Sunday, November 02, 2008

Irrational Thoughts

Sandy sat in one of the big wing chairs, recently re-upholstered in the same sort of smooth pale yellow fabric in which it had always been clothed. Mama claimed the furniture in the sun parlor should be covered in pale colors, so as not to show the fading, inevitable from all the sunlight pouring in through all the windows. Thus, the day bed that, along with Grandma’s old secretary, monopolized the one wall with no windows had a white slip cover; the love seat was a striped yellow and white; and the two chairs picked up the yellow in the love seat. However, having recently made the decision to start using this room again, she’d discovered the ignored furniture was badly in need of reupholstering, the pale colors having not only faded but also yellowed with age. Sending it off to have that done had been the perfect excuse to postpone the inevitable: having to actually sit out here, in the evenings, after dark, as Owen had instructed her to do.

The furniture now returned, this was the second evening in a row she’d brought her book out here to read. Last night, she hadn’t lasted long but had been spared a visitor. Tonight would be different. No more than ten minutes had passed when the familiar scratching and light tapping at the window began. She ignored it, focusing all her energy on the pages in front of her. Those noises were nothing more than one of the many overgrown tree branches being blown by the wind. To believe otherwise was completely irrational. She knew that; she’d spent so many hours discussing with Owen the difference between rational and irrational thoughts. Nobody was out there, staring in at her, keeping an eye on her; he didn’t exist. What did exist was an anxious temperament that could lead to irrational thoughts and fears such as this one. Still, she refused to look up from her book, didn’t want to direct her attention to any of the windows. Still, she was beginning to feel the hair rise on the back of her neck.

(To Be Continued)

5 comments:

Pete said...

It worked! I'm interested to see how this story develops and I liked the reference to irrational thoughts (and the example of the branch tapping on the window). The slow build-up of unease works pretty well. And good luck for NaBloPoMo.

litlove said...

Ooooh creepy!!

Anonymous said...

Hi Emily. I posted a comment to an entry of yours back on July 31, 2008. It was in reference to your posting called "The Perils of Pairing Passion and Publishing." Perhaps you haven't visited it lately. I have copied and pasted it below. I would really appreciate it if you could get in touch with me...

Hi, Emily. I found this post very interesting. The work environment you talk about sounds exactly the kind I would love to work in. And then, when I read that you're a telecommuter, well ... let's just say, it seems like the ideal job I'm looking for these days.

I am a writer, currently residing out of the United States but planning to phase back. I have published a children's book here in Pakistan, and am in the process of publishing two more. In addition, I have mentored six teenagers in writing a murder mystery in English based in Karachi. The manuscript is undergoing final editing touches on my part. Lastly, I am also working on an educational guidebook for more effective teaching of English Literature here in Pakistan.

Now, I am reaching an end of my projects and
am looking to remotely work in a publishing house in the States (preferably the East coast since I am from New Jersey). If you (or anyone else visiting this blog) could help guide me in any way, kindly email me at spqalam@ymail.com. I would like to send you my profile and cv.

I would appreciate your help very much. Take care!

Emily Barton said...

Pete, yes, it worked. Amazing! I think you're going to like this story. Stay tuned. More to come...

Litlove, I decided to post it as is (in other words, as I left it when I finished it about three years ago) without rewriting, editing, or changing anything, but I've already decided there are all kinds of problems with that opening. Glad to hear it still comes across as "creepy," though. Makes me feel as though I did SOMETHING right.

stefanie said...

Eek! You gave me chills!