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Fiction: Full Moon (Part 2 of 2) (674 words)

“Rough night, hm?”  Beth’s eyes snapped open to see Liam Artis, the Graduate Teachers Assistant for the class she was currently missing.  He was grinning down at her, and Beth tried her hardest not the blush.

“My sister is ill,” Was all she could think of to say in that moment. She blinked a couple more times before adding, “that’s why I’m not in class.”  She began to wonder if Professor Andrews had sent Liam to come find her, if he’d finally been fed up with her missing class at least once a month.

“Hey, I have no room to judge.” Liam sighed, pointing at his own rumpled hair and the dark circles under his eyes. “Last night was a rough one for everyone.”  He sank into the chair next to Beth, slumping down so that he seemed shorter than her—even though she knew he had about ten inches on her easily. “I forget all the technically mumbo-jumbo—Something about the moon at its apex or Mars being in retrograde or…” Liam blew air through his lips. “I don’t know. My friend Jonny takes care of learning all that for me. I just have to do the hard part at night and stand back up, which is way easier said than done.  We’re just lucky that the illness excuse makes it so easy for people to cut us some slack. No one wants to press the girl whose sister has been dying since the day she was born—or the man with the reoccurring disease—but he bravely presses on to get his graduate degree.”

Liam went to rub at his eyes, and Beth noticed the bright, white gauze taped neatly around his hand. There was the beginning of an idea forming in the back of her head, but she didn’t know what to do with it. She didn’t even know how to begin to process it. He couldn’t be saying what he thought she was saying.

“She’s lucky to have you though,” Liam continued, “And your parents I assume. My support system when I was young was—let’s just call it mediocre and leave it at that.” Liam pulled himself up, sitting properly in the chair now, turning to look Beth in the eye. “So—was it a bite or hereditary?”

“I—don’t know what you’re talking about,” Beth stuttered. This couldn’t be happening. It was some kind of prank or something. He couldn’t mean it.

“Your sister. The werewolf. Was it a bite or did she inherit it?” Liam pressed on. Beth looked up and down the hall so fast her neck cracked, but there was no one besides them in the hall. She barely focused back in when Liam started talking again. “Mine was a bite. Parents didn’t know what was happening for a long time—believed it was the work of the devil. To Be honest, I’m not sure that they are completely wrong. But—it didn’t help with that whole taking care of your son the freshly turned werewolf thing. Like I said, your sister is lucky.” Suddenly, Liam was on his feet. “Come on,” He offered, reaching out a hand.  “Class is going to go over today—I’ve seen his lecture notes. I’ve already got a copy of the slides too, so I can get you those. I want to introduce you to some people. They’ll be excited to meet someone else who is in the know.”

“I—uh, what?” Beth looked back and forth down the hall again, like someone was going to jump out and tell her she was on candid camera at any minute.

“C’mon. We won’t even leave campus. What’s the worst that can happen?” Liam smiled, and Beth blushed again, all the way to the roots of her hair. It did make her feel more awake, so it was easier for her to stand up when she took Liam’s hand. “They are going to love to meet you,” He grinned, not dropping her hand as he lead the way down the staircase.

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Posted by on January 10, 2017 in Stories

 

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Fiction: Cup of Tea (187 words)

He sat down with a cup of tea. It wasn’t his tea. His cup of tea would come hours later when a sane person would normally wake up. But since he always woke up at least a little when her alarm went off, and since she actually had to go to work at this god awful hour, the least he could do was make her a cup of tea so it was ready when she got out of the shower.

And sure enough—she came out, dressed, but with her hair still wrapped up in a towel, scooped up the mug, took two big swigs of it before kissing him gently on the mouth. “Thank you, love. Back to bed.” A small kiss on the forehead, and then her attention was gone on the next part of her daily routine. He stumbled slightly back towards the bed, listening to her hum happily as she went about her morning. He didn’t even bother to crawl back under the covers as his last conscious thought was only two and half more hours until he had to get up for work.

 
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Posted by on March 24, 2016 in Stories

 

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Fiction: Good Morning (147 words)

It was a tradition.  He was always the first one out of the house, so she woke up, wrapped herself in a dressing gown, and stood by the door, often blurry eyed and slightly grumpy.  But then he came to the door, and it was worth getting up. He kissed her, gently.  And then there was the exchange.

