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Advent Drabble 2: Morning
This fic drabble is a gift for: An anonymous entrant
“Are you awake?” Angela asks, softly, gently, syllables in sleepy Swiss German spread between silk-smooth kisses to Lena’s skin. Lena’s German is passable, if far from functional - Angela can trust her to know what this phrase means, or at least her just-drifted-from-dreaming mind is certain she can.
Lena is naked, sprawled in the pearly duvet; a reckless angel tangled in her own wings. Her chest rises and falls with comforting lightness.
“Are you awake?” Angela whispers again, skimming her lips lovingly across a breastbone she’s memorized the shape of from so many x-rays, so many surgeries. Lena’s breathing doesn’t change, although her face twitches - a shadow delicately flickering along her cheek, exposing the secret movement of muscle below skin.
Angela slides her fingers below a draped corner of duvet and draws a pattern of lazily demanding hunger along Lena’s inner thigh.
“Are you… awake…?” She murmurs, right up against Lena’s ear, the tips of her teeth on sensitive cartilage. Lena breathes out hard, shaky. She blinks eyes gummy with sleep.
“Good morning,” Lena says, bewildered, aroused, barely free of slumber.
“Good morning,” Angela answers, fingertips flickering higher, flowing around the outline of course curly hair, following the trail of them up to Lena’s navel and then back down again. She waits for approval before she does more, not because it’s a power game of any sort, but because as much as she burns for Lena right now the sleeping cannot consent.
Lena’s eyes flicker shut again briefly, and she inhales a sharp note at the touch.
“What’s on your mind then, I wonder?” she purrs, the invading croak of having just woken up sending the remark into the realm of the rather masculine growl.
“I wonder,” Angela says, leaning in and touching their noses together. Lena smiles and tilts her chin to kiss her. A morning kiss, full of potential, infused with the warmth of a shared bed, the knowing and familiarity of an evening side by side.
The fire in Angela’s skin might have settled quietly into something gentler, given that direction from Lena’s response. Instead, she found it suddenly stoked, the blunt tips of Lena’s nails forging a line of prickling heat from her hip to her knee, knee to hip, hip to back, encouraging her as they kiss.
Their hungry, staggered exhales mingle together between the increasing fervor of their kissing. Hands instigate, flowing over the landscape of body, touching soothingly, relentlessly, impishly. The question of Lena’s interest in such activity answered, Angela at last rolls on top of her, presses her thigh between her legs, and pins her wrists above her head.
Lena smirks up at her breathily, looking for all the world like roughly but cleverly sculpted marble, the raw promise of a genius at work, only just begun. Like a pond of ducks at the break of dawn, neither tame nor wild, neither day nor night.
She arches against Angela, pressing their bodies together, and Angela loses the words for her, but fails to lose the feeling. As they make sweaty love, she thinks, repeatedly, how lucky I am, to be here.
the bee movie except every bee is replaced with we are number one but every one is replaced with the mine song but every mine is replaced with the nutshack theme but every nut is replaced with a johnny test episode but every whip sound effect is replaced with the spongebob theme but every spongebob is replaced with the mlp theme but every pony is replaced with a yandere simulator lets-play but every time the word senpai or yandere is mentioned its replaced with a kuledud3 video and every scream or breezy doing the cute voice is replaced with joels reaction to grand dad but every grand dad is replaced with the icarly theme and every syllable causes the pitch to change
I’m thinking something single-syllable. She’s no-nonsense, calm and bewitching, but at her heart she’s endlessly playful and supernaturally patient. She’s like that neighborhood cat you’ve always wanted to pet but has always been out of reach, keenly observing the world from rooftops or tree limbs, until one day, you happen to waggle a leaf on the end of a stick just the right way and suddenly she’s chasing it through the grass like a kitten. When she tires herself out, she rubs her shoulder on your leg and purrs quietly before slinking away into a topiary. Later, she’s watching you from the top of a fence, a twinkle in her eye. You’ve made a friend.
I remember the days I walked down Newland Avenue or sat in Pearson Park, a little Hyde Park or Kensington, in the North of England – surrounded by a sea of people with different hair, and skin colour from mine. I remember walking into a salon in an obscure town in Belgium, dyeing my hair red for thirty-five euros, a high price to pay just to be less conspicuous than I was and watching the red seep onto the floor of the bathtub like blood for two weeks. My hair wept, as if mourning the loss of something it never knew.
And while in class, I struggled, pretended to understand the teacher’s rapid fire discourse on the film we just watched, heavy laden with British accents. Was this really the same language I grew up with, the first language of my nation state? The words, slurred and implicated with inside jokes and cynicism I could not grasp. I found myself translating, breaking down words into the stutter of syllables, crisp efficient tongue I was used to. I worked frantically, trying to slow down time like a broken record player By the time I had something to offer them my classmates turned in surprise at my voice, foreign quiet sound they had not heard in a year. “Singapore? Is that a part of China-a?” “Are you from Hong Kong?” Soon, I was too tired to be indignant.
Grocery shopping was the worst. I was nameless, invisible. Surrounded by bright smiles and niceties – my country sure had a hell lot to learn in their happiness department. Every cashier I met – the checkouts at Tesco, behind the rows of muffins and croissants at Marks and Spencer – the same perpetual summer, hearts in eternal bloom (as if to make up for the eternal grey skies) - “Hi ya! How’s it going?” “See ya!” Though I was sure I would never see them again. Drowning in their bright red smiles and mascara eyes, I missed, suddenly, the grumpy unsmiling aunties wearing long-sighted glasses and floral uniforms at the counters of NTUC FairPrice.
