Here is a short excerpt from a story I began writing tonight (this morning? It’s that awkward period when I’m still awake from Saturday, but technically it’s Sunday). I thought I’d post it and see what everyone’s thoughts were as to where they think the story is going, if it should be a novel or short story, what they think it’s about, or any other thoughts that come to mind when reading. Hope you enjoy and please feel free to leave comments, questions, and concerns. Thanks!
Richard loved his wife.
Amidst the trembling, tears, and dust flowing around the attic air, he could hear his own breathing. And foot steps. Heavy foot steps. Lots of them. All slowly pacing around the wooden floor beneath Richard. He dared not to even move his arm lest one of the floor boards beneath him shift with him and he be discovered. A bead of sweat, mixing with the dust and blood on his face, slowly traveled down the side of his left brow, curling with his cheekbone, and making its way to his jawline. Every nerve in his body sought to wipe the sweat away, but terror of the men below him stayed his hands.
And then it fell.
Right through the floor boards.
Landing squarely in the middle of the search party.
The heavy footsteps stopped.
Richard started shaking – hoping they wouldn’t look up. He prayed to whatever God or gods he could, asking for deliverance, asking to be a free man. Unbeknownst to him, his body, curled up between the attic stairs and a storage chest, started rocking back and forth. With his head bowed and eyes closed, he dreamed of what once was – decades past. He dreamed of a time when Elizabeth and he were free to roam, free to travel, to read, to write, to love. He dreamed of a time when he could stand toe-to-toe to anyone who threatened her or their life together. He dreamed of a time when he was half the man who now cowered in the attic of his own home.
Elizabeth’s scream stirred his dreams.
Eyes now opened, body trembling, heart near stopping, Richard listened as the men below him dragged Elizabeth – his wife, his beloved – from hiding. Hearing her struggle, her feet kicking to and fro, he nearly opened the stairs. He nearly dropped down to free her. He nearly became half the man he once was.
She screamed all the way out the door, through the fields surrounding their home, and on out of range of Richard’s ears. His head now rested against the storage chest, eyes staring into dark places of imagination. What were they doing to her? Worse yet, what were they planning on doing to her? He could still breathe and his heart still beat, but death was claiming him. It was claiming the part of a man that stands against evil, that dares to risk one’s life and limbs to see justice done and peace restored. Yes, death was claiming the better part of him. His body now leaned against the chest. It moved.