Thursday, August 11, 2011

Prompting Fate (a contest)



Contest time at The Merry Sisters of Fate. Randomly-chosen winners are trying for a signed advance reader’s copy of THE SCORPIO RACES by Maggie Stiefvater, a signed advance reader’s copy of THE SPACE BETWEEN by Brenna Yovanoff or a signed hardback of BLOOD MAGIC by Tessa Gratton. The authors are the sisters of fate, if you didn’t know.
The picture prompt for this contest is “The Turret Stairs” by Frederic Burton, and here’s my entry, a flash fiction:

He has no choice. Those are his words, not mine. I feel them like a shard of glass, a needle of ice through my heart.

This is the last time—I have no doubt of this—he will press his body to mine, the final touch of soft lips, hot breath upon my neck.

I cannot look at him.

“I am the kingdom,” he says, as though I need convincing. “What I desire, what I prefer, must always be for the good of all.”

Am I not part of all? But I do not speak those words or any other.

My hand rests on stone, cold as a tomb, centuries of terror held captive in these walls. I must climb into the darkness alone while he will step into the light of ten thousand candles and as many dawns.

“It was your hair, they say, that made them so sure.” He loops the end of my braid around his finger—a red-copper ring. A moan escapes him. He pulls his dagger free and cuts the lock, holding it first to his nose and then tucking it within his shirt. “I will mourn you always.”

I face him finally. “You will mourn, and you will suffer every moment of my eternal imprisonment. I would rather they’d sewn a hundred river stones in my hem or made me run in iron boots fresh from the fire than the end you chose. For you did have a choice, you see.”

“I could not sentence you to such a death!”

“But you have, my love, you have.”

28 comments:

storyqueen said...

TRICIA!This is awesome!

"I am the kingdom"

love it.

You have such a great voice for medieval fantasy...

Yat-Yee said...

Wow. So few words. So impressed with your creativity, as always.

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

Shelley: Oh, my, thank you. Crimey (is that a word?), that makes me feel rather awesome.

Yat-Yee: Double oh-my. Thank you so much, too!

Valerie Geary said...

Chills, chills, I say! Fantastic job!!

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

ValerieG: :):):) I'm a flutter.

And Shelley on my crimey comment. I realize I melded crikey and criminy and still don't know what I'm talking about.

Valerie Kemp said...

Oh that was awesome and heartbreaking! Great job!

Wen Baragrey said...

That is so darn good, Tricia! Kick ass, in fact! I love that last line. Actually, I love all the lines. Beeeeeaaaautiful!

The Golden Eagle said...

I love the description in this piece!

Great last line.

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

ValerieK: Ooooo, thank you so much. I loved your entry and wouldn't have known about this if you hadn't posted, so thank you!

Wen: I love to kick ass! Thankee. :D

GoldenEagle: I'm so incredibly pleased to hear it. *all smiley*

Angela Ackerman said...

WOW, this was brilliant--I love this! Now write the book. Yes, I mean that--get to work! :)

Angela @ The Bookshelf Muse

Stephanie Thornton said...

Wow. That was totally swoon-worthy. Please tell me you're going to make that into a book.

Gorgeous!

Bish Denham said...

Awesome Tricia. But then, I would not expect anything less. You have such a way with words, so lyrical, haunting.

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

Angela: You're a hard taskmistress! This one isn't a book, just a flash in the pan, but I'm encouraged to dig deeper into the dark fairy tale I'm currently writing.

Stephanie: Eeps! You, guys! Now, I'm swooning.

Bish: Oh, thank you, thank you, dear friend.

Jo said...

oooh -- this is beautiful!!! Very evocative -- and perfectly suited to the painting.

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

Jo: Thanks for stopping by and the lovely comment.

cleemckenzie said...

Gee, Tricia can you come over and write something for me? Lovely tone, rhythm and style.

Catherine Denton said...

Tricia, this is AMAZING! And now I wanna know why her hair made them sure.
My Blog

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

Lee: hahahahahaha! I'd love to come over. Maybe we could write for each other. ;)

Catherine: A mystery forevermore. Sorry, couldn't resist. Thank you!

Donna said...

Oooh. Passion and tragedy. You're mastering flash fiction, but then, of course you would. It's fiction haiku.

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

Donna: Oooh. I love that--'fiction haiku' It's a perfect description. And thanks!

VR Barkowski said...

This is so wonderful, Tricia, the setting, the, characters, the build of emotion. I'm not sure what else to say. Good grief, I'm speechless. Don't tell anyone.

Jemi Fraser said...

Sucker punch to the heart - well done!

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

VR: !!!

Jemi: *gasp*

I love you guys!

Phoenix said...

Wow... beautiful, amazing. I am so captivated, and I want to read more!

(I also want her to turn him into a toad.) ;)

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

Ha, Phoenix, he should be turned into a toad! :)

Talli Roland said...

WOW! LOVE this, Tricia. Fantastic story!

Karen Amanda Hooper said...

"I must climb into the darkness alone while he will step into the light of ten thousand candles and as many dawns."

*sigh*

Write a whole story about these characters. Please and thank you.

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

Talli: Eeee! Thank you.

Oh, Karen, these characters have a short shelf life. I made them up for that flash fic and the contest, but I hope someday you get to read my new dark fairy tale and my rewritten mer story (I've got plans). ;)