Tuesday, 7 March 2017

The Brown Shoes

For audio click here
Chrystal watched the rain tumble down and the traffic rumble by. Every day the same; the splashes and whooshes of the cars and lorries through the surface water as more and more rain fell from cold, grey skies. How many days had it been raining now? Chrystal had given up counting. She shivered as more cars splashed past. Where did they come from? Where did they go? All day and all night, car after car like a production line in a factory.  People going, people coming, people leaving, people returning. People in cars. Every now and again one would signal and pull off into the little car park in front of the hotel. But mostly they just whizzed by, going somewhere.  Meanwhile, Chrystal was going nowhere; stuck in this room, dreaming of at least leaving this poxy, communist built hotel. But even her imagination was fading as the constant rain washed away the colours of her dreams. She turned on the TV and flicked through the channels, CNN, BBC, Russia Today, local channels in a language she didn’t understand. They were all showing the same orange face and tiny hands. How long had he dominated the news channels? About as long as it had been raining. 
Her phoned pinged. She looked at the screen and then back out on the road. More cars, different cars, one of them would be carrying him; whoever he was. Would it be a blue one? A silver one? A black one? It would certainly be a Beamer or a Merc or something like that and he’d probably reek of aftershave; Invictus or Boss, or CK One, freshly splashed on to hide the smell of body odour collected over the day or sometimes two days, sometimes a week. Blue suit, pink shirt or black suit, white shirt, whatever the combination it would always be brown shoes. They nearly all wore brown shoes. Brown shoes was a status of manliness, of doing deals, of being on the ball. Brown shoes said I’m important, don’t fuck with me. She bet the customers didn’t wear brown shoes, but the majority of the reps did. 
It was the ones in black shoes she had to be wary of. They were the romantics; the ones who fell in love with her, wanted to marry her, or wanted to come back and save her. She wasn’t interested, this wasn’t some kind of real life Pretty Woman and even if they looked like Richard Gere who would want to marry a man that uses motel prostitutes on the way home to their current wives. They’d be phoning home before they’d even done up their flies. “Just stopped for a coffee love, be home in twenty minutes.” She had higher standards than that. The worst were the ones who wanted to satisfy her, idiots. Fussed around checking all was good for her, took ages trying to achieve the impossible. She liked the pigs, those who got on, grunted, squealed and left - over and done with in minutes. Chrystal watched the rain tumble down and the traffic rumble by. A car indicated and pulled into the car park, a black Beamer. The man dashed across the forecourt in the rain. Late forties, balding, brown shoes, this wouldn’t take long. 

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  1. I am a fan of your descriptions of rain, cloudy skies, storms and grey days and with this one you have given me an earworm for today: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TzFnYcIqj6I

    1. and a mighty fine ear worm it is too. :-)

    2. and another thing I like about the story is that you don't reveal who the protagonis is at the beginning - you keep the reader engaged and curious who this person watching the rain really is. A fine example of your famous twist! I really thought she is a good, romantic girl waiting for the love of her life to arrive (especially because her first name may indicate purity and innocence) and than.... bang... reality turns out to be different.

    3. This story is another example where I write a description and then create a story, so I am as surprised as you are on how it has turned out. IF I believed everything I've read in the Writing Handbooks this would not be the way to do it, but these ones often get the nicest comments.
      Here are a couple of other examples

    4. If everyone followed advice from Writing Handbooks, there wouldn't be great and original stories/novels. And yes the comments are very nice, especially the ones I wrote myself:-D