Peer Review by RockSugar98 (Singapore)

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Conscience

By: Grace Mary Potts


FREE WRITING

Frost crept up the window pane like a scab would encompass on an open wound. Their breaths, quick and sharp, broke the air in clouds that grew and curled like cigarette smoke, exhaled. 

Their fingers grasped one another's. Stiff. Numb with cold. 

A tap came at the window. The shadow of a hand outlined in the frost-covered glass. There was a crack and the girl laughed, abruptly, insanely. It became a sob. The boy wanted to move. But couldn't. Wouldn't dare. 

They never thought it would end like this. 

Cracks threaded their way through the glass, like a spider's web. 

Why would they? It was only supposed to be a joke. They never thought she would take it so seriously.

Then then the glass shattered. 

They didn't think she would fall. But it was raining and the bridge was wet. 

Soulless eyes stared at them from outside the parked car. Then, slowly, a smile crept onto her face.

They were just kids. 

She was still wearing her blue dress. 

It's what they told themselves. What they told the police. 

She still had those ridiculous glasses. 

They weren't bullies, they were just having fun. It was her fault anyway. Her fault for - 

Crying. She was crying. There were tears in her eyes. And she looked just as hurt as she did that day, just as - 

Heartbroken. It was like she'd actually believed they'd wanted to play with her. Her. Of all people.

There was a click and the door opened. 

They didn't mean to shove so hard.

How could one child be so terrifying? Even a dead one.

It was supposed to be a game.

She stopped smiling.

It wasn't supposed to end like this. 

And then she pushed. 


Message to Readers

Wow. This was definitely not supposed to be so dark, or reflective. It just kind of... came out. What started as an attempt at horror grew into a small anti-bullying... thing. Ah well, take from it what you will and, if you so choose, let me know what you think!


Peer Review

"The frost crept up the window pane like a scab would encompass an open wound". The best imagery I've seen in the past 17-going-onto-18 years of my life.


I don't know if my understanding is right, but to me this piece sounded like some premature relationship gone wrong and the girl ended up as a mother earlier than her peers. So there was this very sharp twist in the end which left me totally wonderstruck. I am very impressed with your writing skill.


Why are your stanzas alternating between italics and normal font? It makes me wonder if it were the narrator's thoughts interacting with that of the girl.


Reviewer Comments

It's a beautiful and dark piece with very good imagery. I loved how you made use of the difference in fonts to change the perspective of the story. Your little prose has a very elusive and smokey quality between the deep mellow relationship of the young couple whose love was shattered via these cascade of crazy events. Excellent work on such a bittersweet symphony.