May 7, 2014

Wednesday Weekly Writing Challenge 5.7.2014

Set your timer to 10 minutes and start writing. Your opening sentence should be

"All she left was a note and a... "

Remember you can write in any style or format. When you are finished cut and paste your 10 min piece in the comment thread below OR put a link to your own blog or area where you write online.


  1. "All she left was a note and a... "

    Air slid through the words of Klispy's memory and I waited. More words would come. The memory would be served up, side dishes an all. I was patient like that; always waiting for a man to say his bit. Tom wasn't, though.

    "Shit, and you never seen her since?" Tom wiped his mouth on the back of his hand and reached for the water that had gone stale hours ago.

    More air slid by. Seconds went by, too. Klispy's breaths just hummed into his hand, the pitch never changing. The greying hairs at the top of his moustache kicked up and down over his fingers. Was it is nose that was keeping them down? Or was that pulling them up again?

    "No," he said finally, and reached for his own glass. It was empty, dry. He pored his eyes into it, cross eyed behind glass, all nose and blinkless pupils behind concentric rings and that mark: Made In China.

    "Waiter!" I heard myself scream. "Need some more water over here!"

    "Hear hear," called Tom.

    Klispy dropped his hand, the glass thunking in between dully and sharply against the table. More knicks, more slivers. "Blue Boar" was old as spit. And smelled like it, too.

    "No, I see her. Sure I see her."

    The waiter filled out glasses, Klispy's last.

    Klispy's eyes came uncrossed. He licked his lips. "She just don't know it."

  2. I really like these two lines...

    More air slid by. Seconds went by, too. Klispy's breaths just hummed into his hand, the pitch never changing.


    More knicks, more slivers. "Blue Boar" was old as spit. And smelled like it, too.

  3. All she left was a note and a fur ball on the front hall carpet. That damn cat and her loony narcissistic nonsense – good riddance. May she stay feral and forlorn forever. My only regret is staying so long in a relationship that was codependent and abusive. Hiding claw marks, cleaning up her kitty litter and her barf and her poor, innocent, dismembered victims. I should have taken her years ago to the pound, or offed her myself, but I was weak. I curse my cowardice. I could have wrung her furry neck. I could have hurled her from the fire escape. I could have defenestrated her, stabbed her, zapped her in the microwave – treated her like she treated her hapless victims. But no. How many lives could I have saved? Those poor mice – I can still hear their cries of despair and pain as they shrieked out their last moments in torment. The damage she did to the neighborhood bird population – they didn’t deserve her depredations, and neither did I.
    Farewell, Fluffy, damn you.

  4. My favorite line May she stay feral and forlorn forever.

  5. Anonymous7:42:00 PM

    All she left was a note and a pen. I unfurled the paper again and looked between the two choices. Yes or No. Just which one did her friend think Aaron would circle?
    As an experienced courier down on his luck in the dating scene, I pocketed the urgent note with the usual decorum; it wouldn't matter if I presented an embossed gold leaf card or a crumpled scrap of craft paper adorned with red biro hearts.
    I caught Aaron's arm as he stepped out of the hacky sack circle.
    "Hey man, just got this from Stephanie."
    Aaron smirked and offered his hand.
    "Give us a look, then. Who's the sender?"
    "Who do you think? That new South African chick; you know, the one that speaks Afrikaans and five other languages. Rebecah with an 'h'"
    Aaron read the message with his usual poker grin.
    "And the language of love. Geez, she wants to know if I would consider 'courting' her."
    "Sounds like a game of netball or something round the back of the cricket nets. You want me to answer it for you?"
    "Nah, give it here. Got a pen?"
    I produced the red biro from my pocket. "Watch the end of it, mate. She's been a nibbling on the end of that one."
    Aaron snatched the pen and circled his answer.

  6. All she left was a note and a rend in my heart that was a vacuum for all other happiness.

    Nothing was all I felt when I was lucky. Drinking helped a little. I could cry when I drank. It was better than the vacuum - at least I felt human.

    She never minced words. I loved that about her. The note took her less than a minute to write. I'm sure she never knew that I watched her as she wrote it.

    Nathan: I like the "Made in China" line. Very grounding.
    Rob: The saving lives line is great. Talk about faux guilt. Poor mice!
    Virtuefiction: I like the "Rebecah with an 'h'". Possibly personal prejudice, but it's a nice detail with backstory.

