Tom Sawyer scratched his head. “This here’s the bust of our invisible man?”
“The poor fellow had terrible burns and injuries. His scar tissue means that he can never be totally invisible again,” said Captain Nemo.
Nemo frowned perturbed. “Dr. Jekyll said the invisibility potion only affected our friend’s epidermis but once that was burnt off in the explosion, it meant he would have obvious scarring.”
“He saved us all, ya know. I thought his skin would heal. I wouldn’ta left so long but there’s been rumors. Some say, Allan’s alive, that he dug his way out of his grave. I had ta investigate.” Tom spit on the flour, angry at himself.
“This is true. It’s said Africa would never let Allan Quatermain die. As for our invisible friend, Mina told me he was handsome once. Having half his head and face deformed was difficult for him.” Mina Harker appeared in the hallway suddenly.
“We haven’t seen him yet, Mrs. Harker, Ma’am, but the Captain and I were talking about him.”
She touched the invisible man’s bust. “There’s no telling where our friend went. However, I heard most of your conversation.” Mina tapped her ears inducting her improved vampire senses.
“Earlier you said you had been searching for Allan when you left us. Maybe the invisible man is searching for someone to help him too? Did you find Allan?”
Tom shook his head and Mina smiled, “Young Tom, Allan Quatermain is alive. He’s a youth like you now, but with much more experience at hiding. African Shamans have brought him back to life to fight with us again. I saw him in a vision; a great evil is coming and Allan is the key to stopping it.”
Mina tossed back her hair. “Once we find Allan, he will help us unravel our other friend’s disappearance.”
“Then it’s settled,” Captain Nemo said. “I will tell the crew to sail towards North Africa. There, our next adventure begins.”
Today’s NaPoWriMo prompt is poem type called an elegy – a poem that mourns or honors someone dead or something gone by. Center the elegy on an unusual fact about the person or thing being mourned. ” An elegy generally combines three stages of loss: first there is grief, then praise of the dead one, and finally consolation.” Please see Literary Devices for more information.
I’ve paired this prompt with The A to Z Challenge quote, having the author/quoter’s name begin with the letter C.
——— “We are all the pieces of what we remember. We hold in ourselves the hopes and fears of those who love us. As long as there is love and memory, there is no true loss.” ― CassandraClare, City of Heavenly Fire
Here we gather, today it finally hit —
Me, you won’t be coming back; such grit —
You displayed, at the crux, as death grew near.
There was no “going gently” for you dear.
I always admired that you were strong,
At the finish you groaned your last song.
The pain was so great, it hurt us to see,
A candle flame who flared, flickering free.
Death was not easy, nor was your young life.
But you always shouldered through the strife.
A kind, giving person — philanthropist,
With death, you became a minimalist.
Objects hold memories, the Stone’s song we know —
well: “You Can’t Take It With You When You Go.”
As we remember, we wonder why —
Three-years ago you left, disappeared wide —
Across the world, sending postcards to —
Us all, as you adventured across through —
Every country you could see with no —
Face Time, Skype; we were scared you wouldn’t come —
Timo and Erica had been stranded in the desert when their small plane crashed near Cairo. Sunburnt, exhausted, and thirsty, they were shocked to see an Oasis.
“An Oasis Timo, we’re saved. There’s water and even a chalice to drink from,” Erica yelled.
“You’re seeing things Erica, there’s no water and no chalice.”
“Really look, it’s only a few steps away — we’re here,” Erica said rushing forward to drink from a beautiful pale blue spring; however, whenever she tried to cup the spring water with her hands, it slide away.
“It won’t let me drink and I’m half-dead,” she cried.
Timo rubbed his eyes, finally believing the blue spring underneath a palm tree existed. A chalice made with a human skull sat in the middle of a stone alter as well. It gave him a feeling of dread.
“Erica, to drink the water you need the chalice but don’t do it. There’s something terrifying and evil about this cup.”
She turned to Timo, giving him a dark stare, “I’ll drink from the chalice if I want.” Erica strode to the alter, bowed mockingly and lifted the chalice to kiss the skull on the mouth.
Timo grimaced as she scooped it into the water and drank. It was an Indiana Jones’ movie come to life as Erica’s life force was sucked from her body which disintegrated until she was dust.
He decide to try drinking from the spring without the chalice. Timo drank all the water he could then sat down beneath the large palm tree in the shade. He wondered why cupping his hands worked for him and not for poor Erica as he drifted asleep.
When he awoke, Timo heard the blessed noise of rescuers in the distance and hollered for help. To his amazement the Oasis had disappeared along with the chalice.
He contemplated what he should say happened to Erica as no one would believe the truth.
