Friday, June 29, 2012
Today is another challenge prompt for Romantic Friday Writers. This weeks challenge is Stuck In The Middle.
My excerpt is a continuation of two prior prompts: Decisions on June 1, and The Perfect Ex on June 14. But don't worry, this is the last posting in this series. Its starting to feel like a writing commitment, and I've been looking at a WiP that could use this set of characters and plot concepts and thinking hmmm, could I add these characters and their respective plots to the existing work? I'm infamous for my unfinished projects, ya know.
Julie sat on the floor against her dad’s locked bedroom door. Mentally she kicked herself for still considering Jordan her dad, but she’d spent the last twelve years calling him Dad, and couldn’t break the habit just because her mom decided to divorce him.
Julie didn’t know who her biological father was. She didn’t even have his name on her birth certificate to conduct a google search. And her mom, Abby, refused to talk about the man she considered a donor father. Julie had fantasies that her mom actually went to a sperm bank and purchased the sperm donation
Not that Julie realized this before Jordan drunkenly stumbled into her life. Abby described her relationship with Jordan as a one-night-stand that endured for lack of initiative to end it. Julie only saw the positive changes in her and her mom’s lives.
Abby quit farming Julie out to relatives as she partied and traveled with acquaintances and lovers. There was always food in the fridge.
Jordan laughed, and told funny jokes. He liked to tickle Julie, and Abby. He wanted Julie to go with him everywhere. He helped her with homework and talked to her friends.
Three years after Jordan and Abby married, Abby became pregnant with Celeste. Julie expected Jordan to stop being her “dad” in favor of his own child. But he still treated Julie with the same loving devotion. True, he expected her to be a big sister to Celeste, and after a brief rebellion, Julie had happily settled into her role.
But Abby accused Jordan of smothering her. He needed things organized in a certain way. He made lists of things to be done according to a specific schedule. He became sullen and depressed when his routine was disrupted.After years of chaos, Julie didn’t see what the problem between her mom and dad could be. Everything was better with Jordan.
Julie listened as Reyna argued for Jordan to kick out his reminder of a marriage gone bad. Julie needed a cigarette, and a shot of whatever was available in Jordan’s limited liquor cabinet. Her cell phone bleeped with a text. She crawled across the darkened room and retrieved the phone from her backpack.
“Can I come up?” It was from her boyfriend.
“No, I’ll come down,” she sent. After a minute of listening Julie added, “I’ll have to sneak out. Wait for me.”
* * *
Response to the challenge does not have to be original, unpublished work. It can be an old story or poem, published or unpublished, an extract from a WIP, a story that's been languishing on your flash drive and just needs a bit of a cut, paste and polish to fit the prompt. Or you might want to try out a story on us, get feedback on your unique idea before extending your story. You're allowed to feel self satisfied - you'll know why you kept that story or poem that just wouldn't cut it until now...
Writer or Runner Up award.
For younger lovers: perhaps there is an unexpected pregnancy to upset the balance; or a career change –promotion or firing or company move; or the sheer boredom of routine.
What we want to see is when the romance loses it shine, and the eye wanders, but what our disgruntled lover finds so appealing in another is the qualities that the old flame has lost. Does he/she realize this on their own? Or does the jilted lover or new love point it out? How is the situation resolved? Or is it too late?