I wrote the below piece for a writing contest. The first one I ever attended. After sending in my carefully crafted piece I never heard from them again 😉 However, I had much fun writing it. The theme was ‘rising’ and I used for this a short story I was writing for another project that I participate in (Zusterhood). The first draft of this other thing was around 1500 words long and I had to bring it back to 375. Every word had to count and say exactly what I wanted it to say and I had to kill an endless amount of darlings. Fascinating! After I was done with the bloody work I was like, well, I can still use the long original version for the Zusterhood project so all my darling will still be there! However, after I read the original piece I realised it had improved by 100% by making all these hard, decimating decisions. So here it is.
If it exists
Maybe it’s like what people in war times experience. That after weeks of radio silence from your loved ones you finally manage to travel to where they live. And while you get in the half ruined car you realise there was something good about the horrible uncertainty that will be your companion for only a few hours longer. Hope. Something that you will long for soon, if you find that there is nothing to find ..
Yet you get in the car anyway, don’t you?
It is a very anxious feeling, wanting to know if it exists yet not wanting to know if it does not. However, this particular flavour of uncomfortableness is to be added to my range of acceptable feelings because, do it, I will.
I am going to take that crazy ticket for a journey through time.
Into the future.
To that moment that I desperately hope exists.
Without any appropriate reference for the rather sacred occasion if you think about it, I hastily fumble myself through the last one prep ritual, the one with the cristal and …
on my belly,
on a dark, dusty and spiderwebbed attic.
I start to sit up but reality catches up with me when the lapel of my fine suit catches on a splinter in the wood. The sound rips horribly loud through the dead quiet. But to my ears alone, because it causes no reaction from the scene below me.
I am in a dim room, maybe a shed. I look down on a huge table with 5 people around it behind things that probably are computers. One big fancy display sits on one end of the table and the woman sitting across from it looks intently, no, deadly intense, at the movements of dots, colours and lines on the screen. On the right and left side of the table are two pairs of people. In the dimness I can make out frizzy hair, a woman I think. And another, rather bulky form. Very young this one.
All eyes are fixed on the big screen.
And then it happens.
A violent red fills the screen.
An eruption of yelling. Hugs. Dancing. A chair falls over.
I breath out quaveringly.
In the middle of this wild euphoria the woman at the head of the table stands still and alone.
A single tear tracks down her cheek.
Transfixed I follow it until it disappears into her shirt.
She reaches behind her ear.
The room falls silent at that single quiet movement.
How the others noticed I will never understand.
“HQ, requesting permission to report”
“Damn, 2ndDawn! Don’t official me! Speak, please!”
“We have found, with 100% certainty – no repercussion to the ecosystem as a whole – the way to clean out all the excess CO2 out of the atmosphere.”
Out of my sweaty hands the delicate pink crystal falls to the floor of my sitting room.