Consequences and Shouting

by rdhill316

So I found this blog post with thirteen writing prompts. This was the first one:

Write a scene showing a man and a woman arguing over the man’s friendship with a former girlfriend. Do not mention the girlfriend, the man, the woman, or the argument.

I love the idea. Challenging, but I gave it a shot. Came up with a pretty short scene (only a little over 200 words), but I think it (mostly) fulfills the criteria. Here’s my take on the prompt:

Bitterness hangs in the air, thick like a cloud. The clock on the wall of the kitchen ticks out the seconds, each one as long as a day, or a year. The uncomfortable silences are shattered by shouting and anger. There is a pain and a hurt. A past all too close to the present widens cracks; the relationship is breaking.

Defensiveness and pride are ingrained in the soul. They lurk beneath the surface, and though unwanted and never summoned, they come. With accusations and hurt, they come. Some things, once unleashed, can never be corralled. Like the dark things in Pandora’s box and toothpaste out of the tube, words are let loose into the world. They can’t be put back in.

Wetness on cheeks.


Emotions decide things that they should not. Reflection and logic are not consulted. There are consequences and more shouts.

Shoulders heave and lungs collapse and pleas are made; more wetness from the eyes. In a silence both long and short, a finality creeps in. There is no formal announcement, and yet it is known. There is more shouting, and a suitcase. A cup, white and ceramic and cherished, flies across the kitchen.

The cup, like the relationship, shatters, and falls to the floor.