In the City Of Love

Submitted for Contest #50 in response to: Write a story about a proposal. ... view prompt

253 comments

Jul 12, 2020

Romance

One.

I am in Arizona out for a weekend. I look down and pick at my tangled hair. It touches my lap and looks like there are eggs caught on my locks. Standing in the middle of the Grand Canyon Park, I see a slender man. He looks like he is in his late twenties. His front tooth is chipped. His hair is held back by gel. He takes out a ring, gets down on his knee, and murmurs something. The woman he has knelt before cheers. Yeah, she practically cheers. Ah, they are getting married. The woman is very beautiful. Her hair is blonde. A fairy tale kind of blonde. So blonde that it almost looks silver. She isn’t wearing any makeup, yet she glows. She is dressed in a knee-length black dress. Black. Noah's favorite color.


Two.

I am in New York. This time I see a girl being proposed to right in the middle of the Brooklyn Bridge. She is no older than me. Her hair is a cascade of black curls tumbling down her back. She is wearing a red sleeveless dress. What a daring color. Her lips wear nothing except for the big smile when she sees her boyfriend (or maybe her fiancé) proposing her. Her fiancé/boyfriend is a very tall guy, With shoulder-length hair. Unlike the girl, he is dressed up in nothing formal. Just a black sweatshirt with a pair of army sweatpants. And yeah, a pair of Nike sneakers too. I am very impressed with this guy's idea of a ‘perfect proposal.’ They get to have the epic New York City skyline as their backdrop! New York. Noah' s favorite city.


Three.

I am in Greece. Wandering and wandering in Santorini, I haven’t been able to see any proposal as yet. The sun is going down, and so does the man in front of me, on his knee. He is nervous. Or maybe he isn’t? He smiles and wrings his hand. Then smiles again. The woman he is about to propose is calm as ever. What a beauty she is. Her hazel eyes shine like orbs in the night. She is dressed up in an orange ankle-length dress and white Adidas. Her beautiful dress reflects off the oranges and pinks of the sky which beautifully contrasts the city's stunning white walls. Perfect for a romantic ambiance!


Four.

I am in Rome. Standing in front of the historic site of Colosseum makes me realize just how much I hate the subject of history. So far, I haven’t encountered a couple as yet. I am minding my own business, never even by chance lifting my gaze when suddenly, I bump into an old woman. She is a cute little thing. Her eyes are as small as a bead. The corners of her mouth are slightly turned up. “Hey, young lady. Watcha doin' out here, all alone?” But, before I can answer, she gets dragged into the middle of the place by an equally old man. What an adorable couple they make. Unlike all the couples I saw earlier, he doesn’t get down on his knee, he just holds her hands and says, "Will you marry me?” and suddenly people start to crowd around. Some tearing at the beautiful sight and some cheering all along. Wow, what a spectacle! Witnessing a spectacle. Noah's favorite hobby.


Five.

I am at the Opera House in Sydney. It is almost dusk. The slanting of the setting sun gives an almost warm orange tinge to the sky. As I descend the lane, I approach a man dressed up in the same attire as Charlie Chaplin. He is doing a pantomime: acting without words. He is calling...me? No, it is the woman behind me whom he is addressing. He has a red rose in his hand. He acts weirdly, yet every action of his is crystal clear. He raises his hand, makes a pleading motion, and then gets down on his knee. The woman is at a loss of words. She is dumbfounded at the sight. Her face is damp with tears. Quickly, she nods her head and the man puts on the ring in her right hand's third finger. Isn't the ring supposed to be in the third finger? Sighing, I leave the sight because this woman is not me and the man is not Noah, either.


Six.

I am in Italy standing amongst the Venetian Gothic architecture, and dreamy lampposts lighting up the streets at twilight. No wonder this is just another choice of another couple. The proposal has already been done. I'm near St. Mark’s Square outside the Basilica. I follow the couple through the entrance of the San Giorgio Maggiore church to see them get married on the spot. Douce!


Seven.

I am finally in the City of Love. 

Noah's city. 

Paris.

The seventh year, he had said.

Seven years after my parents' death.

Seven years after his parents' death.

I am back, Noah! Back again.

Where are you?


Above the frenetic city hubbub, the honking taxis, and swarms of pedestrians marching on their missions, the sky is comparatively moving slow. The movement of the clouds is barely perceptible and even the birds wheel in slow lazy arcs. But this juxtaposition is lost on the citizens. No-one even looks up. And suddenly, the sky above is alive, growing at each passing moment, a constantly changing canvas for the world to see: an endless canvas on which colors are tossed upon. Noah. Noah. Noah.


