Together Again

Submitted for Contest #74 in response to: Write a story that takes place across ten seconds.... view prompt

70 comments

Dec 31, 2020

Drama Fantasy Fiction

Lauren didn’t believe in true love and fairy dust and happily ever after’s. At least not anymore. She was older now, wiser, and she knew that everything didn’t magically fall into place, that miracles were mere coincidences raised to fame. That's when a ghost from her past walked back into her life. 

“Lor?”

That one word glued Lauren to her seat, effectively rendering her frozen in place. Her breath caught in her throat. Maybe it was terror that kept her in place, maybe surprise, maybe excitement. Or perhaps a combination of all three. 

It had been a very long time since someone had called her that. No one was allowed to call her that. Not her parents when they were alive. Not the few people she considered friends. Not even her betrothed, Adrian. 

The one person who used to call her that vanished along with that nickname all those years ago. But that voice, Lauren would know that voice anywhere. The sound was deep and warm with an appealing note that thrummed just below the surface. Right now, the voice cracked, betraying the emotion and uncertainty of the speaker, something she’d rarely heard from it before. Nevertheless, there was no doubt to whom the voice belonged. It was the voice that had been with her, comforted her, guided her, since the day she was born. It was the voice of her brother, the lost prince. 

It took mere milliseconds for Lauren's brain to register all this information. Almost as if those thoughts had laid dormant in her mind, just waiting to be discovered.

Lauren yanked her head upwards, letting her eyes instinctively find their twins and settling on the shimmering aquamarine eyes of a tall young man. 

Time seemed to slow around them. It was almost as if some unknown deity had taken control of time, pinching this tiny space of time so that it stretched out. Lauren’s mind kicked into overdrive, trying to process and store all the new information being thrown at it. Her emotions too seemed to have been swept up in the whirlwind along with her brain. Emotions swirled in her faster than she ever thought possible, leaving her with just a wave of overwhelming feelings coursing through her: anger, surprise, disbelief, love, and even a tiny dash of fear. Everything else faded away, graying in comparison to the return of the long-lost prince. Vaguely, Lauren heard a clatter as her quill fell from her desk and rolled, loud in the silence of the empty office. But to her, the sound was muffled, distant even. Like it came from a far off distance, perhaps separated by several layers of walls.

Lauren drank in his appearance greedily, comparing this new man to the brother who had left her behind three years ago. He was very different, that much she could tell. Where he once was carefree and charming, he was now rigid and aged. His whole external image seemed to reflect on how he’d developed internally. She could see it in his eyes, in the set of his stance, even his hair displayed how much he had changed. 

His eyes, the most noticeable part of his face, were unchanged, in color and shape at least. They were the same sparkling jewels of the seas and the same almond shape, but that was where the similarities ended. Where once they were bright and passionate, they were now haunted with weariness and pain. The eyes of a veteran of war. Lauren’s heart sank with sisterly sympathy and she desperately wished she could take it all away, to give him back the life he once led. But she couldn’t change the past, she could only look forward and shape the future. He’d made his choices, she’d made hers, and this was where they were. Nothing she said or did would change any of that.

His hair was still black as night and Lauren sorely doubted whether anything could change that. But unlike the carefully mused and styled black hair of the past, his hair had been almost completely shaved off, making it stiff and formal. 

While these were his two most noticeable features, they didn’t completely distract from the way his face had changed over three years. His skin was still the same tanned coppery gold that matched her own exactly. At seventeen, his face had already been undeniably attractive but in a boyish way; more cute than handsome. Still, back then, girls would go out of their way to impress him and show off their beauty. Now, at twenty, his face was sharper, more refined but also blank and smooth like the features of a cold, lifeless mask. That was another change. When he was younger, his emotions dwelled close to the surface and painted themselves across his face. He seemed to be stuck between two worlds, looking both desperately young and still far too old, especially combined with the new haggard light in his eyes. 

