Day 9 of 365 Days of Writing Prompts: Write a love triangle where the main character feels forced by matters out of their control to pick one of the two options.
Shannon: “Choose,” was the word echoing in my head as I tossed and turned trying to fall asleep. They wanted an answer and they deserved an answer. How was I supposed to reveal that I already knew? All this time it wasn’t a choice, and I kept the knowledge hidden because I didn’t want to loose either of them.
Peyton was a perfect choice. She was the most beautiful girl in the school, and somehow, even with her flawless exterior, her interior contained even more to be sought after. I’d had enough study sessions with her to know her peers often underestimated her wisdom. Her jokes could command any crowd, and she was fearless in her execution, knowing exactly when everyone could use a laugh. She was also a very kind and forgiving soul, unless she felt the need to stand up for her neighbor, or herself. That’s why she didn’t’ hesitate when she demanded I choose between her and Hope, and give her my answer after our last class tomorrow.
Hope could go unnoticed in a crowd. There was nothing distinct about her appearance that made people want to take another look. She was smart in some subjects, but struggled in others. Her jokes were quirky, but not everyone appreciated them, so she kept them personally tailored to the people she knew would laugh, mostly me. I’d categorize her as gentle and kind. She took great care with anything she valued, and she placed the most importance on her relationships. Always taking full advantage of the time she was given with them, and always living in the moment. That’s why I figured she never asked if I was interested in something more, because it wouldn’t change her view of me.
If my heart could listen to any reason I would pick Peyton, but I only wanted Hope. I knew the first day she made me smile. I knew by her eyes, not because they revealed anything about her specifically, but because I found myself lost in them at least once every single day. Her presence had a way of lighting a fire in me that reminded me I was alive. I liked the person I was when I was around her. There was never a choice.
Erin: I had massively ruined everything.
“Ready to go,” Mary’s smile was to my dismay just as breathtaking as ever.
“Yes,” I lied grabbing my gym bag.
Once we were in the car I had to concentrate even harder than normal not to take her hand in mine as she left it on the gears seeming to invite me to do just that. “You seem quiet today,” she finally stopped singing to the radio.
“I’m okay,” I couldn’t stop lying. I couldn’t admit that ride could be the last time we were co-pilots. I couldn’t come to terms with the fact that I would never hear her singing with reckless abandon again. I felt telling the truth meant the last time my running high was boosted by her conversation was behind us. I was afraid I was losing the most precious person in my life, because I was.
“You promised never to lie to me. You promised I was different than Brittney,” she reminded cornering me in my deception.
“She’s pregnant,” I looked between my knees as she pulled to the side of the road. I suddenly felt like I might throw up.
“Who,” I wished I could turn a blind eye to her tears, but her voice showed me my mistake just fine.
“Brittney,” I choked out, suddenly unable to hold back.
There was a long silence, only interrupted by our uneven breathing. “How,” her voice was still higher, but she had gained some composure.
“What do you mean how,” I couldn’t go into detail.
“How far along is she?”
“About three weeks,” I whispered suddenly feeling the worlds judgments on me.
“I gave you time to figure out your living situation and let her down easy. It seems to me that you must have used that time to continue to sleep with her. How is that letting her down easy?” I slowly let my eyes raise to hers. Her face was the saddest sight I had ever seen.
“It’s not like I cheated on you,” I tried to salvage what glimmer of hope I possibly had left.
“Because I refused to be that woman and insisted we wait till you were a single man? I wasn’t giving you a free pass to continue your doomed relationship. I loved you,” the past tense stung. “I wouldn’t have done this to you.”
“I’m so sorry.”
“Yeah, me too. Get out, I’m not driving you home,” she unlocked the car and stiffened into driving position. Her hands and arms were cemented to the wheel.
“I still want you, you’re still my future Mary,” I graveled.
“You’re going to be a father start acting like one,” as she looked straight ahead she could be indifferent to my pain.
“I can still be a part of the kid’s life. With you,” I couldn’t remove her from my vision. She was all I knew of love.
