SepSceneWriMo 2022 – Day 2 – Killer Gossip

Martha switched tabs in her browser and paused the YouTube video. Amy Lee of Evanescence stopped singing about ‘[her] immortal.’

Martha held her breath and focused. She was right – it wasn’t the song; raised voices could clearly be heard from the apartment next door.

“Teddy? They’re at it again,” she called out to her fiance.

The last time the neighbors argued was two nights prior at 3am, right outside Martha and Ted’s bedroom window. It got heated to a point where grabbing and shoving came into play. Unable to sleep and concerned for the well-being of the couple outside, Ted called the cops, who arrived promptly on the scene, separated the couple, and then left. Thankfully, once the police departed, the couple chatted calmly for a few minutes before parting ways.

“What are they arguing about this time?” Ted asked, zipping his pants.

Martha shrugged her shoulders and put her finger up to her mouth. While it was easy to hear the screaming, it was much more difficult to hear the calmer words. Plus, she did not want the couple next door to know they were being listened to.

Mind your own damn business,” Martha could imagine the woman saying to her. She only saw her once, in passing, but felt that she could ‘just tell’ the kind of person the neighbor was from that encounter, supplemented by the various screaming matches from the past.

Teddy and Martha stood face to face, with their ears pressed against the living room wall.

“I’m just so tired of this bullsh!t!” the female yelled. “You sent him my photo without asking,” she continued after no response from the man. “Now I have to clean this mess up. A mess YOU created.”

Martha raised her eyebrow, and now Ted was the one shrugging his shoulders. Neither one of them could figure out what the argument was about.

At that moment, the man replied, but neither one of them could make out what he said. Martha made a mental note to grab a glass next time to magnify her hearing. She wished she had seen the man so she could figure out how he compared to the female. Surely that would help Martha craft a more complete story.

“You motherfcker!” the woman next door screamed just before a loud bang could be heard.

“Was that a gunshot?” Martha asked, looking to Teddy for comfort and direction.

But Teddy did not answer. Blood spilled from his mouth, and his body slumped onto the floor.

Now it was Martha’s turn to scream.

Stay golden,

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15 thoughts on “SepSceneWriMo 2022 – Day 2 – Killer Gossip

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    1. Oh, wow, thank you! I’m glad you enjoyed them.
      ‘Maintain this quality for a whole month?” Well, I’m not sure I will do 30 days. (But I hope to get as close to that as possible.) And, maintaining quality is DEFINITELY something I worry about. In the end – I’m aware that it might not be possible to knock it out of the park every single day. That’s why this is an exercise for me. To push and see where it goes. And to learn from it! If I get that, I will be pleased. Thank you for embarking on this journey with me.

      Day 3 is much longer than I thought it would be… Hope it’s not too bad.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, I was proud of myself for being able to wrap it up in fewer (than normally) words. I’m already seeing how:
      1. there can be a full story in just one short scene
      2. a scene can go on forever

      Thanks for giving me this opportunity to flex my writing muscles.

      I weep over the structural soundness of such walls.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. You seem to already have the terse descriptions down. Gushing details are burdensome, in my opinion. Unfold a character’s appearance & behavior in bits and pieces, like you do, not like a character study.

        Liked by 2 people

  1. Wow. It’s amazing what you can do with a single scene, no? Up until the gunshot, it’s a situation I think most can relate to — which, at least for me, makes the ending all the more impactful.

    Now, as for our regularly scheduled program, I did notice the sentence “the wall living room wall.” Which I found rather interesting, as for some reason, I can totally imagine it (with slightly different punctuation) being screamed by some traumatized victim in a horror movie. Also, I think you misspelled bullsh**. Oh, wait. So did I. 😜

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s what I have learned from this exercise already. Scenes can contain SO much.

      As a reader, I enjoy when a story seems real enough and I can put myself in it. I try to do the same when I write. It’s harder for me to get involved in a story that’s very sci-fi or fantasy.

      ‘Regularly scheduled program’ – I love it. (Though I thought I re-read that once or twice, i.e. enough to catch those.) Heheheh

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Indeed. I’m of the opinion not all stories have to be grand and sweeping (though really, I ought to write a story about some great janitor of giants and his broom) — as you say, sometimes the best story to read is the one that you can live, or at least resonate with to some degree. I can live in fairylands just fine, mind you, but even fairylands must be populated by people.

        Heh, glad you liked it. And for the record, just one is pretty good for the amount you write. Besides… living room walls can really sneak up on you. 😜


          1. That’s kind of you to say. ☺ For me, prose is a bit like painting. If you have something specific you want to create, it probably won’t turn out like you imagined. Which can be… disappointing. So, I have to be in a Bob Ross mindset, or it gets scrapped.

            Heh. Yeah, don’t think about it too much. If you weren’t claustrophobic before…

            Liked by 1 person

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