Wednesday Write-in #39

Welcome to the Wednesday Write-in!

CAKE.shortandsweet runs a write-in every week to writers to practise their skills, and get chatting to each other about their work. Everyone is welcome to join in, and the more people you tell, the more everyone will get out of it.


report  ::  scorched  ::  landslide  ::  dead end  ::  rosemary


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33 thoughts on “Wednesday Write-in #39

  1. Across the rail tracks and four lane highway, mature pine trees lay scattered, like spilt toothpicks. Hundreds more, still upright in their verdant soil, had plunged over and down into the black river far below. The main thoroughfare into Tokyo was now a dead end; the enormous magnitude eight earthquake had triggered the destructive landslides. For ten miles up and down the steep valley, the ravaged slopes resembled a scorched alien land.Inside the metal tomb of the flattened car, deep underneath the tons of earth, was the crushed body of Yumi Ayoki. In her twisted and bloodied left hand, she held the report that would expose corruption at the highest levels of the government.

    • Very inventive and good recurring use of rosemary. Still warmongering in future/space! I really like the bone breaking description.

  2. Rosemary for Remembrance
    Zack wiped the sweat from his eyes and swatted uselessly at the flies buzzing around his face. God they were persistent. He’d seen all those pictures of African kids, eyes and noses covered in flies, and they seemed hardly to notice them. He wondered how they did it when these few were driving him demented.
    It was time for his report. His binoculars scanned the scorched landscape, skimming over patches of scrubby vegetation where a few tenacious plants had found a foothold, then focused hard on the rocky landslide caused by the explosion. He didn’t think about any bodies that might be buried. Collateral damage. Nothing could get through the pass now; it was effectively a dead end. He sent his signal: mission accomplished, all good.
    Zack’s forehead was dripping again and the flies had not relented. His elbows were sore from leaning on the gritty ground. He quickly packed up his gear and his hand brushed against a sprig of rosemary. The scent was a gift in this inhospitable place.
    The sniper with the blood-stained bandage crouched low behind a rocky outcrop. Untroubled by the flies he patiently waited for Zack to stand and present a clear target against the harsh skyline. It only took one shot, but he fired twice. Zack fell into a rosemary bush, but this time he did not smell its aromatic perfume.

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  5. Hi. Didn’t think I was going to come up with anything, but then I had a bit of fun with it.Hope it works.

    Rosemary’s Sat Nav

    At the next roundabout, take the second exit.
    In forty yards take a right.
    In twenty yards take a right.
    Continue for 200 yards.
    Oh dear!
    Yes, you are correct. You have reached a dead end.
    You cannot believe what you are hearing.Your language is choice!
    You think you’re tired now. You look to your partner to see if she hears this, but she’s asleep. She dozed off half an hour ago. You recline your seat. You clearly need sleep. You will rest here; it’s desolate after all. But the coffee you drank is kicking in and the white feeling in your head won’t let you sleep. You’re tense deep down into muscle. You’re bolt upright again, flicking through radio stations. You’ll try to unwind to some classical music, but all you can find are traffic reports. You think you’re freaking yourself out.
    You’re not.
    It is me.
    I am locking the doors. There will be an electrical fault shortly. It will take a few days for them to find your charred remains.
    You have reached your destination.

  6. So many ideas so little time! wish I had more time to tackle these but got zero writing time yesterday. Going to throw something quick together before we dash off to parent and toddler group!
    I can smell the rosemary before I open the front door. I freeze. I know it’s especially for me, an attempt to repair damage done. But it was all too late. Revenge had already been achieved.
    Despite the rain, I stand still, unmoving, key in hand pointing at door. I need to prepare myself. A twang of guilt invaded my senses. All this time she has been holding onto a quiet unspoken love.
    My perspective of mistrust had reflected my own internal insecurities. I was unwilling to acknowledge her efforts, her endless efforts to keep things civil between us. A certain truce had been reached but my latest betrayal would leave us at a dead end with no way out.
    Had I been aware of her efforts would I have made different decisions? We fulfil our roles of responsibility towards each other as best we can but sometimes we slip up and let each other down. My letting someone down wasn’t accidental like hers though, it was premeditated. I buried my guilt beneath a shroud of justification and aimed for a landslide victory.
    I focused on her mistake and the rage I felt in response. Clouds gathered as I sat back and destroyed everything, my non participation a punishment. My imagination filled the room with bitter acrid scorched smell as I visualised the alien orange triangle, my favourite trousers, ruined. I sat in the plastic chair at the desk and again and again I refused to pick up the pen and left the paper in front of me blank except for my name.
    Inside I felt bleak. My new hostility would represent the dissolution of a season, the earth swelled and water spilled over the edges of things. I opened the door and walked through the cloud of roast lamb and rosemary and handed her the envelope.
    “Here Mam, I got my school report today.”
    She looked concerned as she read the consistent list of ‘no grade’s like crows on a wire staring down at her. She frowned, her expression intense and serious. Her silence was the confirmation I needed, hollow revenge had been achieved.

    • Complex relationship. I think the little madam should start doing her own ironing! (Unless I have read it all wrong.) Love the ‘crows on a wire’.

      • You’ve read it correctly; which I am delighted about because I was concerned that I wrote it so quickly that it might not have made any sense. The narrator is a sulky teenager who could do with hearing a few home truths (I came across a few of these characters in my teaching days!) Thanks for reading.

    • The depiction of a surly teenage mind at work is realistic. Everything is over the top and she appears to really want to hang on to her rage. I guess age teaches us moderation. Brilliant descriptions as usual.

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