Sunday, April 6, 2014

A Walk To White River...A Short Story


It's Time For The Weekly Writing Blog Hop!

A couple of changes in the weekly writing exercise, this time we've got two photos (and no five words to include...). Different challenges, but still fun. If you'd like to give it a go, here are the rules:

1) Use the two photos provided in your story
2) Keep your word count 500 words or less.
3) You have until next Tuesday to link up your post.
4) Add your story (Blue Link) at Leanne's or Tena's site.
5) Have fun, don’t stress, let those creative juices flow.
 The photos have given me an idea...let's see where this goes.

A Walk To White River

"So Jullian, you still like it here?" I ask my baby sister as we sit at a Starbucks that's close to her apartment. "When you coming home?" I say with wink.

She replies with a sad smile. "Did mom ask you to ask me that?" She sets down her cup and looks out the window where fellow city-dwellers shuffle from place to place in an never-ending attempt to find nirvana. As I wait for another question, my eyes follow hers to the world beyond the glass. She says nothing. I sip my drink and wait. She's still mad.

"No," I finally say. "In fact, she doesn't even know I'm here." I see the look in her eyes--I've surprised her, probably the biggest surprise in years.

"But I thought you said..." 

"What? What did I say?"

"You said when you got here yesterday that mom sends her love." 

"I must have lied." Jullian was right. I said it and she remembered. She is extra-sensitive whenever anything dealing with mom comes up. "Actually, I told mom I was spending the weekend with Jennifer and her kids."
My sister's shoulders fall. Time to do what I drove 400 miles to do.
"Listen. I really came her to talk to you, about living here, about staying here. It's obvious you're miserable."
"Yes, obvious. You've hardly said anything to me since I got here. You're not happy."
"How do you know?" she says, her biting words cutting through the prattle from the nearby tables.
"Because I'm your brother, that's how. You've been here a year and a half and you've still got boxes you haven't unpacked. Your Facebook status says nothing about living in Indianapolis. There's even nothing in your fridge, except for that turkey you're storing for your neighbors, and..."
"What's your point?" she says, her voice not as loud but full of pain. She's giving in, and she never gives in so quickly. It must be worse than I thought.

"Maybe you don't want to be here," I repeat a sentence I practiced saying over and over again as I drove into town. The anticipated retorts never materialize. She just sits there, her head down.

"Maybe you didn't really want to leave in the first place." I try to fill my words with the compassion she deserves. "Maybe you need to come home."

This time when Jullian looks outside a tear rolls down her cheek. She lets it fall on the white table beside her cup. Still looking at the strangers outside she says, "I can't go home...I can't. Mom'll kill me, after what I said. There's no way she lets me come home."

"Come on," I say. "Let's go for a walk." We grab our cups and make our way outside. I hug her as we leave. "Where to?" I ask.

"The river," she says. "It's my favorite place." I hug her again as we make our way north.

Word Count: 495

1 comment:

  1. What a great big brother. I hope she resolves her issues with her mum. Great story.