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Creative Pieces

011.12.08 Word Challenge (foible)

In the beginning, it was the reflection of passion that held her, wrapping her heart, smothering her senses, and giving her a liberty for tolerance.  As much as she tried she simply couldn’t recall the first time she noticed his strange ways.  She guessed that maybe those sleight illusions had always been there but she had dismissed them for their quality was once endearing.  She remembers one time, a glorious day when they lingered in the haberdashery store and she watched his long fingers gently fondling the rolls of cloth, teasing the weave between his fingertips – the rich brocade sprinkled with gold, the crushed velvet and worsted challis, the sateen, jacquard and tweed.  A delicate sheen rose from his lips as he murmured the names of the fabrics, repeating them over and over.  On that day she thought he humoured her, demonstrating a keenness for her humble interests and she was grateful to have met a man with such sensitivities.

It was much later when his impetuous desire to brush his fingers across any material in reach – the newly hung curtains at their friend’s house, the tablecloth at her mothers, the freshly hung washing began to embarrass her.  She chided herself for feel the pinpricks of irritation.  It was not the action itself, but the dreaminess that would soften his gaze and how quickly the look would chagrin when she distracted him from his reverie.

His foible for fabric was definitely odd, but only when she found him lost in the delights of her best friend’s silk blouse did she feel completely humiliated.  They had not seen her, standing in the shadows of the front porch, for she turned with her heart unravelling and walked away.   She had always longed for him to touch her skin as if it was the finest silk, to trace his fingertips along the weave of her spine, to thread his fingers through her hair.  She had always longed to see that mesmerised look in his eye.  She had always longed to hear the soft murmurs from his lips and feel the tenderness of yearning on her ear lobes.

It is only now at the end, that she is painfully aware that his weakness for damask, satin and cambric were moments when he was longing for someone else.

04.12.08 Word Challenge (quadrature)

The candle flame flickered low in the wick, molten wax spilling over the edge forming grotesque shapes and shadows in the failing light.  The old alchemist was hunched over the reams of parchment, smudged and grubby.  His frail hands quivering uncontrollably each time he lifted the quill, spilling more ink on himself and the parchment before him.  His insane cloudy eyes could hardly see, but his mouth twitched and mumbled as he relentlessly searched for the answer.  He fought his inevitable death with his consumptive hope that there was an answer.  For decades he had heard their derision in the halls whenever he shuffled past, they ridiculed his work as futile as seeking the quadrature of the circle, but even in old age and frailty he believed that there was a solution to every problem and he would find it – even if it took his last breath.

03.12.08 Word Challenge (shelduck)

For weeks, the household had been in a fever preparing for the annual ball at the mansion.  Cook had prepared so many delicious and sumptuous dishes, that the other imps like me found excuses to visit the kitchen to snatch a morsel.  More often than not, we were caught, reprimanded, and then sent on our way to perform some monotonous task.

I had been told to wait on my master this evening.  A fearsome task considering his ill temper that was quick to rouse but slow to cool.  However, there were advantages, I could wait behind the curtain near my master’s table and peer out onto the revelry and finery of the evenings events.  It is here that I wait now for my master’s bidding, making furtive glances into the expansive hall.

All the wealthy in their regal and elaborate attire, from nearby villages were in attendance.  There was one mistress that held my eye – the mistress from Mulberry Lane.  She was about a half head taller than any of her female compatriots, with a plumpness that sat comfortably on her hips and arms.  Her full soft white breasts threatening to explode from her corset.

The mistress reminded me of the shelducks that sometimes Timmy and I would poach from Mr Erningshire’s ponds with our handmade slings in the springtime.  A lushious feather boa draped around her neck and collar bone, sparkling with russet brown, black, emerald green, and white feathers.  They ruffled in the drafty hall, slightly stirring before settling down again along her collarbone and throat.  I watched her wade gracefully through the crowd, offering a smile or a hand to the drakes and ganders that gathered around her, seeking her attentions and their names of her dance card.

I felt as though I was falling in love, and imagined myself respendently dressed in probably a military uniform and sweeping this plump duck from her nest.  I was so lost in my reverie that I nearly did not hear my master calling for me.  In my shock I rushed from behind the curtain, tripping on the cord and nearly spilling my master’s ale all over the floor.

It was then that I heard the terrible honking sound echoing off the walls of the hall, everything else was still and silent except for the honking.  Even without looking up, I knew who made that sound – the shelduck mistress from Mulberry lane, it was not the musical shrill that I imagined most ladies would have, but a terribly deep honk that grew louder with every inhaled breath.  She had seen me, and I felt my checks flush crimson, and I wanted to shrivel up and disappear.  I am not sure if I was more embarrased for her or for my blunnder.

02.12.08 Word Challenge (counterpoise)

I watched breathless, my mouth open in awe as the tightrope walker made the first tentative step into the abyss.  His long muscular arms searching for that exact shape to counterpoise the gravitational desire to fall into the emptiness.  His stockinged feet inch along the rope.  The crowd is hushed.  We can see him falling but will him to stay aloft to make it to the other side, a narrow platform jutting out from the scaffolding.

01.12.08 Word Challenge (Phytochrome)

The Darkness had covered the realm of Zetoec for longer than anyone could remember. Many things had changed during that time and so to had the bloodlines – sometimes from the need for survival, sometimes through more deliberate and calculated means.

Inside the Fortress, a large section of the Labrotorium had been dedicated to transmutation and genetic revival programs under the dictatorship of Squamata. His initial quest to rehabilitate the “mutant genes” of the Zeotecian tribes had failed, and many Zetoecians had died harrowing deaths as they were subjected to unspeakable torture and gross manipulation. His latest ventures focused on the Cordilleras – strong tribal peoples from the mountains to the north of the Fortress.

The Cordilleras were all marked by the same disfigurement – they had no eyes, but had an unnatural ability to navigate around the world, and it was this disafigurement that led Squamata to his latest research – the injection of phytochrome cells into a Cordilleran blood stream enhancing their sensitivity to light and ability to navigate the deepest tunnels that riddled the Zetoecian landscape.  Squamata dismissed the cultural heritage of these once proud Zetoecian bloodline – he wanted to create superior warriors, tunnel fighting rats that with excellent hearing, and phytochromic “sight” would be able to lead the forces into new realms with terrifying accuracy.

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