In the tutorial this week we had a few different writing tasks our Lecture asked us to do. This one was to write a short story that uses the Narrative Arch. This is what I came up with in the 10 or so minutes we had to write it.
Micah’s waiting by the portal with his father. Waiting for his mother and younger brother. It’s dark but if they don’t get here soon it’ll be too light to leave. The watchers will know.
Micah glances up at his father. His father’s face is creased with worried lines as he looks out to the dark alleyway. There’s a noise, his father’s eyes grow wide and Micah turns to look. He sees little Malachi struggling to walk, struggling to stay awake. Their mother’s hands are on his shoulders trying to guide him. What’s wrong with his eyes?
Their father breathes heavily through his nose. Micah looks up at him again and back at his mother. There are men behind her. Men with guns. Men with guns in uniforms. The watchers.
“Going somewhere Markus? You know all Portals must be reported,” a watcher holding a gun to Micah’s mum say. Micah moves closer to his father. Hiding behind his legs.
Malachi’s eyes roll back in his head and he falls. Their mother goes to catch him but as she moves the man pulls the trigger. Malachi’s face is now painted in red. Their mother didn’t catch him. She’s lying on the floor next to him. The red seeping out of her neck.
Micah’s father wraps his arm around Micah and grips him tightly. Micah can feel him fighting to stay strong. Micah tries to as well. Tries to be strong like his father but the tears a flowing down his cheeks. He makes no noise though. A soundless cry.
Some feedback I got from the teacher was that it seems very distant when written in third person. That it would interesting to hear it from the first person point of view. So I decided that I would re-write it in first person and see how that goes. I like the first person version better. Here it is:
My father and I are waiting for my mother and Malachi. We must have got to the portal early. But if they don’t get here soon it’ll be too late to leave this world. The Watchers will know.
There is a noise in the dark alley way. I look over and I see them. Mum helping Malachi to walk. What’s wrong with him? Why can’t he walk normally?
Dad’s big hand grips my shoulder and he pulls me closer to him. He’s tense. Something’s wrong. I look up at my mother’s face and that’s when I see them. The men behind her. The men with guns behind her. The men in uniform with guns behind her.
The watchers. They found out.
“Going somewhere Markus? You know all Portals must be reported,” the watcher holding a gun to my mother says. Dad’s grip on me is still strong and I’m grateful. Dad’s strong, I can be strong too. But I can be strong behind him too. I start slipping behind his legs. I’m not hiding… I’m… I’m…
Malachi’s eyes roll back in his head. The hairs on the back of my neck stand up, my eyes go wide. I’m preparing to fight if I need to. I’m not scared. Why would I be scared? Dad’s not scared.
My baby brother falls. He goes limp. Mum moves to catch him and BANG!
She misses. He falls to the floor. Dad grips me even tighter. There is red stuff dripping from Malachi’s face. It’s all over his face. Why didn’t mum catch him?
I look up to her but she’s not there. The watcher is looking down towards Malachi. The gun is pointed that way too. I slowly lower my eyes and see why she didn’t catch him. She’s lying next to him, motionless. I can see his chest rising and fall with breath but mum’s not even blinking. Her eyes are open staring straight at me but they’re not seeing me. There is a hole in her head and red is gushing out of it.
Other watchers raise their guns at us. There’s a lump in my throat. I try to swallow it as I feel salty tears slide down my cheeks. Dad and I breath in deeply. We’re not scared.
I’m not scared.
*** Side note… next week’s writing task to take in is to be written in first person with the narrator reveals opposing aspects of their character through their words and actions… I think I might use my new version of this for it. ***