Designed for updates, bits of undeniable wit, unasked for wisdom and story scraps.

Currently Available Books

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

New Scrap Set! "Apartment 12"

Lately I have a new source of inspiration, and it's giving me some hilarious ideas! I also have some interesting older scraps on my computer with characters who I still connect with, I want them to have a longer time to shine.

I have decided to roll the ideas into one Scrap-Set. There will be a few continuing themes, but most of the scraps will be cute little blurbs. While many of these stories will probably be inspired by real events, names will be changed as well as places.

The stories take place around and between two roommates and a few of their friends at Pine St Place, an apartment building.

Without out (much) further ado, I introduce,

Apartment 12

Carmen leaned against the washing machine, engaged in a stare down with the timer. She had arrived on time, perfectly so. Well, she was one minute early at the most. Maybe two. Whatever. She was most certainly not five minutes early!

When a timer promised the load would only take 24 minutes, it had better mean it! She ran her tongue over her teeth. She was quite aware of how intimidating she appeared when she did that. Halfway across her pearly whites she grimaced suddenly. She needed to brush her teeth.

Four minutes left on the timer. Carmen took a deep breath and considered. Could she make it back to her apartment, up the stairs, brush her teeth and be back before the timer ran out? Unlikely. Would she try?

Sadly, yes.

She grinned suddenly and deserted the laundry room. Jogging over the gravel path, she listened as always to the sounds from other apartments. Most people were at work at one in the afternoon, but the ones who worked the night shift were just waking. Voices seeped through the walls. If you passed at the right times you could learn some very interesting details.

Apartment 9 had their air conditioner running which muddled the conversation taking place within. She could hear a man and a woman, but their words were indecipherable. Apartment 11 was still empty after the neighbors had moved out. Thank goodness they had, their animals had constantly been allowed to run amuck (emphasis on ‘muck’ please). The carpet cleaners had just left the day before, it had taken them hours to clean the place out. The smell of pine floor cleaner was so strong it had been wafting into Carmen and Vega’s apartment just up the stairs. Across from 11, she could hear the couple in 13 chatting about his new work schedule.

Carmen carefully mounted the stairs. The concrete steps were steep enough and she was clumsy enough she had no desire to take chances. Apartment 12 emitted no sounds, Vega said the two guys who lived there worked across town at a tire store during the day.

Opening the door to the apartment she closed it quickly and sprinted across to the bathroom. She wrenched open the top drawer while picking up her toothbrush with the other hand. In one fluid movement she had the cap open on the toothpaste and was squeezing a small amount on the brush. Turning the faucet on to cold she splashed some water on the brush and paste then jammed it into her mouth so hard she winced.

Ignoring the taste of blood, she brushed like a dancing marionette. After about one minute the fluoride was starting to burn a little. She spat out a wad of toothpaste and rinsed the brush. Grabbing the water bottle she kept on the counter she gulped to much and almost choked. The water shot up her nasal passages, and possibly all the way to her tear ducts as she felt them water. She spat it back out just as quickly and then proceeded to hack up her left lung.

When she was done she stood with her hands clutching the sides of the counter, heaving in air to her remaining lung. She wiped her face with the soft lavender towel that had seen too many of these episodes. Luckily, only a little of her makeup had been mussed. She wiped judiciously at the corner of her eyes, ridding them of the smeared liner.

After another ten seconds she was on her way back down the stairs. Jogging again, she made it back to the laundry room and slid to a halt in front of the washer. The timer mockingly displayed ‘0’. Carmen’s fists clenched and her eyes narrowed. She pulled her cell phone out of her pocket and glanced down at the time. She had only been gone for four minutes.

Yes, the washer was definitely messing with her.

“Grr!” She said loudly and hauled the door open. Reaching across to the dryer she opened its door as well. The transfer of clothes was longer and probably much more awkward than it had to be. Multiple times socks dropped to the dirty floor, further pleasing Carmen. She thought she finally had all of the clothes in the dryer when she turned around to see a pair of underwear also on the ground. Bright purple and covered in leopard print, they were unmistakably hers.

“Shit!” She hissed and snatched them up in an instant. She threw them in the dryer and slammed the door shut, looking around with embarrassment. Had anyone witnessed her display?

The apartments right next to the laundry room, 9 and 10 had their blinds closed. No one seemed to be out and about either. She sighed in relief and started popping the quarters into the machine. One dollar and a delicate button later, she was leaving the laundry room.

Without knowing why, she glanced up at apartment 10. The stair landing was littered with potted plants, wind chimes and a doormat that Carmen couldn’t read from below. The door had a beaded curtain and the whole landing was wrapped in mosquito netting.
The blinds in the front window were shaking slightly, as if something had tapped them. Or as if someone had been staring out.
Carmen's eyes narrowed and she walked back to her apartment even faster.

No comments:

Post a Comment