Friday, April 11, 2014

Prompt: Fire is such a fluid thing

Becca opened the glassblower’s shop door and looked up at the merry tinkling of glass bells. The rainbow display bounced on a ribbon over her head as the closing door swept over them again. She looked around for the shopkeeper, but the room was empty.

Frowning, she pulled her papers out of her well-worn travel bag. The glassblower would be expecting her, wouldn’t he? She had paid a rough glass token for a message to him when she was delayed in Brendlemere. She was so exhausted, all she wanted to do was lie down, preferably on a bed, though she expected a floor pallet was more likely. And alone. She had fended off more advances than she cared to count in the five-day journey here. Not all of them had taken her word for it.

At the thought, sparks flew from her fingertips, and Becca snapped her hands into fists. Stop it! She grimaced and clenched her fingers tighter. She couldn’t afford any mistakes with the glassblower. Her da had made it plenty plain she had no home to go back to.

She wandered around the shop, looking at the glass displays. It was an intriguing mix of the mundane and sublime. Simple glass plates and cups filled one curio, with small, colorful animals and birds tucked around the edges. Everywhere there were hanging birds, butterflies, suns and moons. Soon Becca forgot she was supposed to be looking for the glassblower, lost in the glass itself.

In the back corner, a hanging rod held colorful spirals that spun slowly on white ribbons. Captivated, Becca reached up to touch them, one at a time, spinning them in the light reaching in through the front window. As she traced the colored lines turning around and around, her fingers glowed white hot, and the spirals stretched down, lengthening in graceful curves as she fingered them.

“Nice touch you have there,” an amused voice said behind her. Becca jumped and the glass spiral she was holding dripped to the floor. She closed her eyes in despair.

Rough hands took her own, fingers rubbing over her fingertips, not pulling away in horror. Becca’s eyes opened to the curious gaze of a woman barely older than herself. Still holding her hands, the glassblower said, “You’ll be my new apprentice, then?”

Dumbstruck, Becca could only nod.

The woman smiled gently and dropped her hands. Turning away, she waved Becca toward her. “Good. Come on, then. I’ll give you the two token tour.”

When she reached the doorway, she turned to see Becca still standing, rooted next to the glass bubble on the floor. “I’m Ayla. Pick that up before it hardens, will you? Glass is such a fluid thing…”

Dogs in House

Jesse Cook, Free Fall

Time writing
~25 minutes

April word count

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