Cold Stone Statue

The door closed. His face, sallow, crumpled, reflected the painful years of resignation shrouding the limp, haphazard room. The large pedestal towered over his dingy, sparse furniture, and his pale eyes were drawn once more to the cold stone figure staring imperiously from its regal position.

“Don’t stare at me,” he whispered vehemently, hissing under his breath, like a disturbed snake.

The perfectly carved eyes of the granite statue continued to stare, vacantly, dispassionately. He imagined a curl of the upper lip into a twist of disdain. He hated her. He wished he had never set eyes on her. The fire of his passion was now white hot, cutting like a gas axe through his former forgotten caresses.

“You sit there and do nothing!” he hissed, and his wasting body deflated further into his chair with the effort of forming intense emotion into words. She gazed over his head by a centimetre. Her rigidly flowing coverlet pulled protectively over the curve… He pulled his eyes away, shutting them tightly as his passion converted suddenly to the day he first caught a glimpse of her, stalwartly facing into a gusty summer breeze, her rough-cut hair tightly braided to keep it from whipping in her face.

“Curse you,” he muttered, his gaze now falling, unfocused, to his own emaciated legs, draped limply with crocheted granny squares of mismatched gay colours. His hands closed and opened, and he felt for a moment, the perfect curve of a carving tool curled into his palm, felt the vibrations of the hefty wooden mallet pounding… His reverie was interrupted as the door banged abruptly open against the wall, shaking the peeling faux-gold ornate picture frames on the opposite side of the room.

“This it?” grunted the heavy-set, bristly bearded man, his piercing eyes bored first into the vacant expression of the wrinkled man huddled in the old-fashioned wheelchair tucked into the far corner of the room, then held the lifeless statue in an acute gaze, measuring her sculpted form precisely, as he pushed the solidly fixed wooden crate toward her on perfectly oiled hydraulic wheels.

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I wrote this piece especially for OM, as part of a series prepared for guest blogging at HarsH ReaLiTy in early 2014. Although the guest blogging is not going ahead, at this stage, it provided much needed motivation for me to start writing creatively. This is probably the first serious bit of fiction I have written for over twenty years. It unfolded as I typed, as if it had a mind of its own. I could clearly see the room, the characters, and feel their emotions.

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