Deviant Login Shop  Join deviantART for FREE Take the Tour
×

:icondisrhythmic: More from disrhythmic


More from deviantART



Details

Submitted on
January 16, 2012
File Size
3.7 KB
Link
Thumb

Stats

Views
4,257
Favourites
198 (who?)
Comments
104
Downloads
146
×
There were sixteen tall windows. She'd counted them over and over when she was small, her chubby finger outstretched as she spun in tiny circles. Eight walls, sixteen windows, thirty-two black curtains—the arithmetic of her childhood.

"Eight window seats, Daddy. Eight buttons on each—sixty-four. I counted."

The fountain stood dry and dead-center in the middle of the black and white tiles. Eight sides, eight lion-mouth spouts. Sixteen limestone mermaids poised gracefully around the edge. Four thousand and ninety-six blue tiles. Five hundred and twelve white.

And two doors. Always the two doors, huge and solid and radiating a sense of looming disdain. The rough oak had bitten her hands and it bit them now, when she pressed her palms against it. The doors eased open like wings outstretching, coming to rest against stone doorstops.

Her boots clicked against the marble flooring as she advanced, each click reverberating through the silent room. A mute ghost of a man stood in each corner of the room—eight corners, eight men, eight long black robes, eight sharp-beaked masks. Thirty-two steps to the fountain. Eight feet up to the balcony.

"Good morning, father."

"Good morning, pet." He stood there, leaning leonine against the balcony's carved railing, his hair elegantly slicked back.

His hair had smelled like spice—like cinnamon and ginger— when he'd lifted her up onto his shoulders.

"You know what's happening, pet."

"Yes."

"Mmm…" His long fingers trailed gently over the railing's edge. "You know why it has to be this way."

"Yes."

"And you're ready to take your place."

"Yes."

"And you'll make me proud, won't you?"

The weight of the room fell squarely onto her throat, but she forced it back and stared straight into his cool steel eyes. "Yes."

"Where are you going, Daddy?"

"Just business, pet. I'll be back in the morning."


His gaze lingered thoughtfully on her for a moment before sweeping out to the eight black shadows that guarded each corner. "Bear witness."

In perfect unison, each eagle-faced shadow gave a low assent that thrummed in the air.

"Daddy, why are you bleeding?"

He'd run red-streaked fingers through his hair. "A little accident."


"Good," he murmured, and stared down at the fountain for a moment. Sixteen mermaids posed coquettishly beneath the open-mouthed lions. "They will come after you, darling."

"I know." She fought back the trembling that snuck up into her ribs. The lions seemed to snarl their stony disdain.

"The world will be yours then. Fight. Protect what's ours."

"Yes, father."

"Daddy, take me with you. Please."

"Not this time, pet."


"Protect what's ours," he repeated, voice rising. It echoed—ours, ours, ours—and when it faded, he spoke once more. "Make me proud."

She couldn't speak. She didn't need to.

Catlike, he leapt lightly onto the railing and grabbed the coil of rope he'd always kept ready. Without hesitation, he pulled it around his neck—and jumped.

"Don't leave me."

The crack shook her to her very marrow.

When the echoes died away, she dismissed the men in the eagle masks. They obeyed in absolute silence, taking the body with them—ghosts were fitting pallbearers.

The stone edge of the fountain was cool under her shaking fingers. "Tell me your secrets," she whispered. The world was hers now.
546 words.

I am absolutely drowning in unwritten backstory. There's so much more to this, but the word count limit snuck up on me. I may expand it...

This is based on a nightmare of mine. The octagonal room is still frighteningly vivid--the fountain, as well. The men in the black cloaks are from the dream, as well, but I added in the eagle-beak masks. Let's see... the father is also straight from my subconscious, but originally he was already hanged. Hard for a dead guy to do much talking, though. :P

I think (the key word being 'think') that it all makes sense. Does it?

More Beautiful Words You Should Be Reading

AD - Swan Song Part 1 The boys are betting again on who's going to die.  That's what it's all come down to, in the end: just one big game where someone's bad luck equals a couple of stale cigarettes and a shot of 'Dust, and who has to dig the grave.  
Cris watches them lazily, out of the corner of his eye; he's no fucking peacemaker and he couldn't really care what they do as long as they aren't killing each other--not yet, at least.  Rich's voice rises above the scraps of chatter but really he's only fighting the howling wind: the kid's gotten a lot louder since he killed that gangbanger from Stone's group--nothing more than a lucky fucking shot of course, every
Noticed in Committing I started committing suicides.  They were small at first, but more grandiose as the months passed.

