Monday, June 14, 2010

The Bet

So, I wrote a long section yesterday saying it was one of possibly two pieces. And then I received an e-mail responding to my question about length restrictions: both minimums and maximums. The other story is WAY too long. This one meets the requirements as it is exactly 1000 words. Please, still leave feedback as I am likely to use it for editing purposes. Thank you!

Wrapped in his arms, you continue to sob. Hard tears run down your face, your make-up draws deep shadows of sadness on your cheeks. “Why John? Why did she have to leave us like this?” you question him. As if the desperation in your voice didn’t convey your shock and misery, a thick moan follows your words. The eye contact breaks. You lay your head on his shoulder; his hand caresses your back; his kisses fall on thick hair.

“Shhhh…..” he encourages to no avail. His eyes are wet too, but he knows his time to mourn will come later. It is your time now. “Shhhh…” he says again, pulling you closer to him as your body shutters and releases another moan. The two of you sit in tears, no words exchanged, until every bit of salty liquid has been expelled and a raw flesh path shows evidence of his continuous caresses.

“Cut!” yells the director. Somewhere off stage a bell rings to indicate that it is safe to talk and shuffle to the next area. “That’s a wrap! Great job guys. We have a ton of usable material here. Let’s call it a day!”

Sitting up quickly, you twist your body away. Anger is etched in deep lines across your face. Your co-star looks at you, his mischievous grin widening in pleasure at your angst. “Awww, come on Sarah. It was bound to happen sooner or later. You can’t honestly be surprised, can you?”

You are so angry you can only respond with a primitive roar before stomping off, his laughter pushing against your back as you head to your new dressing room. The room is so small the dressing racks sit in the hallway. You push through the door of the closet you feel has been renamed a dressing room in your disgrace. It is far below your level of stardom and you vow to make someone pay.

Your assistant knocks softly on the door. “Miss Burns?” she says softly, afraid you may stuff an apple in her mouth and serve her up as the main meal for dinner in your current mood. “Miss Burns? I,I…I’m sorry to interrupt, but Mr. Seever wants to see you in his office as soon as you are changed.” She takes a step back, your glare pushing her into the middle of the hall. Her head lowers so you can’t see the smirk on her face.

You take a deep breath. You don’t want to be the Big Bad Wolf, but it feels like you have been huffing and puffing, blowing people’s houses down all day. Maybe breathing in will do the trick. Smoothing the silk blouse wet with tears dredged up from this morning’s discovery of your new dressing room, you take another deep breath and close your eyes. “Thank you Janie,” you say through gritted teeth, your face tipped back to the ceiling. “Please tell him I will be right there. Then you can go home.” Your voice is not unkind, but there is no warmth to it either.

Janie nods slightly and then hustles off down the hall, her heels clicking hard on the stamped cement floor. You make a promise to yourself to behave and then look into the mirror. Your face is a wreck. The crying has swollen your eyes and the heavy stage make-up is smeared across your face. Of course John smiled at you after the scene. You look like a clown!

Twenty minutes later, you walk from the small room. Your face has a fresh coat of make-up in the trendier day style that everyone else wears. Your hair is pulled up loosely in a twist. Your jeans and vintage T-shirt hug all of your favorite parts. The heavy thuds of the thick heels on your boots empower you as you move down the hall and to the elevator.

As the elevator ascends, you give yourself a little pep talk. “I can do this. It’s just another acting job. I’ll plaster a smile on my face, laugh along with the joke, and request a more reasonable room. Even if I can’t have my suite back, I should certainly be allotted something bigger than the janitor’s closet.” The elevator doors slide open. A smile sits pristinely on your pretty face and “I can do this” stamps itself deeply in the front of your brain. Cheerfully you approach Cynthia, Mr. Seever’s receptionist. “George asked me to stop up before leaving today.”

She pushes the little blue intercom button and informs Mr. Seever that you have arrived. “He’s waiting for you Miss Burns. Is there anything I can bring you?” she asks sweetly, her smile more genuine than yours. You’d like to ask for your pride gently stirred and not shaken, but you opt to save your self-mocking for George. “No thank you Cynthia. I’ll be but a short time, I’m sure.” You smile and turn for George’s door.

He is sitting in his leather recliner, feet hoisted on a matching ottoman when you walk in. Upon your entrance, he begins laughing, slapping his thighs. “Ahhh Sarah. I have to say I never thought I would see the day.” He chuckles a little more as his hand extends an invitation to sit on the couch near him.

Your smile widens with self-depreciation. “I never thought I would either George,” you respond while fishing in your purse. He laughs again. It’s a deep joyous laugh, one that warms your heart a little. “$1000 in cash, just for you George. I’m good on my end now. “I hand it over without reservation.

He sets it aside, a trifle amount for both of you. “The Detroit Lions won the Superbowl,” he says, a chuckle rolling from his lips.

“Yes, they certainly did.” You nod in disbelief. “So George, do you think I can have something a little bigger than the janitor’s closet and still fulfill my end of the bet?”

His smile is huge and your heart beats hopeful.

1 comment:

  1. I will read this again when I get home and I am not reading with possibly a sleep deprived brain. I like it. I wonder about the setting a bit. An office above a sound stage sounds wrong to me.

    Other wise at this point I don't have any other feed back.