"I'm dead. I've missed you. Kiss...?"

"I'm dead. I've missed you. Kiss...?"

A Story by Riss

This is a short story I had to write for my American Lit class. We chose "six word short stories" and had to create our own story from them. I know it's rushed but I had to keep it short.


“I’m dead. I’ve missed you. Kiss...?”

The road crunched under the dusty tires of a 1992 Ford Ranger.  It's teal paint was marled with orange and flaking like fish scales, occasionally freeing pieces to the salty wind. Its driver stared ahead blankly, thinking no thoughts but feeling the grumble of rocks instead. Ian turned right onto Grant Street, crawling down the road to a weather beaten gray house. Ian remembered when they had first moved to Brunswick, newly Mr. and Mrs. Talbot. The house had quickly been washed with lilac paint and given a garden before the boxes were even unpacked.

The familiar smell of home whisked through the door as soon as it opened; the forever present smell of pasta and lavender perfume. Ian dropped his heavy coat on the back of the couch, shuffled to the kitchen and began rooting through the cupboards. The metal pot clanged against the stove and brought another wave of pain through his head. He ate in silence, listening, barely, to the scratchy whisper of a small radio on top of a stack of newspapers. The dark of night dropped against the windows and left Ian laying awkwardly on the green floral couch, dreamless and unmoving until the next morning.

The next morning the sun rose, flooding the coast with light so vibrant it seemed alive, tangible. Ian went about his morning routine no differently than every other Sunday of the past 15 years of his life. He moved quietly about the house, hoping to cause no disturbances. While brushing his hair in the dusty mirror above his dresser, a smile found his face as pearlescent hands, wrapped in white gloves slid about his shoulders. Eyes met in the mirror, flat green to brilliant emerald, the contrast blunt in the stark morning light. He cleared his throat and pushed a not so grim smile onto his face.  "Good morning."
"Good morning,ocean eyes. Are we going out today?"
Ian rolled his eyes and patted the satin gloves on his shoulder. "Don't we always?"

The air was violent as footsteps were pressed into the wet sand of the beach. But the sky was clear, the water already warming and the unmistakable taste of summer sweet in the atmosphere. Ian held the boat steady and pushed away from the dock, rolled up his sleeves and began paddling. The sea gulls screamed overhead as Ian searched for a good spot, not too deep and calm. Ian reached for the empty coffee tin and knotted a worm onto the hook. He settled into the seat padding that had conformed to his shape.

He felt eyes watching him, eyes that made him seventeen with sun bleached hair and August freckles.
"Something wrong?"
"Not at all. I was just thinking we should go in soon, Rose will be home soon.." the sail cracked against itself in the wind and Ian jumped. He shook his head and cursed out loud, glaring past the dainty green dress and hour long hairdo trying to catch his eye at the bow of the boat.
"It's not time yet, it's not. It's not."
He muttered to himself as he rowed home, feeling muscles pull in his back and carelessly ignoring them. He glanced upward as a speckle of rain fell on his face, and felt his heart give a shake when he realized the sky was thick and swirling with black. He throat became dry but he tried not to appear worried.
Her wide eyes seemed glossy when he looked up. "How far un..." the rest of her words fell back upon themselves. The boat was rocking, tipping farther and farther with each wavelet. The coffee tin rolled over and broke open, spilling dirt all over their bare feet that quickly turned to mud. The rain drops were more than speckles now, they ran chilly and without pause down Ian's scalp and over the blisters forming on his hands now. In the same instant Ian threw the oars aside and they both began swiping beneath the seats for life jackets. Numbly, so numb, Ian's fingers fumbled with the straps and buckles. He gave up and went to Elizabeth,
"Ian we can't...get home...Rose.." Words came out from between sobbing gasps that made Ian's stomach flip.
"We'll be fine Liz I'll get us home I promise." He spun around, dropping her hands and reaching again for the oars. He felt his right leg drop and turned around to see the wooden boards of the boat flipping over their heads, spinning like a washing machine and sucking them into the mottled green of the ocean.

The phone was ringing. Ian fell off more than left the couch, and stumbled to the kitchen with legs like gelatin. He snatched up the phone and reached in his pocket, his fingers finding the smooth stone that was always there.
"Hello? Hello?"
There was a pause and then,"Mr. Talbot?"
"Yes what do you want? Who is this?" His throat felt gravelly and parched, his mouth tasted like salt.
"This is Jim, sir. Rose is-"
"Jim? Jim who?" Ian's forehead creased while he examined the blue stone in his hand, no bigger than his pinkie nail. There was a chunk missing from the top, a square shaped scar where something had been ripped off-
"Mr. Talbot it's me Jim? Rose's fiance?" The blue stone folded into his palm as he slammed his fist on the counter.
"Jim I'm sorry I don't- What about Rose? Is she hurt?" He tried to control his voice but felt it raising again, this time with worry.
"She was in an accident, we just got to the hospital an hour ago. Ian if you want I'll pay for you to fly out here. She asked for you and I had to tell her- I can't do this by myself."
Ian concluded the conversation and hung up without saying goodbye. He was packed and on his way to the closest airport within five minutes, taking only clothes, a toothbrush, and the blue stone.

