Monday, January 21, 2008

Laura's Awakening (Part 3)

She lifted her head slightly, blood-soaked tendrils of hair still clinging to the floor where they had incorporated themselves into the now gory mess of her once cozy little kitchen. She shut her eyes and listened. She could hear nothing with the ear that had been pressed onto the floor moments ago, save for the deep slow rhythm of her own heartbeat. Well, I’m alive. I guess that’s a good thing. Probably got blood in my ear, she thought, trying harder to focus on the mostly flat and empty landscape of sound around her. Through a steady ringing that seemed to come from inside the back of her head, she thought she could make out the sound of shifting boards. It sounded so far away though, maybe the front porch.

Gently, she lowered her head back down to its place on the floor and slowly opened her eyes, still listening. Everything sounded so far away, even her own thoughts. She wasn’t sure but it sounded like she had just heard the creak of the rusty old long hinge on the screen door.

The screen door slammed home, with the loud clack of wood on wood that she had come to recognize so well since she and Mark had moved in. There was always something else that had needed more attention than installing a pneumatic closer to prevented the loud “WAP!” every time someone didn’t take the time to close it softly.

Booming strides across the floor, (got no problem hearing them now) the whole floor seeming to shudder against her skull with each heavy footfall. Her heart rate doubling in a second, throbbing uncomfortably in her ear and deep inside her head. The atmosphere changed, and then there were no more thunderous footsteps. She couldn’t see him but she knew he was there, somewhere a yard or so beyond her feet, standing in the doorway gazing silently at her and Mark.

The floor shifted slightly and Mark moved behind her. No Mark! He’s right there don’t move now! She was panicking yet remained frozen, her body not giving her the option of doing anything. Fabric (denim?) brushed her left hand, her arm still laying behind her on the floor, and then pushed hard against her ramming her arm up against her body. It felt like Mark was lying next to her trying to roll over top of her. But there was that downward pull as well. Oh god, he’s dragging Mark away… she though a second before realizing that she was right. Her body slid sideways on the bloody lubricated floor; forced over by the pull of Mark’s body as he was being unceremoniously dragged away. More cloth pulled over her hand then something slick and warm seemed to slither over her arm and hand. Her mind reeled, refusing to admit that something that was supposed to be inside of Mark no longer was. Then she felt nothing again, except for the oily liquid that now completely covered her hand.

Something delicately touched her shoulder, trailing all the way down her arm, across the back of her hand and was gone. Mark’s hand, Laura thought in horror. The back of her hand burned with sensation as Laura focused on the last place on her body that he would ever touch. A heavy double thump rattled the floor yet again. A sickening, unclean sound as Mark’s head was pulled over the threshold and landed on the wood of the living room floor.

Laura was alone. She lay in a pool of her dead husband’s blood, as the sound of him being dragged away faded into the crescendo roar inside her head.


¤ Émìlíå ¤ said...

This story is starting to get very exciting! How many more parts are there going to be?

Scott said...

Ok. I realize that this entry is shorter than the prior two. But that is because I feel like this is the end of what I'm going to call 'Chapter 1'.

I greatly appreciate the feedback, so keep it coming. Suggestions, comments, speculation, and critique are all very much welcome.

So let's discuss this. What are your thoughts? Is this a complete chapter? Are you frustrated with the fact that Laura still hasn't managed to make it more than a few inches from where she started? Too much blood? Go.

¤ Émìlíå ¤ said...

Is that comment aimed at me? lol

To answer your questions:
1. It does feel like that is a complete chapter. You have discussed Laura & Mark's situation and the setting. You have said a little about there history so we know a little about the characters and the connection between them. Now you have set it up so that something will happened next. Dragging Mark out of her "sight" has put her into a different situation and I'm guessing that in the next chapter, she is going to try and do something to get herself out because she knows that the killer is going to come back. Making that the end of the chapter gives that little bit of extra suspence to the story; a gap to what we think might happen next (which I'm guessing is what you were trying to achieve?). I also like how you finished it off with that bit of imagery with her laying there in her husband's blood. It just makes me picture how vulnerable she is, now her husband has gone. I think she that feeling of being a little safe with him and now with him gone, I would panic more.

2.I'm not actually frustrated that Laura hasn't moved yet. Truthfully, I have always wondered what I would do in that kind of situation and I would pretend to be dead. She can sense danger and I don't blame her that she doesn't want to move, yet. But now I know that this killer is going to come back, I want her to move and save herself!

3. Too much blood? No. That's ok with me, though I would like to know why this guy wanted to kill them.

My favourite part of the story so far was when you wrote,
"The back of her hand burned with sensation as Laura focused on the last place on her body that he would ever touch."
That was so full of emotion and realisation for the character of Laura that Mark is dead. Like her way to say goodbye?

I also really like how you have descibed all the sounds she can hear. She can't really see things at the moment and her strongest sense at the moment is her hearing. It makes the story a lot more scary because she can't see what is going on.
"Gently, she lowered her head back down to its place on the floor and slowly opened her eyes, still listening."

What frustrates me is that I don't know how this killer came in or what he exactly did to Laura & Mark. I'm guessing that this story has a lot more to it? I hope so!

Scott said...

emilia: My post wasn't directed at anyone specifically. Was really just trying to prompt some discussion (which, from the look of your second comment, it did.) And to answer your first question, I have no idea how many parts this is going to be.

When I started, I intended it to be a short story. At this point, I guess that's probably still what it is, however it certainly seems to feel like it could easily become a longer story as it doesn't seem to be rushing towards a conclusion like most short stories tend to.

In the past, most of my writing has been the sort of one-off type of thing where I would sit down start writing and finish most, if not all, of the story in a single sitting. I like that I've been able to let this develop as it does without feeling like I need to wrap things up in a set amount of time.

Finally, I wanted to mention that I made some minor revisions to part 2, which I think make it read a bit more smoothly and more true to the perspective of the character. Thanks to Theresa for her suggestions and comments with that.

¤ Émìlíå ¤ said...

"Is that comment aimed at me? lol"

That was a rhetorical question. lol.

I don't think it is a short story anymore. Short stories don't have chapters (well, what I know of). :P