Monday, February 28, 2011

"I really don't mind the scars." --a vignette

1: [another might follow later, or not. TM]

"But your breasts are fine...I mean, I wouldn't say they're your best feature, but..." he fumbled, flustered, not knowing how to press the case.
She didn't exactly shake him off, but replied matter-of-factly, "If I'm going make any kind of career, either in Hollywood or in the Valley, augmentation will only help."

#

Ludmilla, all six feet of her, reclined against the chair across the table from him. Her face betrayed nothing but mild amusement, but he knew that this was not all she felt...this was her default expression, carefully cultivated though probably also indicative of her assessment of life.
"Gino is a good man," she began. "I would not have married him, nor certainly had our Irena with him, if he was not. But he has a temper, and if anything was to happen to Irena or to myself, you realize that he will," she paused so very briefly here, "kill you, no matter at what cost to himself. But he is a good man, and that would be the end of it."
He waited, suspecting what was to come but having no answer to it yet. "However, I am not a good woman," Ludmilla continued. "If anything should happen to Gino, I will not stop at killing you. I will not stop at killing your wife, or your children. I will leave no living trace of you. And if anything was to happen to Irena, and I survive...it is best not to contemplate such matters at the dinner table."
She took a sip from her glass, her eyes never leaving his face. "I want you to understand this. It would be best for all concerned if you would put all thoughts of damage to my family aside, and indeed to do your best to ensure our continued prosperity. Or perhaps you should, if you must, make your move here, now."

#

"I want to look like Lady Gaga."
She rolled her eyes. "And how might you do that?"
"Practice, practice, practice," he said, only half joking.
"I'm glad you didn't claim you were Born that way..."

#

"I know you're afraid to go forward with this...it's only natural...but I can think of nothing in the world I want more than to have a child with you." She hoped she didn't sound as irrational as she felt.
His pause before replying was pregnant, she thought...not the sort of pregnancy she was hoping for. "You know what the doctors say." He nuzzled the back of her head as he spoke, her hair only slightly obscuring his words. She turned in his embrace and gave him a long kiss. Then: "I know I'm asking a lot...given the probable complications, and what might happen...but you remember what they also said...a Cesarean would in this case cut most of those risks considerably."
Not all the risks, she knew he was thinking. But there were no guarantees in this life...not a one.

#

They'd pulled her off the street two days before, at least she thought it was two days. Time wasn't passing as it did in the real world here, in this hell. The female officer sat impassively across the room; she wondered if the other woman was here simply as a sort of courtesy, some sort of pro forma attempt to conform to human rules of decency. Or if she was there simply as a trainee...she'd done nothing to meliorate the litany of torture. Perhaps she was there to keep her actual interrogator from simply repeatedly raping her and leaving matters at that. The waterboarding, the simple beating, the other procedures had not yet gotten her to name her supposed co-conspirators...the fake names she gave at one point were apparently insufficient. He was now explaining how he'd needed to search around for a smaller alligator clip to attach the auto battery to her clit, smaller than the ones he used to attach to her supposed comrades' scrotal sacs. He actually looked over at the woman officer at this point, as if offering her the honor of applying the device, then turned back to her, bound in her chair. "You realize," he said, with what could only be described as an attempt at solicitousness, "what a wreck we will leave of you." She summoned what saliva she could, and ineffectually spat, most of the spittle never quite leaving her lips.

#

The fannish tweet to the increasingly famous actress read exactly:
Olivia: My ["Wilde"]s for you, as does every other part of me. Surely you can't leave me in such a consumptive state. Think of the damage you do me.

#

The next line, in each case, in continuation or response, was:
"I really don't mind the scars."

The next line, in response, after, was, in some cases here,
"Very well."
In the others, it was,
"It's too bad that I do."

[the other vignettes in response to Patti Abbott's challenge to write one with the line "I really don't mind the scars" can be found indexed or hosted at her blog, Pattinase.]

16 comments:

David Cranmer said...

This is tremendous, Mr. Mason. I liked the structure best of all but dialogue, plot et cetera was all superb. I would recommend sending it in to AHMM or EQMM.

(You mentioned another might follow. I would look forward to that.)

pattinase (abbott) said...

Very complex, Todd. And the writing is superb.

K. A. Laity said...

I liked the individual bits, but my mind wants to connect them and I don't see how to do so. Maybe I'm just being dim. But I liked the little snapshots. Nicely done.

Todd Mason said...

I wouldn't say dim, Kate...I'm just illustrating a range of situations that might lead up to Patti's overheard line (even if few of these could happen on the street), as the connection.

You are all too generous. If I have time and the more unitary vignette idea congeals, Mr. Cramner, I might post it as well.

Jerry House said...

Echoing David's sentiments. More, please!

Alan Griffiths said...

Nicely done, Todd - super writing.

Richard R. said...

what Patti said.

Paul D. Brazill said...

I had to read this a couple of times. I really like it a lot. Clever stuff. Very cinematic.

Todd Mason said...

Thanks, folks...perhaps more later, but time is tight now...and Paul's interesting observation reminds me to beat the bushes for Overlooked Films/A/V for tomorrow! The dread catarrh has taken down one stalwart contributor, but at least one other returns, and I hope you all either return or debut, as well...

Paul D. Brazill said...

Todd, I have an Overlooked Film up.

http://pdbrazill.blogspot.com/2011/03/tuesdays-overlooked-film-palookaville.html

Glenn Gray said...

Strong, well written snippets. Loved it!

Evan Lewis said...

Cool, compelling and strange. Nice job.

Todd Mason said...

Thank you, gentlemen.

Anonymous said...

Once again, I am reminded of why I am one of your biggest fans. Might we have more, please?

chad rohrbacher said...

I like the cinema aspect -- really threaded everything together nicely.

Todd Mason said...

Thanks, folks.