Interlocking

Four chambers pump and dump

forgiveness

reminiscence

love

lust

pulsing against at a chest that can barely contain them.

 

Will there ever be a time

when I don’t set upon a memory of you

and my eyes don’t well,

my arms don’t ache for you,

my stomach doesn’t drop in excited anticipation

of your kiss at the base of my chin?

 

Is there anything as bitter on the tongue as remorse?

 

Can life be so long and so cruel as to brainwash me

into believing there is a time for us,

a place for us somewhere over the rainbow

or beneath the magnolia trees;

or will you lure me there, once again,

with your sweet words and devil tongue

only to gaslight my daydreams?

 

Our puzzle is scattered, unfinished

I’m on my hands and knees seeking the pieces

that lay strewn about

 

Yet…

I know our lips will meet

after all this time

We will meld,

our teeth may bump

as we rearrange ourselves

we may twist and turn,

attempt after each silly, giggling attempt,

until our four corners

lock

take hold

and frame

the explosion of colors and shapes we left in the middle.

 

 

 

It’s been a long time since I wrote and even longer since I wrote for Studio30.

But the words given to us ; remorse, gaslight/brainwash seemed to want to play.

Thank you for stopping by, I’m glad you’re here. 

Role Reversal

Yancy shifts, careful not to disturb the dream that is evidenced by the slight but completely adorable twitch that keeps pulling Clea’s lips up and unknowingly putting a pink blush in her cheeks.

He struggles to stop himself from reaching for her while hoping he’s playing lead in her fantasy.

The bed moans its disapproval as he gently tries to eradicate his arm from underneath her copper curls.  Yancy takes a fingertip and pushes one unruly fiery strand away from her cheek and allows it to rest there a moment longer than he should.

Clea’s body stirs while her mouth moves in an elaborate series of openings and closings, her gentle whimpers arouse him as she unconsciously fills the gap between them with her warm, soft body until she’s tucked into him.

Without thinking, Yancy presses his lips to her forehead, his nose drawing in the tangy scent of sex and wheaty beer.

He never expected to end up here again.

The last words they’d said to each other, so many years ago, had been full of venom and tears. He’d written her off, vowing to never think of her again.

Until he’d had to.

Until the only thing he could see were her piercing eyes, the color of robin’s eggs, filling with tears as she reached to embrace him in surprise. Vanilla and something almost acrid, like the tip of a struck match,  made their way to his senses as he held on to her, refusing to let go.

They’d left the party together clutching at the past.

****

Clea wakes with her hand on his chest.

Yancy watches as she adjusts her body, naked and exposed, by wrapping the the sheet around herself and letting her gaze travel the room until it settles on him.

Watching  as she  stiffens and allows a single tear to travel the distance of her face before she moves away clutching the flimsy sheet he rushes to assure her.

He knew the truth but he spoke anyway.

“I’m sorry Clea. I never meant to hurt you.” He hears himself pleading, desperate and wrecked, but he can’t stop the words, ” I still love … ”.

Clea cuts off his admission with a watery smile, noncommittal and forced.

” Maybe some secrets  are best hidden away.”  She whispers into the skin near his middle.

Love is a luxury, lust is simply a comfort and Clea is only offering one.

 

I missed last week so I combined once again.

This week, we borrow from Tina, at Not Just Another Mother Blogger.

“Best hidden away” and/or “scar”

A Fool for the Man

 

 

The choice should be simple

And yet…

It’s not.

 

head and heart

be fightin’

tooth and nail

like your siblings at the Thanksgiving dinner table

until your grandmother is tsk-tsking

and your mama is sighin’

and your daddy is yellin’

and pretty soon your very

soul is sobbin’…

 

Because the grass IS greener and the colors ARE brighter

and he was the one dream

you never counted on

coming true.

 

But you’ll try-

pickin’ up your fork to swallow down your

pride alongside the lumpy mashed that keeps getting stuck to the dry roof of your mouth

 

You’re damn sure gonna need more tears to wash that mess down girlie.

 

So keep on pickin’,

scraping those tongs across your plate

and keep forgettin’

if you know what’s good for ya.

 

Cause ya never know when the world will get weird

and you’ll be sidesteppin’ every memory

only to land smack-dab in the middle of long ago-and-far-away

reminiscing about how good it felt to kiss his mouth

 

You ain’t never gonna be prepared when

he’s standing, right there, in front of ya again…

and dear Jesus, all you’ll be thinkin’ is

Lord Almighty that man is fine

while all you’re hearin’ is

Luther,

or Patti

or Barry  (whichever one gets those juices flowin’)

movin’ through your veins like a wink from the other side of the room.

