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The worst moment

by mip1980 

Posted: 30 June 2003
Word Count: 1194
Summary: Just a short story to introduce myself

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She looked so casual, so calm, so cold and most definitely calculated. I had to step out of my body for a moment and just check that this was really happening, but then of course it had to be real didnít it. It was real because the feeling in my stomach told me it was real, the same feeling you get when you rode on the big dipper at the fun fair when you were a teenager. That horrible sinking feeling in the pit of your stomach said it was real, thatís your bodyís way of making moments like this feel even worse than what they really are.

I just stared right back at her, my mouth was probably wide open and I probably looked like an idiot but I didnít care. This woman, my fiancťe, my teenage sweetheart who has been with me for seven years. What has she done? My head dropped, reality was now rapidly sinking in. Hang on a minute! Why am I so calm as well, she has just inflicted the most horrific emotional crime there is. My stomach may have sunk but my heart is at resting pulse, my breathing, completely normal. This whole moment in my life has just passed me by and Iím as calm as the sea on a hot and windless day, yet my Samantha just sits there with those sky blue eyes looking back at me. She obviously doesnít give two hoots about my feelings which is a shame, I thought we had something special together.

You see I had started to suspect months ago that something was wrong, you get that feeling when you are somebodyís soul mate, you now everything. Every little bit of sorrow felt, every bit of happiness shared. Thatís why we were meant for each other, I knew the first time I saw her that I would make her mine. Long were the days leading up to us finally courting, I had to loose weight and change my wardrobe for this women but all worth it of course. The hardest part was trying to get with her, you see, itís considered a bad thing for two friends to get together. I say friends, we were best friends and I didnít want to ruin our friendship over a stint in my life when I lusted after her. So I played it smart and when I realised that lust had turned to love I made my move, it was all or nothing when I asked her. Had she said no, then I probably would have left her side as a friend and slipped off quietly into the night. The embarrassment to strong to stick around and the jealousy, to much for me too take.

Luckily she had said yes when I asked her out and the rest is history as they sayÖ..Until February kicked in, then I started to notice changes in our communication. She would always be behind an emotional window, unsocial and at most times un-rational with any logical thinking. Our sex life dwindled off into the sunset and she was clocking up the overtime at work, itís fair to say that this was when I suspected there was something wrong. Yet nothing quite prepares you for the moment of truth, you hear whispers from friends and rumours from family members but you try to block it all out. You try and cling to the one thing that means most in your life, and for me it was that she still loved me after seven years.

This wasnít so however, she had met someone else. My friends knew it, my family knew it and rather depressingly I knew it. Then the moment of truth arrived, Iíll layout the scenario for you if I may.
You come home from a dead end job that you hate, hoping beyond hope that the one thing in your life that means the most to you is waiting for you. And what do you discover? Your fiancťe having sex on the sofa, my sofa. And not with any random bloke or a mate of yours, no, itís with your brother! YOUR BROTHER, I have to laugh when I think about it now though. Everyone I ever trusted is privately screwing me behind my back and making a mockery of everything I am, my closest kin is helping to bring all meaning of my life to an abrupt end.

Yet the following confrontation is what gets me the most, they stop and my Sam casually gets off the sofa and my brother and without saying anything, walks out the room. My older brother then has the audacity to laugh at me, making a mockery of me and my life. Thereís him with his cushy job and nice BMW and me with Samantha and my warehouse job, that makes him better than me does it? No it doesnít, he and my Sam have committed the biggest sin going and have shown absolutely no remorse for what happened. By now my head is throbbing with thoughts, rage, anger and torment to name but a few. And as I try to make sense of it all, my brother is still tormenting me. Comments are coming out of his mouth and even now when I think about it, I canít remember a word he said it all happened so fast. By now my rage was an unstoppable train rattling down the express line, I picked up the nearest object and flung it at him. Just then Samantha jumps on my back biting and screaming at me, I didnít even notice her come back in the room. Iím completely stunned, my fiancťe is attacking me! What did I do? Yet she is still screaming at me, just then she bites the back of my neck and in shock I fling my back to the side. Samantha is thrown from my back from the force of my sudden twist and I here a crashing sound behind me. But just for a split second I forget about her and touch the back of my neck, thereís blood! Samantha drew blood when she bit me! I slumped down onto my sofa and thatís when I realise, I threw the first thing I could grab at my brother which unfortunately for me was an iron. Now heís lying on the other sofa with blood pouring from his head and a blank look on his face, I then turn my head to the right.
Samantha is slouched down by the fireplace staring back at me, thereís now emotion on her face at all. Thatís when it strikes me, Iíve killed them! OH MY GOD IíVE KILLED THEM!

My beautiful Sam is dead and I did it, I killed her. I threw an iron at my brother and now heís dead, what have I done. I just keep staring at my beautiful fiancťe, the blank look on her face sayís it all. Her sky blue eyes not looking at me but through me, and itís all my doing. Yet as I sit here and weigh everything up, I canít understand why Iím feeling so calm.

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Comments by other Members

Becca at 07:35 on 01 July 2003  Report this post
I don't think I can understand why he's feeling so calm either!
This piece comes over as, maybe a narration from a longer piece. I wonder how it would look if you wrote it in the present tense? It might give it more tension. It's a description of an event,.. albeit of a horrible scene, but my feeling is if the reader could empathise with the narrator it would give it more depth and dimension. I think it's because it's a story about himself, and the himself comes over as someone who objectifies women. If he'd been in love with her for 7 years would he have been thinking in the way he did? A whole lot more emotion would give the piece some weight.
I found a couple of typos for you: 'The embarrassment to (too), strong...'
'There's now emotion on her face...'
Hope this is some help.

stephanieE at 11:28 on 01 July 2003  Report this post
Mike I agree with Becca (spooky, but I always do) that written in the present tense it might be more powerful, and I think, in the first person.

