4-19-12 The prompt: Hard room, soft colors. Soft squishy bodies. Berber carpet, nubbly. Describe textures.
30-minute writing, fiction
He was a hard man in a soft town. Why the hell did he get off that bus? There’s nothing here for him, but everyone needs to be someplace. The lady in front of him had stepped down just a bit too slow, and he pushed past her, in a rush to get away from the crowd behind him. He stumbled onto the Common, and breathed in the soft air. Slumped to the ground. After three hours of a corduroy seat on a bus that still smelled of cigars and cigarettes decades after the ban, the grass caressed and cooled him. Earth beneath his fingers, cool and damp.
He looked around, trying to maintain situational awareness. Students sunning themselves and smoking. The smell wafting over him. He stood and moved upwind, finding a tree for shade. The sun was becoming brutal, drying and shrinking his skin. Shade helped. Another scan of the area, noting the placement of paths, cars sliding by, a police car sitting parked, the cop goldbricking. No worries there.
He shifted again, the leather of the holster digging into his back. He had to move, before people started to wonder why he was wearing a jacket on such a warm day. Time to drift through the town, get familiar with it, and locate another target.
Donovan had slipped out of the last town a full day before the body was found. It was a lot more run-down than this place. An old mill town, sliding down into depression and grayness as only lost hope can produce. Cinders in the streets, a sluggish river pulling dead branches through and away. The target was tough, but not hard. You need life to be hard. All of the life had been sucked out of those folks years ago. He had probably done the old guy a favor.
This new place had life. Maybe he could find a bit of a challenge if he could just be patient for a while. Maybe find the library. They are usually air conditioned, so no one would care about the jacket. And the people are so focused on their books that they find it easy to ignore you. He could pick one lucky soul and live a bit of their life parallel to them, then follow them outside. Maybe her.