Looking at her brother, examining his changes, she pondered her changes. Lauren wondered if she was still the girl who had watched the prince leave those few years ago. Somehow she doubted it. She felt changed, too. Perhaps they weren’t as apparent as her brother's haunted eyes or his severed hair, but walking alone for three years changed a person. Lauren had felt pain, too. perhaps even more acutely than the prince. She was not a stranger to death and heartbreak. So she was different, too. For better or for worse, wasn’t for her to say. 

But looking at her brother and sorting through all her emotions, the most important thing that stood out to her was that he was her brother. Not that he’d changed or that he left her. He was her brother and nothing could ever change that. She couldn’t find it within herself to feel anything negative about his return. 

Euphoria bubbled up in Lauren in a giant overwhelming wave of excitement, surprise, and love. Hysterical tears of delight started to leak down her face, becoming heavier and heavier as the weight of her brother’s presence settled on her. It began as a trickle and then quickly turned to a stream of warm, salty tears. 

Mistaking his sister's reaction, the prince scrambled backward, thrusting his hands out helplessly, on the verge of tears himself. Even so, he managed to stutter out the words, “I’m sorry, I am so, so sorry.”

With those words, Lauren’s thoughts scattered like a flock of birds. Pure, overwhelming joy took over her face with a giant grin to match it. So it was with an incredulous laugh, she flew into her brother’s outstretched arms, almost throwing them both off-balance. But he caught her in his arms and held her to his chest. Lauren was immediately hit by memories of the two of them in this same position many years ago, as well as a wave of nostalgia. “Christian!”

You must sign up or log in to submit a comment.

70 comments

Livia R
02:34 Jan 03, 2021

To everyone who has read the story before this comment was posted, my apologies. I changed the name of the main character for usage reasons from Jenalyn to Lauren. Hence her nickname has also changed to Lor. Thank you all!

Reply

Show 0 replies
Livia R
21:09 Dec 31, 2020

This story is a lot shorter than my other ones and a little less refined. I'd appreciate constructive feedback. Also, I was waaaaay too subtle in the story but one of the characters should be somewhat familiar... So I'll leave you with that. Thanks, everyone!

Reply

Show 0 replies

This story...PERFECTO! I really admire the way that you were able to space out the story, and offer really great description. It was such a great read! -Carolina

Reply

Show 0 replies
Megan Sutherland
14:35 Jan 15, 2021

Hey, Lily!!! I don't know if you play or not, but I will be posting an among us code in my bio at 11 am eastern time! me and my irl friend will be playing. Join if u want!! -Meg

Reply

Livia R
16:55 Jan 15, 2021

I dooooo but unfortunately no one has accused me of waking up on time yet

Reply

Show 0 replies
Show 1 reply
Megan Sutherland
22:21 Jan 09, 2021

You asked me about your bio, so here's my thoughts. :) I wouldn't be offended by it at all; I think it sounds completely fine. Glad you're still following me tho teehee

Reply

Livia R
00:54 Jan 10, 2021

Thanks, Meg!! Of course I'm still following you, you're one of my most vehement supporters and an amazing writer!

Reply

Megan Sutherland
03:26 Jan 10, 2021

Ooh, that's a fancy word. "vehement" Thank youuuuu right back at ya hehe

Reply

Livia R
05:48 Jan 10, 2021

Indubitably.🧐🧐

Reply

Megan Sutherland
14:48 Jan 10, 2021

Hehe

Reply

Show 0 replies
Show 1 reply
Show 1 reply
Show 1 reply
Show 1 reply
Akshaya Sutrave
14:06 Jan 09, 2021

Hi Lillian! I love this story! Especially the descriptions and imagery you wove into your words! The subtlety was well-written indeed, and I can't wait to read more of your amazing work!! Great job and keep writing! :) (Can I call you Lily?)

