After a fast and furious start to my very first National Novel Writing Month, I hit the more challenging week 2 with some extra words in my “coffers.” That said, my characters started heading in unpredictable directions and I have yet to figure out the real direction of my novel. I don’t know where my story is going and I can’t predict how long this current section will last, but I’m determined to figure it out as I go along and then get rid of a lot of the crap that I’ve written so far this month to replace it with rewrites 🙂
Here’s another section of my novel – Ella has entered the Painted Wood in one of her dreams and is about to enter the dream of someone else:
Almost immediately I was drawn to one of the stones near my feet. This one was a reddish purple color and was pulsing – not quite like the green stone of yesterday, but it also didn’t seem to be like the nightmare that Pale Woman had showed me. Shrugging, I reached for the stone and took it between my palms.
Waiting for the yanking from my midsection, I was unprepared for the sensation of floating through water as if I had been dropped in the ocean and immediately swallowed up by the tide. I took a tentative breath and opened my eyes to the darkness.
“Hello?“ I mouthed the words but nothing came out of my mouth. Starting to panic a little, I thrashed my arms and legs to spin myself and try to see if there was light anywhere around me. Behind my body there was a pale glow that seemed to be coming closer to me and growing as it moved. I watched with fascination as it approached, keeping the purple stone wrapped tightly in my right hand and ready to speak the name of my ring if I needed to get out of there. The brightness approached and seemed almost to want permission to come closer. I reached a hand toward it and let it wrap tendrils of brightness around my fingers and wrist. Without warning, I heard a voice in my mind:
“I stopped listening to music the day you left.
It wasn’t a conscious decision, just that the music I love with strong women singing their hearts through their guitars made my own heart twist into uncertain shards. Without you next to me, their familiar strains left unfamiliar shadows in my breath that threatened to shake me apart. Wrapping my arms close around me I found that numbness was much easier than the pain. I could squeeze the bleeding parts of my soul into some kind of order that at least allowed me to wade through the fog of my waking hours and wait through the dim exhaustion of the nights.
Time passed and I slowly added some Classical music – tentatively at first, but with a bit of hope when it didn’t shatter me into tiny splinters. Next I added some unfamiliar melodies with words I couldn’t make out or didn’t understand. The songs we listened to in smoky bars and warm coffee houses still threaten to shake me apart, but each day I’m a tiny bit closer.
Maybe one day I’ll even pull out my guitar and prove to myself that I can.”
I pulled my hand free of the brightness and watched it ripple away from me with a shiver. Clasping my hands around the purple stone and speaking the name of my ring, I spun back into awareness seated next to the stream. Placing the stone back in the water, I noticed that this time the stone didn’t shift as the green stone had yesterday. Perhaps because I didn’t affect this dream as I did the other. Shaking my head, I crossed back over the bridge and headed back to my self again. I still have so much to learn.