Friday, November 5, 2010

Bedtime Stories for the ADD: A Thousand Rooms Called Home

I never again complained about the house being too small. I didn’t dare complain that the new rooms had dead bodies or spent shell casings in them. Not that I feared her.

She wasn’t the one who made the rooms we borrowed from empty universes so ghastly.

Sometimes I don’t see her for days at a time. I search the rooms, track drywall dust and sulphur through all the incarnations of our house, but I never call out for her. It seems a sin to bring sound into those wind-swept places where gods fear to speak.

What shame they must feel, created by humans and blamed by humans for human failings.

I wasn’t sure if I was dreaming that night as I wandered through our countless kitchens and living rooms. Sure, I spotted the remains of meals we’d carried there, dishes we’d forgotten, pillows I had taken with me on nights I couldn’t sleep alone in that one bed we’d ever shared. It still didn’t seem real.

I wasn’t blaming her for the size of the house or how cramped it felt when she opened up the holes. I thought we were commiserating.

Then I passed into one of the worlds that is endless winter and heard the faint whoosh of the hole being closed.

She couldn’t hear me and it wouldn’t have mattered if she could. I’d apologized before. Many many times before.

I felt like crying then, but it felt like sin.



Sulci Collective said...

loved the world you created here - borrowing rooms from empty universes etc - had a real lyrical sweep through epic scale here.

Think you mean 'spent' shells rather than 'spend' maybe?

Marc Nash

J. McNeill said...

Thanks, Marc!

Good catch. I fixed the spelling error.

John Wiswell said...

That's one heck of an opening, J. Don't complain or you might join the outlines on the floor. Got to brave up!

J. McNeill said...

Haha, thanks John. :D

Mike Robertson said...

Fine sullen internal monologue alternate reality thing going there, J. Amazing work.

A. S. Boudreau said...

Very intriguing. I love the concept of this.. really makes you think...

Kath said...

Intriguing world you've created here with rooms from other universes added on to the existing ones in the narrator's world. Look forward to reading more about it.

J. McNeill said...

Thanks, y'all. :D I hadn't really thought about doing a longer piece with this, but I may give it some thought after my current novel project is over.