Tuesday, April 1, 2014

The Ageless One

You had the best time at your New Year’s Eve party—such a good time, in fact, that you can hardly remember it thanks to a little too much vodka. While nursing a hangover, a friend calls and says, “I’m so pumped we’re doing this New Year’s resolution together. I know it’s unusual, but doing it together will make it easier. I’ll pick you up in an hour.” The problem: You have no idea what your friend is talking about. Write the scene starting with the car ride.

Post your response (500 words or fewer) in the comments below
The Ageless One
    I could be called a lot of things—easy going, jock—but never a light weight. I guess that's why New Year's was so surprising.
    I couldn't remember anything.
    That is—except her.
    Even in my intoxicated state, I knew she was perfect. The most beautiful girl I'd ever seen. She seemed to float into the room, moving gracefully with every step. She was wearing a white lace dress that buttoned up to her neck, making her look like she had stepped out of an old picture. She had the darkest black hair I'd ever seen; so dark it made her skin look porcelain—doll like.
    I knew I had to meet her, if only to know she was real.
    I couldn't remember anything else from the night—not even her name! But it must have worked out, because the next night she was outside my house, waiting for me.
    “Are you ready to keep your promise?”
    “Promise?” I said, echoing her dumbly. “Uh...I don't remember a lot from last night. It's strange. I didn't even drink that much.”
    “Strange,” she said, a hint of a smile on her lips. She moved closer, rubbing her laced hand across my chest seductively. “Take me.”
    A shock went through me at her touch. I was aroused and terrified in the same instant. She stared up at me expectantly.
    “Okay, yeah,” I said, swallowing nervously.
    As if under a spell, I found myself driving down an unlit road. We passed under the archway to a cemetery, but she didn't stop me. It was only when we were outside a large stone crypt that she put her hand on my arm.
    “Take me inside.”
    I wanted to argue, but it felt like my lips were glued shut. I simply followed her into the crypt, and without being asked, lay down on the stone slab in the center of the room.
    “You're remembering,” she said, stroking my face.
    As her laced hand touched me, images crashed into my head from the night before. Her face close to mine—looking as if she were going to kiss me. Without taking her dark eyes from me, she had pulled out a knife and slashed her arm, red staining the lace of her dress.
    My mind was buzzing from the memories. It felt like my forehead was on fire. I shuttered against the pain, but not before remembering that I took her arm and drank.

    “You are ready,” she whispered, pulling me from my memories.
    She removed a lace glove, revealing a wrinkled, withered hand. She placed her bare hand on my cheek, smiling grimly.
   “I am the ageless one.”
    I seized at her touch, my heart first quickening, then slowing—ba, bump.
    Ba, bump.
    Until my heart gave a final beat and was silent.
    I stood outside my body, staring at the boy who had once been me. He looked porcelain—doll like.
    The ageless one floated out of the crypt, energy lighting her, and moving her forward into the night.


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