Hello! I’m proud of myself for posting on here semi-regularly. It seems like I’m going to be keeping it up, so woo!
Anyhoo, I was looking for writing prompts to get the creative juices flowing, and found this one:
“The garden was overgrown now.”
This opened a world of possibilities for me, particularly in regards to my latest project, Reckoning’s sequel. It’s an untitled work in progress, but I already have the main character down – Jenna. The following is an experimental piece that may or may not be included in the final version of the story, but I wanted to put it on here regardless.
The garden was overgrown now, that much I recognized. Why that was the bit that stood out the most was beyond me. Behind me, I could feel Asher standing silently, expectantly. I resisted the urge to turn to him and hide. It wasn’t every day I was faced with a past I’d long forgotten – for whatever reason. Doing my best to stare ahead and keep moving forward, I put one foot in front of the other, listening to the crunch of long dead leaves under my feet. When was the last time anyone had stumbled onto this little cottage? Our little cottage. Despite my amnesia, I knew this was it – my childhood home – where I once lived before making my way to Stacy’s backyard on that rainy night so many years ago.
It was rundown, the greenery of the forest around it having reclaimed the land it was built on. Weeds and vines wove in and out of the windows, now broken. Glass hid among the weeds on the ground. I could only just make out the narrow, cobble stone path that led up to the front door.
“Do you want me to go in with you?” His voice floated over to me, and it was only then I realized my hand was on the doorknob. The door itself was ajar, giving me just enough of a peek into what looked like a small living room.
“Just…give me a minute.” With a deep breath, I pushed the door open, struggling to overtake the rubble and greenery that barred it from opening all the way. Inside, sunlight punctured the darkness through the holes in the windows, creating spotlights, highlighting broken furniture, dust-covered surfaces, and scattered belongings. None of it seemed familiar, at least not consciously. There was a pain in my chest, though, as if my body recognized it, my heart and lungs constricting in response. Fighting the pain, I moved deeper into the small house, down a hallway where I assumed the bedrooms would be.
At the end of the hall, was the bedroom with the smallest bed – my bedroom. I only recognized it because of the bed, clearly one belonging to a child, unlike the one in the other bedroom I’d only glanced at. It was darkest in this room, mainly because it only had one window. Unlike the other windows, however, the glass wasn’t broken, but it was open, the wind blowing through the large curtain that covered it. Careful not to trip in the dark, I moved over to it, reaching over the bed and to the curtain to push it aside. When light flooded the room, I turned to take it in, unaware of what I would find.
Seventeen years. For seventeen years, they’d been right here. I couldn’t help but fall backwards onto the bed at the site of them, their bodies emaciated by time and whatever came through the windows over the years. They lay on the far side of the room, one of them, the woman, apparently thrown against the wall. The other body, male, lay a few feet from her. My heart was pounding, my lungs shrinking by the second, and I could feel my entire body shaking. Without realizing it, I was making the room, the house shake as well. Several objects around me started to tremble, and I knew I was coming close to losing control. “A-A-Asher…!”
My voice was weak, but he somehow heard me. His footsteps sounded far away, until his face was right in front of mine, blocking the vision of the corpses lying in my childhood bedroom. He didn’t seem to need an explanation. Sitting beside me on the bed, he wrapped his arms around me and held my face snug against his neck, blocking the entire room from view. “Relax…”
“I’m so sorry, Jenna. I didn’t know. I never should have brought you here…” Despite his efforts to distract me from it, the image was burned into my mind’s eye. I could never step foot in this room again, but I could never forget what they looked like. I didn’t even remember what they looked like alive. I just knew it was them. I felt it.
“What…what happened to them?” I pulled back, feeling slightly more in control, and looked over to them once more.
“I don’t know.” He stood, taking my hand. “Come on, being in this room can’t be good for you.”
I followed, doing my best to take in the rest of the room now that more light was coming through the window. It was a regular children’s room, with toys strewn about, a few posters on the wall. Everything was so worn, the colors were faded, though the general theme seemed to be purple. Had that been my favorite color as a kid? Maybe. Once we were outside the room, I paused, turning and pulling the door closed behind me.
“We can bury them, if you’d like? I could tell Adwin…”
“Something tells me he already knows.” I wasn’t sure how, but I knew there was no way Adwin didn’t know we’d find them here. Channeling my grief into anger, I focused it towards him. “Can we leave? I don’t want to be here right now…”
So that was just me playing around a bit thanks to that prompt. Sometimes, you only need one sentence to push you forward. I’ve been having issues with writer’s block on this story, and this prompt is exactly what I needed to get me going.
The advice that comes with this post: Feeling stuck? Google writing prompts! You’re bound to find something that tickles your fancy.
Also, while Reckoning has only been out for a short while, I’ve decided, as evident in the intro to this post, to give it a sequel. In fact, it’s the first part of a trilogy I’ve titled The Breach. Putting it in writing like this and making it known will now force me to follow through! 🙂
Until next time! Think happy thoughts! 🙂