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A Chapter by Alice

My name is -

Does it really matter what my name is? Well - I suppose it does. My name is Lucie and when this all began I was eighteen years old.
 
My family before - what should I say about them? Well, I had a father and a mother, and I once had an older sister but somebody took her away. It was in all of the papers at the time and, like most of these sorts of cases, the police never found her. I think when this happened I would have been four years old. Her name had been Michelle, before she was taken away. They called her Shellie - my mother and my father - and brushed her hair and bought her new clothing. After she went my name was always Lucie. I can't remember what it had been before, but after it was always Lucie. I'm not sure whether I liked my name; really, I cannot remember.

 

They moved after that - they could not stay in the place where she had been taken. I was about to move up from nursery to day school, but the whole place had bad memories for my mother and my father, and they chose to take me away. They took me back to the place where my mother had grown up when she was a child. It was a place close to the sea and I did not like it. The small town gave me nightmares. I did not like the tall black shoulders of the little beach. I became unwell and we moved again. After that, we never really settled in once place - we were always on the move. I think that some day they hoped to find her - my sister who wasn't ever there. They told me that it was my health - always told me that it was my health and never stopped moving from place to place. When people asked me about home there was a blank space in my mind, and a vague recollection of a place that I had lived in once, when I was four years old.

 

One year all of it stopped. My mother and father decided that they were old now, and they stopped looking for Michelle, though they never forgot about her. We were not a rich family, I seem to remember, but my parents wanted countryside. They were growing old, and they wanted a place where they could live out the rest of their lives. I was fifteen by then and I remember thinking that they were looking for somewhere to die. I never said it out loud though, even though it was true. 

 

Gradually the three of us descended into a state of numbness; my father would work endlessly and to little effect, my mother became a running loop of resentment and spite, occasionally breaking out in little outbursts of anger when she felt particularly upset. I turned page after page after page, and hoped that one day I would look up and it would all be gone, like some sort of bad dream. Of course it never was, but the more pages I turned the less I cared. This was how I managed to do what some people call living. And, of course, if being alive is what you call living, then I was a living human being, back in those times when I was young, those times that now seem so very long ago.

 

So my parents moved to a place that they considered to be in the countryside, or at least it was all the countryside that they could afford, because in reality our house then was a concrete square with windows near a bypass with some fields. It was cold there, and the town was what had been spat out at the end of the two wars, and there had once been a train running through it, but now there was a tarmac path where the lines had been for cycling, though not many people cycled. Not many people left their houses for that matter; not many people worked. And all around were these grey blanket fields and in the distance a line of mountains that never seemed to get any closer until you were suddenly on top of them. We did not visit the mountains often though because nobody ever had time. My mother and father were busy, but what with I could not understand.

 

I went to school in a larger town nearby. In all the schools that I had been to as a child I had wanted to have friends, though I had found it hard as I was certain that we would be moving soon enough and that I would have to leave people behind. The school that I attended this time was large and hostile. I complained to my parents, but before I went to that school I had been to an all-girls Catholic school, it being the nearest in the area, and had complained about that too, so my parents paid little attention. Nobody seemed to want to make friends in this new place, but then I was unsure whether I wanted to be friends with them either, and so I sat back and kept my mouth shut, and for the most part everybody left me alone. My parents sometimes wondered why I never saw people on the weekends, but it didn't bother them often, and I learned to be quiet about it as the subject provoked upset. They were not happy with my inability to socialise. Michelle had always had lots of friends, they told me. I didn't want to say that I had found it easy to make friends too, when I had been eight years old, but I never spoke back to either of them about Michelle and so I said nothing.  

 

 

So I passed one set of exams and then another. I had high grades in both, but apparently did not matter, as on the grand scale of things my results were mediocre, and the exams that I had sat were getting easier and easier every year, or so everybody said. I had always had good results, and my parents had become used to it. They congratulated me, but it was nothing out of the ordinary to them, and if I could achieve good results then it was most likely that the exams I had sat weren't all that difficult. I sometimes wished that they could have been responsible for a short while for some of the students in my year that never worked and were generally abusive if you tried to encourage them. Of course, this never happened, and after a while I came round to the opinion that my results were nothing special as well.

 

I wanted to get away by then. I didn't like to think about getting away too often, because it made me ache and after a while the ache became unbearable. I decided that I would like a degree; all people who had results like mine were going away to get degrees. I wanted to go as soon as I left school, but my parents said that without working for a year I simply could not afford it. Looking back on it I wonder what would have happened to me if I had disobeyed them and gone anyway; I know now that what they had told me was untrue. I would have been ignorant, though, of things that I am not ignorant of now, so in many ways I am glad that I was obedient and I am glad that I stayed when I was told to stay. At the time I was not glad though. I put off my studies, and went to work in a local shop, a shop that sold greetings cards. I cannot remember, really, whether I was entirely unhappy. I was certainly numb though, more so than I had been in years.   

 


 

 

 

 



© 2010 Alice


Author's Note

Alice
Any first impressions on the narrative voice? I've had mixed responses to Lucie as a narrator.

My Review

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Featured Review

I liked this, it was sombre and you showed the emotions in your words well. I think the narrative perspective worked very well and in total I enjoyed this. It is not a light read, yet it is not too heavy. Some bits could be revised but overall I like this.
Keep writing as your words are well sculpted.


Posted 10 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.




Reviews

This is very good, I don't usually read the stories here beceause none have really grabbed me. But I like the simplicity of this so far... how you have Lucie talks matches what her personality feels like to me. I can feel that numb feeling... I'm ready to read the rest :) There were a couple of lines I really liked and now I've lost them... oh well, I'm sure I'll find more!

Posted 10 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

I like how world-weary she sounds, but not like an old woman or anything. Just like a girl who has been through much (which I guess she has). I also like how the memory of her sister haunts the family. Even when siblings are alive sometimes it's hard to live up to them, can't even imagine how much worse it must be if they're dead.

Posted 10 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

I liked this, it was sombre and you showed the emotions in your words well. I think the narrative perspective worked very well and in total I enjoyed this. It is not a light read, yet it is not too heavy. Some bits could be revised but overall I like this.
Keep writing as your words are well sculpted.


Posted 10 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

wow this is grate :)
i liked it :)

Posted 10 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

I know I wrote a comment on this on DA, but seeing as you've put the whole novel on here, I want to read it from start to finish. Also, writing of this quality deserves lots of reviews! :D
Really great establishing chapter, you've already created a really bleak mood that reminds me of alot of the great classic scary stories. Your use of language is gorgeous, and you describe things so well!

Posted 10 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.


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Added on February 7, 2010
Last Updated on February 9, 2010
Tags: jane, lucie, vampire, vampires, vampire romance, lesbian, lesbians, gay, LGBT, realism, realistic


Author

Alice
Alice

United Kingdom



About
I’m a prose writer, mainly one that works on novels and doesn’t finish them. I want to use this place like an online notebook. I’ll be posting as I write, which means a lot of this .. more..

Writing
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A Chapter by Alice


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A Chapter by Alice


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A Chapter by Alice