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August 15, 2012 / bpeveril

They laid in bed togethe…

They laid in bed together, that night, long enough after that they’d taken the plastic off of the tattoos, rinsed away the dried blood and smeared them with lotion. Cecilia fell asleep quickly, she always did, but Jared lay awake, watching the light from passing cars play across the ceiling. In her sleep, her fingers touched the tender skin on his shoulder, traced the lines of his tattoo. He winced and moved her hand away.
The cool air played over their skin while Jared watched the shadows of the evening play across the ceiling and looked into the waste-land he’d never noticed, looming on the horizon. He didn’t know how he’d missed it but he was sure it had always been there; omnipresent and terrifying, an inescapable part of his world and himself. It lay all around him, all around his world, like he was on an island built in a vast junkyard of waste and despair, discarded washing machines and toxic filth slowly eroding the ground he stood on and tainting the air he breathed.
As he started to drift off to sleep after a while he felt a twinge of disgust with himself for what he hadn’t realized he was a part of. He pulled the blankets over his shoulders and pressed himself against Cecilia’s body for warmth.

This scene coming to me changed the story in my head from a short story to a novel. It’s ironic that it’s so short, that such a short chapter could have an impact on the whole work, but it does. 

Actually, now that I’m looking at it, this is a pivotal moment. It’s also just complete enough that I could call it microfiction and pass it around if I decide I’m better off mining this one for usable pieces than selling it as a whole.

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