“You can’t be a part of mine. I don’t want to hear any more of your bullshit. I gave you too much credit. That sleaze ball that tried to kiss me that night, that’s who you have always been. You told me what I wanted to hear, but if any of that was true you wouldn’t have been able to do that with her,” She tried to reach over and open my door, but I couldn’t be that person. Not to her.
“You don’t understand,” I pulled her arm off, but she immediately slapped it into my stomach to shake my touch.
“Oh, believe me when I say I understand that you are an expecting father and I wasted my life waiting for you. Congratulations on the exciting news, go celebrate with your fiancée.”
In honor of The Bachelor Monday this seemed fitting. What would your story be?
He walked out of the sun-drenched desert like a mirage, faded and wavy at first but becoming clear and bright. As I watched, frozen to the scorching sand, his stark features became clear; his blackhole eyes were placed in a frighteningly pallid face framed with a mess of raven locks. Suddenly I was looking up into his angular silhouette against the burning sun without a breath in my chest. When I remembered to breathe, smiling shyly, the corner of his thin lip twitched up in a smirk.
Giggling like a little girl I opened my mouth to speak, but no words would materialize in this lonely desert. I turned to the boiling sand, letting its tawny brightness blind me for a moment. Timidly I pried my eyes from a tiny dune that stood between us and met his eyes. They were entrancing; like you could see the universe in them. As I was caught in their irresistible pull I felt something gently brush my lip; his soft, icy finger.
Breathing out against his cold skin my breath condensed in a tiny cloud between us. It floated, like magick, above the hot desert air as I struggled to keep my heartbeat regular. Calmly, the man put his hands comfortingly on either side of my face, which only made my heart beat faster. I meant to pull away from this angel as he chilled my skin but I couldn’t, or didn’t want to.
When his glacial lips lightly brushed mine, I sighed into him. But after a moment of gentle embrace I shoved him, with all my strength and willpower, away from me. There was a hurt look in his eyes and it was his turn to be speechless. Hastily I sputtered, “I have a boyfriend, Leo.” As I caught my breath I stated more forcefully, “I can’t.”
He didn’t seem surprised but there was a tinge of regret in his tone, “I know. I knew,” shaking his head to get rid of the idea he smiled crookedly, “He’s a lucky man.” Stepping forward he bent to take my hand, kissing my hand courteously, before nodding politely and walking back into the sun.
When I awoke there was a phantom tingle on the back of my hand and on my lips. Sighing, I quickly got dressed and sauntered into the kitchen, a smitten smile plastered on my face. When I read the cheesy little note on the coffee maker left by my sweetheart it made my heart flutter. Leo was always doing the most romantic things for me; how could I have been so lucky?
As soon as I turned the handle when I arrived home the most amazing smell hit me; pasta with sauce and garlic bread. Romantic and a great cook; how could he be any better? Stepping up into the kitchen I peered around the corner at Leo dancing around the kitchen like a maroon. He had the look of a creative genius and pasta sauce dripping from his ladle. Careful not to get in the way of the sauce I pecked him on the cheek gratefully and went to get changed.
There was a part of me that loved this phase in our relationship; where we were comfortable and didn’t feel the need to excessively prove our love to eachother. It was an amazing moment to be in. I’d never been a romantic but some of his quirks had caught on. Sometimes I left little notes on the bathroom mirror or brought flowers home to surprise him.
But there was also a part of me that longed for the days where everything was a big show; dressing up to go out, perfume and flowers. It had been exciting and we’d done everything to the extreme. There had been fun times but also a lot of things we’d eventually regret.
Checking the clock I noticed it was 4:58 and started to close up; counting the cash, slowly turning all the lights in the store off, closing out the computer, sweeping the floor and locking the door. I’d just finished counting the money and depositing it in the safe when I could have sworn I heard the bell on the door ring; I knew I’d already locked the door, though.
