Day 66 of 365 Days of Writing Prompts: Write a character inspired by a day of the week: Tuesday.
Erin: He was my demise. He was work. I tried to put in the effort, but there was only so much one human being could be for another person. I couldn’t be all of the things he was demanding. I would burn out if I continued to give myself to him. There was no end in sight, but I was determined to find one.
Shannon: Tuesday is a pusher. He’s a very efficient guy, because he knows where he’s headed. He’s got a goal and he’s going to reach it because he has the time. He’s not worried about deadlines. He’s getting a head start, and you have to give him some credit for all he’s able to accomplish when nothing else is distracting him.
The only problem with Tuesday is how he can go a bit unnoticed. His presence causes a bit of indifference in those around him. He’s not a bother, but he’s also not a necessity.
Day two of the week, day two of writing about the days of the week!
I watched the young woman with acute interest as she penciled in a few measurements, took a few leisurely laps around the classroom and erased what she’d just scribbled. Again, she jotted down an idea, wandered around and decided it was wrong, and stroked it out. When she’d done this three times more, I knocked softly on the door as she was passing by the windows. Surprised that anyone was in this wing at this time of night, she hesitated before unlatching the classroom door and peered out into the hall.
With my most convincing grin that just barely reached the corners of my eyes, I laughed, “Hey, Trish, right?” She nodded the affirmative silently, sizing me up, so I tried a little harder, “Sorry, I’m Eliza. I was told you have the last copy of that book for English?” Pretending to be wracking my brain for a title, I touched my head and huffed quietly before giving up. “You know the one. I can’t remember the name of it. Look, I just need to see the final few pages; I handed mine back in but I forgot to answer a question,” I pleaded, smiling shyly.
She sighed and smiled wearily, “Of course. I’m just so exhausted I can’t finish this silly question.” Turning, she ambled to her bag, ignoring the giant symbols sprawling across the whiteboard behind her. They were magnificent but, I suspected, could only be seen if you were supposed to see them. When she pulled a short, thick text from her backpack and offered it to me I could barely look away from the seductive shapes written on the board. “You must be tired, too. That class is brutal,” Trish mused as she sunk back into the uncomfortable chair.
Book in hand, I set my own bag down on a desk and took out my binder to finish my work. Flipping through the book I watched the blonde-haired girl biting her lower lip as she pored over her pages. “So, why are you in here this late? Don’t you have a place to stay?” While I already knew where she lived and why she was here, I needed to gain her trust to continue with my mission.
Chuckling darkly, Trish turned her deep cobalt eyes on me, “My roommate is an ass. She is forever bringing her friends around to gossip and listen to what they call music while I’m trying to work. Pretty sure she does it just to spite me,” yawning, she readjusted her violet sweater, shivering slightly. “What are you here this late for? Please tell me it’s not just read a couple pages,” she seemed genuinely concerned I was at the school near midnight to do homework, as though she wasn’t doing just that.
I just shook my head and glanced out the frost-tinged windows, watching the campus lights flickering through like spirits on the prowl. With Trish glaring at her homework abysmally, I glanced around at the doors. After deciding there wasn’t anyone to see us, and reminding myself my employers wouldn’t knowingly let anyone find out what I was up to, I got up from my seat. Stepping deliberately to the front of the room and steadying my breathing, I placed my hand on the plain-as-day sigil before me; I was a little nervous about what Trish might do, but I had no choice.
Keeping myself calm as I whispered to the drawings, I could feel the blonde girls’ eyes on my back. “Revelet deus absconsa tua,” I spoke the spell over and over, feeling the warm tingle of magick sinking into the lines. Behind me, Trish gasped as the shivering sigils began to glow through to the mortal realm, showing themselves to the engineering student. Finally releasing me, the enchantment faded slightly but continued to be visible and I turned to face my audience.
Sitting stock still was the girl dressed in comfortable, yet professional attire, who spent her evenings studying in an empty classroom, working harder than anyone else to earn her degree. But when she finally stuttered a sentence she didn’t sound like a valedictorian hopeful, “Wh-what is-is-is that? How, bu-, how?” When she pointed to the squiggles, written with my hand unfortunately, I just shook my head.
