This is a Fiction piece written in response to the prompt on a website I love, The Red Dress Club.
The prompt was “In the middle of the night, you get an urgent call from a friend you haven’t talked to in years. Something terrible has happened. What is it and why is he/she calling you?”
After a very long, trying day my breath exploded from my body as I dropped my suitcases in the entryway. While nudging the door closed with my hip I kicked off my pumps and sighed with relief. I steadied myself with a hand on the wall, my head pounded and there was a ringing in my ears.
My only thought was of a hot shower and getting changed into what my fashion forward friends condescendingly referred to as my “Mumu”.
I didn’t care what they called it; in my mind that body length fleece hoodie was a God-send at times when I needed to unwind.
Ignoring my luggage at the front door I made my way to the bathroom while shedding my body of the oppressive business suit. The cold bathroom tile felt wonderful on my swollen feet as I turned on shower on.
With the pulse of the hot water upon my scalp the stresses of the day seemed to float away, the delayed flight, horrible traffic and inept law clerk working under me were a thing of the past.
I was caught up in the soothing heat and the fragrance of the products as I lazily bathed.
Feeling refreshed and relaxed I found myself humming while towelling off and had to smile, I’d better not quit my day job I thought to myself. Glancing in the mirror I caught sight of myself and wondered what the folks from my hometown would think if they could see me now. Would anyone have imagined I’d end up as a Lawyer in “The Big City”?
Slipping on my “Mumu” I made my way into the kitchen to check for phone messages when suddenly it rang. My eyes instantly went to the clock on the microwave.
“Bloody hell its 2:30am, who could that be?”
Bound with anxiety my tense arm reached out and I snatched up the receiver.
“Hello?” I said too quickly in that horror movie way.
“Macy, Is that you?” was the response in a calm accented voice I couldn’t mistake.
“Boyd, wha…” I floundered for understanding, leaning against the wall for support.
My mind raced, I hadn’t seen or heard from Boyd since the Law school graduation party fiasco. Thoughts raced through my head, Where did he live? Why is he calling? How did he get my number? My heart was pounding, nervous energy flooded through me.
“Macy, listen carefully I know it’s late but you need to hear me, are you awake enough?”
“Yes I just got in from a flight…..what’s going on?” I softly asked, fearing the response.
“You have to meet me first think in the morning at the Courthouse, I need your help.”
Breathing a sigh of relief my thought was “Okay its work related, this I can handle!”
Relaxing my muscles while straightening my posture I smiled to myself as I put on my game face and the attitude to match.
“What makes you think I’m available for a phone call at this hour or that I would take on a new case?”
He sighed deeply into the other end of the phone “You haven’t checked your voicemail yet have you?”
In my oh-so- important Lawyer voice I haughtily repeated that I’d been out of town and was just getting home.
There was a long pause and in a much softer tone he said “Macy I hate to have to tell you like this but there’s been a situation at your parent’s home.”
Again there was a pause as my pulse throbbed in my throat, my facial skin felt tight and itchy from the lack of moisturizer, I stared at the Lilac candle on the shelf in front of me, and the ringing in my ears began again.
I felt my brain closing down, avoiding hearing what he had to say next.
But I heard it, that terrible thing that he said.
“Macy your Mother has been arrested for the murder of your father tonight and she needs us at the courthouse tomorrow.”
There it was, the tragedy which would forever change my life with its bloody gore and its media tagline “Slaughter on Park Lane”.
Rebel Chick says
Those phone calls are never good. You took this in a direction I would have never expected! Great curve ball at the end there!
fantastic new characters, and a great ending! love it!
Jess Mistress of Mischief says
ooooohhhhh LOVE THIS!
Nice job Julie! Rich word choices and smooth story-line~d
Jana A says
I love all the Red Dress Club posts! This one's great!! (#15 on Project 20 today)
Elaine A. says
Oh wow, now I want to know what happened in the past that led up to this. Chilling. I love the way you describe her trying to get rid of the stresses, etc. Very good. p.s. you have a little typo error in the line, "You have to meet me first 'think' in the morning…"
Soooo good. Do we get to find out anymore? You are an excellent writer girl…..
Mary Patricia Bird says
Excellent, Julie. I'd like to extend an invitation to you to join our writing group. We meet every other Sunday from 1:30pm to 3:30pm. The time may not be convenient for you, or you may not be ready, but we're here and you're welcome to join us anytime.
I Was Lauren says
You're a great writer! But what happens next?
K Pugliano says
Oh, this was really suspenseful! I thought something was going to happen to her in the shower like 'Psycho"! Gah!And then the twist at the end with mom….I hope you continue this story!! I like it!
The mad woman behind the blog says
This was great. Love the little details, like her skin feeling itchy.Only concrit is that I would leave the title and drop the last sentence. Let the reader make the connection.Also, don't capitalize MOTHER in the next to last sentence.Great writing, Julie!
Wow. The description puts you in the scene. It's nice. You can feel the floor and the aching feet. The lawyer attitude was nice – the game face. It felt real.Nice fiction.
Sober Julie says
Thank you for all the great comments, I love the concrit!!I know nothing about the study of law so I may have set myself up for tough times if these characters last.
I love the attitude of the character! Very lawyer-like arrogance.The text centering was a bit odd, I'd rather read prose left-aligned.Great set up for more writing!
Excellent, and I totally wasn't expecting the twist at the end!It would be a little easier to read if it was left justified, but otherwise, it's great!Great job!
Not Just Another Mother Blogger! says
I think I tend to associate centered text with poetry or song lyrics, so seeing prose set up that way is sort of disconcerting. Which is maybe what you were going for. I liked the build up. The description of arriving home and getting comfortable was wonderfully evocative(I happen to have a 'moomoo' as I call it). There wasn't any sort of hint as to why your father might kill your mother, and maybe a sentence about that would be good. But that's it–great job!
Sober Julie says
I write in the middle simply because that's how my brain is working these days, next time I'll edit my piece to left justify. Awesome advice!
I love all the details that really set the scene. You could feel her flip from exhaustion to relaxing to panicking very fluidly.Stopping by from trdc!
I agree with the others. You transitioned very nicely from emotion to emotion. If you went over the word count, I didn't notice. I also liked that you closed out your story with the title. It was nice change from the norm.
I agree with mommylebron. You really set the tone well and the flow from emotion to emotion was seamless. I also liked that the story ended with the title. It brought it full circle, though I do want to know more. Nice visuals throughout the story too. Loved it!
Rebel Chick says
I had to go back and read this again! I love the posts you are including in TRDC from this story. I can't wait for the entire thing to unfold. You're an amazing story-teller!
You had me at “mumu!” Wish I knew what happens next!
Ahh see now you’ve commented on an older piece you’ve got me thinking of continuing it….well done!