Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Kingdom of Obsession

I haven't posted excerpts in awhile - heck, I haven't posted much of anything.

Camp NaNoWriMo kept me busy last month, and this month?  Well, I really have no excuse other than:  DOTA 2.  And more DOTA 2.  We also got an adorable new kitten named GERTY (and two points goes to the first person who can tell me where we got that name from).  That makes five cats.

It was never our intention to adopt him, but him and Munster (our 2 year old) get along so well, we eventually had to cave.  Oh, that and he's flipping adorable.

But it is time that I post an excerpt.  Nina Pelletier does weekly writing prompts (sometimes more than once a week).  I always try to use them to create new, better excerpts for my novels.  This is one for Kingdom of Obsession.  It's a first line prompt that begins with the first line from Fifty Shades of Grey.  Which, I still haven't read yet - has anyone else?  I'd love to know some fellow writers/readers opinions on it!


I scowl with frustration at myself in the mirror. Nine years. I blinked slowly. My hair was the same, a little more wily and unkempt than usually, but that was attributed to nine years in bed. My eyes were the same, the same aging crow’s feet that just started to pucker when I forced a smile onto my lips. My lips were less pale than before, probably because I hadn’t used as much makeup. I twisted them to the side, almost expecting the reflection to move in the opposite direction.

I had tumbled through a rabbit hole.

This didn’t happen in real life.

My knuckles turned white with the pressure I applied to the corners of the sink. Except it did. I’m living proof. I closed my eyes. I’d wake up in a second. I’d wake up and my mother would be dead again, my husband would be wrapped clumsily in the comforter besides me, and my son will be in the other room. I’ll wake up in California, sun shining through the lush trees of our house.

I opened my eyes. My reflection gazed back at me, green eyes locked on mine. The corner of my right eye twitched.

My mouth opened, and I started laughing. The guttural sound pounded through my throat, escaping my mouth in hysterical heaves. Someone’s knuckles brushed against the door. The laughter bounced off the walls, reverberating my core, filling me with utter hatred for the rest of the world.

My spine tingled, my whole brain swelled in my head and I almost lost control of my body. My limbs slowly went numb against the realization. Gone. Gone was the life I knew, and all I had left was the bitter prickling that trembled in the back of my neck, separating myself from my body. I wasn’t here, but my reflection told me I was. This was me, here, now.

It was a lie.

My reflection stopped laughed and instead screamed. The noise was so sudden and so fierce that I winced at the sound of my own voice. I found control of my right arm, just long enough to thrust it into the mirror, distorting my face into tiny pieces and reflections.

At least I now resembled how I felt.

These broken pieces, they had to fit back together somehow. They had to still be alive. Nine years couldn’t have been a dream. People don’t dream for nine years. The pounding on the door got louder, nurses and doctors, the lot of them were working to open the lock. I didn’t let them have the pleasure of seeing me like this. I unlocked the door and pushed it outward. Everyone gazed at me, eyes locked on mine as my fingers dripped blood onto the floor.

My dead mother  My mother gasped.

My ex-best friend My best friend swallowed.

The nurse stood ready with another needle.

“I’m getting them back.” I marched across the room and sat at the edge of the bed. The nurse and doctor exchanged a look, very prepared for my insanity, but not for this. I was calm, cool, collected, at least that’s what I told myself. “I don’t care what any of you say, it wasn’t just a dream. Dreams don’t last that long.”