Thursday, June 22, 2006

Solemnly stuffed

glass.jpgUse the following words as a writing prompt ... in the order given! A bit more of a challenge but easier to keep track of which words you've used. ;-) (Expect to not get through all of them.)
glass blower
buzz bomb

1 comment:

Joyce Fetteroll said...

Grabbed from the damp street and stuffed into the floor of a carriage by rough hands, Jenna’s brain froze. The carriage lurched and her head slammed against the door. She could hear the thud of the webby’s padded feet against the stone pavement, the smell of the glass blowers shop but couldn’t think beyond “Why?” There had been abductions in the town over the past week, a wizard, a professor at the university, a holy woman. All talented people but who was she? Solemnly she thought, as the weight of her parent’s disappointment rushed at her, a temporary worker with a myriad unskilled jobs to her name.

A crack of the whip and the webby galumphed down a dirt side street jostling her against the seats. She peered out of the corner of her eyes, upward and around. It was dim. The shutters had been pulled across the windows. She appeared to be alone. Twisting and pulling, Jenna struggled from the bindings of her voluminous winter cloak and waist length hair wrapped about her by her abductors. They hadn’t been prepared with anything to bind her so perhaps her abduction was unplanned. She had no idea what that meant.

Something thudded softly against the back of the carriage followed by gentle scratching. Struggling Jenna wriggled onto her back in the narrow space and sat up, pulling her arms free of the cloak. There was silence at the back of the carriage but a sweet scent filled her nose. Jenna sneezed then sneezed harder and it felt like lower half of her face had expanded with the pressure. She touched her swollen jaw as a weird sensation filled her head and the light in the carriage grew brighter. She sank as though the floor of the carriage were dropping beneath her. Grabbing the edge of the seat she saw a furred hand and claws.

No! She was transforming! Touching her face again she could feel the fur and the ears and the elongated face with thickened skin of her stubbier fingers.

The sounds about her became sharper, the scents more distinctive. She heard the slap of meat — beef, prime cut — against an iron skillet. She smelled the burning aged oak of the firemaker.

About half her usual size, she slipped from the too large cloak and dress. Then with a growling howl like a buzz bomb and an exuberance she hadn’t felt since she was a child, she sprang at the shuttered window. It smashed outward and she hurled out into the unknown.

A carriage heading towards her and by virtue of a new litheness she twisted and landed neatly between the two carriages, with a soft crunch against the crushed seashells of the waterfront roadbed. Startled, the webby of the other carriage jerked away, eyes white-rimmed and round, swinging the carriage sideways in the street with a cry from its occupants. The indolent driver startled from her half sleep wildly clawed for the slipping reins, missed and the reins dropped between the haunches of the webbies.

Jenna bounded across the startled webby’s path, leapt to a stone wall, up to the awning and onto a roof. Behind her cloaked figures leapt from the carriage she’d escaped from, pointing at her and shouting at each other. WIth a grace she’d never had, Jenna ran up and over the steep roof and leapt to the next while irascible voices from balconies for her use of their roofs as avenues of escape followed her.

With a cunning and instinct, not to mention daring, she’d also never felt before, Jenna dropped into an alley, scrambled through a hole in a fence, dove into a warehouse. With vision that was sharp as in midday, she crossed the dim interior of the crowded warehouse and out the other side to find she had traveled several blocks.

Then someone slammed into her from the side and they rolled over, demolishing a pile of crates until her attacker’s breathless, “Stop! I’m not going to hurt you. I’m the one who helped you escape!” broke through Jenna’s empassioned struggle to free herself.

When she’d quieted, the body rose to stand in a shaft of moonlight. He looked like the devil, dark red skin, horns atop his head. But, of course, what did she look like? “Let me begin by introducing myself,” he said, with a stolid voice and stance that calmed her. “I’m Harthur. I’m a shapeshifter. As you are. As are the others that have been abducted recently by the Black Fist for purposes we’re only just beginning to understand. There are others like us if you’d like to join us. Or you can return to your life and wait for the Black Fist to snatch you again. Your choice.”

Jenna got to her feet and studied the vaguely human shaped being. “Did you change me?”

“I helped you do what is already in your nature. It will come naturally with time.”

“So. Tell me what’s going on.”