Reply

Livia R
18:14 Jan 09, 2021

Hiiii! Thank you so much! And you can call me Lily, Lia, or Anne. I'm very fond of nicknames. ;)

Reply

Akshaya Sutrave
16:28 Jan 10, 2021

My pleasure! Okay! :)

Reply

Show 0 replies
Show 1 reply
Show 1 reply
Megan Sutherland
04:08 Jan 09, 2021

Hey, Lily!!! Litlover (Luke) and Maya Emerson did a story that has their Reedsy friends as characters, and I am going to do one too. If you don't mind, I would love for you to be in mine!!! If it's okay with you, could you answer these questions please for your character? Favorite Color: Power: Hair and Eye Color: Pet/Spirit Animal: Weakness: Thank you!!! -Meg

Reply

Livia R
05:24 Jan 09, 2021

OMIGOSH YES!!! THANK YOU FOR THINKING OF ME!!! 1. Color: Aquamarine. 2. Power(😍😍)!!! Shapeshifting and/or supernatural abilities(strength, speed, endurance, etc). 3. Features: Dark brown curls that fall to just below the shoulers. Blond natural highlights from outdoor activites. Brown eyes. 4. Spirit animal: Can it be magical? If so I'm going with phoenix or dragon. If not lets do a leopard. 5. Weakness: Won't hurt or endanger friends if it can be helped. Is usually even tempered but at the loss of friends or a betrayal, she could become da...

Reply

Megan Sutherland
05:35 Jan 09, 2021

OF COURSE, LILY, HOW COULD I NOT INCLUDE YOU? AND YES I WOULD LOVE TO BE IN YOURS!!!!

Reply

Livia R
06:00 Jan 09, 2021

Hahahaha I could go on and on about the specifics of the character I want to be. Word of the wise: Don't get me started.

Reply

Show 0 replies
Livia R
06:53 Jan 09, 2021

Hey, Meg. I'm starting my story so can I get your... Hair(anything from just a vague description to every detail is fine): Eyes(anything from just a vague description to every detail is fine): Clothing preferences(anything from color preferences to exact outfits is fine): Personality: Fav Color(if you want multiple, please choose up to two): Reaction if you discovered one of your best friends betrayed you: Please note that I may need some more info(powers, favorite animal, etc) as my story progresses. Also the last one might not be relevant ...

Reply

Megan Sutherland
14:17 Jan 09, 2021

Hair: Shoulder-length dark blonde with dark teal tips Eyes: grey/blue Clothing preferences: I don't really care to be honest Personality: spunky, sarcastic Color: Teal Reaction thingy: I would be hurt and mad and probably confront them

Reply

Livia R
18:17 Jan 09, 2021

Great, thanks! Also not sure if I'll be doing the story this week because I don't think any of the prompts are very good for what I had in mind. Sorry!

Reply

Show 1 reply
Show 1 reply
Show 1 reply
Show 2 replies
Show 1 reply
Show 1 reply
Litlover 📖
16:11 Jan 05, 2021

I ANOINT YOU A MARSHMALLOW

Reply

Livia R
18:43 Jan 05, 2021

THANK YOU!!!

Reply

Litlover 📖
18:43 Jan 05, 2021

NO PROB!!!

Reply

Show 0 replies
Show 1 reply
Show 1 reply
16:10 Jan 05, 2021

XDD just saw ur bio LOLLLL!!! Here is the official mallow meeting place - https://blog.reedsy.com/creative-writing-prompts/contests/74/submissions/48043/

Reply

Livia R
18:47 Jan 05, 2021

Okay!

Reply

Show 0 replies
Show 1 reply

Hi Lillian! This is a very beautiful story, I really like this emotional part and I felt like crying:) Great work once again!

Reply

Livia R
19:30 Jan 04, 2021

Thank you so much, Varsha!

Reply

Show 0 replies
Show 1 reply
Show 1 reply
Megan Sutherland
03:59 Jan 01, 2021

SUCH A SWEET STORY WHY AM I NEARLY IN TEARS You described Christian so perfectly. I can visualize his every detail in my mind. Like- wow. You also displayed Jenalyn's emotions perfectly: everything she was feeling, I felt as well. This wasn't a very long story, but you definitely feel for the characters super well. Kudos to you! Like I said, and like you mentioned, this was a little short. Though the ending was super sweet, I was curious as to why Christian had some back to her. Maybe a part two on that? hehe. I'd love to read it. Amazing...