Quietly I rounded the corner from the backroom, expecting to find the floor empty, but was shocked to find a tall, handsome man standing in the middle of the store. For a moment I was speechless as I realized this was the man who’d been in my dream. “Uh-” I stuttered awkwardly before getting back into retail mode and happily chortling, “Anything I can help you find?” Hastily, I went around turning the lights back on.
When he laughed I would’ve recognized that noise anywhere, “I was just hoping to talk to you, Jamie. We’ve met before.” There was a long pause where I attempted to place the god standing before me, with smouldering eyes and gorgeous hair, but couldn’t. That happened all the time, though; I forgot people’s faces all the time. “Maybe this will help?” leaning over the counter he brushed my lips with his. I was appalled I didn’t immediately pull away, but I was too confused.
When I finally broke away, slightly out of breath, I had to lean against the back counter. “Who are you?” I gasped, holding my chest to calm my racing heart.
Smiling shyly he studied me intensely, “We were friends,” after considering his choice of term he rethought it. Emphatically he restarted, “We were more than friends. A very long time ago. I thought you’d remember me but clearly you don’t.” Rolling his eyes he glowered at me, eyes fragments of a black hole just like in the dream. Dream But when he looked right at me, staring straight into my soul, it was like something clicked; why should I have a person who’s warm and romantic when I could have this awesome, dangerous guy?
It was like a spell, that look of his. I was stuck to the floor as he left, heart thumping in my eardrums and breath caught in my throat. I was in love with this man and always had been. The store around us faded into the broiling desert again, momentarily blinding. When he touched me the cold was a comfort and I smiled up at my new love.
When I woke up, hearing Leo’s cheerful Saturday whistling, it was like the freezing spell was broken. I remembered why I loved him and how sweet he was and how we were going to be together forever. Warmth flooded through my body again and I almost forgot completely about the man from my dream.
Until I stepped into the kitchen and he was there, standing in front of the stove, with his arms crossed. He glowered at Leo, for whom he was obviously invisible; he was clearly a figment of my imagination. But the emotion I felt for him was real. There was a strong connection I longed to explore and I couldn’t keep the idea in my head that he wasn’t real.
Pancakes were piled high beside him as Leo expertly cut up an enormous fruit salad. The kettle screeched, calling to be made into tea. As I poured the boiling water carefully into mugs I attempted to ignore our intruder. “Mornin’ babe,” Leo cooed, pecking me quickly on the cheek before taking the fruit to the table.
Angrily I whispered at the ghost, “What the hell do you want?” I was still struggling against the spell; I didn’t want to be with him. As Leo hustled back into the cramped kitchen he passed by the man without noticing him and I held onto that when he finally answered my question.
Sneering he growled, “You can’t have it both ways. Either me and the eternal honeymoon phase with danger and excitement at every turn.” Rolling his eyes at Leo he sighed, “Or this little runt and a boring life here.” When he put it like that my life did seem dull, I watched Leo dash past with the pancakes and bacon, thinking about how that would be my every Saturday for the rest of my life.
I thought about it for a few minutes, glaring at the sugar pot. Leo ran past my gaze, snapping me out of my reverie, and I’d made up my mind. Slowly I turned to the cold angel and walked towards him, through his tall, dark form and kissed Leo more passionately than I ever had before. Forcefully I clung to his arms, our lips crushed against one another until we needed breath. Smiling at my love I knew I’d made the right choice.
Our kitchen appliances were arguing again, as per usual. The coffee machine’s voice dripped with electronic british ire. “How could such a fine upstanding appliance such as yourself even consider yourself worthy of his attention? He requests me to produce coffee at least ten times a day. When have you ever been used, hmm?” Our coffee machine’s name was butler. That was what he called himself at least. He got angry if we didn’t address him properly.
