Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Space Bus!

I have an honors thesis due tomorrow, so obviously I am writing fiction. Hah. As promised, the space bus story. This is a draft, and I have a second part semi-envisioned, but I like vague endings at the moment, so I'm thinking of leaving it roughly as is. I thought of trying to make this reminiscent of Ayn's drabbles; but there's a bit too much here to be a true drabble (100 words) and I am rather... prolix (?) in my writing. Or at least verbose.

So, exactly 300 words, because I wanted it to be very short, and I am arbitrary:


Honk! Jeremy’s eyes snapped open. What was a car doing out here? He was the only one who ever came here; that was its only temptation. He turned and saw, even more surprisingly, a bus, shimmering with fine dust. How had he not heard the approach of a bus?

Honk! The driver was waving at him. Jeremy stood up and approached. The door was already open; the bus inside comfortable and almost full. “Where are you going?” Jeremy asked.

“Wonderful places,” the driver said.

Jeremy looked behind him at the cesspool of a lake and the poor excuse for a boathouse. His Toyota sat in the driveway, kneeling with a flat tire. He shrugged, stepped aboard. Almost anything would be better than here.

The doors snapped shut behind him. “How much?” he asked the driver.

“I don’t want your money,” the driver answered, and the bus lurched forward, catapulting Jeremy down the aisle. He quickly made his way to an open seat next to a young woman. He smiled at her, but she didn’t look up.

The bus creaked forward, over dirt roads, making its way through the forest and finally out into a pristine clearing. A lake sparkled, clear blue in the setting sun. There was a little cottage right on the water with floor-to-ceiling windows, and a dock with a canoe and a row-boat and fishing poles already set out next to a pair of blue Adirondack chairs. Jeremy was in awe – wonderful, indeed, he thought. He stood to get out, but the woman beside him grabbed his arm with a surprisingly firm grip. The driver hacked a bit and climbed out of the bus. Before Jeremy could follow him, someone else was in the driver’s seat, the door was closed, and the bus drove away.

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