17-year-old professional green tea drinker | Somehow managed to finish a novella

Message from Writer

Child of our time, our times have robbed your cradle
Sleep in a world,
Your final sleep
Has woken
-- Eavan Boland, Child of Our Time

All The World Upon Us

December 1, 2018

PROMPT: Polar Opposite

"You're not going to do it."

She looks up at me. "And who says I won't?"

I shrug, stuffing my hands in the deep pockets of my jacket. The chill is palpable today, stuck in the currents of the wind, and I am not as youthful as I used to be. I feel the Norwegian cold more often than not these days.

"You need the money," I take a guess. "You can't drop it all."

The girl - she can't be more than 16 years of age - pushes her curly hair away from her face. Both arms tighten around the suitcase against her chest, and her eyes are wild in the twilight. The water rushes beneath us, singing its tune without a care in the world. Sometimes, I wish I could be just like the river.

"I - I don't even know why I took it," she says, glancing away. "I can't give it back, not now."

"You must. You simply have to, or it'll be worse for you in the long run."

She snorts; a humorless thing. A single dollar bill flaps against the side of the suitcase, half trapped inside the relative safety of the thing, half exposed to the harsh elements outside. I step closer. Behind her, I see the rest of the force place their hands on their Glocks, muscles twitching, aching for a fight. I've never wanted something less in my life - but the girl seems to follow their lead. Her legs tense, and she cocks her head to the side.

"W-what'll you do if I drop it?" 

I smile at her and receive a look of indifference for my troubles. If only she knew that my future would fall into the water along with the case, engulfing me in an emptiness. If only she knew. I point behind her. "It does not matter what I'll do. It'll matter what they do." 

Tears spring in her eyes. "I hate this. I wish I'd never gone in the first place - I wish I'd just stayed at home and told Jack I don't feckin' have his damn money."

The bridge creaks, no doubt underneath my own weight. She doesn't look like she weighs more than a lamp, at best, her limbs so thin they waver in the strong gusts. I take another step closer to her, one eye trained on the rickety, rotten wood beneath my feet. She has nowhere to go. Backward, where aggression and testosterone, fueled by anger at the blood she'd shed await, or forwards. Into an unknown force.

"Please, miss, give me the case," I yell over the sound of the river. "Nice and gently, easy does it."

She appraises me. "My name is Anais," she says, and confusion hits me. "I'm sorry. I can't give you this. I just can't. I'm sorry."

The splash of the suitcase rings loud in my ears, louder than the wind and water combined. And yet, it is still drowned o,ut by the sound of my failure. My future wavers before my eyes, and uncertainty taints my vision.

Anais walks steadily backwards, unnerving dark eyestrained on mine. When she's safely off of the bridge, they rush at her, large hands grasping at hers, tucking them behind her back, shoving handcuffs around frail wrists.

I suppose it's better the Devil you know, than the Angel you don't.
Honestly, this only half fits the prompt. The girl sort of resembles me, and my inability to make smart decisions under pressure. And the protagonist, Office Henrik, is a 60-year-old man in Norway that has built his entire life in a field I would never work in, and has ended himself in a situation I'd probably never get into. He's a bit of a drunkard, and this case was the last chance he had to reattain his position on the force.


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  • December 1, 2018 - 2:06pm (Now Viewing)

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