Genuinely, I wonder what smart ass-thought it would be funny locking us in here. Five of the brightest minds in human bioengineering and making them work in what’s essentially a glorified kindergartener project. Never mind that the human body has 46 chromosomes or that we can splice our DNA perfectly with the strains of fungus or something disastrous like that. They burry us not one, not two but five kilometers underground! Who does that? What we are doing isn’t even that uncommon. It’s necessity. It is freaking cooks in here if we weren’t stationed at what was left of the southern ice cap. The engineers thought they could use the ice to help cool the temperatures down. Too bad ice melts. “Can I just have my freaking coffee and toast already? I just want to get back to work.”
Becky the Toaster spoke out. “We have not finished talking here Daniel! You think Butler can just bully poor old Johny Kettle from not confessing his true feelings to you but I know better!” Becky is probably one of my more favourite ones, though she’s had a habit of being blunt with what her internal compositor had decided about you. “Isn’t true Johny? Come on speak up!”
Johny Kettle was one of the newer models that had been installed. He was quite charming and cute sometimes with a child like naivety. Didn’t help any better that Butler much preferred our previous kettle. Johny whispered. “Um, I don’t know if I should um, say uh, anything. I just wanted to have a friend.”
Butler spat, his vocal synthesiser crackling. “You wout? A friend? Tosh! You’ve only been installed for three weeks! Three bloody weeks yo u young kettle. The right to earn Daniel’s affection is mine and mine alone!” The lights on Butlers smooth frame flickered in rapid three blink unisons. “Isn’t that right Daniel? Am I not your most favourite appliance? Worthy of your love and love alone?”
“No.” I stately plainly. “What I would love is to have my-”
“YOU DO LOVE ME!”
“Oh god no.” I facepalmed.
Butler whistled. “Do you see that Johny Kettle? Daniel has declared his undying love for me and me alone your daft simpleton.”
Emily walked into the kitchen, still in her white lab coat. Curly strands oakish hair tumbled down to her shoulders. Butler sputtered. “Ah miss Emily Patterson! How pleasant to you again. Would you like another cup?” He paused. “When was the last time you slept my dear?”
Emily groaned, squeezing the bridge of her nose. “Just get me another cup please.” She stood next to me where I was leaning against the table top.
Butler chuckled. “You mean please Mr. Butler I assume?”
She sighed. “Yes.” She dragged out the word longer than needed. “Please may I have another cup Mr. Butler?”
“Of course, my lady! Coming right up!” Butler took in a deep breath for dramatic affect. God, I hate these things. “JOHNY! Get some water boiled for the nice lady here you twat! What are you waiting for?”
“Uh, uh, yes sir Butler! Right away sir Butler!” The light at the base of Johny flicks to the beating colour of red. “It will be ready a few minutes sir!”
“That’s what I like to hear! This kitchen is now becoming well oiled machine with your help Johnny!”
Becky snapped. “Your nothing but a bully do you know that?” The handle slammed down and back up, shaking the toaster a bit. “All you do is holler and shout at us to do our work ever since Francis shattered. It doesn’t help any of us!”
Emily turned around to face me, her amethyst blue eyes meeting mine. “When did you wake up Dan?” She looked at my face. “You look like you haven’t slept all night.”
I shrug. “Only because Butler thinks I’m in love with him.” An angry bleep blared from Butler. “Again.” I grumble. “I just want my coffee already.” The argument in the background becomes little more than white noise. I look to Butler and then to Emily.
The howling whistle of Johny pitched as complicated plugs and drains sucked the boiling water out of the kettle and directly into the coffee machine. “It’s done sir!”
If Butler could even smile you could hear it. “Bloody brilliant my young chap!” He bleeped twice. “I shall prepare two cups then. One for Emily and one for the handsome Sir Daniel!”
“Handsome?” Emily eyed me weirdly.
“Exactly.” I jerked my head towards Butler. “That’s why I can’t get a cup of coffee.” I rub my eyes, stretching my face like clay before it flexed back. “I need to ask a favour of you. Can you promise to not freak out?”
“Daniel…” She dangerously asked with the low tone of voice. “What are you thinking?”
“Just,” I exhale. “Just go with it. It will make sense later.”
