Taking The Boat

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Light touched the rippling surface of the lake. Small boats, bobbed on the water their ropes creaking. Birds called up the sunrise and other animals stirred awake in the stillness of dawn.

She was running. Running from her home and following the path downwards. Her dress floated out behind her, caught in the air rush from her movements. A bed sheet, turned bundle bumped at her side and weighted her down with supplies.

Her feet were bare, easier and silent to aid her running. The dew grass wet her feet and the last of the warmth from her bed left her.

She reached the boats, placed the bundled into the closest one, then gathering all the skirts up into both her hands, she quickly stepped into the boat and had to catch herself before she almost fell into the lake.

Crawling to the front, she untied the boat, sat down and began rowing. The light of the dawn lay across the water as if it was guiding her. She wasn’t a strong rower, but the rush from her escape and the knowledge she would soon be with her lover spurred her on.

 

From the castle window, her matron sat at the window. The old woman couldn’t see her young charge running then rowing the boat away, but she could see the yellow light touching the lake and the tree tops which sang just as her heart did that she had done the right thing in aiding the girl’s escape.

Summer Storm

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I hummed to myself as I planted the new flowers I had just brought from the garden centre. I loved digging in the soil and watching the plants grow. My gloves were dark with soil, my old jeans sprinkled with loose earth and the sun was warm on my back.

There were two trays left to plant when I felt a chill along my arms. I looked up and saw the sun being covered by dark clouds. The weather forecast had said there was a low chance of rain.

Rising my trowel, I went to dig some more holes and heard a rumbling. My head turned up to the sky and my eyes searched the heavens. The clouds were heavy with more of a downpour then a gentle summer shower. Plus, something else seemed be brewing up there.

I got back to digging and hurried to plant the rest of the flowers. A few drops of rain landed around me. Plopping down and staining the soil. The last few plants went in and as I covered them with compost, the thunder rumbled once more.

Gathering my things, I went to the open back door and got inside just in time. The clouds erupted and rain lashed down like a massive waterfall. Thunder roared and lightening flashed across. I saw the end tail of a jagged fork of white light and my breath hitched. The storm was right above me!

Shutting the door, I took off my gardening boots, gloves and jeans. I left them in the little back porch area and went into the kitchen where I put on clean jeans and a jumper. It was dark like it was evening time and I turned on the light then watched from the window next to the kitchen sink as the storm continued.

Sing #FirstLineFriday

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Do you hear the people sing? from Les Miserables strangely came to my mind as we watched from the balcony as below the people gathered. It seemed the whole country was flocking to the capital, their voices a mass of shouting words which made it hard to pick out what they were saying.

Drums and other instruments echoed along said the peoples’ voices, blocking out my chance to hear what was being said. There was a marching beat going on with the drums, though a few sounded out of the beat and perhaps a trumpet? or something else forcing it’s notes through.

Handmade banners and signs waved in the wind, the writing upon them moving as if the letters were alive. I picked out the words ‘rights’ and ‘for’ and ‘stand’ and ‘truth’. The normal things that protesters wrote about.

‘What are they doing, daddy?’ my five year old daughter, Betty asked.

‘They are unhappy about something and want people to know about it,’ I said.

I picked her up and held her tightly in my arms, so she could get a better view of events below.

The police were starting to gather now. Their uniforms and see-through shields marking them out from everyone else. For the moment they seemed not to be doing much other then preparing. If fighting broke out, I’d take my daughter inside and put a movie on really loudly.

‘But why, daddy?’ Betty asked.

‘Same reason when you get unhappy and want mummy and I to know about it, ‘ I replied simply.

‘Or Freddie?’

I glanced across at my wife and our three month old son. My wife had a worried look on her face and was clutching the baby, who was wrapped in a blanket, to her shoulder. She hadn’t said anything since we had come out to look at what was going on. I knew scenes like this reminded her of the unrest in her home country.

‘Let’s go inside,’ I said gently.

‘But I want to see!’ Betty cried.

‘Maybe, another day,’ I answered and hustled my family safely inside.

 

(Inspired by; https://mindlovemiserysmenagerie.wordpress.com/2020/06/05/first-line-friday-june-5th-2020/ with thanks).

Drinks At Sunset

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The birds were singing the last songs of the day but it was still hot and hazy outside. I lent back in the garden lounger and looked at the wax crayon blue sky. It had been a beautifully day, one of this days ‘miracle’ like days that seem only to be in films.

Shutting my eyes, I relaxed into the heat, wishing and not for the first time that day, that I had a swimming pool to be dipping my feet into. We had had one in the last holiday villa we had stayed at. Oh, how it had been glorious to sit on the edge of the pool, legs in the cool water and sipping some sweet drink whilst the sun set behind the palm trees.

