Outside the window, the day was barely starting. A few weak rays of sunshine slowly warming the sky & hinting at the day ahead. The first tinkling bars of the birds song gently breaking the silence of the night.
Inside, he had been laying awake for what felt like hours. His mind whirling, back and forth, trying to decide the best way forward, but no answers were coming. The clock clicked over to 5.30 as he rolled over, again, to watch her sleeping beside him. God. If only he could read her mind. The hardest was the not knowing, and no matter which way he played out the conversation in his head, it never went well. He watched the peaceful rhythm of her breathing, her face relaxed in sleep, and the thought of not waking up to her any more was enough to stop him uttering the words he knew needed to be said. He rolled back and stares at ceiling, as if the answers he needed were written there.
“Hey,” her voice was still scratchy with sleep as he felt the bed move when she scooted towards him & cuddled up against his side. “What’s up? You’re twitchier than a terrier with a boomerang.”
He wrapped an arm around her, pulling her even closer, trying to find the words that would explain what he needed to, while not getting him yelled at – or dumped.
“‘s’not that dream about the billabong again?”
He laughed. If only it was something as simple as a nightmare, one that visited so frequently it was more like an old friend than anything else.
“Yeah, nah, reckon that’d be easier. Sorry, I didn’t mean t’ wake you, just the old brain won’t stop talkin’ at me, y’know.” He took a deep breath and gave himself a mental pep talk. Like ripping off a bandaid. Just get it done. Like his sister said, even if it all went pear-shaped, at least he’d know.
“Ever been in a spot where y’reckoned you’re screwed either way?”
Ooooo, something new! This is a new fiction work that I started writing over the holidays – in a manner of speaking. Unlike my other major WIP, this story will only be told from from one POV – that of Steve, a character I have being developing and writing for as a role-play character on Twitter for the past couple of months. It has been quite the experience – the character of Jo Kensington was created and written by another RPer, and she has very kindly allowed me to use her character, for this particular arc where our characters intersect, and full credit must go to her for all Jo’s dialogue and actions. For this reason, I’ll only be telling Steve’s story – while I have a fair bit of dialogue and some action & inner monologue to work with from Jo, as well as some insider information about her background and motivations, she is not my character and hers is not my story to tell. Steve, on the other hand, has firmly lodged himself in my brain, and here we are, one week and 2500 words from one conversation later – with three months worth of interactions, plus some other stuff I want to explore, this could turn into a pretty decent sized project.
It’s also been quite interesting in the way we have played with language, to establish and develop their characters and identities. Both Steve & Jo are Aussie travellers in the US, so playing with the extremes of the Aussie accent and slang has been a major part of my time RPing – and honestly, you don’t want to know how much time I have spent listening and parsing my own accent since starting this. As you can see above, both speak in a very heavily stereotypical Aussie accent with plenty of slang thrown in, making it easy to tell our ocker Aussies from their US friends and neighbours. If/when it progresses past a first draft (yes, I’m laughing, but you’ve got to dream big, right?), that will likely change, but for now, I’m keeping it as it happened.
Not that I over think these things…