Friday, October 16, 2009

Inside the closet...

It's Friday and you know what that means. Yes! It's the weekend!!

Besides that it is time for a writing prompt. Write a sentence, a paragraph or a page, but have fun and share what you come up with back here.

Friday's writing prompt: Inside the closet. . .

Here is my shot at it:

Inside the closet, Jane sat curled up in a ball with her legs pulled up to her chest and her arms wrapped around her knees and pulled up tight. She folded her lips inward to prevent her teeth from chattering and making noise.

“Be quiet as a church mouse,” her mother told her as she slid the closet door shut.

Jane huddled in the back, dark corner behind her mother’s dresses and winter coats with her fingers pressed to her ears.

“Please, please, make the bad men go away,” she chanted in a whisper as she rocked back and forth. “Please.”

When she heard a loud bang and her mother shriek, her heart froze, stopped then beat in overtime. Jane squeezed herself into as small a ball as possible and held her breath. Another explosion ripped the air. Jane opened her mouth to scream then slapped a hand over it and gave a silent yelp. She buried her head against her knees and her fingernails dug into her legs as she held on to the screech that bubbled and scratched at her throat.


Jennifer Parris October 16, 2009 at 8:41 AM  

Inside the closet, Samantha surveyed the wreckage. The overhead flurescent light illuminated the short skirts, dresses, blouses and jeans strewn across the floor, along with an array of lacy panties, and push up bras. She raked her hand through the tangled mess of her blonde hair and sighed. At this rate, she miss her date with Matt entirely.

Denise October 16, 2009 at 9:29 AM  

J.Parris -

Ooo! Good one. I can see the disaster.

BookObsessedGrl October 16, 2009 at 9:55 AM  

Inside the closet, past the shelves of shoes arranged just so, rows of color coordinated shirts and crisply folded pants, the faint blue light continued to
stream out from the edges of a tiny door set in the back wall. As she had done each day for more years than she thought possible, Rina stood just outside the closet
door mesmerized by the light and the siren's song beckoning for her return.
The last few days as the sun handed the reigns of the world over to the moon the song had grown more urgent than she had ever heard before. With each passing day it was getting harder for her to ignore the call of her past and as she fingered the key at her neck Rina knew she didn't have much time left.

Denise October 16, 2009 at 10:24 AM  

BookObsessed - Hm...a blue light in a closet and a siren's song beckoning her back. Makes me want to know to where.

Excellent. Very vivid!

BookObsessedGrl October 16, 2009 at 10:33 AM  


Thank you! That's exactly what I was going for. I almost started on the 'where' but decided it would be more fun to leave you wondering. ;)

Denise October 16, 2009 at 10:56 AM  

BookObsessed - That's my kind of hook!

Cynthia Spurr October 16, 2009 at 8:19 PM  

Inside the closet, the bright overhead light faded into darkness quicker than any of the inhabitant’s thought possible.

The shadows tripped over each other, fighting for the door, fighting to escape the aftermath of the riot of shoes. New white sneakers tried valiantly to withstand the onslaught of dress pants as they fell silently one by one. Shiny black heels dodged in the opposite direction of the falling pressed shirts.

The scraping of hangers as they made one last effort to grab their charges lasted only a few scant moments. The shadows of the aftermath moved only slightly before the silence returned to the closet.

Jennifer Parris October 16, 2009 at 9:15 PM  

What a great variety! Amazing what can come out of a closet!

Ceri Hebert October 17, 2009 at 2:06 PM  

Have to do this in two parts I guess.


In the closet there was a rustling. The closet door opened just a crack, but enough that Ari saw it move in the mirror. She turned around quickly. Ruth Anne may come through for them after all? She went to the door and pulled it open. The smell of musty rose was stronger here, lingered in the small space. Was that a clue they were on the right track?
Rochelle looked up from the notebook. “Something?”

“Don’t know.”

She pushed the clothes aside, looking for what she didn’t know. There was a shelf above the clothing rack, filled with shoeboxes. One after another, she pulled them down, opened them up, and found what she expected. Shoes. Ruth Anne had a generous shoe collection. After the last box came down, she examined the empty space left behind, frowning.
Then her gaze went up. There was a square door of sorts that would lead to the attic.

Could it be that easy?

Ari looked around for a chair.
There was a padded chair at the little desk in the corner. She brought it over and set it in the closet.

“Please hold me,” she muttered and climbed up on it.

Rochelle came over and joined her.

The panel that covered the opening didn’t want to give way but when it did, dust and grit, probably a dead bug or two, rained down on them, but Ari didn’t let that stop her. She pushed until the board was completely out of the way, exposing a dark hole.

“Need a flashlight. Could you? In the pantry down in the kitchen.”

“I’m on it.”

While Rochelle was gone, Ari groped around the edges of the hole, praying she wouldn’t come in contact with anything like a dead bird or squirrel. She knew she wouldn’t find Ruth Anne up there, there was no way a body could remain up in the attic undiscovered, but what a good hiding place for something that someone didn’t want discovered.
Who in their right mind would be digging around up there? Ugh.