 

Heart’s already gone…

while your head’s shaking its own, muttering

you foolish, foolish, girl”

….damn child,  here we go again.

*******************

 

For Studio30Plus

(are you #WritingWithUs yet? You should be!)

I missed last week and so I have used both prompts since one was from my piece Autumn Offering.

“The choice should be simple”

and this week’s

“here we go again/weird

from Nonamedufus and Tara’s offerings.

 

 

Autumn Offering

Sam was deliberate.

Oblivious to the stares of the other shoppers, the piped in elevator music and even the harsh overhead lighting she handled each one,  grabbing it by the stalk, tipping it over to inspect its round bottom and then balancing it the palm of her hand to contemplate its merit.

They had to be perfect.

Her phone chimed but she ignored it as she worked her way through the choices.  It began to ring and she tapped the dismiss button, annoyed now.

She was talking to herself and making a disgusted face at one particularly ugly selection when the Droid went off again. Dropping the gourd she tapped an icon and typed swiftly, “I love to spoil them “and then barely hit send before turning off the sound and dropping the phone in her cavernous purse.

Sam remembered Daddy bringing their special Halloween surprises home as she tapped her booted foot. “The choice should be simple” he’d say as he plopped them on the dining room table, turning their painted smiles to their delighted faces. “Don’t make it harder than it has to be.”

Mixing up the memories, she realized he wasn’t referring to the gifts. He was reminding his daughters to go with their guts.

Sam closed her eyes , opened them and focused on two silly faces and set them gently in her cart so they were sitting where a child would, grinning up at her.

Her nephews would love these and even with him gone all these years, her father’s tradition was still her favorite part of Fall.

 

BlogHalloweenPumpkins2014

 

*Inspired by the actual Fall tradition my daddy had of buying us Painted Pumpkins every year. My sister Dana, Aunt & Godmother extraordinaire, continues  the custom for her nephews. Love her so.*

 

This is for Studio 30Plus:

 

 

This week, we borrow from Nonamedufus and his self-titled blog, “Taught By My Example.”

“I love to spoil them.” and/or “tradition”

The word for the 100 Word Challenge at Velvet Verbosity (even though I completely ignored the word limit)

 

Velvet Verbosity Writing Prompt

The prompt at The Light & Shade Challenge

lightandshade logo

 

Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler.

Albert Einstein (1879 – 1955)

 

 

At Your Knee

“I’m okay.”
(smile!)
You’re okay.
(right? )

Until you repeat the question,
(“You okay?”)

and I stammer (dammit!)
choking on the black dust of memories
while the
loose gravel of forgiveness under foot
shifts
threatening to
lay me out if I’m not careful

“What were you asking?”

“Are you okay?”
I pause
listening for the echoes of your voice
clinging
(a little too tightly)

to your lips spilling promises

Grow old with me…”

Hey…
Your gaze is all want and concern
You’re subtle, I’ll give you that.
A charmer for sure.

If I was any kind of student I’d show you how much I’ve learned
taught by my example” you’d say and pat yourself on the back.
I meet your icy blues.
“Never better.”

 

lightandshade logo

 

How Do You Plead? (The Angel Sagas)

 

BlogTheTroublewithJaneMedium

 

A gavel thundered and the milling along with the chaotic, whispered conversations was immediately silenced.

“We’ll come to order, please.”  Araquiel requested in the smooth, patient voice of the doting grandfather figure he resembled. His white hair deeply parted to one side was streaked with stripes of gray as if those strands had stood their ground when asked to change.

Raquel sat to his left, with his hands folded on the table in front of him with a look of quiet terror on his face. He’d replaced the Armani suit for light blue robes and it aged him. His face sagged and sallow, purple shadows played on the skin beneath his eyes.

He looked awful.

It mattered little to Amriel as he sat in a beautifully carved wooden chair, a foot below the rest of the council, in the middle of the cavernous room; on display or in-the-round as it was often called. He’d refused to relinquish his own Italian blend so he looked like a banker at a toga party.

Peering at his elder he felt no earthly (or heavenly, for that matter) guilt. Instead he harbored a deep desire to assure his handler that nothing that happened in this room could dampen his mood.

Amriel’s thoughts snuck off, as they often did,  to Jane.

Soon she would wake and Charles Wakeford would be there to greet her with soft eyes and love that (manipulated or not) would finally pull her from her somber and lonesome sleep.

He tugged on the Windsor knot at his neck to release the relief and a tiny pinch,  yes, an almost undetectable pang, of jealousy gathering at the base of his throat as he imagined her wanton surprise.