England didn’t really allow that setting. We didn’t have constant sun and heat that other European countries did. Still, on the rare days like this….

The clicking of ice against a glass made my eyes flicker open. My husband was stepping out of the house, two glasses of some pink fizz in his hands. He came over and hand me a glass, I smelt the hint of fruits and took a sip.

‘Something light and sweet for this hot evening,’ my husband explained.

‘What is it?’ I asked twisting the glass in my hand to inspected the drink.

Bubbles coated the sides of the glass and others raced to the surface fizzing and popping. Mint leaves floated along side the chunky ice cubes and the colour was a light pink hinting at the taste summer berries.

‘My own invention,’ my husband replied.

I took another few sips, nodded and spoke, ‘ I love it.’

Light

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The garden was alive. Birds were singing merrily, bees were buzzing around the blooming flowers but I wasn’t interesting. I could see the beauty of it from my back door and the way the sunlight caused a cast of shadows against the walls and flagstones.

The air was heavy with flowers, grass, damp earth and somewhere a faint hint of burnt toast. No doubt from one of my neighbours who was rushing through breakfast. I hadn’t eaten, couldn’t face the idea of food yet. I had a few sips of water and that was enough for the moment. Later, I would have a cup of tea and a biscuit.

There was nothing  wanted to do today. TV was a boring old friend, going on about the same problems. The radio was a drone of sounds that washed each other out. The birds would start to annoy me soon, they seemed too happy, too caught up in spring joy.

Why couldn’t I be as happy as them? What did they do that made then feel so good?

I stepped outside, feeling the sun like hot bath water around me. The sky was a crystal blue, too pure to be real. The flowers were too brightly coloured. They swayed in the breeze as if nodding to each other. Bees visited the blooms and carried pollen away, they large fuzzy bodies cute like children’s TV characters.

I breathed deeply and sat down in a somewhat abandoned plastic garden chair.

I didn’t want to live in the shadows anymore, the light was so much better.

Freedom

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There was nothing out here but nature. I got up on the wooden fence of the pier and let the wind blow though my hair. Sea salt tingled my lips and waves lapped in my ears. It was a calm, cool night. The sky was dotted with stars and the moon was full.

My torch lay abandoned on a near by bench. Normally the pier was lit up to tempted people here to go on the rides, play the fun fair themed games and spend money. The lights hadn’t come on this year, there was no point because people had been told to stay at home.

I could no longer bare it and had escaped into the night. I was tried of the arguments with two teenagers, tried of trying to do maths with my other children and tried of trying to keep my toddler entertained for long enough for me to do some housework. I didn’t regret having seven children, I just had never imagined we’d been all trapped at home for weeks on end.

I shut my eyes, breathed in deeply and listened not just my ears but my heart. The sea whispered, singing the song it had done since the beginning of time. The waves rasped across the sand and shells on the beach behind me. A seagull called close by disturbed by my presence.

For a few seconds I thought about letting go. I could fall down with the whistling wind and part the wave below. The sea would consume me gladly and wrap me in a watery embrace for all eternity.

I felt the forward lurch in my body and placed my hands on the top rail to catch myself. I looked into the dark water below and decided not today. I got down, grabbed my torch and walked back the way I had come.

I had responsibilities and so much love still to give but the sea would always be waiting for me.

Dear Diary

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Dear diary,

It’s another day of lock down. I’m losing track of the days and time, thankfully, is flying by. I guess it’s easier for me being a young woman at home with her parents. Friends of mine have children or live alone and they are not coping as well. I guess lots of people are in the same boat right now and that’s not much that can be done.

I have been keeping as busy as possible. I ordered or £200 worth of books and soon I’ll have a stock pile of books to read and keep me sane. I’ve been speaking to all my friends on the phone or online. I’ve also found a new Dungeons and Dragons table/group to join thanks to my boyfriend’s friends. I can’t wait to fill a few hours away on a fantasy adventure.

I’m thankfully for the large garden my parents have, also the local parks and woods which mean I can go for a walk and not think about being stuck at home. The rules are only an hour of outside excises a day but who’s not know how long I’ve been out for?

Yesterday, I was in the woods for almost three hours. Of course, I kept my distance from people and I didn’t pet any dogs I saw which was so hard to do! I spoke to a few people too from across the river or down the path. It surprised me how many people were there!

I miss going to the beach. I’ve been listening to and watching online scenes of the sea. The waves are comforting to me but how I wish I could dip my toes into that cold water and feel the rushing of sand under my feet.

