Saturday, March 24, 2012

Movie Week - Writing Prompts (Day 4) Unforgiven

Continuing from the first three days, the writing prompt for today was:

It was one of those starry and subdued summer nights in the depths of the desert. Cocooned in the enclave of a sand dune, a group of friends gathered around a fire, toasting chestnuts while sipping heart-warming cups of chilli cocoa. The night games had taken an interesting turn with a fresh round of truth or dare. Jenna decided to withdraw from the group and listen to Tom’s strumming on his guitar instead. He was playing an old familiar tune. Soon enough, Jenna was humming to the tune until her voice could sustain itself no longer and she broke into song. With her eyes closed, she gave it her all until she slowly realised that the music had stopped. Flicking her eyes open, she caught Tom looking at her, watching her. There was this awkward moment and Jenna just didn’t know what to do with herself. Hesitating, she smiled and dug her feet in the sand, bringing herself up. But as she took a couple of steps away, she felt a squeeze on her shoulder, bringing her to a stop.

“Jen, let’s go for a walk.”

Jenna shifted her weight to the other foot and avoided looking at him. She shook the sand from her hands, “I… I think I should call it a night, mmmm, where’s Sarah? I need to find, Sarah. Just got this awesome design…”

“Wait. There’s something I need to tell you.”

Jenna blinked nervously as she found herself being led away. She knew what Tom had to say to her but she would have none of it. He was with Sarah now. Yes, they had been married once. Yes, they shared a son. In fact, they had so much in common that it had kept their friendship alive even after the separation and the divorce. Despite all the bitterness and the pain that they had experienced, she could forgive him all that, or so she thought. She had moved on and found new avenues for herself. So when he had hooked up with Sarah a couple of years after it was all final, she had no qualms. But infidelity was not something she could accept or even conceive in her mind. It was a concept alien to her but she wasn’t so sure about him. Tom was fickle and temperamental.

“Look, Tom, this is not going to work.”

“I’m still in love with you.”

“No, stop it! You’re not! You’re with Sarah now. You’re happy together. I won’t have any of this.”

Tom kicked the sand with his feet and made a fist before looking at her in the eye.

“When will you ever let go of it. You never will, will you! After all these years, you just won’t forgive me that one indiscretion. I did it for us, Jen. Why won’t you see that?”

Jenna pursed her lips and tried to stop herself from saying anything that she would later regret. It was of no use now. His lies were in the past and bringing them up now would do neither of them any good. Yet, she couldn’t help the heaviness in her chest, thinking about how he had lied to her about his family. About his history and lineage and how he had known that it would make it impossible for them to ever marry. About the fact that he had allowed her to break the vow that she had been made to take as a young girl. All the daughters of her family had been made to take. He knew it all and he had ignored it all, belittled it, brushed it aside as irrelevant. It made an unfurling sense of indignation rise within her. She picked up a handful of sand and threw it as far as she could. But the cold desert wind, dispersed it, carrying the specks over to the flames nearby. Tom watched as Jenna stormed off, her incensed feet stumbling against the softness of the sand. It was only then that he truly realised that what he had done would be forever unforgiven.

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