Araquiel’s voice pulled him back to the room, where his peers had begun to titter in the wake of unaccustomed silence.

“Enough.” The angel demanded, a bit more forcefully than his previous request and the room hushed. Leveling his gaze he seemed unnerved by the peace that had settled around his rogue disciple, “Amriel, we are here to ascertain your role in the matter of Jane Best. Did you, dear Angel, intercede on her behalf?”

“I did, sir.”

Araquiel’s eyes clouded, “You don’t deny involvement?”

“No sir.” Amriel acquiesced, taking in Raguel’s heavy sigh before covering his face with his hands.

“Are you prepared to state your reasons for this breech?”

Amriel pulled at the small white cuffs of his dress shirt until they peeked from the edge of his suit jacket. He answered unapologetically, “I am. “

“Proceed.”

Amriel sat up straight in the chair, “She needed me. I watched over her heart for almost two years tending to her dreams, her hopes, her wishes. Wakeford wasn’t ever going to come back to mend her heart. “Amriel stopped, desperately searching for the words that help him explain, “I had to do something.”

“Your initial intention was to harm this human?”

Amriel nodded, “To end his life.”

The hushed council exploded into a frenzy of disbelief where voices spilled over one another in a rush to scold or offer an opinion.

Jane’s angel simply closed his eyes and listened, even as he felt the iron cuffs snap over his wrists, anchoring him to the chair and whatever fate the council had in mind.

 


For this week, we’re going back to quote and single word prompts.

From Linda, at In Somnis Veritas,”With Every Season”

“I close my eyes and I listen.” and/or “iron”

 

You can read this story from the beginning by clicking on tab at the top of this page. 

 

Amriel: The angel of May

Araquiel: The angel with dominion of the earth 

Nanael:  The angel who governs science

Miniel : The angel invoked to induce love

Raguel: The angel who watches over the behavior of angels. 

No Regrets

BlogTheTroublewithJaneMedium

 

Raguel was furious.

Slipping quickly through the smoking mirror into the empty space where Amriel had disappeared he struggled to make sense of what he’s just witnessed. Coming out on the other side he took in his angelic colleague’s wings protruding from the back of his suit, finally free of their constriction. Amriel was dusting the remnants of the crimson, glittered dust from the sleeves of his jacket.

Raguel felt his insides boil.

“You stupid, stupid sprite.” He scolded.

Amriel grinned and shook the empty vial in his face.

“It’s done old friend.”

Raguel sighed, felt his insides heaving, “There is no going back now, Amriel.”

The younger angel nodded, accepting his fate as though he’d been handed his own execution orders.

“I know Raguel.” He said stepping toward the elder angel and placing a hand on his forearm. “I appreciate your worry but I’ll be fine.”

Raguel’s shook his head, his voice more groan than whisper, “There is will be no forgiveness for what you’ve done. The council has never offered absolution in these cases and they are unlikely to start now.” Tears began to spill from his eyes onto his cheeks and he covered Amriel’s  hand with his own. “What have you done?” He pleaded.

“The dust I requested was violaceous.” Amriel confessed.

Raguel lifted his eyes, “I saw it, with my own eyes. The dust you gave Wakeford was red, magenta, the powder of renewed love.”

Amriel smiled, his wings fluttering, scraping against one another in joy. “I know. The dust must have been intercepted by Miniel.”

Raguel was not swayed, “You should not have intervened on Jane’s behalf for any reason.”

The men were still holding onto one another, one’s hand covering the others but the air had gone cold around them,

“I meant to kill him elder.”

Raguel’s head hung with this news, his own wings drooping like a weeping willow. “An advocate! You were always a loyal disciple, a trusted ally. What’s happened to you?”

Amriel thought of Jane; of her sweet, kind, generous heart and the pain it had endured, his own heart aching to give her some small joyful moment.

“Sorry my friend, I’m not that guy anymore.”

 

Amriel: The angel of May

Nanael:  The angel who governs science

Miniel : The angel invoked to induce love

Raguel: The angel who watches over the behavior of angels. 

 

 

This week we borrow from Tina(one of my FAVORITE people)  at Not Just Another Mother Blogger, and her continuing love story of Caroline and David, in “Summer’s End.”

“… I’m not that guy anymore” and/or “entwined”

Occupational Hazards

BlogTheTroublewithJaneMedium

 

Amriel wasn’t stupid. He knew what could happen if he used the vial. Upsetting the natural continuum of events could be disastrous and revenge wasn’t something he was comfortable with. There were other guardians for that, namely the fates and karma.