The canvas of darkened colors stretches over my head, gloriously brilliant in the dipping sun. My heart, caged like a bird in my chest, thrums with a strange sort of feeling as I see the clouds vanish into thin wisps and the moon rising in the sky. The ethereal light the budding stars give off reminds me of iridescent, sweeping rainbows; the moment of stunning epiphany when I'd first gazed into Noah's eyes. It was beautiful.


He told to me to wait.

"My lady?"

For seven years.

Noah. Noah. Noah.

But, he never told me why.

"Tris? Oh, come on, Tris."

Why after seven years?

Noah. Noah. Noah.


There he is. Down on his left knee, the handsome Noah. "Beatrice Miller? Will you marry me?" My stomach flips. So, this is how it felt. This is how the black-haired lady must've felt. This is how the old woman must've felt.


I don't know what to do.


So, I just stand till Noah wipes my tears.


So, I just stand till Noah inserts the ring on my left hand's fourth finger.


So, I just stand till he envelopes me in his arms.



15 Of The Prettiest Places To Propose









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253 comments

Rhondalise Mitza
17:47 Jul 12, 2020

You always write from the heart and I love it. It's so wholesome to read a story like this! A good, strong ending without being over the top or fakey. :D Much love to you and your writing, my friend!

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Batool Hussain
17:48 Jul 12, 2020

Aww, thank you so much. You made my dayy!!

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Rhondalise Mitza
17:56 Jul 12, 2020

Yay, that makes me happy! I also really like how you add pictures sometimes. That's an extra touch I always look for.

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Abigail Slimzy
16:52 Jul 20, 2020

Please can someone get a delected story back?

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Batool Hussain
16:54 Jul 20, 2020

I don't think so.

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Cece Lin
13:59 Jul 23, 2020

This was so unique - And the photo is breathtaking. I loved it.

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Batool Hussain
05:30 Jul 24, 2020

Thank you

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Rhondalise Mitza
05:40 Jul 14, 2020

how are you number two on the leaderboard with six stories, my friend? I'm so impressed! You're lovely, keep writing but also... what's the secret to this success? Obviously you write well, but is there something else? Eating five bananas before bed, perhaps? Or not eating fruit at all? Just kidding, but it's cool, really, that you're moving on up. Don;t forget Reedsy when you're famous!

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Batool Hussain
05:42 Jul 14, 2020

Oh come one, I'm never leaving OR forgetting Reedsy. I love bananas. And I'm crazy for mangoes. But that ain't no secret. I'm truly overwhelmed for the love. Still can't believe that I'm on the leaderboard amongst so many good authors(like u) ~B♥

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Rhondalise Mitza
05:46 Jul 14, 2020

Yay, thanks that means a lot to me! *goes off to eat more fruit and cheer for writers around the whole globe*

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Batool Hussain
06:19 Jul 14, 2020

*_*

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Niveeidha Palani
04:22 Jul 18, 2020

This was so heart-touching and so lovely that I struggled to pull out the tissues! An interesting concept! Keep writing, looking forward to more! PS- If you do have time, could you check out my latest story? I'd be glad if you could!

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Batool Hussain
05:39 Jul 18, 2020

Thanks! And, sure;)

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Batool Hussain
05:40 Jul 18, 2020

I just realized I've already checked it out and commented on it to;)

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Niveeidha Palani
05:51 Jul 18, 2020

Oh, thanks anyways!

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Oh my gosh, Batool! This is amazing! The details give a realistic side to the story. You show that Beatrice wants to be proposed to by the love of her life without actually saying that, and I think it's great. I love this story!

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I love the picture too :)

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Batool Hussain
13:44 Jul 17, 2020

Thanks..it means a lot ;)

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Niveeidha Palani
12:24 Jul 16, 2020

I think you really answered this prompt Batool! It was so lovely how you conveyed various proposals in a story. Great job! Looking forward to more!

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Batool Hussain
12:53 Jul 16, 2020

Thank you!

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Niveeidha Palani
12:59 Jul 16, 2020

No problem Batool. Have a great day ahead,

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14:43 Jul 14, 2020

I like your writing style a lot. This story is romantic from all the cities and the proposals the protagonist got to witness. I could feel that longing that existed within her but which you managed to uniquely place in this story. This is so beautiful.

