Furious Fiction is an Australian competition each month where they give you a set of rules and you have to write a 500 word story. Check out my short stories below.
Eliza hurriedly runs to the library, wanting to rent her favourite book she reads at least once a month before someone else rents it. She goes into the library and goes straight to the romance fiction section and shuffles through the books. She pulls out the hard book cover but frowns deeply as she sees the binder broken.
"Are you kidding me?" she murmurs to herself. Who would dare ruin her favourite book? Yeah it's a little warn out given how many times she's rented it, but she would never break the cover. The cover is what brings the whole book together; the thing that catches a readers attention.
"That was my fault actually". A boy's voice catches her attention and she spins around seeing a cute boy standing there. "I picked up that book yesterday and a girl tried to tear it out of my hands and it ripped".
"Oh". Eliza looks down at the book in her hands. "I guess it is a popular book".
"Tell me about it. I wouldn't dare be caught reading a romance, but that one captured me". The boy smiles and two prominent dimples appear in his cheeks. Eliza smiles at his teenage boy like nature of not wanting to be caught with a romantic book. But to hear him admit that this book captured him, it intrigues her and all she wants to do is ask him what he thought of the storyline.
"What are your thoughts?" Eliza asks.
"Let's sit at a table and discuss, shall we?" He gestures to the table with a charming smile.
Once Eliza sits down, she sets her backpack down and unzips it to grab her travel mug full of coffee out. Coffee with a great book in a silent library is the perfect day for Eliza. The boy sits in front of Eliza, smiling as she takes a sip from her huge travel mug.
"So I freaking loved this book. Every time I read it, it's like the first time. Each chapter keeps me on edge even though I know what's going to happen", Eliza gushes over her favourite book and the boy chuckles at her enthusiasm.
"Yeah, when I read it for the first time; it was such a lovely romance, I thought cupid wrote it himself".
"Do you come to the library often?" Eliza asks, still holding the book in her hands. She's planning on mending the binder so she can read it again. She could go to a bookstore and buy herself a copy, but there's something serene about sitting in a library and reading a warn out book, inhaling the scent of the pages. Ever since she can remember, she's SMELT the inside of a book. There's nothing better than the scent of a book.
"Every so often. I actually have to head home. Can I have your number?" he asks.
"Sure". Eliza smiles and gives her number, then watches the nameless cute boy walk away while smiling back at her.
Perseverance Is Light
The young woman sits on the roof, holding her knees to her body, the tears uncontrollably falling in her wretched state. The bitter cold of the night eases when light starts to form on the horizon, the heat of the sun warming her ears. She lifts her head and squints as the glowing shade of orange gradually turns into a golden ball of fire, shining through the blue sky. She tries to stop her crying, but keeps hiccuping from her night of breathless crying.
All night on the roof, she couldn't come to terms with what she had done the day before. There was something about the black covered sky, the complete darkness that encompassed her through the night that made it easy for her to let all her agony out. But now in the light of day, everything feels different.
Life didn't stop once she signed her shaky signature on the medical form. The life of her baby did, but hers didn't. Through all her strife with her family, the girls she called friends, the boy she thought loved her, she thought it was the best decision to do what she had done yesterday. No one knows of what she did. Once she arrived home, the roof seemed like a safe place to grieve without horrid judgement from all the people she thought would be there for her.
Being alone in the dark of night makes it easy to forget there's a world out there. It gives you a moment to truly be selfish and do absolutely nothing but sit. However, we can't hold on to that protection we feel in the dark. Because once the sun is up, the public is out, and civilisation keeps running as it does, the facade we drop at night has to be put back on, like a mask.
Now that the sun is shining, the birds are chirping, and distant car engines are driving, she knows her world didn't stop. It is time to face what she had done. There's no turning back from the excision the doctor had performed on her the previous day. She knows the hate she will receive once she hops down from this roof so she tries to stay seated for as long as possible. But when the sun is blazing down on you, such a positive and warming life-force, it's difficult to stay in a place of emptiness.
The woman rises to her feet, stares at the brightness before her and takes a deep breath. It was her choice. Her body had given her a life changing opportunity, which her brain had to make a decision for. Even though she hates the fact that she is now a registered patient at a women's health clinic. And hates even more she won't be teaching a version of herself to ride a bicycle like her father had taught her, she is accepting her new found strength in the light of day to keep going. Perseverance is light.