Category Archives: characters

Tagged 7-7-7

Sidney Williams tagged me in a fun meme, so I figured I’d play along. Well, at first I couldn’t, because I was supposed to go to page 77 of my work-in-progress, and the only thing I’ve been doing as of late are novella length, or shorter. But, my genius friend Kate Sterling said I could do what she was doing and go to page seven, and play that way. The rules are, go to page 77 (in my case 7) of your current work. Count down seven lines, and then post the next seven lines/sentences. As I’m a chronic long sentence writer, I chose to copy the sentences, not the lines.

This is part of a short story I’m writing for an anthology on sexuality in fantasy.  I’ve had some thoughts, lately, on the recent sociopolitical push to drag women back to the old prehistoric caves by our hair. It has caused me… Angst. Okay, rage. And you know me, go dark or go home, so this little dystopian piece of bad news was born. This scene is where our heroine, Cherry, is confronted by an official of her church commune whose twisted desires for her cause him to act out in unholy ways:

“To keep me chaste,” she sputtered past the blood.

“Why?”

“As a reminder the Destroyer is everywhere, and that his demons cannot be overcome with manmade Chemical, or the National Church’s polygamist whoring, but by purity’s resistance alone.” If Cherry desired her back as bloody and raw as the Warder made his own every night, she would have added, But, the government keeps pumping me full of hormones and Chemical so I can lure these earthly servants to them, and you let them do it, so how can I be pure when everyone demands something unholy of my virginity?  As she had no desire to be whipped, she remained silent.

The Warder had always been a devout boy, singularly driven to understand the world they had inherited, the life so unlike the antiquated photographs of men and women walking freely in the sunshine, holding hands and pressing together their lips and bodies. He had latched on to the church’s inane assertions that the mouth of hell had opened up and spewed forth the creatures that had one day appeared from underground and carried off the majority of the world’s chaste in less than a month’s time.

*****

As I am very, very late to the game, all of my writing friends have been tagged, so I can’t play the “tag seven friends” part. But, if you’re a writer stopping by here and want to play, go ahead. Just let me know in the comments so I can read your 7-7-7.

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Meeting People

If you’re ever in need of character inspiration, I suggest utilizing the local car dealership’s shuttle service. With the many adventures of Agatha, my broke-ass Explorer, I’ve taken advantage of this service often, and have been fortunate enough to meet a wide variety of fascinating individuals. Across the board, they’ve all been of retirement age and slight of build. Aside from that, they’ve been as diverse as Agatha’s plethora of issues.

There was the nut-brown gentleman who loved gospel music and loved bananas even more than that–but only as long as they were as withered and dark as he was. There was the grandfatherly man who had connections at the Holocaust museum in D.C. and insisted I hit him up for guaranteed tickets the next time I want to go. Today, though, was my absolute favorite. The slightest of them all, shoulder-level to my five-nine stature, he stood with a sloped back, oversized glasses and a high-and-tight haircut he has undoubtedly sported since his glory days in the Marines. Despite the large “No Smoking in Shuttle” sign affixed to the dash (which would have ended up embedded in my face in the event of an air bag deployment), the windows were coated with a thick film of nicotine, the air stale with tobacco. The grim set of his jaw and hardened eyes inspired me to call him, “Sir,” with each clipped question he shot in my direction. Aside from telling him the way to my house, the stilted conversation covered only the lack of skill of other drivers–this done as he called a metro bus picking up passengers a ‘bonehead’ and peeled out into the next lane and then swerved back just in time to make the turn onto my street. As I gratefully climbed out of the van, he told me to, “Keep them straight.” Despite my uncertainty as to who “they” were and why they needed straightening, I heartily agreed to do just that.

Agatha should be ready for pick-up this afternoon. As I’ve never had the same driver twice, I’m pretty excited to see what will be waiting behind the wheel this time.