Here is my entry for Furious Fiction for August 2021. I have missed a few months with my last entry being way back in May.
The Furious Fiction criteria for August were:
1. The first sentence must contain only 4 words.
2. You must include the words paint, shift, wave and toast (or variations there of)
3. Something must be shared.
Based on a true story!
This story is based on a real life event although in much more benign conditions. In 1987 my ex and I were doing some painting. He had loosened the lid of a full can of paint and then went to do something else. When he returned he picked up the can and shook it vigourously forgetting he had loosened the lid! I walked into the room at the exact moment the paint was whooshing up all over his face and hair.
I grabbed him, and as it says in the story below, held him under the water forcing his eyes open – Silkwood style. Once we got him cleaned up, we started on the room. Once that was clean we went downstairs. We had a beach-comber style house and our car was parked underneath. It was covered in paint! That took another couple of hours to get that clean! A few days later he was still sneezing out blobs of paint. Funny but not funny.
The Furious Fiction Contest is fun, easy and low risk! But you could be $500 richer for your 500 words. Check it out at the Australian Writers Centre.
Story Stats: I started writing about 7 PM on Friday night. I did no more work on it until Sunday morning and spent another hour “polishing” it up and getting it under the word limit. All up about 3 hours. 496 words.
Whatever you want, darling!
“Whatever YOU want Darling”
Stephanie hated it when he said that. She was especially wary when the emphasis was on the YOU and not the Darling. It meant he didn’t like her decision but wouldn’t say so. Whatever you want really meant that the ‘whatever’ came with a whole side of heartache. It really meant “Darling I will remind you at every minute that you got what you wanted”
Exasperated, Stephanie waved her hand toward the deep crimson wall.
“Well, what colour would you prefer Damien?”
“I really don’t care Stephanie, like I said whatever you want”
“Oh for goodness sake, Damien I’m sick and tired of you pretending you don’t care and leaving the decisions to me! Whatever you want darling” she snarled back in a mocking tone “No, it isn’t whatever I want. WHAT DO YOU WANT?”
As she shouted, Stephanie shifted her weight onto her left leg and kicked the full paint can clear across the room. A thick unctuous arc of liquid vinyl followed a millisecond behind the rim of the can and draped itself over Damien’s head like a matador’s cape. The now near-empty can clanged against the wall and the last of its contents oozed onto the carpet.
Damien stood motionless. The paint trickled down his face. His eyes were opaque red pools. His teeth were smeared red and his spittle frothed blood-like at the corners of his mouth. Stephanie gasped and led him to the bathroom. She pushed him under the faucet, holding his eyes open as the warm water sluiced the paint from his eyes.
For the next hour, Stephanie washed him gently but the red paint lingered. It was in his ears and nose. He hacked and spat as it dripped down his throat. Neither of them spoke beyond Stephanie’s guilty clucks.
Now that Damien was clean they went into the loungeroom only to be confronted by paint-splattered carpet.
“Thank god it’s water-based!” Stephanie quipped trying to make light of things. She scraped the thick paint back into the can and poured buckets of water over the carpet. It seemed like a better idea to get the paint off first and worry about drying it later.
Another hour passed and while a pink stain remained it wasn’t too bad.
Damien finally spoke. “I’m hungry, let’s go get a toastie and coffee.”
He grabbed her keys and headed down the stairs. Stephanie followed him into the basement garage, her remorse a heavy layer that slowed her down. Damien stopped abruptly on the bottom step and looked up at the dripping roof. The garage was directly under the painted room. The room that Stephanie poured buckets of water over.
“Stephanie,” he said “did you ever stop to think where all that water was going?”
Her shoulders slumped and she wailed. Stephanie’s black Peugeot was covered in a thin coat of red paint.
Damien smiled. “I’ll share something with you, Stephanie. I don’t like red. I would have preferred blue.”