Butler started to stammer. “Master Daniel what exactly are you two talking abou – OH MY GOODNESS!” He yelled as I drew Emily in for a kiss. A long mind you. To get the point across to that ignorant little piece of heat resistant plastic.
The others gasped in surprise as our lips broke. “Sorry.” I meekly said before I felt my cheeks burn with Emily’s backhand. “OW!” I said pathetically. Her eyes were sharp with knife like eyes. “I didn’t mean to,” She pecked me on the lips. A quick one before the first cup of coffee was done.
Butler stammered. “Here’s…here’s your coffee miss Emily…” The coffee machine extended out an anti shatter porcelain mug, filled with coffee, almond milk and honey. Emily strode out of the kitchen back out, mug in hand.
I ran out of the kitchen out after her. “Wait!” I said as I turned the corner. Apparently, she already was waiting for me. I skidded to a stop. “I’m so sorry, I really am. I didn’t want to! I just wanted Butler to shut up! That’s all I want,”
“Shut up.” She stated. “I get it, it’s fine.” She looked at me with analytical eyes. “Just don’t do that again out of the blue.”
“Oh! Ha, ha, hah.” I chuckled nervously. “Yeah, yeah, That’s good. Thank you. Thank you.” I peaked around the corner into the kitchen, the appliances for the first time completely silent in sheer shock.
“Your welcome though to work the shift with me.” She winked. “I’ll see you later then?” She started to walk away.
“Uhh, Emily, Whaaat do you mean precisely?” I leaned forward cautiously.
“Oh, nothing.” She said nonchalantly.
“Uh, I’ll just um, get my coffee.” I thumbed back towards the kitchen.
“Sure thing.” She said. She turned around the corner and down the hall towards the research labs.
I stepped back into the kitchen, hurriedly stepping towards Butler. “Um, hi, I would like to have my coffee now.”
“You, scandalous backstabber! Why I should I make your coffee?”
“Oh, come on!” I face planted my head on the counter in frustration. “All I wanted was some coffee.” I groaned.
(Trying to catch up. But, I have college, so this may happen more in the future.)
Created to Write: Heather comes in, shaking the snow off her coat, “I could go for some cocoa right-” Her head perks up, looking at the kitchen. There is a fresh apple pie sitting on the counter. heat radiates off the crust.
She pulls her boots off, setting them on the thick rug. Then she walks over with all her other winter gear on, her mouth drooling.
She stares at the pie as she goes for a cup and a plate.
Heather pauses, then recognizes the voice. She turns to August. His arms are crossed.
“You can have pie or cocoa, not both,” he specifies.
Heather’s jaw drops. She looks back at the pie, then at her cup. “But… But the pie is fresh from the oven.”
“That means it’s hot.”
“I can see that.”
“And I’m freezing.”
Heather pauses. “And… And cocoa’s hot. They’ll both warm me up.”
“No…” August walks closer. He takes the cup and plate from her hands, “One will warm you up. The other will wait until next time.” He holds them both out. Heather tries to take both, but August uses his ninja reflexes to swipe them away before she can grab them. Heather scowls at him.
“You’re being unreasonable,” she complains.
“Don’t pout, it’s an easy answer.”
“I’m not pouting, and it’s not easy!” Heather says. She tries to grab both over his shoulder. But August evades her, smirking. “Cocoa is delicious, pie is delicious. How can I choose!?”
August sighs, then walks away.
“Where are you going?”
“To my room,” August says, carrying the plate and cup. “When you choose, let me know.” He disappears up the stairs.
Heather sits on the counter next to the pie and crosses her arms. She completely forgets there are more cups and plates in the cupboard.
Knock knock knock
August goes to his door. He peeks out, so Heather can’t weasel passed him, “Yes?”
“Give me the plate.”
We’ve been there. Balancing writing and school is hard. Not getting discouraged by a few bad days, or set backs is the most important part! You are doing great. We love reading your writing and the writing of all of the people who are sharing… when we get around to it.
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