(I truly meant for this to be Flash Fiction, but the story just developed. Sorry about the way – over word count.)
Grandma June huffed at Natalie, her granddaughter visiting her at home.”You’re not getting any younger, you’re thirty-eight. You can’t barely have babies anymore!”
Natalie rolled her eyes at Grandma June,”Gran, I’m an elementary school teacher. I like going home and not having to worry about kids.”
June sighed,”It was that man, you were supposed to marry. He’s a thief and stole your heart; I’m right aren’t I?”
Natalie ignored June’s question. She hated when her Grandma or anyone, talked about Christopher. She’d never admit he was her one.
He hadbeen since she was in grade ten and Christopher an attractive senior in high school. It was when he had first asked Natalie out. They’d broken-up, having had incompatible lives with Christopher away at university soon after.
Then, seven-years-ago, they’d ran into each other and started talking and dating again. Natalie had convinced herself this was finally it. Sadly, a few weeks before the wedding, Christopher had disappeared; the memories were agony for her.
Two-week’s later, Grandma June called Natalie up to invite her to a wine and cheese night she was hosting for her neighbours. She had tried to decline but June was adamant Natalie attend.
She arrived at her Grandma June’s surprisingly lively wine party, in jeans and a white t-shirt. She had barely bothered to apply makeup as Natalie had come from the gym and was worn out.
“Oh you came,” Grandma June said excitedly, approaching Natalie as she let herself inside. She hugged June and kissed her cheek, as June poured Natalie a large glass of red wine and filled her plate with bread and cheese. She winked at Natalie and left her alone in a small sitting room to rest before joining the other guests.
“Natalie?” A deep voice said. She turned on the sofa towards the sitting room door. Christopher’s voice shocked her, she had almost doused herself in red wine. His familiar timber filled Natalie with great pain. She peered up at him feeling raw, as if he’d only left her yesterday without explanation.
Tears began dripping down Natalie’s cheeks; she was crying and couldn’t stop herself. Christopher immediately sat down on the sofa beside Natalie and pulled her close; he wiped her tears away with his thumb. She tried to jerk out of his arms, but he wouldn’t let her move.
“I’m not letting you go, ever again,” Christopher swore.”I can’t explain much about why I had to leave you, only that I didn’t have a choice.”
Natalie shoved him hard, “You have nothing more to say, nothing at all?”
Christopher was noticeably upset, “I told you I worked as an IT consultant. But I could never tell you or anyone who I worked for until recently. I worked for Special Forces in the army and I was called out to a job. It’s the only thing I can’t about. The job lasted years, and I wasn’t allowed to contact anyone. We saved countless lives, but it was awful what I did to you and being without you. I’m sorry.”
Natalie rubbed her swollen eyes, “You’re a liar Christopher. You could’ve mentioned something, anything. What do you want now? To stay for a while and then leave?To rip me apart again?”
Christopher buried his face in his hand, before gazing up at her: “I’m out now Natalie. I swear to you I work for regular businesses now, nothing to do with Special Forces or the army. I’ve no more secrets other than experiences of war and blood. I came back here for you, I even moved into a house on your Grandma June’s street. I hoped somehow, you and I could be together again. I love you.”
Natalie made a sound of frustration. Emotions of both anger and feeling relieved assaulted her. Despite her anger at Christopher, Natalie knew inside, there would never be another man for her but him.
To Christopher’ surprise, Natalie moved to sit in Christopher’s lap and be closer to him, to breathe in how delicious he smelt.
“Marry me now and we can do whatever celebration our families want later. I’m still mad at you Christopher but you’re it for me. I’ve always loved you and always will. If you can be with me and never leave me like that again, I can forgive you.”
Christopher nodded at Natalie, saying: “I promise.” He held Natalie tightly and kissed her lips hungrily.
Suddenly, there was a loud knock on the sitting room door and Grandma June walked in, a smile on her face. June’s boyfriend Nigel was with her and so was the local United Church minister.
Natalie looked at Christopher, “Did you do all this?”
Christopher shook his head, squeezing Natalie tight and kissing her cheek. He pulled out a beautiful sapphire and diamond ring set from his pocket. He slid the engagement ring on Natalie’s finger, and Grandma June handed Natalie a ring which had been her Grandfather’s wedding ring.
June smiled at Natalie and Christopher, a gleam in her clever blue-eyes. All was at it should be, she thought as her and Nigel witnessed her granddaughter’s wedding ceremony.
Belinda was a nasty middle-aged woman, but her behaviours were characteristic of someone older.
She was mentally and physically sound; however, the pucker of her frown never left her face. Wrinkles indented themselves deeply into her forehead, around her eyes, and around her mouth; her skin was pasty white.