However, he could not stop himself from wanting to secure a resolution for Jane now instead of waiting. Heaven was a place of infinity, an endless landscape with no ending or beginning where instant gratification seemed foolish and terribly selfish.  His wings continued to twitch against their confinement as he made his way along the hallways and came upon the wide expanse that was the law firm’s kitchen and lounge, the voice in his head at odds with the one quietly whispering in his heart.

Amriel put a hand on the wall, a wave of nausea tumbling his insides. Angels were made to protect and prod non-believers toward devotion. Instead he felt a cold, sheen of sweat coat the back of his neck when he thought about dumping the black dust into the unattended mug. It hardly mattered that the reaction would be swift and undetectable.

Dear God, he’d changed.

Once a loyal and humble servant, it had all begun to fall apart with the arrival of Jane and her devastated heart. Right or wrong was no longer a consideration, he simply wanted to grant his charge a chance at happiness even if it meant compromising the life of Charles Wakeford.

His queasiness abated and he straightened plunging his hand into his pocket for the vial.

The dust in the flask wasn’t the dark, sinister purple it had been just moments ago. Instead it sparkled and bubbled inside the glass, a red the color of beating hearts, painted lips and swollen bouquets.

Had Nanael and Miniel conspired with the fates on his behalf?

Before he could curse his fellow guardians for their carelessness he spotted a profile out of the corner of his eyes; arms folded tightly against a chest and lips set in a horizontal grimace.

Raguel.

The nausea threatened again and Amriel realized he had precious little time. He covered the space between himself and the mug in three strides, emptying the contents and sealing his fate.

******

Amriel: The angel of May

Nanael:  The angel who governs science

Miniel : The angel invoked to induce love

Raguel: The angel who watches over the behavior of angels. 

******

Using the following prompts:

 

Studio30Plus’s prompt:

Our prompt comes from Stephanie, at From My Write Side, “And There Was Nothing They Could Do About It.”

“… it all began to fall apart.”

Tipsy Lit:

Risky Business

Tipsy Lit Prompted

And thank you so much to SAM for offering up “The Trouble with Jane” as a title for this series.

You can see all the chapters of The Angel Sagas by clicking the tab at the top of this page. 

Procurement

Amriel’s wings twitched under the trench coat as he strode down the street. He wore a faded brown fedora he’d snagged from Lameschial before he left the hospital room offering strict instructions to his two colleagues but vague references as to where he was headed.

Thinking about Jane’s sleeping body and her anguished heart caused his wings, eager to unfurl, to flutter against their forced imprisonment again.

He sidestepped the cracks in the concrete, still suspicious even after all these years, and kept his head down as he passed the hooligans clustered at the corner of 10th and Carson ignoring their petty cons and shenanigans .

Amriel was angry.

Anger didn’t come naturally to angels.

Frustration at the sight of human unkindness? Sure. Disappointment with a flawed soul refusing to learn from the lessons thrust upon them? Yes, it happened every day. He’d even felt moments of torment or plain grief as he watched events unfold saddened by the knowledge that there was nothing his hand could do to stop them, but anger was a new and especially frightening emotion.

Angels were built for forgiveness or empathy, but Amriel crossed the street to the high rise building he was headed with Jane’s guttural wail of despair echoing in his ears. Touching the brim of the hat, as if he were straightening it and pinching the bridge of his nose,  he willed the sound to recede.

His body burned with rage.

He’d never believed it could happen to him when he’d been warned over and over again about the risks of becoming too close to a charge. Amriel was the angel of a beautiful and especially serene month and no appointment he’d ever been given up to this point had turned out to be anything but a chance to right a wrong.

But Jane was different in ways Amriel couldn’t explain.

Coming through the front door of the law office he made his way to the front desk where the trench coat draped over his arm, his beautifully tailored suit and hat in hand offered him entrance to the inner sanctum.

As he moved through the halls  his hand cradled a small tube of fine dust he’d drawn from his pocket; similar to the pink dust Kabshiel has sprinkled over Jane, but a purple so dark it appeared black.

Going off grid was not advised and Amriel knew he would be dealt with severely but he took comfort in knowing the reason Jane was not healing was because the heart her own was still attached to felt no sorrow or remorse.

It was time to right that particular wrong.

 

********************

You’re not going to believe it but I’ve wanted to write this piece since Sunday.

Work is crazy.

Home life after mini-vacations is crazy.

I am tired.

But!!!

I used three different prompts to write this newest installment to my story about angels.

(Anyone have any good ideas for a title of this series? All opinions welcome!)

