Drabble Lab Round 9: Explosive
Sorry for the lateness of Drabble Lab this round; I am on vacation and foolishly messed up sending the winner out to Brian, who was illustrating.
But oh man, there was some great stuff last round!
I loved the rhythm of Seelix’s drabble:
We know the egg won’t stand on its end. At least not any more than usual.
We know that planetary alignments won’t tear apart the earth apart.
We know the earth isn’t any closer to the sun than usual.
We know that fertility isn’t granted through solstice sacrifice.
We know the darkness hasn’t been fought back, once again, through rituals, spells and piety.
We don’t dance around Stonehenge or to the sun. We aren’t feasting Epona or St John. But still, lying under the full moon, next to a friend, after the longest day of the year, there is magic.
And the imagery in this one by Breadbox:
The night before the solstice he retrieved the sleeping bag from the attic and took it into the back yard. It was warm enough, now, that he could sleep in the open air. He planned to spend every last moment of tomorrow’s daytime outside, in the sun. He took out the canteen he had found with the hiking equipment and filled it from the kitchen sink. He took a long drink from it, then topped it up again before replacing the cap. He imagined himself similarly, all topped up with sunlight before starting the long hike across another winter season.
And the character of the anthropomorphized sun in this one by Scurvygirl:
The sun had not traveled so far in its lifetime. Each moment, a little further out, but where was it going? It had heard whispers from its little blue shadow saying the journey was the thing. Sometimes the sun would fart in the general direction of the little blue pest, but sometimes it would misdirect those outbursts entirely. The sun shifted its thoughts to the planet’s surface. Somewhere, on the little blue pest, someone was marking a day off the calendar, thinking about nights getting longer, the sun seeming to push itself away, like punishment. The sun vented a sigh.
This round’s winner was Falco Rusticalis’ entry, for the imagery and the intrigue:
Hesitating, she wrote him of a world he might remember, the fading flowers and embarrassment of green. Of perfect kickball weather, five degrees short of swim season. Of dogs bounding down the sidewalk and the steamy tempo in the bars. Of quiet rains that came at night, blurring the streetscapes in her windows. So cruel it seemed – rubbing his face in the sand of a distant desert, surrounded by strangers and unfamiliar taboos and his unhappy thoughts that scared her so. After six months, which world would be more real? Still, she knew, strange roads are opened on the solstice.
And here’s the illustration:
Thanks for your participation, you guys are awesome. The theme for the next round is explosive.
I forgot to watch the fireworks that night. They were upstairs, on the 22nd floor, you could see for miles. The next morning the thought occurred to me, as explosive as the lights would have been if I had seen them.
But you were not on the 22nd floor. You were 20 floors below with your face in my shoulder, sobbing.
We waited for the ambulance. I hoped your heart would remain in your chest, however broken he had left it. I held you while your heart beat like a firework, hot and sudden and painful.
“He’s gone” you whispered.
“What was that sound? There shouldn’t be a sound like that in the forest” Jason thought as he trudged through an undergrowth that seemed to be made of Cheerios and Golden Grahams.
The log he crawled over gave a crack and crumbled beneath him into large shards of rotten wood that could have consisted of pound cake, all crumbles and weightlessness.
The sound was growing louder and the fog was rolling in. Jason didn’t like the way it clouded his mind, his ability to think or perceive.
Groaning, Jason rolled over and hit the snooze button.
John tapped on the flask. He had forgotten the professor’s reminder to tap periodically, to ensure the viscous drip dissolved fully instead of settling to the bottom. Silly mistake. He needed to focus. He’d overslept, no time for coffee as he ran to class. The solution should have changed color minutes ago. Everyone else was already on the next step. Because he’d forgotten the periodic tapping. Suddenly he realized what would happen when the overstrong mixture was finally agitated but it was too late to call back the nerve impulses extending the index finger that tapped sharply against the flask.
Shards of the Widowmaker surrounded her black-box like a minefield. The box was blinking faintly. The light had probably been red, but was now faded with age. It was cracked along the edges where it met the cool, black surface of the box. The mechanical arm grabbed it easily and guided it back to the salvage vessel.
There was condensation on the box now, as it adjusted to room temperature, still too cold to touch. Finally, the secrets of the ill-fated Widowmaker would be revealed. She had always been destined for a one-way voyage, her secrets spilled over and again.