Log in

No account? Create an account

per amica silentia lunae

or, across the ferny brae with the evil voodoo celt

Previous Entry Share Next Entry
"even as children...
I haven't posted anything in a while; this doesn't really bother me, but I was looking through my old writings and I dug something up that isn't half-bad. So why not pad my entries out with something that I only have to re-format a bit? ;-)

It's one of the very few short stories I've ever written; I think I wrote the first draft not long after getting out of school... Even with lj-cut, it's a little long for one entry, so I'll be stringing it out into three. Enjoy; commentary and constructive criticism always welcomed.

Even as Children

There was a child by the street's edge, poking with a stick at something in the gutter. As I drew closer, the blur of the November dusk parted a little, allowing me to see the object of the raincoated boy's scrutiny: a road-killed squirrel, glassy-eyed and twisted, blood washed palely away in the water. There was nothing odd in a young boy's interest in a dead animal, but still I stopped and watched. Perhaps it was the air of concentration about him, or the meditative angle of his hooded head; something that suggested a more adult absorption than you would expect from one his age.

Then his head snapped up, and he looked me full in the eyes. I recoiled, stammering an inane grownup admonition about dead things, even though he had asked no question, said nothing. His eyes were very grey, but held green close around their pupils- and for a second it seemed that green flickered within them. His gaze was sharp at first, but it quickly took on a dreamy quality, and his head tilted in the same way he had when staring at the squirrel. A very appealing look, perhaps, in other circumstances. But I felt my breath catch, my pulse start to race, and with a detached surprise I realized that I was terrified. That same detachment allowed me to override my impulse to flee, and instead I forced a nervous, twitchy smile onto my face. We stood there for a stretching, foggy minute. There was a passionate longing in his face, composed of equal parts of animal hunger and the pathetic loneliness of the young.

A wind-lash of stinging water darted under the edge of my umbrella and exploded in my face. In the time it took to clear my eyes, he turned and darted off. Only then did the rest of his appearance come to me- fine bones, pale skin, light hair. He looked about six. I stared after him long after he disappeared into the gathering night. I felt ridiculous, but I had to fight to convince myself that walking around the block to my house the wrong way was a bad idea. Actually following the child was a physical effort even though that was the shortest way home. What with the weather, I decided I had two good reasons for brandy tonight.