SHORT STORY COMPETITION: Creative Competitor
Here's a short story competition entry I can now blog as the time period for selection has passed. Check out the competition on the link below. The maximum word count was 800 and the theme was 'nostalgia'.
Raise the Drawbridge
I would like to go back five years, not six hundred. What did you do Henry? Once discarded, why not destroy it all so I would have no reminder? Over the waving white blossom I see three white towers and behind those, one mile or perhaps a million, the rocket ship of St George’s Wharf Tower. My dislocation has found some comfort. I had a misfortune today, or rather three. Oyez! Oyez! Oyez! My triptych trauma! How did Henry deal with a repetition in name and in pain? His crāwe-in-the-throat of Catherines? Good Henry, bad Henry! I command thee arise and help me! Well… maybe it is best not to ask. From 1935 I entered 1479 and smiled at the steel within the trusses, the beauty of the old and the new, the will to survive, of how to grow old gracefully. There is always a way! A thigh high wooden table, its two carved legs as stout to my own as a lumberjack’s neck is to a baby’s finger, made me want to smash down a goblet of mead on its aged but polished surface. A Visitors Book lay on top, open with pen askew. It is four o’clock in the afternoon now, so it would have been nearly three then, on a Thursday so the pages were full of names from the week’s activity. There, in time and in place, both the here and now, and my every waking moment, is her name repeated: once, twice and thrice! How can it be that three guests with the same name appear in sequence? What cruel mockery did the universe employ for its pleasure, hurting me with its Royal Flush of coincidence? Light from the blue sky fell over the gallery-come-lately, the ancient seeming crisscrossed stained glass, the Sun and the Rose, posing my shock cinematic. Was it a sunny day when she was here too? I cannot remember. I feel her looking at me, smiling in the Wild Flower Meadow; I feel her press against me as we navigate through the crowds in the narrow opening of the Sunken Rose Garden and I feel the heat of her legs as they lay over my lap on the South Lawn, but… I cannot remember. There is no joy imagining feasts instead of silent-headphoned-tourists as I peer over the edge, the creaking floorboards urging me to shuffle forth. I wish I could be back there, centuries before she was born so I would never know. I could be the fool or the King, and be released. I look up and wonder if the eavesdroppers remember us and I picture her face, but… I cannot remember. We had walked amongst the present and the history, wrapped up in no one’s procession but ours; that day was the trumpet call of our future. Half a decade later, a blink for the Great Hall, a lifetime for me, and I have managed a day-to-day acceptance. I do not remember what I do not allow to be thought, and I do not miss what I deny had existed. Then I see her name, threefold, and I remember I loved her and I love her still. The empty palace holds its own memories and now it holds mine. I cross the North Stone Bridge and leave the past behind for today, yet she walks by my side, her hand in mine, while I plead for a future as the willow weeps.
Have a great week all,