Wednesday, 30 March 2011

The Chrysalis Experiment; Prompt #13

Yep, I joined the Chrysalis Experiment - a short story every single week of the year. Here we have it then. Fall into the ocean. Revel in it.

‘In loving memory of Cara Green. Died 13th March 2011.’
What a lovely way to finish off my life. No flowers next to my grave then. I’m floating next to my little coffin, smiling mischievously, as always. Mind you, whenever I see that gravestone, my heart (my heart? Does that count anymore?) melts. In a bad way. It makes me think of how stupidly I died. For no apparently clever or important reason.

I just needed to. I couldn’t stand my life anymore. I’m sighing, and wanting to return home for once. See how my death’s affected my family. Like that’ll help the nightmares. I hover down the path, through the gap in the trees, across the road until I’m standing outside my house, like I did every day, the days I’d come home crying, running to hug my Mum. ‘Don’t think about that. It’ll hurt.’ I tell myself. I notice the strong smell of flowers coming from inside. It’s been a month since I died. It’ll be the gifts and sadness, probably. But I look through the window, and I can tell it’s not. The flowers are all orange blossoms. I remember that I used to wear them in my tangled, overly-curly hair when I was younger. Mum had decorated the house with them. That hurt. Why did everyone have to think of my death as a bad thing? Sure, it hurt me. It hurt my family, and even they know how bad I felt about school and everything that I hated. ‘Shataap.’ I whisper. I must forget it all. ‘Stop thinking you hurt everyone. There must be some little rainbow-y, butterfly-y place here somewhere!’

I’m standing in my bedroom. With my brother, who has now made it his second-home. He has dragged his drum kit in here, along with his computer and desk, so he gets his own little space. Even here, where my brother’s raving, is covered in orange blossoms. It’s hurting my ears, the stupid noise from his stupid drum kit is deafening. I leave, trundling to my little sister’s haven.

She’s dancing. Ballet, just as I guessed. She always is. I’m suddenly having déjà-vu to little Rosa taking my hand and dragging me into her room to show me how to pirouette. I laugh, but again, there’s an element of sadness here as well. Wilted orange blossoms in the corner, and ‘Adagio’ being the piece of music she’s attempting to dance to over the racket down the hall.

I leave. I keep an orange blossom to hold in my coffin, to keep the smile on my face, if I can. Hey, who says death has to be all mourning and sad? Moments pass. I’m stood on the cliff, the very one. My face scrunches up with pain and sadness. Why, stupid girl, why did you come back here? But then I have an idea. My body isn’t in my coffin. They didn’t find it. They just knew I didn’t return, then they found my bag on the shore. Hang on...

Now I’m at the bottom of the ocean. The place I fell. Well, jumped. And there I am, pale and cold, resting on the sand-bed. My hand is now on mine. A smile is on my death’s face, but it’s growing. This is one good feeling. But wait... No way.

I’m drenched, shivering and drained of energy, attempting to knock on my front door.
And there’s Mum, Lisa, Dad, my brother.
And we’re hugging.
And I’m not dead anymore.
Smiles can be found everywhere. Even at the bottom of the ocean. Even on the dead.

It is short, I know. It's no way good. I hate writing in present tense, I find it so much easier to write in past, but I had a go just this once. Didn't really work. I'm not the best at short stories, hence why I joined up, so I could improve.
Bad writing day. Bad day in general, in fact.
-Sigh- might review some books some time soon:)


  1. I'm glad that you joined the Experiment. It really is fun and I'm amazed at all the new ideas I get. It makes me feel happy that I can be so creative.

    I like the concept you have here and how you build up the character's 'life' in such a short time. It's also good how you tried something new. I also thought I was only meant for past tense, in fact, I think I barely knew what present tense was. XD But one day, it just started spewing out of me. My only problem now is, I tend to switch back and forth in my writing.

  2. I actually liked this ;) Don't be so hard on yourself!
    For some reason I picture this story coming to life as a short film, and it would be full of colour - except for the end part where we dive into the ocean. That'd be more muted. But the orange blossoms were really vivid in my mind as I read.
    That end part where she dives to the bottom of the ocean is CREEPY! esp. the "A smile is on my death's face" part. But it's creepy in a good way :D

    Personally I really love present tense, even if most of my stories are in past tense. But sometimes a story just doesn't seem to work in present tense, and needs to be past. It's weird. or maybe it just depends on the writer's mood ;)

    Anyway, the Experiment IS just that - an experiment ;)

  3. Brooke - I hope it will be the same for me. Thank you!

    Trisha - I love your explanation of how you'd see it as a film :) And that whole ocean bit was really hard to write. She was looking at herself, so it took me ages to get the write words out.

    Thank you both!

  4. haha, i didn't even notice that typo until you pointed it out. lol

  5. I love this character's take on her own death. I loved seeing her family move on even though she was still stuck on her old life and her old grievances.

    Was the sister's name Rosa or Lisa?