Ian stared at the faint veins in his hands. He ignored the machines, the countless wires, the noises, the tapping of heels in the hallway. For the past week everything had been Rose. He looked now, to the scabs covering the side of her face, the skin pinched and disfigured. His hands squeezed around her clammy one, a sob clenching in his chest but stopped himself  this time. The past week everything had been Rose. Until now. Now everything was everywhere, memories had come rushing to the surface of his conscious. Regret filled his every pore one minute and disgust the next. The blue stone was constantly spinning in his hand, he woke every night with the unforgettable choking taste of sea water and the smell of lavender perfume. One night on a bathroom trip he had broken down at the sight of himself in the mirror, his hair turning gray and wrinkles taking over his face. His cracked hands turned in the green tinged light above the sink. Chipped nails, scars still pink, a wedding band slim and dull around his third finger. That was the first night he had talked to her, to Elizabeth. He soon realized that the only help she gave were memories, turned sour until they became nightmares playing out in his head.

After a month of no improvement, Ian returned home. He occasionally left all the lights on, forgot to sleep, abruptly ended conversations with neighbors and replaced their names with random ones. The first night home, Ian left pasta on the stove for an hour and threw a fit at the scorched mush glued to the bottom of the pan. For the first time in 15 years he had take out, chewing it disgustedly on the green floral couch. A week after returning home, Ian was finished. Every sight of himself in the mirror looked only as DONE, as black inky words dripping into the folds of his skin and staining him. Upon waking in the morning he would slip on work boots, stomp to the mailbox to get the paper, and read it without eating. The knob on the little radio grew dust for the first time since he bought it. The plastic excuse for a boat sitting at the dock, waiting, had mysterious green things beginning to grow on the bottom. The old cream colored phone in the kitchen would ring on and off all day, sounding painfully forlorn and, to Ian’s ears, nosy.

It was May now, everything was sparkling green and fresh. One Tuesday night, while singing along to a Sinatra hit at the kitchen table, the phone rang.

"Hello? Is someone there?"
"Dad?" The voice was croaky and slow, but it still knocked the wind out of Ian.
"Rose honey, is that you?" He didn't know why he was whispering too.
"Mmm. Will you come see me soon Dad?"
"I'll be there tommorrow night."

That night the house reeked of lavender. The bed creaked without Ian moving, hands reached for his calloused ones and eyes pleaded at him from every direction.
"Ian stay with me, stay with me ocean eyes,"
Her voice was so clear, so terrifying.
"You can't leave me here. You can't do this I need you,"
The whispers roared throughout the house like the wind, they reverberated in his ears without fading. He closed his eyes and could only see Elizabeth, green eyes, green dress, the bracelet he bought her for her birthday still on her wrist.

Ian slept fitfully the last night in his home. He stayed in bed until one in the afternoon. When he finally got up, he threw his belongings into his truck haphazardly and drove the old thing one last time to the coastline.

As the sun was setting, a small plastic boat was untied from its dock and pushed into the tranquil sea. The sun blazed orange, touching the crests of waves and ripples in the water, neon splashes alive with movement. He stood still for only a minute, taking in the air, feeling the sun paint his face. He brought a blue polished stone to his face, worn even smoother by his worry, cracked at the very top. He rolled it against his palm, turned his hand and watched it curve into the green water.

© 2011 Riss

Author's Note

Honest comments and reviews pleeease? :)

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THis is really intersesting! I like it!

Posted 12 Years Ago

I liked this story! I am glad you shared it with us.

Posted 13 Years Ago

this is a good story, I like it. you also was very descriptive. you should turn this into a novel, if you do please let me know. keep it coming.

Posted 13 Years Ago

The title is very nice, I like it a lot (though the 'kiss...?' part throws me off a little. i think it would sound better as just 'I'm dead. I've missed you"). This piece starts out very dark and mysterious, which held my interest with relative ease (Often that is hard to do). It didn't really feel rushed to me, and you did a good job organizing time flow into the confined length alloted for a story. You had some very nice description as well, and literary devices when jumping back and forth between present day and past memories. I honestly feared the worst as the end of this story, but it seemed like by throwing the rock into the sea he sort of let the memories go, which is nice assuming that he can eventually move on.

other suggestions:
-"and left Ian laying awkwardly" Lying
-"go in soon, Rose will be home soon.." This line is a little repetitive, because soon is used twice so close together in the line. Maybe just "go in, rose"
-"raising again, this time" rising

Posted 13 Years Ago

Your writing style is very descriptive. This was a very powerful piece, and I'm still trying to get the whole of my mind around it. Your story has a very classic feel of love that transcends planes of existence, very difficult to do, yet you've done it in a very splendid fashion. I enjoyed reading this very much.

Posted 13 Years Ago

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5 Reviews
Added on January 27, 2011
Last Updated on January 27, 2011



Bloomsburg, PA

I love art, I'm drawing or doodling constantly. I love doing portraits. I also love music, I am learning to play piano and guitar. more..

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