On my first school trip – to Amsterdam – surrounded by international students mostly from America, chatty and eager for the parties and pub crawls in the red light district. The first night we spent the time shopping for souvenirs in the tourist district, whilst I waited outside, taking pictures of casinos, fascinated, until the owner scolded me and asked me to leave if I wasn’t here to gamble. Why the heck was I even in Amsterdam? I did not know. Everyone was supposed to go if you were cool, that’s what they tried to tell us. Deep in my heart, I have never wanted to be cool. When the night fell and my companions wanted to discover the place where you could see naked ladies walking around canvassing for business, I opted out, feigning sickness, and felt like a pathetic loser in my room.
The next day, I took a bus out to a remote town on the outskirts famous for the windmills and tulips that Holland was always known for (other than the weed brownies of course). But it was empty, grey, and desolate. It was three degrees Celsius in winter. There were no grass, no leaves, much less the postcard tulips I was looking for. But there was a certain beauty in winter, I tried to convince myself and marvel at everything as I walked around, alone, taking self-timed pictures discreetly, waiting till there was no one around to watch. My Singaporean friends liked all my pictures on Facebook, told me how envious they were of me. Europe! What a beautiful place! I thought the same, and tried to keep thinking that way. It was beautiful in a lonely way. Even sitting on the steps at the river in Ghent, watching people watch me on the opposite bank, I missed the sun setting on Clarke Quay, the heart to heart conversations between me and my best friend.
In the house I stayed in, with a German and two Americans, one eating healthy rye bread and the others pizzas and fries, while I asked if they would like some Singaporean fried bee hoon – they politely declined, while my father asked me excitedly on Skype: “Did you cook my bee hoon for your ang moh friends?” Their worried faces, shining eyes – they were always worrying for me But I hated them to worry, and so I started weaving my lies – “Yes they really loved it, Pa, and we have a food party every day in this house, just like you’d hoped for. And Ma, the weather is just fine, I brought enough winter clothes. I did not tell them that the people here did not even know what a “Long Johns” was, they looked sleek and beautiful with black stockings and high heels.
That night my house mates all wanted to go to the cool club all the uni students loved, I could not say no. I spent forty minutes fretting and being nervous in my room, messaging my friends who were studying abroad in other parts of the world, “Should I go? Clubbing’s not my thing.” While the rest of the gang played drinking games and got high in the kitchen. I went, in the name of “once in a lifetime”, completely sober and unable to dance.
When he said “Hi” in my ears, I turned around, shocked, staring in disbelief at the blonde-haired guy staring at me with his olive green eyes. Was someone talking to me when I was just standing by the sidelines, not even something to fondle on the dance floor, the way the entire dark room blasting funk rock was a massive makeout playground. I watched my reserved American house mate turn into a different girl on the dance floor. And now, was this green-eyed boy saying something to me? I couldn’t hear. Art history major. University. Theatre. Shakespeare. He wanted my phone number to invite me to the school play he was acting in. Without thinking I gave it to him. Until today I still don’t understand why I was so brave or reckless. Was there nothing to fear just because I was studying abroad?
Fortunately he was not a rapist or liar. I fell in love, or thought I fell in love, when we picked seashells at the beach, watching the waves roll up like the foam on a cappuccino cup. I talked and talked, I could not stop, it was as if my months of silence had reached its expiry date. It was strange because he said he fell in love with my voracity, my gregarious nature, and little did he know I spent days and nights avoiding the kitchen in my house because I dreaded making small talk about the English weather, and answering questions about classes that I didn’t really participate in.
I moved out of my house and found a cheap and crumbly apartment outside. We ate expired vegetables because we were both broke or rather, money was something we constantly fought about. Not for a moment did I even stop to question myself, how could I abandon my room in a brick house along Cranbook Avenue, worth three thousand pounds a semester and subject myself to sleeping on the floor and showering in a bathroom filled with mould? When I look back now I see two strangers making a black hole out of love.
When it all ended I flew back to my land of chopsticks and curry puffs, carrying with me the memory of the olive eyed blonde haired guy proposing to me with a marshmallow by a campfire on a mountaintop looking out to sea.
And suddenly, everything seemed absurd. I grew up and was destined to stay in a place where marriage was an application process of registration and built-to-order housing flats. For practical reasons, money and finances had to be planned meticulously three years before the wedding. The proposal came after, a customary act of romance that the bride was waiting for. And I laughed, thinking of the way the Englishman who proposed to me, spent his money without saving, relied on student welfare cheques to get through his year. I laughed in bitterness, picking up the chopsticks I haven’t used for a year, and picked expertly, at rice in a blue porcelain bowl.
The longest one syllable word in the English language is “screeched”.
With 9 letters, screeched ties with scratched, scrounged, scrunched, stretched, and the plural nouns straights and strengths for longest one-syllable word. There are longer one-syllable words that are not included in the Oxford English Dictionary. Weighing in at 12 letters is “schtroumpfed”. What does it mean? It’s French for “smurfed”. Smurfs tend to say “smurf” and “smurfed” in every sentence. The French Smurfs, “Les Schtroumpfs”, would say words like “schtroumpf” and “schtroumpfed”.