At first, I came up with basics: wrist slashing, hanging, overdose, jumping off a building, and stepping off in front of bus.  They were all very mundane, really, and if not done properly you just end up living very, very painfully.  It was after those routine ways to snuff oneself that I began to get creative.

There was going into a biker bar nude and starting fights with drunk bikers.  And when I say "fights", I mean with a knife in my hand.  That was a fun night.  Everyone was freaked out and angry at the same time.  They all wanted to kill


Stationery Pt I Stanley loved stationery.

He loved the way it smelled when you stripped away the crinkly cellophane wrapper. He loved the Spartan beauty of an unspoiled pad of paper (A4, plain, 260gsm). He loved the sound of a cap crisply clicking onto the top of a Biro. He loved the texture of a freshly-sharpened pencil and the flake of the finely-honed graphite point. He loved gazing over stacks and stacks of untouched Post-Its, each a perfect square of yellow, an army of ideas awaiting orders.

He loved everything about it. stationery was neat. It was orderly. It was always needed, easily replaceable, and something that everyone can appreciate.

Stanley


hierarchies White pick-up truck
red brick, ruby house
smoke and mirrors, now
gone to the dogs
gone to the crawlers below
the ditches of the sleepy south

Vietnam flashbacks of
meaty, greased palms
loaded dice
"I'm blind in my left eye."
Okay.

Here, there is a magic show,
hourly.
Afterward
the scientists and mathematicians
make love.
Everyone else watches;
they can't figure it out.
Sex, that is.

The beautiful assistant
talks about the fifth grade
and the pills.
Everyone cries.

A week later, you could have heard
nothing
as they all went about their business.
The fifth grade went back
to where it came from:
tucked, with love, aw
lost kings we were all lost kings of the electric
highwire act, tripping like ghosts through boarded
windows and vacant lots that never held
any secret we wouldn’t tear apart
cables stretched over the place we used to live
drooping tightropes for worn-weary dancers
that pirouetted from house to house while
we just paced the streets of glass and concrete
our mothers worried on their rosaries
and poured their fears into party-line chats
father just poured another scotch and said
boys will be boys so let them have their fun
and us out in the night between the tracks
and the towers willing our years into
smoke and bottles and dolled up girls that jus
Add a Comment:
 

Daily Deviation

Given 2012-05-19
The suggester says The Fountain by ~disrhythmic is "brimming with backstory yet delightfully concise." ( Suggested by angelStained and Featured by thorns )
:iconmeggie272:
Meggie272 Featured By Owner Jan 16, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
This is a lovely bit of suspense - a cinematic and dramatic atmosphere, but yet restrained and not over-the-top. Nicely done!
Reply
:icondisrhythmic:
disrhythmic Featured By Owner Jan 16, 2013
Thanks so much! Glad you enjoyed it. :heart:
Reply
:iconlacewinged-beauty:
Lacewinged-Beauty Featured By Owner Oct 14, 2012   Writer

This is lovely. It makes sense.
Reply
:icondisrhythmic:
disrhythmic Featured By Owner Oct 15, 2012
Thanks so much. <3
Reply
:iconlacewinged-beauty:
Lacewinged-Beauty Featured By Owner Oct 16, 2012   Writer

No problem.
Reply
:iconblueflippy:
blueflippy Featured By Owner Jul 20, 2012  Student Writer
"The weight of the room fell squarely onto her throat, but she forced it back and stared straight into his cool steel eyes."

oh my gosh. that line... *_* sheesh, dizzy... leave some talent for the rest of us!
Reply
:icondisrhythmic:
disrhythmic Featured By Owner Jul 22, 2012
Oh gosh, thank you so much. <3
Reply
:iconexhellfire:
EXHellfire Featured By Owner Jul 3, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Oh, congratulations on the daily deviation, I didn't know such thing happened =0
Reply
:icondisrhythmic:
disrhythmic Featured By Owner Jul 4, 2012
Thanks! :D
Reply
:iconexhellfire:
EXHellfire Featured By Owner Jul 4, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Still, knowing how good this is, it shouldn't be any surprise :B
Reply
Add a Comment: