Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Beware the Subway...

I belong to the website indiehorror. It's a great place to meet other authors, have interesting conversations and sometimes exercise your creative muscles. One of the posters decided we should all do an exercise. She posted a beyond horrible piece of writing (I mean seriously, the OCD editor part of me was mentally covering it in red pencil). The exercise was to rewrite the piece, obviously using better grammar, better imagery, just well, better. You couldn't change the setting, characters or basic storyline. Here was my entry:

Gertrude sighed and looked up from the novel she was reading to glance about the subway car. It was surprisingly empty. She shared it with only one other passenger, a young woman in a tiny black dress. Gertrude was sure the dress was in fashion but it contained far too little material for her tastes. She believed firmly in leaving something to the imagination. Of course, at her age, a woman had to be a bit more discerning.

She kept watching the girl, noticing that she was trying to chew something off of her wrist. It looked like some kind of hospital ID. Didn’t she know how bad that was for her teeth? Yellowed stains on both her teeth and fingertips spoke of habitual nicotine use. Killing herself slowly. Gertrude sighed again. Youth was definitely wasted on the young. Someone should advise her to take better care of herself. She started to open her mouth, and then thought better of it. No use getting involved, you never knew what you were getting yourself into nowadays. That girl could be a junkie hyped up on drugs, or a serial killer or contagious. She was wearing a hospital bracelet after all!

Gertrude picked up her novel and chuckled silently to herself. She was being silly, of course. The girl was probably just some poor kid with a cold who’d been to the ER for medicine. She started to offer to cut the bracelet off her wrist but the girl shot her a look of such pure venom that she averted her gaze back to her book. Well! The nerve of some people. Trying to scare a little old lady. That was just plain rude. 

The car slowed and rattled its way to a stop. Gertrude gathered her novel and her purse and proceeded to the door. The glass of the door frosted over as she approached and the doors didn’t open as they should. Gert gave them a feeble push. From right behind her she heard an impatient sigh and the girl pushed her a bit. Gertrude knew she was in trouble. The girl pushed her again and she whirled on her.

“Now look here little lady…” Gert began. But she never got past those words. As she looked into the girls bloodshot eyes, the girl exhaled impatiently again. Her hot breath carried not only the hint of alcohol but the scent of blood from where she’d bitten her lip while trying to gnaw off that damn bracelet. Gert was lost. She grabbed the girl by the shoulders and slammed her back against the closest seat. She held her immobile while she sunk her fangs deep into the other woman’s neck. There she drank her fill while the girl’s protests became weaker and weaker. She let the body sag to the floor as she fumbled in her bag. Taking a dainty handkerchief out, she dabbed at the drops of blood that clung to her lips.

“Just look what you’ve done!” she said to the dead girl. “Your rudeness has cost us both. You’ve lost what pathetic life you had and I’ve ruined my appetite. Hildi will be furious! We were supposed to eat French tonight.”

Delicately stepping over the body, she proceeded to the door which opened with a swish at her approach. She disembarked without a backward glance.

Leave me a comment, let me know what you think.



Blaze McRob said...

Not the ending I thought was going to happen! Great job! I guess we should be nice to little-old ladies.

Spot said...

Thanks Blaze. Its the whole "respect your elders" thing. Lol.

Blaze McRob said...

I'm an elder! :D

Claudia Lefeve said...

I'm glad I don't ride the metro anymore that's for sure!

Anonymous said...

Lesson to be learned or Confucius says: Be polite or you could end up someones meal.