creativewriting.ie, Writing

Vanity in Peach

My pale skin glimmers in the artificial light of the dressing room, mimicking the ivory tone of my vanity table. “Is this what beauty looks like?” I ask aloud, knowing perfectly well that no answer would be given. I was alone, my bare feet cold against the hardwood floors, but still beautiful. I gaze into my reflection, surely a distant cousin of Aphrodite herself. I pout my lips and ruffle my hair.

Perfection. 

Alexandria says my looks resemble those of a horse, but she is surely jealous. No horse has ever looked this stunning. And she – well she couldn’t pass for any better than a bloodhound. I smile at my twin, thrilled with my witty thoughts. “Hairspray, a lady’s BFF” speaking aloud once more, I spritz my newly curled locks with abundance. 

I feel the cool air from the window blow through my garments as I reach for an atomiser, delicately picking a bottle from my collection. A spray here, a spray there. The air now filled with a pleasant blend of bergamot and rose. “Maybe a touch more blush” I think aloud as I search through my makeup bag, an Aladdin’s cave of Dior and Estée. Miss Houndface herself could only dream of such class. I’m lost in my own beauty as I pat my cheeks with the lightness of a feather. 

A familiar hum awakens me from my trance. My rose-gold iPhone rings happily, the appearance of Alexandria’s name dimming my sparkle.

I hesitate for a moment. Compose myself. Flick my finger over the green icon. 

“Alex, darling!” I answer through gritted teeth. I reply to her continuous wittering with a series of polite noises. She goes on. Eventually I cut her off, bored of her self-centred attitude. Me, me, me. “Lovely to speak, Ciao!” I jab at my screen to end the call. I have better things to do, who does she think she is calling me at this time of day? She knows perfectly well that my meticulous beauty regime takes up hours of my day. It takes time to look this good, after all! 

I deposit my phone into the drawer of my vanity table, distractions banished, and set about preening the already-perfect image that sits before me. 

Composed using a writing prompt provided by creativewriting.ie

Constructive criticism welcome. 

 

Standard
Writing, YeahWrite

The Gift of Life

It all started with the clicking of dirty-red stilettos as their unique diction cut through the whistling of the violent wind. Dustbins fell to the floor with a clatter. Vehicles came to a standstill with a scream as green became red. The owner and indeed inhabitant of the stilettos maintained her swagger in the gale, hips swinging with each stride, dark hair swishing with purpose. Her pale, milky skin camouflaged into the gray-brick buildings of the street. Her deep-set eyes, dark but with a glint, focused intently on a building at the end of the sidewalk.

‘Not far now’ she thought, once again stretching out her slender left leg for another stride, but this time her figure and the ground did not make contact as before.

A rough hand grabbed her from behind.

A stumble followed. Confusion.

Her eyes stay fixed on the destination until her vision became submerged in the darkness of an alleyway where she had been forcefully dragged.

‘QUIET!’ her attacker ordered with conviction, pressing her open-backed dress on the cool brick walls, like ice on her bare skin. His gruff voice confirmed his male identity, although she was already confident from the crushing grip of his hand on her shoulder.

‘Well this is an inconvenience’ she spat, the corners of her bold lips turning upwards, the glint in her eye still very much present. This witticism was clearly unappreciated by her assailant, as a blade was brought up to her neck.

A creature screamed in the distance – the meow of a feisty feline stray which sat atop a dumpster. A witness to the crime, it watched curiously as the events unfolded before its eyes, like emerald beacons in the darkness.

‘Okay, Okay. Let me explain’ she tried to reason with the holder of the now unsteady knife. ‘I’m -‘

‘I KNOW WHO YOU ARE!’ he growled with as much ferocity as his previous order to her. ‘You are lucky that you’re still alive’ he continued, this time with a more sombre tone. ‘Usually they don’t get a chance to speak’ he informed, avoiding her gaze, tightening his grip on the knife.

‘Wait’ she protested, struggling to force a single word from her now restricted airway. For the first time she began to panic, her eyes widening, breath accelerating. The tip of the blade cut into her neck, slowly revealing a river of red. One slash. One shank of the knife, one more slit of her throat and she’d be dead, she was sure of it. The world was closing in, the damp walls of the alley collapsing inwards.

Time passed. Pressure released. Something hit the ground with a sonorous arrival.

‘I can’t’ her once shouty assailant, whimpered. ‘This isn’t me anymore’. He turned his back and repeatedly launched his head into the opposite wall before beginning to cry rather audibly. With this, clearly unimpressed, the witnessing feline fled to seek entertainment elsewhere.

‘Thank you’ she uttered, her voice now hoarse and weak. These were words that rarely left her mouth. She staggered slowly to a patch of sunlight at the far side of the alley to inspect her battle scars. ‘Don’t worry about it, I’ve had worse’ she directed her words towards the broken man who had now concluded his head-banging. Smearing the blood from her slim neck with her fingertips she walked back towards him.

‘The gift of life’ she turned his head towards her once more ‘is the most magnanimous gesture known to man’. She brushed his forehead with her bloody thumb, leaving a trail of quick-drying blood on his grubby skin. ‘You’re a kind-hearted person’ she continued before the male figure felt a sharp blow to his stomach and took a sharp intake of breath. He collapsed to his knees, before she revealed her action and removed the full length of the blade. ‘Me? Well, I have no heart’ she smirked before heading back towards the street from which she herself was snatched, her dirty-red stilettos clicking back into the light…

Standard