  7. All she left was a note and a shriveled up string neatly wrapped in a white, spotless silk handkerchief. My umbilical cord, said the note written in a rushed script, each word marked by clear, non-negotiable stroke extending upward at the end. That was pretty much all it said. “Your umbilical cord. Born on August 7, 1988, sunny morning. God Bless, S.”
    Maybe she had left me something more than just a card and a dried up relic of our one-year relationship, but when the father found me on the steps of the local church, I had nothing else with me. Good job for remaining anonymous.
    I wish I could brag about living the musical life of Annie, but I was soon adopted by an unfathomably wealthy but childless family, and turned into a Little Princess whose father never died.
    The princess grew up, and as any young sensible socialite, I took up a charity project with the local church. Yes, the one where I was first found.
    The father was still there, delighted to see me come back. I was his favorite pupil in Sunday school, the brightest bulb that lightened up the room.
    “It’s been years, and you’re doing alright!” He gave me a bear hug in his room, and then squinted at the piece of paper in my hand, the notes I scribbled for the speech tonight.
    “Is that your handwriting? It’s changed. Let me see,” he held up the paper. “Hmm, looks like the note’s handwriting, if I remember correctly. Do you still have the note that came with you?”
    I was surprised. Alarmed, even. I felt the shriveled cord grab my ankle and start to pull me back. Cool breeze blew in from the half-open window, seeping through my ironed hair and down my back. Birds chirped in the distance as they flew back to their nests.

  8. Anonymous9:32:00 PM

    All she left was a note and a banana. It was a stupid fight. 'You always eat all the food. You don't even ask me if I want some,' she said. The accusation was unfair for I certainly did ask her last night, but according to her, just because she didn't want it last night didn't mean she didn't want it this morning. 'All right,' I said, 'you can have the banana.' But she wasn't happy. 'It's not the banana that matters. It's that you didn't think about me that matters,' she said, not touching the banana.

    She was always like that. When she didn't like something, she would disappear from my sight. She didn't necessarily leave the place. Sometimes, she just hid herself somewhere – in a closet, bathroom etc –it was childish and silly. But she was quite serious – 'childlike seriousness' as I would describe.

    It was the first time she left a note. 'Ciao! You can have the banana!' it said. I didn't know why she did it, but I thought it was just one of those things she did.

    Except that now, I feel like leaving her too. 'Dear Barbara,' I find a piece of paper and begin to write.

  9. Anonymous10:34:00 PM

    All she left was a note and a proviso: "You won't understand". In that, if nothing else, I know she would not have been disappointed.

    As I reach for the note I know what I will find: spidery numbers skittering wildly about parchment, spelling dark futures only visible to those who dwell on shadows.

    I've seen these spiderwebs before, and failed the test. She told me I would not understand. Try me, I said.

    A great change is coming, she said. It is all connected. We are all connected. God is in numbers. I will bring the darkness, she said, and jabbed a finger at the spiderlegs. "Here, it says here."

    I told her I did not understand. Months later, when she left, all she left was a note and a proviso. The darkness has come nonetheless.

  10. All she left was a note and a glass of watery whisky. It felt warm when I picked it up but the wet ring on the table told me she’d added ice to it which meant it wasn’t intended for me. I was a whisky neat kind of guy. She was the one who liked to ruin it with ice. The note said “A Toast! To Us!” but didn’t tell me anything else. I downed it with one gulp because it was too weak to count as anything other than flavored water. She took every bottle of water and all the packaged food. She left most of her clothes and shoes which told me she wasn’t going to be gone that long. She wasn’t the type to suddenly go out and find herself. She went out to find little things and eventually came back. Slowly but surely, she seemed to believe, those little things would add up to one glorious whole and she’d finally know herself.
    I’d asked her once, half joking, what would happen if she assembled enough pieces. She said we’d probably never know. I picked up the note. Was I part of the “To Us?” or was she talking about all those little things finally coming together? I could only wait to find out. I wiped every trace of water from the glass with a paper towel and poured myself a whisky straight. I toasted her, wherever she happened to be and whatever she found.

  11. All she left was a note and a stained, faded strip of red cloth that had been torn from a once favorite skirt of hers. The note contained only three words, "Remember to breathe" in large block letters shakily formed. She had carefully and precisely folded the fabric to encase her last words. It was addressed to no one but I knew who it was for, and I knew of all the pain that one small piece of paper and slender strip of cloth contained. I knew that she had stopped breathing when she heard the soft footfalls on the packed dirt floor. She had stopped being when she heard the soft click of the lock turning and sliding into its proper place. She no longer was when she felt his warm whispers of breath on her body and his deceptively gentle hands as he slowly loosened the ripped red binding so he might place her in a better position.