for yourself. If you find that one thing, one person, one moment that can light your world on fire, grab it and do not let go.