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Hopscotch
November 26th, 2013, 11:29 PM
Prologue

I Wake up, heat creeps up my body, a ruddy glow spills over closed eyes, penetrating my dreams. A deep reptilian brain screams, wake up! Light! Hunt! Birdsong is singing in my ears. I can hear the Finch, Larch and coo of the Wood Pigeon as my mind cranks up like a rusty piston stirring into full steam. For the thousandth time I picture a wooded glen that no longer exists. Sitting up I murmur. “Alarm off, news – no sound”. The sunrise is swept away, replaced by a newscaster’s face dominating the far wall; her mouth mumbles a silent nonsense. A cold weather warning flashes in the top corner. She turns, and the screen flicks to a grey haired man standing in court. His knuckles white, gripping a tarnished brass podium bar, red faced, spittle is let fly from his gaping mouth. A red banner below declares in yellow writing: this man is the leader of the Violators. This man, who, when the war was fought, would have been a brown haired boy handed a gun. He will be dead by the next morning. I stared fascinated, a close up showed panic in his eyes, the rapid rise and fall of his chest, the blood pumping through his veins; protruding vessels carrying life, soon to cease and curdle.

Arthritically I get out of bed, naked; I shuffle into the living room. It gently illuminates revealing the morbid details of the expensively modern furniture; a generic taste that came with the flat, now far out of date. My robe hangs from the back of a long backed chair, which tapers at peculiar angles; I pick it up and put it on. Smelling like every night sat in my favourite slippers, it feels good to wear. ​ So it’s been a chilly night; the clean-up will have begun earlier than usual. I reach for the porridge. A refuse crew will be scouring for dead; ploughing its way through the morning crowds.

Steam rises from the bowl, I add the honey. I picture the sad lonely forms being pried from their frozen concrete beds; I almost can’t eat my breakfast. ​ Walking up to the window I tell it to reduce opacity, and a scene dissolves into view. I flex my toes in the hand-woven rug, as freezing rain beats the street outside. Hooded Men and women scowl at one another through the downpour. I watch on, consuming spoonful after spoonful of warm porridge. On the fringe of the bustling flow of humanity sit the less affluent in beautifully manicured parks. The gardens edging avenues flooded with people making their way to work. Workers, heads down, rush by, leaving the homeless to their communion with the pigeons. My feet are getting cold; I make a mental note to ask the concierge to look at the floor heater. The half-finished bowl of porridge has begun to cool taking on the consistency of papier mache. I put the bowl down, balancing it on a pile of antique videos.

Noticing a glob of porridge stuck to my gown, I rub it in, it will add to the general charm of the garment. I continue to observe the torrent of people channelling their way through cement streets; their business attire forming a grey-black jigsaw. Above, the morning sun breaks. It is Peak Hour. It is Money Monday.

Unconsciously I tighten my robe; the expensively soft fabric soothes me. For some reason, unknown to myself, I let the robe fall. The crowd does not stop. Four floors up I doubt anyone would notice. The back lit glass gives me double vision of interior and exterior. I stand here proud of this... I do not really know what, but I am content, a minor victory, it that is never mentioned. Me… A face looks up from the crowd as if it senses someone viewing the seething mass. I stand, proud, still, deformed. My warped body reflects back and through me, smashed face and misshapen arms, a Picasso man.

The face in the crowd I see is a face I see a thousand times a day, perfect skin, oval shape, large eyes, thick lips, a classic. A sneer fouls this particular genetic artwork. Loathing burns in her eyes. I stare back, straightening my curved spine, gaining strength from every moment as I feel her gaze waver then slowly relent. She dissolves back into anonymity of the masses. Smiling to myself I pick up my robe and don it; a short flourish brings the soft collar high, one small victory at least.

I shamble away from the window towards the kitchen. Looking back I spot a commotion in the sky. Two darting Jackdaws viciously dive bomb a Sparrow. I watch as they claw and rip the small bird to tatters. The Sparrow begins a slow descent, bird elegance evaporates as it spirals to the ground; its wings locked in death’s embrace. I turn, flick the kettle on and wait for it to boil.

Hopscotch
November 27th, 2013, 07:09 PM
I've edited this a few times. I'm not sure if it still works.

What I need to know is that, does it flow? Does the point come across that the protagonist lives in luxury? That there are genetically enhanced people in the world? That the world is a cruel hard place? I've added a bit about a rebel leader being executed on the news at the start - does that work?

Last but not least - did you like it? - I would appreciate negatives as well as positive - if you couldnt read the whole thing what was it that turned you off? Trust me I won't be offended - I know I have to learn!

Also is it too flowery with words at times.

- - - Updated - - -

I've edited this a few times. I'm not sure if it still works.

What I need to know is that, does it flow? Does the point come across that the protagonist lives in luxury? That there are genetically enhanced people in the world? That the world is a cruel hard place? I've added a bit about a rebel leader being executed on the news at the start - does that work?

Last but not least - did you like it? - I would appreciate negatives as well as positive - if you couldnt read the whole thing what was it that turned you off? Trust me I won't be offended - I know I have to learn!

Also is it too flowery with words at times.