Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Distant Blue

Okay, so I've slacked off a bit.  I'm nothing if not inconsistent.  Anyway, this is for Day 22 of the Flash Fiction Project as talked about here.  Based off the following image. 


by Brenda Stumpf


From far away it glimmered as a blue sparkling mass.  On a canvas of pure black, that spot was the only source of light and color across her bobbing vision.  Under she went again, mouth and nose full of ice, blackness all around so it seemed that nothing including her existed.  Up again, she gasped for air.

“Will you marry me, Jennifer?”

Never, or maybe, marriage seemed less terrible than floating over oblivion.  Cold water seeped into hers skin, numbing her, if she had arms she only knew it because she saw them hanging white and dead just beneath the invisible surface.  Jennifer’s teeth pounded against themselves, her jaw uncontrollable, it would have been so easy to just slip away into the freezing black.

“Please don’t look at me like that.”

He was so charming, rich too, an older man, as old as her father maybe, but he looked  good, very handsome.  When he touched her, he made Jennifer feel as if she were again a young teenager, girlish, as they kissed and groped behind the shops on the pier, just out of sight of the crowds.  His breath smelled of sweet cigar smoke and whiskey, his suit of woodsy-smelling cologne, like fine sawdust mixed with male sex-must, a bottle more expensive than her dress no doubt.  His rough face tickled and scratch at her chin and she laughed, coming away red-faced, feeling her face and her loins hot and warming like they hadn’t been for so long.

“Let me take you away from everything.”

Martin, he said, no Mr. Ruis, tonight I am just a man and you are just a woman.  He said it with that accent of his, Spanish maybe, Jennifer thought.  It gave a slant to his words.  They curved into her ear as he spoke in that soft low way of his.  Let me take you on my boat, he said, no commanded, how could she refuse?   A boat, he had a boat, of course he did, and it was beautiful, a large and sleek yacht, bigger than her apartment but she didn’t say that.  With a smile, devilish, wide swath of teeth, he led her on board by the hand, the night would no doubt be magical, she thought.

“You need me Jennifer, and I need you.  We can’t survive without one another, can’t you see?”

Once the pier and the city became only a collection of lights on the distant shoreline, he turned to her and held her tight, electric yellow lights of the yacht reflecting in his gaze.   From out of the darkness he produced a bottle of champagne and two glasses, pouring seamlessly with grace the golden liquid.  Let us drink to a beautiful night, he said softly, only to her.  From somewhere else unseen, he produced a velvet lined box, opened to a diamond ring so brilliantly capturing every drop of moonlight.  She couldn’t possibly accept though, no, how could she?  She barely knew Mr. Ruis, it was just far too fast.

“It’s just me and you against infinite emptiness.”

His grip hurt, fingers digging into her shoulders, nails pinching against bare skin, she gasped in pain and he kissed her.  No, stop.  Martin wouldn’t listen, he pressed his mouth against hers, biting lips, squeezing, it hurt her and she felt as if she couldn’t breathe.  Out there on the dark deck, Jennifer was undressed, rough hands undoing straps.  I’ve wanted this for a very long time, he whispered.  No, please no, I can’t.  Jennifer pushed him, light at first and he kept grabbing, pulling, exposed skin cold against the whipping ocean winds.  Again she pushed, harder, knocking him back against the rail so that he cried out and stumbled. 

“I am so much stronger than you, don’t you see?”

Cursing through gritted teeth – goddamn whore – the man rushed Jennifer, took hold of her and forced her screaming into the cabin below.  There was no one to hear, the lights of the nearest boat on the night only a twinkling speck, she screamed all the same.  Raking nails across his neck and drawing blood, she broke free of her grip, tattered cloth hanging about her, naked feet slapping fast on metal.    She didn’t know where she was running to but suddenly a hand was pushing her, shoving, and her body went airborne against those hard and cold rails.  The world spun to empty darkness, then the vision of a distant yellow moon, and all at once, all around her the instant feel of wet, overwhelming suffocation filled her lungs and eyes.

“Every woman needs a man as strong as I in their lives.”

And now the boat was no more than a choppy path in the colorless waters, waves and foam disappearing among the relative calm of the ocean.  The distant perfect-round mounds of blue-lit glass and steel seemed to grow closer, larger.  Jennifer went under again, using all her strength to pull again above the water, kicking with swiftly disappearing feet.  Though she could no longer use her arms enough to pull against the flow, she leaned forward towards the shining and blurred blue, hoping the waves would soon dash her up against its beauty.

“Don’t you want me to make you feel beautiful?”