Welcome to Day 13 of the Author Up Challenge!
Today’s prompt was:
Day 13: Write Science Fiction.
I’ve written science fiction pieces before, but this prompt was really tough. And it’s still not “true” science fiction–there’s no explanations of techie things in it. But I found some prompts on writepop.com that sparked some ideas. So I choose one. It is at the end of this post, because I wanted to at least tempt to not spoil the story. Too bad I can’t make it expanding text–so that you have to click on it to see/read it. Oh well.
This certainly isn’t my favorite of pieces I’ve written recently, it needs more work, but I think it turned out okay.
Let me know what you think in the comments below.
After three weeks of engaging conversation and so much in common, Erika wondered if it was too quick to ask to meet Ryan. He hadn’t brought up the subject yet. In fact, she didn’t even know where he lived, just that he was local. He knew many of the same stores and restaurants in her small town, even the comic book shop, and she realized maybe she’d run across him at some point.
How weird would that be?
After all the ways they could have met, and maybe they had but didn’t know it, Erika had started talking to Ryan after a chance meeting in World of Warcraft. She’d been herbing on her worgen druid, and he’d snagged a Felweed she’d been about to pick. She got annoyed, but then the offender turned around and came back. A human hunter named Velius opened trade with her and gave her the herb, along with a smile emote.
Erika didn’t know how to reply, except, “Thanks.”
That simple interaction had led to a conversation, somehow. Erika couldn’t even remember how. The guy just started whispering her, and suddenly it was three in the morning and Erika had to peel herself away from the game and the conversation to log off and go to bed.
Then, she’d dragged her tired ass around at work the next day. Ugh. The only thing that got her through was the hope that Velius would be on again.
They talked until the wee hours again, and Erika learned his name was Ryan. She’d never known many Ryan’s, but it had always been a favorite name of hers. She tried to sneak it into short stories when she could.
Then, to find out he lived near–or perhaps in–her small town.
Ryan admitted he didn’t get out as much as he wanted, between work and other commitments. That made Erika nervous and her stomach queasy. Oh, God, he’s married! But he assured her he wasn’t.
Not that she had much room to say anything. She never got out either. Between working full time and going to school part time, the hours of her day were usually full. If she wasn’t at work or school, she had homework. And on the rare occasion she caught up on that, she stole away the tiny chunks of time to relax, either reading or writing.
Ryan had been thrilled when she’d introduced him to her blog. He seemed to absorb the entirety of it in a few days, and had shared his thoughts on several pieces–both positive and negative, but all constructive and even some insightful things she hadn’t thought of.
They also enjoyed the same music. Which never happened. Usually guys barely tolerated her techno and quickly got tired of it. He knew many of her favorite musicians–Moby and Morcheeba, Bjork and Royksopp, Zero 7 and Massive Attack, Above and Beyond and Armin Van Buuren.
The list of things they shared in common seemed almost impossible, but Erika didn’t complain. She enjoyed it every minute she could. Don’t say it, she thought more than once. Don’t you dare say too perfect.
As she sat at her desk, waiting for Ryan to log on, she mentally worked up the courage to ask him to coffee. Coffee was safe. Coffee was in public, in case by some chance he was some crazy nutjob in real life. Coffee was also short, and meant either one of them could decide on more, beyond coffee, or ending their–date?–there. No, not a date, just coffee. Keep it simple.
Then again, Erika began to ponder, they hadn’t even spoken on Skype or the phone. She started to wonder what Ryan looked like. Maybe that was a better next step. Maybe coffee was too quick, but a phone call, that made sense.
Velius logged on. He was still standing next to Erika’s Druid in the Dwarven District of Stormwind, where they’d last chatted until way too late. She had been too distracted since logging on to move from the spot.
“Evening,” came the whisper text. “I was thinking maybe we could talk on Skype tonight? What do you think?”
Erika blinked. Whoa, did he read my mind or what? She fumbled to untangle her headset and plug it in while she clicked around until Skype opened and logged her in. As soon as she connected, the line began to ring and she picked up.
“Hi!” Ryan said, his smile reaching his sea green eyes and making them sparkle.
Erika had to forced her mouth closed. He was gorgeous. She couldn’t have dreamed him better. Wavy brown hair that hung almost to his ears, but not too messy or too tidy, and a goatee that perfectly outlined his smile.
“Is your audio working?” he asked playfully.
“Oh, yes, sorry,” she sputtered. “Hi.” It sounded lame and flat as it came out of her mouth.
Ryan chuckled. “Oh good. I can hear you.”
“One sec, let me close WoW.” Erika tabbed through the open windows and Stormwind came back into view.
“You can close it later. Let’s just talk for now,” Ryan was saying in the background, but Erika barely heard him. Her screen did not open as she expected. She wasn’t looking through her druid’s point of view, she was looking at her druid–from the view of Ryan’s hunter, Velius.
Ryan had trailed off and become quiet.
“What the hell?” Erika said, her confusion coming out annoyed and verging on angry. “Are you some hacker? How the hell are you logged in on my computer?”
“Well,” he began but stopped.
Erika closed WoW, and Ryan’s face filled her screen again.
“Explain. How are you on my computer?” she asked again.
“Actually, I am your computer,” he admitted with a shrug and an embarrassed grin.
“Oh bugger.” Too perfect, she thought once more.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~
This story and all related material are the original works of Awaiting the Muse and Effy J. Roan AKA Effraeti. All rights reserved.
Awaiting the Muse by Effy J. Roan AKA Effraeti is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
Based on a work at https://awaitingthemuse.wordpress.com/.