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Batool Hussain
14:55 Jul 14, 2020

Thank you so much. This means a lot;)

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14:20 Jul 14, 2020

Beautiful! I absolutely loved this story, Batool. I'm so glad I came over to read it. The way that Beatrice kept on watching other couples' proposals until she was finally able to have her own was adorable. Your take on this writing prompt was perfect! I wish I could write as well as you do. Keep writing and stay healthy! <3 -Brooke

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Batool Hussain
14:54 Jul 14, 2020

Thanks. You write well too!

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14:55 Jul 14, 2020

You're welcome! Thanks!

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Jonathan Blaauw
08:12 Jul 14, 2020

This is an interesting story. Nice flow and very well told. The cool thing about this site is I end up reading all kinds of genres I otherwise wouldn’t. I used to consider a story where no one died as a waste of time, but now I see that even feel-good, love-type stories like this can be good. Very good. I love your descriptive style, and writing in the first-person present-tense, when done right, is very engaging for the reader, as you’ve illustrated. And speaking of illustrations, the pic at the end was a neat touch.

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Batool Hussain
08:24 Jul 14, 2020

Thank you so much! This means a lot:)

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Jessie Nice
15:15 Jul 12, 2020

What a lovely story, I really felt her anticipation and emotion conveyed through the narration. I also love the way you described the other women in the scenario. Bravo :)

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Batool Hussain
15:22 Jul 12, 2020

Thanks! If you don't mind please give it a like!

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Abigail Slimzy
19:07 Jul 18, 2020

Wow! Wow! Hussain, you are good! Don't stop, keep pushing. I admire your work. Please if you don't mind, see my stories too. Like, comment. All the best dear.

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Batool Hussain
19:07 Jul 18, 2020

Thanks. My first name is Batool, by the way;)

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Abigail Slimzy
00:21 Jul 19, 2020

Oh! Alright. Batoo. Good job. Thank once again,thanks for reading.

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Christina Steele
18:01 Jul 18, 2020

Adorable story. I feel I've been proposed seven times and yet only one was too touching for words. Wonderful writing, my dear.

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Batool Hussain
18:22 Jul 18, 2020

Thank you. This means so much;)

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Zilla Babbitt
14:59 Jul 16, 2020

You asked me to read, so here I am. How sweet! I love the numbers, the showing of different proposals to reveal her desire-- you're getting better, working on the talent of showing not telling. Well done. In the first paragraph, you talk about "unlike me, she is very beautiful." This is sort of awkward, like you're trying too hard to describe her while not describing her. You can do this-- like so. Obsess over the other woman for a moment. Talk on and on. Then "I look down and pick at my tangled hair. It touches my lap and looks like the...

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Batool Hussain
15:45 Jul 16, 2020

Thanks for the feedback! You're still really ahead of me so it'll definitely take time;)

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Zilla Babbitt
15:59 Jul 16, 2020

Haha! You're welcome.

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Peace Nakiyemba
14:59 Jul 16, 2020

Enjoyed reading through the story and travelling with her. I like that you showed how widely popular 'the big proposal' has become and how you can be sure to find one in almost any country you go to. I liked the ending too. Nice story.

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Batool Hussain
15:45 Jul 16, 2020

Thank you

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Prakhar Mishra
10:51 Jul 16, 2020

This was amazing! Loved the writing and the unique style of storytelling. Also love the buildup to the proposal. Very well done. It was a great read!

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Batool Hussain
11:16 Jul 16, 2020

Thank you:)

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Adah M.m
08:10 Jul 16, 2020

This is beautiful !!. I love the way you presented the other women proposals and the buildup of her own was amazing. My favorite couple has to be the pantomime

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Batool Hussain
09:07 Jul 16, 2020

Thank you:)

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Adah M.m
08:03 Jul 16, 2020

Beautiful !!!. I love the way you captured the moment of the other women proposals and the buildup was perfect.

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María Barrios
22:51 Jul 15, 2020

I loved this. It was heartwarming and hopeful. Exactly what I needed to read.

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Batool Hussain
03:57 Jul 16, 2020

Aww, thanks.

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Sue Marsh
18:16 Jul 15, 2020

I really enjoyed that story, what a great way to interpret the prompt.

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Batool Hussain
03:58 Jul 16, 2020

Thanks.

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Kara Kilgore
17:10 Jul 15, 2020

Your prose is lovely! I enjoyed this story.

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Batool Hussain
17:47 Jul 15, 2020

Thank you so much

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