I am taking a break from my normal blogging style to participate in the writing prompt over at The Red Dress Club this week. Here is my first attempt at *FICTION*. If for any reason you are not up for fiction you can go read my favorite post ever, up at Multiples and More today.
If she looked out the window one more time she might have to tie herself to the chair, there really was no point to her vigil.
It had been three days. Three full days since the gleam of headlights blasted through their frost covered windows, bringing some kind of life to the cozy, but sort of ugly, hand-me-down of a cottage she was trapped in. She wasn’t alone of course, she never was. That was fine though, because the only non-annoying person on the trip just so happened to be the one who was still there with her now.
What was she thinking? Why did she decide to be the hero and stay back with Gran?
Someone who could sit still was much more apt for the job.
And now? Long since saying goodbye to her sister and her brother and her neurotic parents, she was left to wait for the stupid blanketing snow to stop and the one lane road to open and for someone to remember she and Gran were actually out there and bring them back to the land of the living.
Her mind drifted to school and unchecked voicemails and unanswered texts and that cute little ringtone she had just found and barely got to use. This blizzard was an unbelievable waste of time but there really wasn’t much she could do about it other than pout. Pout, or stare at the wall, or stare at Gran, who had been glued to her knitting needles and that obnoxious flower print couch since the day they got there.
Gran would be 87 this year and they couldn’t chance her venturing out in the cold. She offered to stay back, but not for Gran, for herself. Five minutes of time without the rest of her family would be heaven. The rest of them could bundle up in that tacky winter snow gear, Gran could continue her knitting marathon and she would break out the laptop, swap her dead phone battery for her brother’s half alive one and get a good ten minutes of texting and chatting with the real world in, before the rest of her frozen family returned from their pre-blizzard freak out/stock up mission.
What she had not counted on was the anger of the storm, the incessant pounding of the wind, the rapid piling of white and the quiet of the house as the whir of her laptop slowly faded and the last of that borrowed battery died, as that ten minute shopping trip turned into ten hours, and stretched on into three long, painfully boring, days. So instead of enduring lame card games with parents, trying their hardest to cram family time down her throat, now she was rationing out bread and peanut butter (always a bit more for Gran than for her) so that they could make it through until who knows when.
Life was fragile for Gran now and although Gran worried about her medicine and could not remember what doctor said what and spent most of her day getting the curlers in and out of her hair and could take up two full hours dissecting her meal from last Wednesday, the mind-numbing quiet of this place did not rattle her a bit. Three days of waiting and wondering when they would be dug out left Gran happily amused, quietly knitting, nibbling at every morsel of conversation her eldest granddaughter could muster.
How could Gran be so calm? Who has time for this? She was trapped in this house with NOTHING to do and no one to talk to but sweet little knitting Gran and she needed to get out. Prom was coming and she was still searching for a dress, the last of her college applications were sitting at home waiting to be mailed and there were probably a million people trying to get a hold of her right now. This blizzard was totally not in her junior year plans. She knew they would get out eventually and they probably had enough to eat and weren’t cold or anything so she should just chill. She had, like, 80 years ahead of her to do what she wanted to so she was fine, but Gran? Gran didn’t have 80 years, she might not even have eight.
The thought giving her more chills than the wind pushing through that rickety window.
And she stopped her endless pacing just long enough to look back at little Gran, knobby hands looping and folding those long needles. How did she not notice Gran was creating one of her famous blankets for the latest baby in the family? Hands crossing back and forth, over and over again, each motion just as careful as the last, taking all the time in the world.
Because, at that moment time was hers to take.
She crossed that empty room and finding her place, nestled her lanky teenage self into the soft wrinkles of a beautiful lifetime that made up her precious Gran, and asked her for a story, a long one.
They might be here for a while.
This post was written in response to the prompt “You are trapped (alone or with others) in a single location during the fury and/or aftermath of a blizzard of historic proportions.”
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