Part two to follow...

Ceri Hebert October 17, 2009 at 2:07 PM  

Part two... oops... have to do it in 3 parts...

When Rochelle returned with the light, she shone it into the void, sticking her head further into the attic. It only took one sweep to find what she wanted. What looked like a cigar box nestled into the loose insulation between two boards.

“Bingo,” she said and pulled the box out, ignoring the tendrils of spider webs that came with it.

Rochelle helped her down off the shelf and both heard, quite loudly, a sigh. It had the sound of relief. Even the very air in the room seemed to lighten.

They pushed the shoes aside and sat on the bed, the box on Ari’s lap. She opened the lid. The box was filled with a variety of items, mainly letters. A dried flower lay on the top of them, a rose, now brown with age, but still a perfect bud. From John?

Other items included a small velvet jewelry box that was empty, a heart shaped stone and a cut out Valentine’s Day card. Small personal keepsakes that must’ve been precious to Ruth Anne.

Rochelle laid the items next to her while Ari pulled out the first letter. It was written on a single sheet of cream paper.

“I don’t know if I want to read it,” Ari murmured. “It’s like invading her privacy. I mean she’s right here.”

“And she wanted you to find the box.”

“The letter is dated December nineteen fifty-one. A long time before she tried to run away with him.”

“Yeah? There might be something. We can’t overlook anything, Ari.”

“Fine, I’ll read it. Still feel like I’m prying.

Ceri Hebert October 17, 2009 at 2:07 PM  

part 3....

‘Dear Ruthie,
You looked so beautiful last night. I hardly could take my eyes off you. I’m glad you wore the necklace. I hope your parents didn’t ask you where you got it. Do you think they’ll ever come around? I mean to marry you, whether they like it or not.
Will you be at the dance at the town hall next week? I’ll be there and I have a Christmas present for you.
I love you, Ruthie.
Yours always,

“Sweet. Sad.” Rochelle sighed. There was an echoing sigh between them.

A chill went down Ari’s spine and it had nothing to do with the cool air that pressed against her. She could easily picture the dark-haired Ruthie poised behind her and Rochelle, reading the letter too.

Ari put the page aside and picked up the next, which was date January third, ninety fifty-two. Getting closer to the date of Ruth Anne’s disappearance.

“Dearest Ruthie,
I know it’s a bit late, but Happy New Year. I can’t wait to see you next week. I’m sorry if I got you in trouble at the dance. At least I can talk to you at school.
This is a short note. I have to go to work.
I love you forever.

Ari read through the next half dozen notes, much of the same. They were all sweet and short but nothing that gave them any information that was useful. They took them through April. Then there was a gap. No notes until the last one in August. A month before she disappeared.

The air around her cooled down, seemed to gather itself up.

“Is this it, Ruth Anne? Is this the one that’s going to tell us where you are?”

The tension behind her thickened into something nearly tangible, something she could almost grasp.

“Read it,” Rochelle urged.

The tone of this note was slightly different than the other love letters.

“‘Ruth Anne,
I’ll meet you at Garner’s cabin. Get away when you can. Don’t worry, I’m not going to leave without you. And please, please promise me you won’t crawl through that—‘ Oh my God,” Ari exclaimed, then continued reading. “’…promise me you won’t crawl through that tunnel. You’re not a little kid anymore and I don’t trust it no matter how long it’s been there. I’m sure you can find a chance to sneak out through the door.

I’ll see you soon, my love.
Your John’”

Ari dropped the letter. “Tunnel,” she said in a whisper. “What tunnel?”

Rochelle closed her eyes. “Talk to me, Ruth Anne.”

As Rochelle attempted to communicate with her, Ari tried to work it out in her own mind. What tunnel, and where was it? The house was old, built in the early eighteen hundreds. Could it have been a part of the Underground Railroad? A forgotten link? There were other houses in the area historically known for their participation in the famous escape route. Could her home have been a part of it?”

She glanced at Rochelle. Whatever had grabbed her friend’s mind suddenly let go.


“I keep hearing the word ‘yes’.”

Suddenly the air around them got considerably warmer and the presence Ari had felt was gone.

Both women looked around. At the bedroom door, for just a few seconds, an image formed in the hallway. A girl with dark hair.
Dark eyes stared out of a deathly pale face.

“Holy hell,” Rochelle muttered.

The apparition turned away and started toward the stairs before fading.

Denise October 19, 2009 at 9:42 AM  

Wow! I turn my back for a second and I miss all the latest writing.

Cynthia - Shoes coming to life. Great idea! I never would have gone there. :-)

Ceri - I felt the dust of the attic and smelled the old age stench of the box of letters. Excellent - and you left us hanging! Evil woman.

Ceri Hebert October 19, 2009 at 5:55 PM  

well yeah! have to leave some mystery. :)

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