She pretended to walk feebly; but when a neighbourhood child or dog was near her property she ran out screaming, wearing stodgy Victorian gowns, no skin showing but her face and hands. Her hair was always severely pulled back in a tight bun.
Besides a cat or four, she disliked everyone. She made known she had cut her family out of her will. All her money would go to a stern Catholic congeragation she had terrorized since she was four.
An old trailer and burned-out truck from a cousin who had lived with her, remained on her lawn, even after the cousin disappeared. No one who entered Belinda’s house came back out, only her cats.
The neighbours thought this had been occurring for some three-hundred years, having heard the same stories from their great-grandparents and before.
Was Belinda a ghost? A banchee? A witch? No one knew. But every now and then someone disappeared inside her doorway and everyone knew that person wouldn’t be returning.
Thanks to MindLoveMisery’s Menagerie for hosting this week’s music challenge. This one brought back memories of teenage angst and pain. It was one of my favourite bands and songs in high school. The band for this week’s prompt is Evanescence and their song: “MyImmortal.”
Evanescence – “My Immortal”
Childess fear, devoice, perfectly placed; your words.
Compelling words, you’re afraid, have no voice.
Love, not a choice, it hurts; guess it’s for the birds.
Faltering, smothered; clear you sing no choice.
Suffer, no relief uncovered.
Linger, anotherwound betrayed so.
Resonating light, preserved false love.
Scoundrel, thieving; she is wasting.
Wipe bruising tears, yours deceiving.
Crocodile pours saltwater, stings.
Petals droop, swims face down, soul forming.
Nothing left, sinner stole her soul’s wings.
Captivating man, just leave her within.
Solid glass splits; why is life frustrating?
Fractured from ripping, your words scream flitting.
Untrustworthy, you’ve stole all her being.
Give her up, let her go; life moves forward.
She sheltered, faltered not; tears and regrets,
She rebuilds, sets constructing her torn heart.
Disappeared; tells herself you two never met.
The LaJemme is a 5 stanza form created by poets Laura Lamarca and Jem Farmer.
Meter: consistently iambic Stanza 1, 10 syllables per line, Rhyme scheme abab, 4th syllable of each line is to rhyme with the end rhyme of the preceding line. Stanza 2, syllable count: 8/8/8/6, Rhyme scheme cdef, with cross rhymes in each couplet on 4th syllable Stanza 3, syllable count 8/8/8/6, Rhyme scheme gfdf, 4th syllable of each line follows the same rule as stanza 1. Stanza 4, 10 syllables per line, Rhyme scheme hihi, 4th syllable of each line is to rhyme with the end rhyme of the preceding line. Stanza 5, 10 syllables per line, Rhyme scheme abab, 4th syllable of each line is to rhyme with the end rhyme of the preceding line.
Caden wasn’t sure how he arrived at the park; his feet had walked themselves there. He sat on a park bench feeling empty and worthless. In front of him sat an old Chinese stove, but he gave it little thought.
He’d lost Caroline for real this times and Caden didn’t know how to get her back. Lyrics from the song playing in the pub as she walked away from him, were on a continuel loop in his mind; she loved that song. He sighed, begging his mind to forget the painful lyrics.
“She’s imperfect but she tries, she is good but she lies. She is hard on herself, she is broken and won’t ask for help. She is messy but she’s kind, she’s is lonely –most of the time. She is all of this mixed up and baked in a beautiful pie; she is gone but she used to be mine.”
Caden hadn’t ever felt so low. What did a man do when the woman he thought he’d stay with forever disappeared and wouldn’t talk to him?
No one seemed to know where Caroline was. He had almost cried in front of her Dad saying he only wanted to apologize and win her back. Caroline’s Dad patted Caden on the back saying,”Things will get better soon.”
Caden stared at the odd Chinese Stove wondering what its purpose was. He attempted to distract himself with the stove as the lyrics from that damn song floated back to him:
“If I’m honest I know I would give it all back for a chance to start over and rewrite an ending or two. For the girl that I knew who’ll be reckless just enough, who’ll get hurt but, who learns how to toughen up when she’s bruised . . . she is gone but she used to be mine.”
Caden pressed his hands against his ears, trying to block the words out.
Suddenly, Caroline was standing in front of him, “How did you get here?” He asked her.
She gazed at him, “You look horrible Caden. Did I do that to you?”
He gasped shocked at seeing her, truly there now sitting beside him. Caden couldn’t hold back, he cried into Caroline’s neck as she stroked his hair; he held onto her tightly.
“I thought you would never forgive me,” he said.
“It’s alright,” she crooned to him, “I’m not leaving you ever again.”