Monday, April 24, 2006

Entry #12

“Blinded by the Light”
by Bethany K. Warner


The sideboard lights, I decided, would be the test.

A one-if-by-land-two-if-by-sea-Paul-Revere sort of thing. Only for me, it was on if he's faithful, off if he's not.

I turned on the lights as I wheeled my suitcase down the hall. I never did that. He always did, letting them burn all night if I didn't shut them off.

My father's voice rang in my head when I left them on, a phantom from my childhood about how nobody knows how to use a light switch and how would I like to pay the electric bill.

The cost of electricity was the last thing on my mind. I paid for the airfare that I wouldn't use so I could make him think I was traveling on business this weekend.

I had a rental car on reserve so he wouldn't spot my red car parked down the block where I would keep surveillance.

I would meet him at the airport restaurant for a last meal.

I would check in and then I'd turn back to the rental car desk, drive home and wait.

Wait for them to return from the martini bar-- it was those receipts that first made me suspicious. And he would nibble her ear in the hallway and wrap his arms around her waist.

So the neighbors wouldn't see, or because she heard her father yelling about leaving lights on unnecessarily, she would reach for the lamps' switches.

Sometimes, vision is better in the dark.

12 comments:

Erik Ivan James said...

Very clear, the message. Good job.

Jaye Wells said...

Nice job.

Anonymous said...

This is leaving me wanting more. I wonder, with all the preparation of your character, what her vengeance would be. Your final line is realy good.

Flood

sandra said...

I can see her slipping down the hall to the bedroom with the gun in her hand now. Nice.

Jeff said...

Good story, Bethany. :)

Kelly Parra said...

Bethany, ooh very nice! =D

Kelly from FM =)

Jim said...

Wow, very powerful closing line.

Bhaswati said...

Indeed, this keeps one asking for more! Very well done :)

Robin said...

Very, very nice! Wow!

skees said...

Excellent story Bethany. Remind me never to try and fool you....

Btw, I'm bettin' the lights go out;)

-John Wilson

Lyn said...

Great story - perfect set up and concluding punch line. Very compelling; I'm also waiting for what happens next!
For some silly reason I thought she was returning from the airport to wait in the hallway for the betrayal - I had to reread the story a couple of times before I realized she was turning on the lights as she left and would eventually park down the street to catch Paul's midnight ride. More my reading than your writing. Good work. Lyndon

jason evans said...

Bethany, such an original idea! You definitely have a strong writing voice and great execution. Also, your first and last lines are superb. They're so important to the reader's experience.

High marks on voice, storytelling, and enjoyment.