November Rain

Adam stood separate from the others who huddled like a rookery of penguins in their funeral best, as if the frigid downpour were acid and only the rainbow of mismatched umbrellas could save them. He smiled at the contrast of clothing versus accessories—one solemnly selected and the other haphazardly pulled from a closet or vehicle trunk in desperation.

Evie would approve, especially of the one sporting her alma-mater.

He refused to hide and welcomed the November rain, its ice pelting his face, sneaking beneath his collar, the cold already caressing the skin beneath his suit. It simultaneously invigorated and numbed him, reminding him how little time remained.

The preacher’s voice was hoarse and the herd leaned into him, straining to hear from under their sheltered cocoon. Adam ignored the words, focusing on the tall man in front and the deceptive mask of grief covering the man’s face—the perfect picture of a distraught father—hiding the mean drunk who’d been driving that night.

The mourners had no idea, or if they did, they pretended to believe the lie to cleanse their souls of any guilt.

The sky cried harder and the crowd squeezed the air from their ranks, tightening, as the preacher’s lips sped up, racing to the finish line.

Adam waited, patient, his face now tipped to the sky, savoring the beating from above.

How many times had Evie grabbed his hand, pulling him from warm safety into the storm, dancing around him until he surrendered and joined her?

“It won’t last forever, Adam. Live a little.”

People scattered, cockroaches seeking haven from the deluge, the normal teary good-byes and etiquette abandoned. None glanced his way or acknowledged his presence, as if the rain cloaked him from view.

Adam walked to the casket, the saturated ground warning him away by pulling each step deep into its embrace. His focus was so strong he almost bumped into the figure leaning against the carved wood.

A white grin flashed upon the stranger’s face even as the rest of him faded to shadow, like a human Cheshire cat. “You’re here. I must say I am surprised. Most try to avoid paying their debts.”

“I am a man of my word, if you keep your end of the bargain.”

The stranger cackled. “An hour with your beloved in exchange for your life. As agreed.” He waved his hand, parting the rain, carving a dry space as the sealed coffin sprung open. He reached inside, placing his hand over Evie’s heart and mumbling an incantation before whirling back to Adam. “Sixty minutes, lover boy. Tick tock.” The man walked into the opaque rain curtain and disappeared.

“Adam? What’s going on?” She rose from satin lining, confusion and fear lacing every syllable.

Adam smiled and held out his hand. “Nothing lasts forever, even cold November rain.” She laughed, the magic words erasing her fear, her hand grasping his as she climbed out—fire to his ice. “Dance with me, Evie.”

~o~

This is for the Write on Edge week 45 writing prompt. Guns ‘N Roses “November Rain” was given for inspiration.

I tried to write out of my comfort zone this week. What worked? What didn’t?

Concrit always welcomed.

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About Kelly K @ Dances with Chaos

Kelly K has learned the five steps to surviving of motherhood: 1) Don't get mad. Grab your camera. 2) Take a photograph. 3) Blog about it. 4) Laugh. 5) Repeat. She shares these tales at Dances with Chaos in order to preserve what tiny amount of sanity remains. You can also find her on her sister blog, Writing with Chaos (www.writingwithchaos.com) sharing memoir and engaging in her true love: fiction writing. It's cheaper than therapy.
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2 Responses to November Rain

  1. Roxanne says:

    This is so heart-breaking. The description of the mourners was very well done. I love the image of them dancing in the rain, her oblivious as to what he’s given just for that single hour.

  2. Amanda Lynn says:

    So, first I just wanted to say I had to pull a crumpled sheet of paper out of my back pack (please don’t judge me, yes I am over 30, I carry a back pack and I can’t even claim it is a diaper bag because I have 5 teenagers)…I digress…the note that I scribble on my lunch break toady reads “how much would sacrifice to have your love back, if only for a fraction of time?” I recently hit a plateau in my WIP and my brainstorming led me to this thought…

    I really loved this piece because the imagery was so wonderful. I prefer “seeing” to “reading” if you know what I mean! I also love how you created the contrast between the somber attire of the funeral attendees and their umbrellas, suggesting that perhaps the rain was unexpected. I would definitely love to see more of this! I am intrigue! Scribe happy!

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