“Go back to bed, yes?”

“I’m going. Look I’m walking as we speak.” She wasn’t walking, but smiling softly up at him.

“You’re stubborn.”

“You’re wonderful. Have a good day.”

“Good bye. I love you.”

“I love you.” She stood still, waiting patiently for the click of the two locks on the door.  Once she was fully locked into the house, she shuffled back to bed.  It was a silly daily tradition, but she loved every second of it.  Even if she had to wake up early for it.

 
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Posted by on March 23, 2016 in Stories

 

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Fiction: Quitting Time (614 words)

Colin and Mara sat across the room from each other. Literally, on opposite sides of the room, with as much space and big pieces of furniture as they could manage. They were going to have this conversation.  They had to have this conversation.  They had to have this conversation in its entirety without dissolving into having sex half way through and not coming to any official decisions about the whole thing.

“We have to talk to Andy,” Colin started the conversation again, for what felt like the hundredth time.

“I don’t want you to give up the team for me.”  Mara repeated.

“I’m not giving up the team for you.  I’m giving up the team for us.  I’m giving up the team everything that we’re going to be in the future.”  Colin finished.

This was usually the time when the conversation part ended, and there was pushing past whatever they put in the way and closing of the space between them.  But they both stood their ground this time. They had to have this conversation.  It was going to change their lives.

“Here’s the long and the short of it, Mara.   You’re pregnant.  You are carrying my baby.  Was it unexpected? Yes. But I wouldn’t change the world for it, and I want to be involved in your life, and this child’s life, for as long as I am still alive.   I can’t keep risking my life every night, running around like an idiot on this–granted, very good mission that you and your brother started–but now you are more important than that.  You, our child, there is nothing more important than that.   You can’t not tell your brother you’re pregnant.  And he’s going to immediately know that I am the father. Because let’s face it, we are utterly pathetic when it comes to each other and it wouldn’t be anyone else.  Even if I didn’t quit the team, do you really think that Andy would let me do the things I’m doing now?  Do you genuinely think that he would let me do anything that risky? Don’t you think I’m going to volunteer to do more admin work and try to stay off missions as much as I possibly can? I’m quitting one way or another, Mar.  It’s all just a question of degrees.  Your brother and the rest of the team will be so much safer if I sign off altogether, free up my spot, let them get some fresh blood in there for them, a fourth who can really be dedicated to the work they are doing. So, I say again.  We need to talk to Andy.”

Mara had never known Colin to go on a rant like that.  In their friendship, in their relationship, and in there awkward post relationship on and off again thing, Mara had always been the one to talk more, to ramble on, to use anything she could think of to defend her point. Colin usually just stated his opinion and let someone else worry about the details or nuances of the whole thing.  But, she was also willing to bet that there was nothing in his life this far that he felt as strongly as he felt about this.

“Okay,” Mara smiled, a bubble of hope and a dream of a future swelling up in her chest.  “Okay, we’ll talk to Andy.   We’ll figure this out.  We’ll make the whole thing work.”   She took a step towards him.  “Conversation over, right?  We can stop this forced separation now, right?”

“God, yes.” Colin moved towards her faster than she’d ever seen him move before, “Let’s never have forced separation again, okay?”

She kissed him fiercely in response.

 
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Posted by on January 6, 2016 in Stories

 

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Legal Theft Project: Problematic Parent Issues (445 words)

She shut the computer with a furious snap.  Lizzy couldn’t believe it.  She was so angry she was starting to literally see red.

“I don’t like that look.”  Lizzy looked up to see Chris standing in the doorway of the living room.  “That look never bodes well for anyone. Do you want me to come in and listen to the rage rant, or should I just back away slowly and try not to be hit by projectiles?”

“It’s just Dad.” Lizzy said simply.

“Oh. Oh, I’m so sorry.”  Chris came quickly into the room, sitting down on the couch next to her. She curled up into his side, and let him rub soft comforting circles on her back. Lizzy felt the familiar anger fade away, leaving her with the bland lack of understanding that always came out of interactions with her father. He was half her genes, right? He’d been in her house, in her life, everything, for the first eighteen years of her existence. In fact, when she was eighteen years old, she probably would have called her father one of her favorite people in the world.

