United States

Eremurus- a flower native to eastern Europe and temperate Asia; aka foxtail lily or desert candle; often compared to a long spike
the flower is unlike any other and the word infatuates the tongue (or at least mine)

Message to Readers

This is a scene from a book I'm working on, I plan on publishing them as I finish them (except the ones that would give away too much about the story) for feedback.

1. I want to make sure I'm giving descriptive enough information but not so much that I take away the space for the reader's imagination.
2. There is a sort of voice to it but so far it's less of Adam's voice and more of my voice so I know I'll need to work on that much.
3. I'm not sure how I feel about my skill level with dialogue so I'd like to know whether it feels natural.

This is the first rough draft with minimal editing from myself. Also, Adam is not the name of the story, I'm keeping track of which scene is from which perspective.

Adam (1)

December 1, 2020


     I reach forward and press the doorbell. It dings and I stand waiting for someone to answer. I turn around and see that social worker sitting in the car behind me. The engine is on and he sits with his hand on the steering wheel, ready to pull out of the circular driveway as soon as someone opens the door. The front yard is bigger than anyone I’ve ever seen, at least for a house.
    I turn back to the doorway. The door itself isn’t too flashy. I notice beside the porch there is a small dirt path. My eyes follow it and I lean back as it turns the corner of the house. From the little I see, it looks like it leads to a flower garden. A butterfly garden maybe? There isn’t any fence around it, it just grows outward. Whoever takes care of it doesn’t seem too concerned about weeds, though the pathway is cleared of them. It looks beautiful. I wonder aloud if anyone ever spends time out there. If I do end up living here for long, I get a feeling I might.
    The door opens, pulled by a tall thin man in a gray suit. He smiles at me and reaches out a hand.
I hesitate. I was going to shake it, but his hand isn’t in a position to shake, rather like he is expecting something from me.
    “Your bag,” he says. His voice is low but not deep. His words are smooth and round, they sound almost hollow.
I slide the handle of my suitcase down and pick it up with a smaller strap. He takes it from my hand and brings it down a hallway to my left.
    I step inside. There are two kids, probably around my age. One girl has her hair up in long braids pinned up in elaborate swirls, she wears a black dress with big yellow flowers bunched up down in the bottom corner just below her knees and a strip of yellow fabric, the same shade as the flowers, that ties a bow around her waist. The boy who stood beside her has almond brown skin and wears tan dress pants with a light blue, plaid, long sleeved collared shirt. His hair is cut short and evenly.
    They both stand in a row, with great posture and folded hands. Then the girl gives me an awkward smile and whispers, “Sorry, he’s probably busy.”
    Behind them is a long room with hardwood floors and a rug with an interesting pattern that is no longer in style. There are double glass doors that let you see into a dining room with a long table and maybe fifteen chairs on the other side of the long room.
    To my right is a wide staircase, its banister carved to look like grapevines. It leads to the overhang that surrounds the long room. On the second floor, doors line the wall across from the railing. The place is huge and surely expensive.
Out from one of the doors on the first floor comes an average sized man. He is well dressed, his belly pushing against his top. He walks fast and shouts angrily into a phone pressed between his ear and shoulder. Then he pauses by the boy, shuffling through the stack of papers in his hands.
    “Adrienne, you will show him his room. Remy, get ready for your piano lessons.” He isn’t shouting now, but he’s still speaking too loudly. He looks me up and down dismissively and looks suddenly confused. “Can you slow down; I don’t understand a word you just said.”
    I suddenly tense up. Was he talking to me? Then he starts cursing, eyes me again, and shouts some more into the phone. He wasn’t yelling at me, but those eyes he gave me. He must have been looking at my clothes. My stupid basketball shorts, they make my legs look like twigs. There are only t-shirts in my bag. I don’t have any money to buy nice clothes either. I begin to feel awfully stupid in this house.
    The man who took my bag comes out from the hallway.
    “Gary, make Eleonore some tea, she says she isn’t feeling well-” he turns back to the phone, “No I wasn’t talking to you! Is your name Gary?” He drops a paper, squats to pick it up, and walks fast again. I feel a woosh of air as he passes me and pushes his way through the front door, leaving the room feeling hollow and empty, even bigger than before, and me smaller.
    The girl rolls her shoulders and slouches, not excessively, but evidently more than before. The boy relaxes, I didn’t realize he had been tensed in the first place. Gary rushes off, to go make Eleonore’s tea I assume.
    “Don’t worry, he’s never really nice to anyone,” the girl starts up the stairs, skipping every other step. I follow. “I’m Adrienne. Your Adam, right?”
    “This is Remy,” she points a thumb back. Remy’s on the stairs behind us. Adrienne gets to the top of the steps and waits for us to join her.  
    Once we do, she turns and walks past a few doors.
    “My room,” she points to a door without looking back at us. “Remy’s room,” she points to the next door. Remy heads in, saluting us as he goes. “And this,” she stops at the next door, it’s at the end of the hall, and turns to me, “is where you’ll be staying.” She opens the door and gestures for me to go in.
    I go in and stand awkwardly in the center of the room, between the king-sized bed and the dresser, which will probably end up with most of its drawers empty due to my limited number of clothing items.
    Adrienne peers in the room and frowns, “I don’t know where Gary put your stuff if it’s not in here. For now, I guess make yourself at home. I’ll go find your suitcase.” She shuts the door.
    This place is supposed to be my new room. But, standing here I don’t feel like I’m standing in my own space. Like I’m just standing in a hotel room, like I’m going to leave soon. Truth is, I don’t know when I’m leaving this place.
    My phone buzzes. I pull it out of my pocket, Josh.
    ‘I’m working now but can I call you later?’
    I text back, ‘not sure when I’ll be able to’, and then, ‘when are you off work.’
    ‘I’ll call when I can.’
    There’s a knock and I shove my phone in my pocket fast, “Come in.”
    Adrienne comes in and leans my suitcase against the bed, “Remy’s does piano in maybe thirty minutes. I usually go and watch, I find it fascinating. You don’t have to come, but I’ll be there. Dinner’s two hours from now.” She smiles again and leaves.
    Apparently, they have dinner kind of late here. I’ll be able to call Josh before then.
    In the meantime, I open my suitcase on the bed. I stare for a moment at all the clothes I’ll have to wear. There’s a tightening in my chest and I want to cry, but I don’t. Such a petty reason to cry. People cry when their fathers die, when their mothers leave. People cry when their brothers are left homeless and virtually penniless. People don’t cry when their clothes aren’t as nice as they have to be.
    I pick up a stack of shirts, these don’t belong to me, I think. I am taking someone else’s clothes out of someone else’s suitcase, putting them in someone else’s dresser.

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