Reply

Livia R
04:17 Jan 01, 2021

Actually there was a longer version for a previous prompt but it was too long. This is the capture of a single moment. Anyway, Christian is actually the prince from, well, "The Prince." ;)

Reply

Megan Sutherland
04:27 Jan 01, 2021

Ohhhhh I'm sorry I forgot about that one of yours

Reply

Livia R
04:30 Jan 01, 2021

Haha no problem, I tried to write as many references as I could but I think it was still way too subtle.

Reply

Megan Sutherland
04:38 Jan 01, 2021

lol

Reply

Livia R
04:49 Jan 01, 2021

Yeah, I think I'm going to add something at the end with Verlian in it. I just don't know where and how. 🤔🤔

Reply

Show 1 reply
Show 1 reply
Show 1 reply
Show 1 reply
Show 1 reply
Show 1 reply
🄼🄹 🅂
22:50 Dec 31, 2020

This was such an amazing story! I love the details you used to describe Jenalyn's emotions and thoughts. You're fantastic author, and I can't wait to see what else you come up with. Keep writing. -Mj

Reply

Livia R
22:58 Dec 31, 2020

Thank you!

Reply

Show 0 replies
Show 1 reply
Maya Emerson
21:03 Dec 31, 2020

This was such a touching story of reunion! You described Jenalyn's reaction at seeing her brother perfectly. Also, I loved the way you showed how much her brother had changed since going to war. It was sad, but also sweet and hopeful. Amazing job!!!

Reply

Livia R
21:10 Dec 31, 2020

Thank you!

Reply

Show 0 replies
Show 1 reply
05:41 Jan 09, 2021

Can I be in your story....? 🥺🥺🥺🥺🥺🥺🥺🥺🥺🥺🥺🥺🥺🥺🥺🥺

Reply

Livia R
05:50 Jan 09, 2021

Of course I'll include you, Celeste! Don't worry, I haven't forgotten you. :D

Reply

Show 0 replies
Livia R
05:57 Jan 09, 2021

Can I be in yours?🥺🥺🥺

Reply

06:06 Jan 09, 2021

YES yeS YEs Fill this out: Hair: Eyes; Clothes they wear all the time: Personality: Fav color:

Reply

Livia R
06:39 Jan 09, 2021

Hair: Brown curls to below my shoulders, natural blond highlights from outdoor activities. Eyes: Brown. Clothes: Athletic black joggers with pockets, leaf green cute athletic t-shirt, black jacket with pockets, and comfortable black sneakers. Personality: Cheeky, clever, sarcastic, teasing, compassionate. Color: Aquamarine and silver.

Reply

07:16 Jan 09, 2021

YES!

Reply

Show 0 replies
Show 1 reply
Livia R
06:52 Jan 09, 2021

Okay I'm starting my story so can I get your... Hair(anything from just a vague description to every detail is fine): Eyes(anything from just a vague description to every detail is fine): Clothing preferences(anything from color preferences to exact outfits is fine): Personality: Fav Color(if you want multiple, please choose up to two): Reaction if you discovered one of your best friends betrayed you: Please note that I may need some more info(powers, favorite animal, etc) as my story progresses. Also the last one might not be relevant if I ...

Reply

07:16 Jan 09, 2021

Hair: Purple with rainbow and golden swirls, very pretty Eyes: Rainbow with purple and pink flecks Clothes: Robes with dresses, purple. boots Personality: Smart, funny, but usally reading a book or on a ipad Fav color: Purple and Rainboow! Reaction: Hurt and angry. Note that im not one bit sad. Power: Psychic Animal: Phoniex or Dragon I AM SO HYPED -Cel :D

Reply

Livia R
07:17 Jan 09, 2021

Ehehehehe. Oooohh, can I call you Cel?

Reply

Show 1 reply
Show 1 reply
Show 1 reply
Show 2 replies
Show 1 reply
Show 2 replies

Aw, love this story! You have awesome imagery and descriptions and vivid characters. I enjoyed it, great job!

Reply

Livia R
20:21 Jan 01, 2021

Thanks, Aerin!

Reply

Show 0 replies
Show 1 reply