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Winston was small with floppy legs that refused to bend and skin as orange as the rind of a tangerine. His shirts were always filled with numerous deep creases and stains of all sorts. A faded brown hat was always worn on his head to cover his hideous black octopus bangs.


His toes pecked on the chair occasionally as he hummed a familiar tune. The spring buds were crawling on the polished window sill and as Winston looked outside he felt assurance in the familiar sight. Assurance. That is all that he needed.


The sun was hiding away behind the hills as he sipped his stale dusty coffee. His mother was whisking away - chopping thin scallions, frying runny yolks, and beating egg whites into mountainous clouds. The sounds ran around him - all blurry as he focused on the amber wood of the dining table and the strong coffee seeping down his stomach.


He occasionally glanced at his Ma. Her smile was formal, a disguised form of non-pleasure. But it was his job to smile at her - so he did and her cheeks creased simply as she turned around and continued to chop. His Ma's eyes were vehement, they were blue-grey like a twinkling forest crocus. But they weren't pretty. They were tired, wrinkled, and worn. She was forced to love her Winston and he was forced to love his mother.


Because she gave birth to him. She was the first one who stared at his wet, glazed eyes. Winston rested his head on his palms as he gazed at her in a way that he had never done before. It was an informational way, a microscopic way.


Her thick curls were whitish brown, they drifted prettily down to her shoulders in a papery delicate way. Her skin was cold and pale and her eyes blinked interrogatively as if she analyzed everything she saw. Her lips were pale poppy, they must have been fresh red in her youth but now they had lived their time and were slowly expiring.


Winston briskly looked away and started to rub the back of his damp neck.


Pa came in with a slight limp. His moustache was frizzled so that it covered his crackled upper lip. His hair was dark black and sleek like an Autumn night sky.


"Pa." Winston stated. He wanted his voice to be exclamatory when he said “Pa” but it came out monotone and grey. Winston leaped to his father, picking up his satchel and removing his yellow coat.


"What's for dinner?" Pa asked Ma, as he straightened his hair.


"Eggs." Ma didn't even turn around as the spatula through the simmering spiced water.


Then, Pa slowly walked over to her and tried to give her a hug and she replied with a quaint tap of her fingers on his leather back.


Winston thought that they were good people with good intentions, his whole family didn't belong together. Because they didn't match like fitted puzzle pieces. They joint roughly, all the pieces slanted and barely fitting.


But Winston would always come to the aid...try to at least. But he’d do it with tense muscles, a fake, creased smile, and an aureole of awkwardness.


One by one, eight bouncy kids filed into the room. Their hairs were frizzled because of the damp rainy air and their eyes were tired because of their long monotonous day. All of them pounced like hungry tigers onto Winston; excited to rekindle the excitements of their day. Winston grinned - a real one this time - and held his arms out like he was welcoming a hug.


As soon as all the small children ran up the stairs into their cramped and shared bedroom, Winston rambled out the door and onto the open field. Every individual blade of grass was coated in a bundle of frost. The air was liberating - so free and wild and promising. The stars were slowly dotting opposite of the sunset and the Lombardy trees were shaking with great air. The Maples were socializing in their unique jolly carefree way. Winston loved all these things with his heart - not one doubt on his mind.


The sun was blooming like a flower of ruby red. Its rays were flitting along the pearl harbour and sitting like a restless bird on top of the thin widow trees.


A flock of lilac-blue swallows scraped against the sky, basking in the evening light and plunging through thick cloud blossoms. Spring was coming, snow was thinning and small blooms of green were popping out of the grainy mud.


The sight of the beauty - the serene stillness made his fine, sharp cut lips quiver and his eyes water in the most delicate way.


He loved these things so much that he could fall on his knees if they passed away. But for him Ma or Pa, he would arrive at the graveyard, dressed in all black, and try - try with all his might to shed one tear.


He pulled out a notebook - an old leather coated one. And with the pen dancing between his fingers, he created words. And he began to write entries about how beautiful the thin spring-winter snow looked - transparent and brownish. And how the chirps of the birds delighted his ears in a miraculous way. Then, Winston heard a shrill voice bounce down to him. It was his Ma, calling him for dinner.


Winston walked down to his mushroom house that sat tucked in the snow and covered in thin winter branches. He saw the warm orange light pouring out of the fragile windows and the smell of fresh food fluttering out. And the forced love reeking out its walls. But it was still love.


And maybe one day Winston would love his family the way he loved the trees and stars.


But for now, he had to believe that it was real.


And maybe. Maybe, one day it would come true.



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8 comments

Arya Preston
03:38 Jul 09, 2020

Beautiful descriptions throughout the story, especially "they were blue-grey like a twinkling forest crocus." - that was a really interesting line for me! This was such an intriguing take on the prompt and those last few lines were incredibly powerful. Great writing!

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Z. H.
03:45 Jul 09, 2020

Thank you so much!

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Arya Preston
04:05 Jul 09, 2020

No problem! Could you please check out my story if you don't mind?

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Yageen Faiz
18:01 Jul 08, 2020

hello! can you read one of my stories if you have time? thank you!

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Z. H.
03:45 Jul 09, 2020

Yes I can! And I'd really like it if you could read Winston!

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Z. H.
02:36 Jul 04, 2020

I am not happy with my title and if anyone has any ideas, then please let me know!

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Grace M'mbone
18:41 Jul 04, 2020

For a title I like to pick a word or a statement from my narrative. Your title is okay but if you feel you can do better then work on it. Brilliant work though. I loved the flowof your story. Could you do me a favour and check out my story: An Orio Love Story.

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Z. H.
18:48 Jul 04, 2020

Okay, I shall! And thank you!

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