Sep 28, 2009 by

Read Utah 5 here (see “Similar Posts” at the bottom of this post for any earlier entries)

Round 6 Challenge: Incorporate a White Russian and the words “over the line” into your next passage, which should be no more than 500 words.

*          *            *

The expanse of Lake Champlain opened before them as the black station wagon pulled in to the cabin. Junked cars and trucks lay abandoned about the yard. A black Presa Canario that was chained by its spiked collar to the shed rose to its feet and began growling as they stepped out of the vehicle.

“Don’t worry about Herb,” Jacob told Corey, who was glancing over at the dog nervously. “He’s all bark and no bite.”

The cabin was shrouded in the shade of weeping willows, whose tendrils overhung the lake. Jacob motioned out over the state line of Lake Champlain towards the far shoreline. “Have you ever been to New York, Corey?” She shook her head. “I’ve got a rowboat. Want to row across sometime?”

Corey looked out blankly at the lake and nodded mechanically. He unlocked the door. “Home sweet home,” he said, with a sweep of his arm. “After you.” Her fingers knotted by her waist, Corey looked back at the dirt road and then walked in.

Jacob first showed Corey to the spare bedroom, her bedroom as he emphasized. He needed to calm her frayed nerves. Her body had begun tensing up when they first turned onto the dirt road. From then on she kept glancing about, unnerved by the absence of residences. Her fear mounted as they descended towards the cabin, so by the time they arrived she had gone silent and shrunk into her seat. Jacob found her girlish fear appealing but he knew he had to check his lust. He’d rather avoid violent incidents. “Why take something,” he thought to himself, “that might give itself to you freely?”

After touring her around the rest of the cabin, he opened the door to his office, a cramped unlit space dominated by a 23-inch computer screen.

“Look familiar?” he asked, pulling the chair out. “Try my throne out.”

They spent the rest of the afternoon on the computer. Corey began speaking again and even laughed a few times. That night he microwaved baked beans and hot dogs, which they ate in front of the computer screen.

“I have a treat for you,” Jacob told Corey. He returned from the kitchen with a White Russian.

“What is it, Ronaldo?” Corey asked, holding the cloudy liquid up to her eyes.

“Try it,” he insisted. “It’s a dessert.” She took a sip. Then another. Several drinks later, Corey was sprawled out on the beanbag in the corner of the room, snoring. Jacob checked her pockets until he found her cell phone. The last call she’d made was days ago. He tossed the phone into the river and then scooped her up in his arms. Her eyes still shut, she clutched blindly at his sweatshirt, burying her face into his chest.

“I want to go home,” she mumbled as he carried her to the spare bedroom. “Please … take me home.”

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  1. Oh dear lord, I’m completely afraid of what’s coming next, but am enjoying your writing a lot. Hope to see you in Round 7 (I I hope to see Corey well, alive and intact there too! Fingers crossed).

  2. Annasbones thank you. I’m enjoying seeing how the others include this round’s challenge. My inclusion of “over the line” was perhaps a slight bending of the rules but then again no one ever said the words had to be unbroken!

  3. “Why take something that might give itself to you freely” – Utah – this, the whole passage, is really creepy stuff! In a good way! I’m on the edge of my seat over here.

    I sincerely hope to see you (and Corey!) safe next week.

  4. tetra

    good stuff. Im tense and now have to wait until the next installment. perfect form for this competition.

  5. Jay

    Oh my goodness. Edge-of-my-seat stuff, definitely. Yikes.

  6. Thanks for the comments. All I can say is, ditto!

  7. Liked this section. Taking the time over this scene pays off. There’s more showing here than telling. That last line was very sad. Great closing as reader’s will not want to leave the story at this point.

  8. Somethings make you, me at least, uneasy and I don’t like them for that reason. Yes, the story has all the elements necessary to keep up interest and the writing is good but as I have said before we do tend to laugh at things we should not laugh at; not that I’m saying that anyone is laughing here. The unease is balanced by an expectation as to what Corey’s mother’s input in the story may turn out to be. Decisions, decisions!!

  9. JD Evolutionist, what do you mean in writing that we tend to laugh at things we shouldn’t laugh at if no one is laughing? Maybe I missed something.

    Yes, Dan, a sad last sentence, and also an ambiguous one. Decisions, decisions indeed!

    • Utah, its just that this type of story is not really my ‘cup of tea’, my choice of reading, however it is part of the competition and I am intrigued to find out what will happen. I hope it will go one way and Corey will not be damaged – good overcomes evil – but I have no idea which way you will take it. Hence I want to read on; the laughter bit is only to relate that dichotomy to the fact that we also tend to laugh at things that really should not be considered funny but, regardless of taste, we still find ourselves laughing at.

  10. ‘m going to go against everyone else here and say I didn’t like the flash back to Corey’s story. I was primed and ready to see Delia launch into her search for Corey – especially since you used your immunity last round to fast forward the story and position it for the search.

    I guess you need to decide if you want it to be the story through Delia’s eyes or Corey’s because in my opinnion the competition doesn’t allow the flexibility to alternate between their stories. Other’s may not agree but that’s OK.

    I’m still a big fan of your writing Utah – just not impressed with the twist you’ve taken here.

  11. i feel equally sickened and intrigued at the same time. Please Utah, don’t make this another young-naive-female-victim story – empower Corey PLEASE!

  12. Pete Seeger! Bravo on the video, though I haven’t yet warmed to my steak knife challenge! Shouldn’t the credits song have been saved for when I was eliminated… 😉

    You have a wonderful son, Jodi. You must be very proud. Upsetting to see Omar go. He was one of my favorites.

  13. Wasn’t Delia in a diner when last we left her? My Mum’s favourite steak knife is one which accidentally slipped into her bag from a meal out. Not that you need ideas!!

  14. Ideas are welcome but the one in the diner was Corey and she had a club sandwich!

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