That’s the first thing I’m going to do when I get out of here; spend a week at the seaside with my family and friends.

Spaghettification #AtoZChallenge

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Spaghettification – the process by which an object would be stretched and ripped apart by gravitational forces on falling into a black hole.

The engines of the spaceship let out a desperate sound of straining and Colbert put more pressure on them. He was determined not loss this gravity fight with the black hole. The lives of his crew were in his hands and they had been through so much all ready.

Colbert shook his head to get rid of the sweat dripping into his eyes. His knuckles had turned white on the control sticks and his hands were numb because of the tight grip. He gritted his teeth and kept his eyes on the front windows ahead of him.

Space was endless, dotted with planets and stars, wormholes, asteroid fields and so much more undiscovered. It was rare for a black hole to appear as normally they were find and carefully mapped but this one that Colbert had found his spaceship in hadn’t been plotted.

‘I won’t give up,’ Colbert hissed, ‘come on, baby,’

A crackling voice came over the speaker, ‘boz, the engines are over heating!’

‘It’s fine, Linger! They can take it!’ Colbert barked back.

Linger answered but the intercom crackled over it.

Colbert puffed out and shut his eyes. His whole body was shaking and he felt dizzy.

The engines give out a churning noise then cut. Colbert smelt smoke. He let out a scream of defeat and everything began stretching as if they were warp jumping. Then the spaceship began ripping apart and groaning under the buckling stress.

More screams and yells echoed through the ship. Colbert listened to them over the intercom, his heart pounding. The front window smashed and he was sucked out, tumbling into a grave of unknown blackness.

(Inspired by; http://www.a-to-zchallenge.com)

Iniquitous #AtozChallenge

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Iniquitous – grossly unfair and morally wrong.

It’s always so unfair and wrong. He’s got more then me or she’s broken it. He’s annoying me then she bit me! He started, she started, he did it, she did it!

Always fighting, like they are punishing you for having them both. Would it have been different if they were both girls or both boys? Doubtful. Siblings always fight. You did so with your own.

‘It’s not fair!’ he cries, ‘I hate her!’

‘I hate you more!’ she screams back.

You roll your eyes and silently beg for peace. Just five minutes like Mrs Elephant wanted.

‘What happened?’ you ask thinking you can play judge, jury and court all in one.

They spill the story of how one was doing something wrong but the other was sure it was right and unfair it was for the interruption to happen. How this or that might be broke, why it’s not his or her fault. He should be punished, no, she should be punished.

It’s the same old story, repeat time after time. What’s the point in trying to keep putting the bridge out of fire if it finds a way to carry on burning down?

‘Leave each other alone,’ you rule, ‘you go back to whatever it was and you come do something with me.’

Tongues stick out, there are pouts and tears. She stamps are foot and crosses her arms and declares, ‘its not fair! you love him more then me.’

Not that cliche again!

You say, ‘that’s not true. Do you want to do some baking?’

Another war stopped, another battle half won. You just hope this is a phrase they are going through. How can they love each other one moment and hate each other so much the next? It’s a bafflement never to be solved but then that’s siblings for you.

(Inspired by; http://www.a-to-zchallenge.com)

Lambent #WritePhoto

Isolation. Everyone was recommending it, everything into lock down and slowing.

Crowded streets and places were empty. Traffic lights changed colour but no one stopped and started before them. Signs hung in shops declaring the stock that was no longer available though most of those shops were shut for good. Life continued from behind closed doors.

On the research island it little mattered. I was the only one here, researching the puffins as they made nests and mated. I had two months worth of extra supplies in case of emergency as standard. Though, I had ordered more, as much as they could send me as I heard that panic buying was causing shortages.

I was far too busy outside, distracted enough with my recordings to eat or drink much. It was keeping warm at night that was the problem because even though it was spring, it was still cold and sometimes a bit of snow glittered in the morning light.

My boss had suggested I return home. Be with my family and stay safe because if anything happened to me out here there might not be no one to my rescue me.

I had thought carefully then answered, ‘no. I’m not at much risk here. The delivery people can leave the supplies and I can disinfect things. If I go home to the mainland I’m bound to catch the virus. We should keep in regular touch though. Two to four times a day fine with you?’

Laying on my stomach, I watched the sun rising and the puffins waking up. I couldn’t help but think about that idea of isolation. I imagined everyone complaining about it, becoming restless and fed up. I though, thrived on solitude. It was needed to become one with nature, to do the work I loved and never did the sense of boredom creep into my mind.

 

(Inspired by; https://scvincent.com/2020/03/12/thursday-photo-prompt-lambent-writephoto/ with thanks).