Then it would be more interesting to try and understand what this character feels about the heinous crime that's just been committed - remorse, chagrin, sorrow, or really, none of the above?

And there were quite a few typos:

you now (know) everything

I had to loose (lose) weight

the jealousy, to (too) much for me too (to) take

I would also suggest adding in a few strategic commas, as it rather trips over itself in places without them.

Interesting though!

Sarah at 14:48 on 01 July 2003  Report this post
Yes, you should keep the tenses consistent. I think, and agree with Becca, that this story would be better told in the present, as live action, so that the reader can experience the crazy impulses the narrator goes through in killing his fiancee and brother. It would be a great piece of short work.

I have to say I balked a little bit at "I threw the first thing I could grab at my brother which was unfortunately for me an iron". I think you could make this a little more subtle!

It's a very powerful situation, and makes a good story. Good luck!

Nell at 15:35 on 01 July 2003  Report this post
One thing that I really wanted to know when reading this was the narrator's age. It didn't come across consistently - at one moment he seemed about 17, in the next sentence much older.

I think you could look at the language and try to use it to tell us more about him.

For example:

'Everyone I ever trusted is privately screwing me behind my back and making a mockery of everything I am, my closest kin is helping to bring all meaning of my life to an abrupt end.'

The words in italics are spot on for a guy up to around 40, maybe even 50, but in the second part of the sentence he seems to have aged about 30 years.

Having said all this I don't believe you'd have trouble fixing it. You just need to decide how old he is and take it from there.

But it's certainly action-packed and should polish up to a good story.

Hope this helps, best, Nell.

mip1980 at 18:18 on 01 July 2003  Report this post
Thanks everyone for your responses, it will help me a great deal in improving my writing skills. I look forward to more comments about my writing, thanks for your help guys. This was a short story i typed in about half an hour whilst travelling on a train, I'm trying to write a book at the moment and would love some feedback from you guys similar to this onslaught(only joking). Thanks again peeps

Becca at 19:06 on 01 July 2003  Report this post
Hi Mike,
did you mean you typed it in 30 minutes, or you invented and typed the whole thing in 30 minutes. If the later, will the book you're writing take a day to write?

Nell at 08:34 on 02 July 2003  Report this post

Sorry it seemed like an onslaught - I know you said 'only joking' but I'm convinced there's a grain of truth at the core of every joke.

I try to comment as an ordinary reader rather than a writer, and that was what struck me.

Keep writing!

Best, Nell.

Ralph at 13:55 on 02 July 2003  Report this post
Hey Mike
I'm seriously impressed with the half hour on a train - that's how long it takes me to find a seat most of the time!! :D
I was curious about the objectivity of your narrator here - I'm not saying this isn't an original idea because I think it is, but certain moments were reminiscent of Porphyria's Lover for me, especially her blue eyes at the end. I think the fact that he is feeling very little emotion atv the end of the piece is the most chilling part of the story. Perhaps just under-emphasising slightly, and guiding the reader to his emotional state with more subtle clues would make it even more effective.
Best of luck



mip1980 at 16:10 on 02 July 2003  Report this post
Becca, i did come up with the whole idea and story in about 30 minutes. I had it on my computer for ages and just posted it to start myself off here in this group, this is the whole story as far as i'm concerned.

I will be showcasing some more of my other work soon, as for the story. I wanted to portray the image that this man (the narrator) has committed a hideous crime. Yet even he cannot understand why he is so calm in this situation, you can never predict someone's reaction in any type of enraged situation. They always say that the quiet ones are the ones that flip out and lose control in tense situations. again thanks for the follow up guys

Newmark at 17:03 on 02 July 2003  Report this post
I like the central idea behind this, and am also very impressed by the half an hour thing. It sometimes takes me four hours to write a paragraph!

One idea though. I feel that you need to develop some sympathy for the narrator. To be honest, he comes accross as a little pathetic, everyone gets dumped. Maybe you could write down what exactly his brother said to him afterwards, if it was nasty enough, that would provide a reason to kill that I could empathise with.

Having said that, there are sections in it I think are really good. In particular I liked;

"I had to step out of my body for a moment and just check that this was really happening."

Becca at 20:23 on 02 July 2003  Report this post
Newmark's got a good point about working to raise a bit more empathy in the reader for your main character,although I'm not sure how easy this would be without also graceing, (sp?), him with more emotion.

Salty at 00:09 on 03 July 2003  Report this post
I enjoyed readying this a lot. If you did this in half an hour - wow. Imagine if you worked on it for a week, that would be cool.

Speaking from another perspective: The deaths are a bit neat. Bang bang everybody is dead. People don't die that easy. Being hit in the head with an iron might work for a knock out on Eastenders, but I don't think it would kill anybody unless it was tied to the front of a train, or you hit them about twenty times. Sorry to be a bit gritty but I write horror and I speak from experience, I have been hit in the head hard, quiet a few times, with worse than an iron ... most likely by people responding to my postings on sites like this... ;-)

I think the reason for this is the conflict is mainly internal, not external or dialogue driven. We talk for reams about the emotions of character and what I get is he is a tad disengaged and cold. I feel rage has to be built and what I get is this jump from Mr. Cool to lava hot fury with no inbetween. He is a remote, easy character and they are remote easy deaths.

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