We restarted the writing course this month, going back to the beginning because, well, we got lost again. Tough subjects to deal with and didn’t handle it well at all. Getting better at dealing with emotional pain, so counting that as a plus. The goal to this course is to write a manuscript by the end of it. I don’t have a story yet to write. I suspect it’s just a matter of picking something and sticking to it.
I’d like to share with you a snippet of the progress I’m making. Lessons are 500 word short stories at a time, often focusing on a segment of grammar. The shortness of the short story is causing me some frustration but I’m managing to write something. Enjoy.
“Run!” Mavern pushing hard to reach the tunnel’s mouth, wedges himself against the stone door slowing its roll into position. “Come On, hurry up! His voice cracks watching as Gus and Willian rush the doorway as it slams shut. Panting hard Gus bends over heaving as he holds his knees. He didn’t look too good, his face turning pale. Willian wheezing, struggling for breath lays on the ground. Gym class never prepared them to run for their lives or climb up stone walls or battle giant beetles with their bare hands.
Gus looks around and shakes his head.”Last I saw of him was..”
“It’s his damn fault!” Will turns, punching the stone door. Howling, holding his fist close to his chest, Will stomps the ground hissing through his teeth.
“Shit, Will. Why’d you do that?” Taking Will’s hand, Mavern looks over the bruising knuckles and flexes Will’s fingers. “Stop being a baby. It’s just bruised you, big idiot. We’ve got bigger problems.”
They look at each other before dropping their heads to their chins as their shoulders slump.
“Minck was behind the DM screen before the flashing light.” Gus scratched his head. “Before..” He nodded his head behind him. “Before, back there.”
“Shit is right. I’m hungry.” Gus flushes as his stomach growls.
Shaking his head, Mavern turns looking over the countryside. Down the valley, past the fields, a road leads to a cluster of buildings. Looking behind him, a mountain; a billy goat would find a challenge to climb, stood. Trudging forward, Mavern makes his way down the slope, Gus and Will following.
“Where are you going?”
Turning to his friends Mavern shrugs. “Look, I don’t know how we got here but we can’t stay back there. We need help or food. Mostly food. So. Are you coming or what?”
The aroma of roast meat entices them forward. Lifting his hand to the door, Mavern pushes it open and steps inside.
“Hey, this looks like the tavern in chapter two” Will elbows Mavern. “Do you think..”
“Shh. Be quiet. Let me do the talking” Mavern winks as he walks towards the man wiping down the counter. Three meals and somewhere to sleep, easy? Maybe. Making a prayer to the universe that they speak the same language, Mavern offers his hand out to the man.
“My friends and I would like to work for our meals and a place to stay for the night.”
Glaring at the boys, the barkeep leans forward, his grin showing off rotten teeth, slamming his fist into the counter. “I have no use for worthless boys!” Cackling, the barkeep waves them closer “Work now. Eat later. Come on.” Leading them past the counter to the back of the building, he points to the stalls. “Muck them out.”
Gus punches Mavern in the shoulder as he shrugs, finding shovels for each of them.
“You have a better idea?”
Hours later Mavern, rolls to his side in the fresh hay with a belly full of hot soup, his friends snoring beside him. The stars peak between the roof slats of the stable. “I miss working at McDonald’s.”