It’s time for another #WritingPromptWednesday, and this time, I’ve decided on something slightly different. It could be considered, maybe, cheating to use my own creations as a writing prompt, but it’s been that kind of week – and to be fair, this particular story doesn’t actually have anything really to do with the inspiration behind the prompt itself.
So, over the past few weeks I’ve been dealing with some pretty heavy revelations and realisations about my own identity. Yesterday, I turned to music to deal with some of that, and in the process, found myself turning to a new medium for expression. I opened up GarageBand with the idea of working on a cover recording (no spoilers – it’s still a plan so if it comes off, you’ll hear it later). What ended up happening, though, was that I found myself playing with the various loops that are included, and I started expressing and processing the issues I was dealing with through the music I was making.
In the end, I finished up with Silhouette.
So then it became Wednesday, and I needed a writing prompt, and thought,“Hey, why not use that track?”
To be honest, I kind of regretted it. It took ages for me to lock in an idea that I wanted to use – at least something that made a little bit of sense in the context of the actual prompt. At first I was tossing around this character who was pulling up to the entrance of a party in a Lamborghini, a beautiful woman in the passenger seat, and the line, The most beautiful woman to the coolest party in the hottest car.
Which, to be honest, could actually have some potential if I could actually have taken it any further. Unfortunately, Paige was busy in the back of my mind trying to get out, and so ultimately, I had to write for her, and this is what we got…
Ambient piano melodies filled the room.
Bathed in incandescent oranges, shadows seemed to hang in places they shouldn’t, while light touched the furniture with just enough of a glow that people could see where they were sitting, and the faces across from them. Paige began to wonder if she’d chosen the right location.
She had wanted to make a good impression, so she’d Googled the best bars in town. Silhouette came with great reviews: good style, lounge atmosphere, great drinks, and just quiet enough to remain classy in a town that was known for too many dives. The reviews had been right, but the mood was perhaps wrong for what she had been hoping for this evening. The low light set the room off like a daytime soap opera, it was hard not to envision a soft focus casting the faintest hints of blur across the entire scene.
Paige slipped her phone out of her clutch and checked the time. She was still twenty minutes early. She assumed that she would catch both edges of that blade. She had managed to get here early, and he would probably be late. It was a rare person, she’d discovered, who could have a family to take care of and still get places on time. Normally it would be time for a selfie, and a collection of hashtags. Tonight, though, she was too nervous to think about social media; or at least she had been until she had picked up her phone. Capitulating to the temptation, it seemed only moments later that she’d wiled away ten minutes scrolling through Instagram posts, double-tapping fluently from one image to the next.
Of course, being there changed things as well. From Instagram to Snapchat, and she held the phone up, analysing herself in the screen. The golden light emanating throughout the bar gave her an almost angelic glow, the hint of a halo encircling her head like the selfie version of an historic painting of some Catholic saint. She looked good, that was at least something to remind herself of; and with a practiced hint of a smile, she snapped the photo.
When you’re 20 early, and he’ll probs be 20 late.
She added the caption, and then scrolled through the list of friends, her manicured thumb tapping lightly on the handful of contacts that she wanted to share this particular moment with. She barely had time to even look back away from her phone before it notified her that she was receiving a message in return.
OMG Babe! You look amazing! You holding up?
Paige’s thumbs glided across the screen of the iPhone, tapping the keys with expert precision.
Tnx Babe.Nervous, but I’m ok.
She had wondered at different times, since coming here, what it had been like for people who moved cities before technology had come as far as it had today. Here she was, eighteen years old, living halfway across the country from her best friends, and they could still stay in almost constant communication with one another. They could share photos, and live videos, anything that Paige experienced, she could share with Emma and her other friends and family back home. What had it been like before?
The phone vibrated in her hand again.
Praying it goes well! Emma said in return, emphasising the message with half a dozen praying hand emojis.
Paige took a deep breath, silently agreeing with her best friend, and slipped the phone back into her clutch; she didn’t want to be staring at it when he arrived.
Pulling at her skirt, she shifted on the leather couch. Her eyes noticed movement toward her, a man approaching with a drink in hand. Well dressed in a tailored suit, his dark hair was swept back, and his brown eyes glinted in the soft light. He welcomed himself onto the couch across from her.
“Hey,” He said through a smile that screamed artificial teeth whitening.“I’m Logan, can I buy you a drink?”
“Sorry, I’m waiting for someone.” Paige replied, “Thanks for the offer though.”
“So let me keep you company until they arrive.” Logan shot back, his smile unwavering, “Pretty girl like you shouldn’t be left alone in a place like this.”
“I get your point.” She shot back with an icy gaze, “You never know what kind of dick might start harassing me if I don’t have some guy there to ward them off, right?”
The smile faded.
“No need to be rude about it.” He said, his voice cooler now.
“Well I tried being polite.” She replied, “It didn’t seem to take, so who’s really being rude?”
He glared at her, wordlessly standing up and moving away toward a table where a number of other males awaited his return. She stared after him with an impassive glare, and felt just the slightest swell of pride inside as she recognised the taunts and jeers that came over his unsuccessful return. A conquest failed.
A hint of movement at the door caught her eye, bringing her thoughts back to the reason she was there at all. He’d arrived.
He seemed taller than she remembered from their first meeting. She watched as his eyes scanned the room, coming to rest where she sat.
His lips curled into a smile and she matched his expression, lifting a hand in greeting. She stood up as he walked over, and they embraced, he kissed her cheek lightly and stepped back.
“Sorry I’m late.” He said, “I hope you haven’t been waiting long?”
“Long enough,” She replied. “But I’m used to it. I’m perpetually early.”
“I used to be that way once.” He replied, “Drink?”
“Absolutely. A martini, if that’s okay?”
“What is it?” She asked, a curious smile curling her lips.
“It’s nothing,” He replied, shaking his head with a smile. “I just find it strange. My first father-daughter date with you and I’m buying you a martini.”
“It is a bit strange,” She admitted.
“Just a little. I’ll be right back.”
As he turned and made his way to the bar, Paige watched him. For her entire life, she had craved to meet this man, and now here he was. She had spent so many years wondering who he might be, what he would be like, that now she had the opportunity to discover the answers to all of her questions, she wasn’t even sure that she wanted to ask them.
She realised that even if she did, the answers didn’t actually matter as much as she had always thought they would. The lights behind the bar turned his figure into a silhouette as he ordered and paid for the drinks, and she realised that was all they were to one another at the moment, shadowed forms, somewhat familiar but shrouded in darkness and curiosity. He, no doubt, had as many questions for her as she had for him, and gradually they would begin to uncover the details of each other.
It was all she had ever wanted.