Master Class – Solace


Master class is back, and with perfect timing for my determination to keep up with writing on a regular basis in the new year.  The first one of the new year has a pretty simple requirement – use the quote from Divergent (excellent book) as your first line.  Click on the quote below to go over to the Master Class linkup and add your own story, or read the other submissions.

There is one mirror in my house.  She is my solace and my despair, as tempestuous as the sea.  At times she is docile, granting me my requests sweetly, glimpses of elsewhere and elsewhen – a bustling village market,  or a peaceful family taking their ease of an evening, perhaps.  The wind picks up and she is derisive and spiteful, twisting my desires, showing instead that same village at its end, all smoke and blood and death, the family’s suffering, the hollow cheeks and broken sobs of starvation and desperation.  Each picture worth a thousand words, look at what you’ve done, over and again.

She rages and storms, my looking glass, and for days at a time, all I see is my true self, no cruelty or disfigurement left cloaked, unswayed by my tears.  Soft as a kitten, my Lady sidles up to me, all soft words and kisses, my face as I once was reflected in her gaze, my own hideous rictus of pleasure mirrored in that long-ago boy’s delighted grin and wide brown eyes.

Whatever her mood, she is my companion, gripped tight while I stalk the desolate halls of my prison, or hugged close as I toss in restless slumber in the den of tumble-down furniture and shredded bedding that was once a grand and bright bedroom.  The only time I feel able to set her down is when I tend my roses.  Their hidden barbs save them from my fits of despair as no other thing of beauty here has done.  I long to believe that there is some beauty yet within me, unseen as the rose’s thorn.

I sit up late into the night, thinking of nothing and everything and staring into her depths.  My past, the innocent boy I was.  The gradual change in me, I pick at the threads of my memory.  Was that it?  Was that the first of my cruelties?  The first time I failed to care, to be human?  Was that when I began my descent?

I have thought of countless ways to avoid my fate, but redemption lies beyond my twisted grasp.  It is as I think on this, a full year into my captivity, one claw absently scraping gilt from her frame, that she begins to show me the girl, pale and plain and solemn.  Her path leading her ever nearer.

Perhaps there is yet hope.

another request put in to my sister.  she is very patient with me and my demands for free artwork!

another request put in to my sister. she is very patient with me and my demands for free artwork!

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8 Comments

  1. I love the direction you went with this, the darkness of the piece yet, a subtle darkness. You leave us with all the answers, yet none at the same time, so our imaginations can play with your words, entangle us and trap us within your creativity. (Sorry. I know that totally sounds like a spam comment, but I didn’t mean it as so.) I just meant that my favorite stories are the ones like this that can be interpreted in different ways. When you’ve made my imagination roll, you’ve successfully seduced me, making you a master storyteller indeed.

    • Wow, thank you so much 🙂 Definitely not a spam comment, you didn’t use any of the ‘words that are not quite the right word, but are almost spelled the same’ the spammers use. I’m glad you enjoyed it – I was hoping people would use their own imagination to create the mc in their minds. My sister asked me what he looked like for when she was drawing him, and all I could say was “What do you think he looks like? go with that.”

  2. I know the focus is supposed to be on the writing, but I LOVE when you post your artwork! You’re super talented. Show-biz has triple threats, so does that mean literature has double threats: the ability to write and illustrate? Or maybe also a triple threat if you count reading audio books? I dunno. I’ve digressed.

    • My sister has a great imagination, and I’m always happy to provide illustrations when she asks for them 🙂 I’m glad you’ve been enjoying my drawings as well 🙂

    • I’m glad you enjoyed the artwork. Doodled is very talented, and generally comes through for me on my weird requests. “Draw this character… or something that you think represents this story… and no, i won’t tell you what he looks like, you have to get it from the story itself… aaaand you have 24 hours, go!”

      • Ahh I totally misread that thinking the photo was requested by your sis, not of – in any case, one talented sis! You make a great team!

  3. I don’t mind drawing 😛 AND you’ve always got something new for me, so…
    Doesn’t hurt that your stories are always super neat, so… 😀

  1. Master Class 2014 Vol II | My Write Side
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