But over the last eight years, something had gone wrong, and neither of them were sure what or how or when exactly, but now every interaction left them angry and confused and not sure why they couldn’t interact the way they used to.  Why couldn’t they just be a happy family again?

She hadn’t realized that she’d been rambling aloud until Chris gave her a little squeeze and said “I know. I know. It’s tough.”

“Sorry,”  Lizzy sat up and blinked hard to prevent her tears from forming in her eyes. “I know you have your own Daddy issues.  It’s not fair for me to ramble on about mine.”

Chris laughed. “My daddy issues do not cancel out your daddy issues.  And you can ramble as long as you want as long as you do not expect me to solve your daddy issues, because I think if I have proven nothing else in my life, I’ve proven that I have the wrong ideas when it comes to endearing oneself to their paternal parental unit.”

Lizzy giggled at that. “Paternal parental unit. That’s fun to say.”

“Problematic positions with paternal parental units.”  Chris upped the ante.

“Perplexing problematic positions with paternal parental units.” Lizzy replied.

There was a long minute of silence before, “Damn. I got nothing.  I think you win.”  Lizzy laughed and gave a little fist pump while Chris rolled his eyes.  “Come on, let’s go get ice cream. Problematic paternal parental units aren’t as important when you’ve got moose tracks.”

“Fair enough.  But you’re buying.”

 
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Posted by on January 4, 2016 in Legal Theft Project

 

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Legal Theft Project: Surprise Abandon (360 words)

The problem with having scarily brilliant friends was that it made surprises….complicated. Any good idea that Jeannie had, she was absolutely certain that Mary and Leslie had thought of it first.   Even if they didn’t think about actually surprising her with it, Jeannie knew that when she started to move things into position—they would notice the signs.  Of course, they wouldn’t say anything, and Jeannie would feel like maybe she was going to get away with it.  But then the surprise would follow through, and they would both pretend like they didn’t know what was going on, but then Jeannie would see them share that little smile, and she would be left wondering how early in the planning process they figured the whole thing out.

So, Jeannie decided that she was going to just take the direct approach from here on out.

She came down to the kitchen and dropped a binder heavily between the two bowls of cereal that Mary and Leslie were making their way through.  “I want to through your guys a party for your birthday. These are the ideas I’ve come up with so far.  Pick your favorites and then get back to me.”  And then she wandered to the other side of the kitchen to make her own bowl of cereal.

“We’re impressed, you know,” Mary grinned, flipping through the binder.

“Yeah. You tried for a good seven years to surprise us with something good.  Mom and Dad gave up on—what? Our fifth birthday?”  Leslie chuckled, stirring her cereal gently.

“Yeah. Just about.  And we were only five there.  You’ve tried against snarky and slightly paranoid Twenty something us.  You’ve got bonus points for life, Miss Jeannie.”  Mary pointed at something in the binder and Leslie nodded before turning the page.

Jeannie couldn’t help but feel a little proud at their compliment, but she just wasn’t ready to show them that yet. “Yeah, yeah, yeah.  Just pick something.  With enough time for me to throw it all together.”

“Yes, Ma’am. Thank you, Ma’am.”  They answered in unison, teasingly. Jeannie rolled her eyes and shoved a spoonful of Frosted Flakes in her mouth.

 
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Posted by on January 3, 2016 in Legal Theft Project

 

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Year Three (111 words)

Here starts Year Three, guys.

I am amazed that I’ve made it this long.  Yes—I did just take two weeks off, but before that I put up a post a day for the past one hundred and two weeks.  That is a lot of weeks guys.  Considering my last writing daily blog ended after something like—eight days, one hundred and two weeks is pretty nice.  I’m pretty proud of me, if I may say so myself.

Two years down, and hopefully many, many more to come. Thanks for sticking with me, and here’s hoping that it can only go up from here.

With all my undying gratitude,

Bekah Beth

 
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Posted by on January 1, 2016 in BekahBeth's Thoughts

 

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