 

 

From Studio 30Plus: 

This week’s Studio 30+  prompt comes from Ashley, at Fictional Fool, who gave us “Buried Treasure,” 

“He wore a faded brown fedora.”

lightandshade logo

From Light and Shade Challenge: 

If you wish me to weep, you must mourn first yourself.

Horace (65 BC – 8 BC)
Storch-Badge
And from Master Class (the weekly challenges) 
I used the words HOOLIGAN(last week) and SHENANIGANS (this week)

 

I invite anyone here from any of the challenges to come write with another one. I am so proud to be a “Prompt Diva” with Tara (Thin Spiral Notebook) over at Studio30Plus and we have lots of exciting things planned for our community. Please come #WriteWithUs.

Jane

Jane’s eyelashes fluttered once then again until her eyes popped opened and she stifled a yawn.

The lighting was so bright in this room and she hurt all over as if she’d overdone it in Zumba class. Again.

Adjusting to the sunlight streaming in, she squinted and balked at the three people (people she’d never seen before in her life) standing around her bed.

Her bed?

Wait a minute. This bed wasn’t quite big enough and the sheets were white and, yes, stiff and if you were asking, a bit sandpaper-ish.  Where was her overstuffed comforter and sheets that felt like clouds laying on top of her feet? This bed felt like a hospital bed, all tucked in corners and shiny metal bed rails…

Oh.

Jane reached out and touched the shiny metal bed rail. Tears welled as she finally made eye contact with the man whose hand was sharing space with hers on the rail.

“Hello Jane.” The man said.

He was short but handsome, the man standing next to him was taller with a longer nose and a chin so sharp and angled Jane was sure he could cut glass with it if he wanted to, but the shorter man was more Jane’s type; piercing blue eyes that reminded her of the color of her favorite shoes and wavy brown hair that sat on his head like a cap.

The men were wearing suits. Jane loved men in suits particularly.

She flirted with a smile and then bit the inside of her mouth.

“Am I dead?” she asked no one in particular.

“Oh dearie, no!” she heard from the foot of the bed and Jane fixed her stare on a small round cherub- like face hovering right over her blanketed legs. Jane blinked. The woman couldn’t have been more than 4 and a half feet tall, the size of a small six year old really, and her bouncing yellow curls made it look like she had a halo (slightly tilted) above her head.

The shorter man touched her hand, “Jane, you’re not dead but you are, um, not quite alive.”

“Oh.” she said, letting the single syllable slide through her dry lips.

“My name is Amriel.” The man continued “And I’m your, well,” he turned to the taller man who shrugged and shot Jane a smile as if to say, ‘you can tell her’ “I’m, we’re your guardian angels. This is Lameschial and this is Kabshiel. ” He used that move where he wagged his pointer finger between the three of them to denote their inclusion in the club.

“I have guardian angels?” she asked.

“Oh indeed dearie!” the cherub lady chirped. “You needed them, especially after the, um, unfortunate incident.”

Jane’s head hurt and her throat felt like the bottom of the ocean, all grit and salt plus every time she tried to sit up an awful case of vertigo sent her falling back on to her white sterilized pillow.

“Best to stay put for now.” The taller man advised patting her legs.

Jane nodded and tried to remember how she’d ended up here. Squeezing her eyes shut and thinking really hard it all came rushing back. Suddenly it seemed like all the oxygen was being pulled not only from the room but from her lungs too.

She was back in her living room slowly folding the letter into two then four pieces then unfolding it only to fold it again. It was like he had just evaporated from her life. There had been no signs to indicate anything was wrong. In fact he’d told he loved her, wanted her for his own (his words) only two days before she found the letter and then , out of the blue, he was gone.

“Charles!?” she sputtered and soon tears were sneaking down her cheeks into the hollow of her neck, creating puddles. Then a  sob erupted and soon she was choking, wailing from a primal place in her.

“Quickly!” Jane heard Amriel order Kabshiel who jumped up and waddled to the side of the bed where she sprinkled a fine pink powder over her.

Jane felt sleep take her swiftly under.

“That was close.” Amriel said to his counterparts. He produced a small phone from the inside pocket of his suit and pressed a button.

“Yes, hello.  Please tell him that we’re here and we tried but she’s simply not ready.”

A moment passed, Amriel listened.

He sighed, “No. No, no. We’re not going anywhere. I made a promise to guard Jane’s heart and that’s what I intend to do.”

********

If you missed the first part of this story click here! 

Studio30 Plus prompts comes from :

Nonamedufus who let us borrow this line from his story, “He Confessed Everything.”

“… he had just evaporated…”

 

lightandshade logo

My response to the  Light and Shade Challenge  prompt based on this quote:

masucci_trang@mailxu.com maise.kent@mailxu.com
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