An unpolished piece of writing that I did during a class exercise today. Nothing special, but I figured I should post it here anyway.
Although Game of Thrones warned me that winter was coming, I had hoped that it wouldn’t make me sick. Of course, hope does nothing, and I spent most of today curled up in bed under a mass of blankets, next to a mountain of used tissues and an infinite number of cups of tea. At Melbourne Uni you need a doctor’s note to miss class, and I figured that since a trip to the free clinic would involve getting dressed and making the trek into campus, I may as well just go to my tutorial.
This is something that I wrote during a class exercise. It’s far from perfect [or even good], but I’m trying to write more fiction – well, more prose fiction – and hopefully the fact that other people are reading my work will be motivation to write better. Or something. I don’t know. I’m sick. Here’s the story…
It looked like something from a picture book, all of the little houses lined up in a row; almost identical, but each with their own quirks. Hope lived in the third house on the left, the one with the rose bushes along the fence. On one side were the elderly Mr and Mrs Tucker; theirs was the house with all the garden gnomes. Across the road was a family of pitbulls, and their pet humans.
Hope had lived in the same house on this same street her entire life. It was a house full of memories. The front room, where she first learned to read. The kitchen, where she accidentally smashed the glass on the oven door while trying to bake some cookies. The upstairs bedroom, where she’d hidden under the bed the first time her brother brought his boyfriend home. That was also where she first learned about the need for privacy. The bathroom, where she’d etched her height into the wall on every birthday, even after she’d stopped growing taller. The downstairs bedroom, where she still slept. The lounge room, where she had given the policeman a cup of tea after he told her the news.
Memories can’t replace people, and no matter how much they filled the house, it still felt empty. Hope stopped watering the rose bushes; they withered and died. But Mr and Mrs Tucker kept bringing home new garden gnomes, and the pitbulls kept barking. The rest of the street stayed the same, while the house that Hope lived in grew cobwebs and started falling apart.
Outside, there were questions and conversations: What happened to the little girl? Inside, there were memories. And the little girl was bigger than they thought. Hope lit one match, then she lit another. The flames burned amber and the wood turned to ash.
Now there was one less little house lined up in a row.