There’s no place like home

Submitted into Contest #85 in response to: Start your story with the line, “That’s the thing about this city…”... view prompt


Adventure Happy Fiction

That’s the thing about this city.... I don’t exist here.They say the city never sleeps, that’s true. 1000’s of people brush pass me everyday but not a single one of them see me. I feel like I’m suffocating. Drowning in a pit of concrete rubble and lost souls. The tall over hanging buildings intimidate me especially when they look down on me. Who am I but a lonely countryside girl. 

Its my first day living here in New York City. Never ever did i imagine leaving the country but my career dragged me here. I had to be closer so I upped and left all I ever knew to chase my dreams. I want to be the worlds best selling author. For that, there indeed had to be a sacrifice. My name is Darcy  I’m 31. I’m a Scorpio by day, a Taurus by night. There is of course two sides to every girl. Two sides to every story. This is mine. 

I left school when I was 14 I never fitted in. I was always the quiet one, the observer if you like. If I was to be completely honest, I was a complete loner. An alienated introvert trying to fit in to a very extroverted environment. Every school morning I would wake up to the choking sensation of anxiety. I hated it. After 2 years suffering internally my papa finally decided he would take me out of mainstream school. He said I could help him out on the farm instead, learn life skills  that sort of thing. I was an only child so it was just myself and my widowed papa. My mother died shortly after she gave birth to me. Papa could never find love again so it was just us taking on the world. I was his little princess. The apple of his eye and the essence of my mother, his dearest love. I was the happiest girl alive. I use to sit amongst the hay bails lost for hours in a world where you could be anyone you wanted - books. That’s the only place I wanted to be, so far deep into a story you completely lose touch with reality and your always the main character. My imagination grew wider and deeper with every book I read. 

Papa brought me a journal so I could note down my own ideas, my own story line. I did just that. The words would just flow through my pen and meet the paper in perfect harmony. I instantly knew that THIS is what I love! Creating, scripting, imagining, word play, tongue twisting, riddles, falling in love with characters, being the character, creating worlds SO imaginative that MYSELF still falls for them even though I created them.

Then it hit me - I’m not a ‘reader’ I’m a writer! Ohhhh how my body tingles with passion when I say that. 

Every morning as the sun jumped up over the hills to welcome us into daylight I grabbed my pen and journal and raced the sun to the river. I am the only person inhaling this crisp delightful fresh air for miles and miles. The only company to cross my path is the carefree wildlife. The beautiful sunlit meadows. The clean excited river gives me a quick wave as it passes on its long journey to the sea. This is the only place I truly exist. I am SO alive.

So engulfed in my safe haven I suddenly heard my papa shouting and screaming as he  ran towards me in the distance. I panicked and raced toward him. “My darling” he said while panting and swiping a drip of sweat of his forehead. “This letter, it’s for you and I think it must be from........ I SNATCHED it. Ripped it open with my heart pulsating at 120bpm. “It is papa, it is..... it’s from ‘Amethyst LTD’ the publishing company”. 

I had waited forever for that day. My book was being published, published by the leading company of publishing’s in New York City! My papa dropped down sobbing while crying out with joy and pride. He noticed that my excitement was quickly stolen.

“my darling what’s wrong” 

“Papa it says I must..... relocate.... to the city to work in partnership with the company” I stuttered. 

“Then you MUST go”....”don’t you dare decline” Papa demanded. 

So.... that’s how I ended up here. 

           ** 6 months later **

There are so many things I adore about this living breathing city.... 1000’s of people brush pass me every day and every single one of them see me! I’m peeking in my career, my colleagues are like family. In fact tonight we hit the streets of New York. I paint on my lipy, dive into my long elegant dress and drench myself in Champaign with handfuls of friends and colleagues. As we skip out to the clubs I feel like I’m founded in a bubble of vitality and unified souls. The tall over hanging buildings illuminate my path, especially when I’m looking up to them! I am SO alive.

The following day I get a call from Papa who’s fallen ill suddenly. I grab my bags and I take the 5,000 mile trip with no hesitation. I arrive back ‘home’ to the country and settle down with papa for the evening. He’s okay, I think he just wanted to see me. It’s been a while. As I wipe away my sleepy eyes the next morning I see the sun jump up over the hills to welcome us into daylight again, so I grab my pen and journal and raced the sun to the river.  I am the only person breathing life into this abandoned piece of Earth for miles and miles. The only thing to cross my path is grasshoppers and wild birds singing an annoying song. I look around me and see nothing but empty meadows. The deep rushing river spits at me as it passes on its long journey to the sea. I feel like I’m lost in a fabricated thought that evaporated eons ago. That’s the thing about this countryside.... I don’t exist here

March 17, 2021 20:50

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Julia FitzGerald
15:29 Mar 25, 2021

Well done mirroring the language from the beginning at the end - overhanging buildings, 1000s of people, etc. The relationship between daughter and father feels genuine. Nice job!


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Lynel Black
15:04 Mar 25, 2021

very pithy! I like it. I am not a happy ending writer. Life only sparingly gives out happy endings, and whenever it does, you feel like the story should end on the high note. But it keeps going. The problematic endings are the ones that you want to press on with to discover what is around the next twist and turn of fate! Dreaming of the elusive happy ending.


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