Monday, 22 April 2013

Journey



(image courtesy of sxc.hu purveyors of fine photography)

ECSTASY (noun)
3: trance; especially : a mystic or prophetic trance
(a writing prompt from Trifecta)

The pain is everywhere now.   The cords are tight around my arms and my legs, the long cuts on my back from the scourge weep blood, but the pain is no longer confined to arms, or legs, or cuts.   I am pain, a fire from head to toe flaring with every beat of my heart... or the drum... and the beat is fast, too fast.    The fire is outside me too, at the edge of the clearing, wood from the ash tree, flames crackling and eager.   The fire in my body longs to be reunited with the fire outside me and if I was not bound I would rush into its heart and be devoured.   The woman I love watches, eyes fearful, brave enough not to comfort me.   I endure.

This is not my first journey on behalf of the people.  Since I found my gift in the Summer of Fevers I have journeyed often when there was need.   To find the will of the gods and the other beings who moved unseen in the woods and hills and mountains.  Unseen by most, but I could see them.     The heart drum beats faster and faster and I am sure I will burst if it does not stop.   The bonds cut into me again as I stretch and strain to free myself and...

My body remains bound, my soul flies free, into the fire, into flaming ecstasy, the world burns away and I rise with the smoke and I see... I see...

I see the ceiling of my apartment as I awake suddenly.  I’m shaking all over, my arms and legs hurt.   Light from window opposite my bed makes my eyes water, it’s too damned bright.    I stagger from the bed and drain a bottle of water, and try to recall the details... something about fire, and winter and... people?   The details fade like always, a dream on waking.   A memory of a woman’s voice.

Come home.

Then that too is gone.



39 comments:

  1. Goosebumps again - I love it! And so haunting! LM xxx

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    1. Thanks Lyssa, I'm glad it had that effect.

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  2. so vivid - it captured me as I read it, leaving me feeling a mixture of ecstatic and frantic and perturbed - wanting answers. I felt connected to your narrator's experience.

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    1. I can't hope for more than that! Thank you so much

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  3. Ooo. Great job of yanking me out of the narrative just like he was yanked from sleep! And what sweet sorrow in the end. Great job!

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  4. You had me biting my lip. This is really awesome. I love it to crumbs.

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  5. What a surreal experience. I'm not sure I'd want to sleep if that's what waited for me in 'dream land!'

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    1. I can only agree. Thanks for commenting :D

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  6. Very vivid dreaming -- eerie and frightening, and just maybe a message lost.

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    1. Thanks Bjorn, glad it had that effect

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  7. sharp and well written move from dream to awake - I felt it.

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    1. Glad you did -thanks for the feedback

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  8. Vivid and captivating. You can feel the torment and pain, and the end just leaves me wanting more.

    Thanks for linking up!

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    1. My pleasure - and I'm pleased you found it vivid - thank you.

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  9. This is so good! The ending left me wanting to know which was the reality. From dream to waking? Or from waking to dream?

    And: "I am pain..." That line set the tone for me.


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    1. :D Thanks Renee - and you're quite right in pointing out the ambiguity of the viewpoints. It was my intention to leave it to the reader to decide which "I" was the real one (or perhaps both)

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  10. This is really good. I was right there in the dream and then I woke up with the character! It's so weird when a dream that seems so real will fade so quickly.

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    1. It's frustrating too - knowing that something *significant* happened in the dream but being totally unable to recall what. Thanks for the feedback

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  11. Captivating and nailbiting. Love the intensity of the dream and the suddenness of awakening as a dream. So well written!

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  12. Come home... I wonder where that is, and who is waiting, and what did he see. Great tension. Leaves me wanting more.. very nice writing.

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  13. Beautifully paced, rising in drama. Well done

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  14. I'm grateful for the person who told me that I should check out Trifecta and the writers there, because I have found a few, including yours, that just blow me away. I love that his woman was brave enough not to comfort him; that takes its own kind of strength and gives a quick character study in a simple line. It's got a very past life vibe to me, really well done.

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    1. Thanks Shannon, I really appreciate the feedback and I'm so glad you like the story. Do feel free (of course) to take a look around the other stuff here, I hope you'll enjoy it.

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  15. Really liked the way I was taken into the trance and became one with the flames.

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    1. Thanks, glad you liked it, I appreciate the feedback

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  16. I was wholly caught up in the fire and bondage and almost held out my arms towards the memory of a voice... Great placement of the prompt word, too. Beautiful piece!

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    1. Thank you Kymm, glad you got caught up in it

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  17. The vividness of his dream is matched only by the incredibly descriptive imagery of your writing! I found myself needing a big drink of water after I finished this one, Thomas! What a masterpiece!

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    1. That's so kind of you Valerie, much appreciated, hope the water helped :D

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  18. This puts me in the mind of Thomas Covenant going back and forth between realities. But this guy loses the other reality like a dream when he wakens.

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    1. Thanks JQ - an interesting comparison - and glad you picked up on that this isn't just a split between dream/waking but between two actual lives

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  19. "I am pain" - powerful line. Those last few lines of the story really stick out to me as well. Really nice writing.

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    1. Many thanks - I appreciate you taking the time to comment

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  20. Congratulations! Much deserved!

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