I can’t believe how fast the summer flew by. So quickly that I tripped and bam, we face planted into the new school year. 3 weeks in, already. Waking up at 6 is wreaking havoc on me. After I drop the youngest off at his middle school (!!!!!!!), I go home and get very little done. It’s hard enough for some adults to function when forced to wake up before it’s light out, it sucks harder for kids who I think need more sleep. Whatever. Excuses. I’m tired. The kids are tired. Hopefully, we’ll adjust.
So, I’m looking to start a new blog. I have to come up with a good name for it, one that isn’t already taken. It’s going to focus strictly on fiction. Rock and Drool isn’t the place for it…I may have other plans for this little corner of the ginormous WWW.
In the meantime…
I’m going to combine the writing prompt from the picture with the 3-word prompt given to me by my friend, Diane Nassy (Aurora, Paris, glass of wine) and David (Otis, Southern California and vinyl) and do a little piece of fiction. Again. Because I can’t write about real life, still. The people I want to write about would have a conniption fit. So..fiction it is…
Stunned, Aurora Harker stared at the letter, the printed plane ticket and the check in her hand. The writing as unfamiliar as the name signed in swirls with heavy black ink. Griffin Towers. That name didn’t remotely ring a bell. The only Griffin Aurora ever knew had been her best friend and neighbor who had been fatally hit by a car when they were in the third grade. She had been nine and had witnessed the accident, it had happened when they were walking home together. That sort of tragic event etches itself into your DNA and forever changes a little part of who you are. To this day, Aurora still has an ounce of hesitation before crossing the street, not to mention random and haunting nightmares.
Blinking her emerald eyes, she scanned the words on the thick parchment yet again, “He has served countless kings, faked countless deaths and bided his time. Griffin Towers is now waiting for you. Enclosed is a check, the sum should be more than sufficient to procure whatever is necessary for your travels to Paris. I will find you at baggage claim and will take you to him. There is no reason to be afraid, he only wants what is best for you, Aurora. Safe travels, Liam LaRue”
She wondered if there was some sort of new viral scam going around that people were falling for. Like the IRS one where the older folk lost small fortunes to. Well, she might be blonde but she wasn’t vacuous by any means. The bank the check was from was an affiliate of Bank of America so she could verify the legitimacy of it. The plane ticket, all she’d have to do is call the airline to confirm. Easy enough but what if it really was genuine? She had a check for $10, ooo along with a one-way, first-class ticket to Charles de Gaulle airport, departing one week from today. With two phone calls, she knew they were as authentic as she was.
Paris, France. She’d always wanted to go there. There were a lot of places she had wanted to go but unfortunate financial circumstances had left her shackled to Southern California. San Bernardino, highest poverty level behind Detroit, was where she had been born and raised. And, stayed to take care of her sick mother. Barely squeaking by on odd freelance graphic design jobs that were becoming fewer and farther between as she put more hours into taking care of the ungrateful woman who birthed her.
Placing all the papers down on the rickety coffee table, she paced the tiny apartments living area while her mother snored and gasped for air in the only bedroom. She really needed to clear her head but playing records on the old turntable would probably disturb her mother and, god forbid she disturbed her mother. She gazed longingly at her newest garage sale find, Otis Redding’s Greatest Hits, and sighed wistfully.
Walking toward the grungy window, she allowed her gaze to fall upon the mysterious papers. Should I stay or should I go, she mused. Then laughed at herself as she began humming the famous Clash song, another discovery made from a garage sale. Her gypsy soul was already headed to thrift shops in preparation for departure as her physical self, the one stuck in a dingy apartment caring for a woman who never cared for her debated with that gypsy side.
She had no one in Paris. Who was this person who so poetically called for her? What if he were some crazed lunatic that was luring her to a certain gruesome demise? And what was this whole “Biding his time, waiting for you” thing? It was eerily romantic, if not insanely outrageous. And, that she was even one iota considering using the money and ticket showed how deeply disturbed she truly must be. Crazy or desperate, interchangeably.
Yet, here she was, Aurora Harker, a nothing and a nobody with absolutely no life experiences to her name in her entire 24 years of existence, contemplating running away from this hole to Paris. The City of Lights. Or, the City of Love, depending on who you asked. Ten thousand bucks, she could certainly stretch for quite awhile. If she shopped in her normal frugal way, she would have emergency exit money, just in case. Assuming she wouldn’t be cut into little pieces and shoved in a deep freezer somewhere in the bowels of Paris. Were there bowels in Paris? She didn’t know much about it, aside from the bits and pieces she read about in books and the tiny section in her World History class that was dedicated to Europe.
One thing was certain. It was thousands of miles away from her mother.
With her decision almost one-hundred percent made, she pulled her straight golden hair into a ponytail and prepared her mothers soup. While she was waiting for it to heat up, she poured herself a glass of cheap white wine. When the soup was warm, the way her mother liked it, she headed in the direction of where the raspy voice was, alerting Aurora to the fact she was awake and hungry. Right on schedule. Same time, every day.
Excitement pounded her chest before disappointment overpowered it. Taking a deep breath, she took a giant swig of her wine, nearly choking herself. She wrinkled her nose at the smell emanating from the bedroom and took shallow gulps of air from her mouth. Now at a firm 100% resolution, anything was better than where she was at this moment, she settled in to feed her mother.
She’d worry about who’d take care this woman during her upcoming and, perhaps prolonged absence in the morning.