“You’ve seen the fliers?” I questioned, wiping my hands clean of any marker residue and leaning carefully against the professor’s desk. Tentatively, Trish nodded her head, unable to peel her eyes from the complicated forms and shapes glowing on the board. “Great!” I shouted, my mild voice echoing in the expansive chamber. Clapping my hands once I continued in the uncomfortable silence, “Well, magick is real and it can help you to become an engineer. Not that you wouldn’t without our help,” cringing at my slight backtracking, imagining what punishment there would be for not selling the society as forcefully as I was supposed to, I tried again. “But, you know, you’ll be fantastic and it’ll help you to work even harder,” I rambled on. Grinning from ear to ear, I paused for any kind of response.
What I got was a little less than ideal; laughter that echoed and reverberated back at me in stereo, “Yeah, right. Those fliers aren’t for anything real; they’re fake. Just to suck noobs like you, in. I gotta get back to work, Eliza,” she spat, furiously erasing across her page. But I had one more trick up my sleeve.
Marching back to my desk, I ripped open my bag and plucked my tiny, The Best Meditation Guide Ever for Chill Peeps, book. Halfway through the thin pages was a charm to levitate items and I cleared my throat heartily, earning a sneer from Trish. “Pluma quasi lux,” I whispered at her pencil, imagining it lifting into the air. When it suddenly pulled away from her fingers, the engineer turned to me and watched the writing utensil hover over my desk like a faithful pet. “Please, let me show you how to harness the powers you were born with; you won’t regret it,” tilting my head slightly, I watched her nod curtly, packing up her things in a huff.
I shoved my stuff back in my bag and held the pencil and book out to Trish, who snatched them back and jammed them savagely into her backpack. Motioning for her to follow me, she rolled her eyes, and I sighed in irritation at the society for forcing me through these trials.
When we’d safely made it out the door, I strode across the empty hallway to stand before a mathematics room that didn’t actually stretch to the built-in second door. Trish was right behind me, attempting to look bored, so I held out my arm and recited the question, “If I show you this, do you swear, on pain of death,” I paused for dramatic effect, watching the young woman squirm under my intense stare, “that you’ll never tell a single soul about what you learn.” Nodding, she yawned loudly. “You must say it aloud for it to be binding,” I wasn’t taking any chances with this one.
“Fine, yeah, I swear not to tell anyone. I work too much to have friends, anyway,” sighing, she leaning against the sturdy wooden wall as I handed her a small paper ticket and knocked on the door. It swung open to reveal a pitch dark room into which she stepped and was swallowed whole.
This time I wandered through with my mark, locking the door behind me. As the lights flickered to life, it revealed the stunning inside to be a library frozen in time with shelves lining every wall with their warmth, full of ancient leather-bound books. Between the heavy bookcases were slim, full-length windows looking out on different scenery; some were in full spring bloom while others depicted deserts or snow-capped mountains. There was some fancy, complicated magick at work within those empty frames. Staring around I spied, sitting in a supple leather armchair before the roaring fireplace, Monica with her nose buried in a grimoire.
Created to Write:
Nikki looks around the room as her classmates bustle, finding their partners for the assignment. She sits there; no one looks at her. She sighs and goes to her lab station. In an odd numbered class, this is a given. Sure, she could be in a group of three. But why? Why would she do that to herself? She’ll either feel like an outsider, or end up doing all the work.
So Nikki sets up the lab and carefully measures the first powdered chemical. After creating the mixtures, she starts the Bunsen burner. The groups around her are laughing, messing up a few things. There’s a shatter on the other side of the lab. Nikki pays none of it mind, and finishes her lab with diligence.
When she’s done, she cleans up everything and sits at her seat to finished the after lab questions. She hands in her worksheet as the others are cleaning up. The teacher nods to her, engrossed in something on her computer.
Nikki sits back down and takes out a notebook. She sketches the osmium periodic table square, then draws arrows coming from it. At the points, she draws the periodic squares of other elements from memory. She writes how many will be created if she took how many protons from the original element. It creates a web of squares and it calms her down. She’ll have to practice this web when she goes to training, but she writes how many lead she’ll need at the top to make the osmium in the first place.
“You know that from memory?” Nikki jumps, looking to her left. One of her classmates is looking at her paper, shocked.
“…Why do you always finish the labs alone, if you’re so smart?” her classmate asks.
Nikki doesn’t look up at her. ‘Why didn’t you invite me into yours, if I’m so smart?’
“Nikki, why not?”
Nikki then looks at her after thickening the arrow pointing to four silver squares, “I work better alone.” The classmate takes that reason too easily. Nikki never finished her answer, ‘when there is no one that wants to work with me.’