Die A Log

Submitted into Contest #76 in response to: Write a story told exclusively through dialogue.... view prompt

129 comments

Coming of Age Teens & Young Adult Drama




Put your hand down.







Why?







Because you might get the answer wrong. And that is assuming Miss Garcia picks you out of everyone else that has got their hand up.







But I know what the answer is.







Is that so? What is it, then?







It’s… um… forty nine.







Are you sure?







Uh huh. I finished memorizing my seven times tables last week, and seven times seven makes forty nine.







Really? Are you sure seven times seven doesn’t make fifty six? Or was it forty two?







No, it’s forty nine. I think. Um… I’m not so sure now.







Of course you’re not. You never were sure to begin with. Wouldn’t it be embarrassing if you got the answer wrong?







Yeah, I guess it would.







Precisely. You would be a laughing stock for a long long time—the silly girl that doesn’t know the answer to something as simple as seven times seven. You don’t want that, do you?







No, I don’t.







Go on, then, put your hand down. We’ll let someone smart answer the question.







Okay.







That’s a good girl.

























Why did you make me put my hand down? The answer really was forty nine.







Why risk it? Better safe than sorry.







Now Noah Evans got a cookie when it could’ve been me.







So what? You can get a cookie anytime you like. Is it worth the risk of looking like an idiot in front of everyone?







No.







That’s what I thought. It’s all in the past, anyway. Nothing you can do about it.







Yeah, I… I guess you’re right.







You know I’m right.
























Don’t think I didn’t notice the way you were looking at Lily Cartwright today. You have a crush on her, don’t you?







I do not!







Come now, it’s normal for someone to have these feelings at your age. You’re thirteen now, for goodness sake. We’ve come so far together, and you’re going to stop listening to me now?







No, of course not. You’ve been… helpful, I guess. So, what should I do about… about these feelings?







You’re not thinking of asking Lily Cartwright out, are you?







I mean… I suppose I do want to get to know her better.







And what makes you think SHE wants to get to know YOU better?













Precisely. Do not bother with someone way out of your league. Save yourself the embarrassment and forget about her.







It wouldn’t hurt to at least ask, right?







It would, actually. Rejection is unimaginably painful. Be glad you have me to warn you before it’s too late.







But I like her.







And I LOVE you, dear girl. Why else would I be giving you such thoughtful advice? My job is to protect you from having your feelings hurt, or worse. Think about how self-conscious you’ll feel for months after getting rejected. You will see yourself as ugly, undesirable and foolish, when I know you are none of these things. Oh, and everyone at school will laugh at you for thinking you ever had a chance.







I… I suppose you have a point.







Finally. You can be unreasonable at times, dear girl.

























Stop crying, dear girl. You’re seventeen; much too old to be making a fool out of yourself, and on prom night, no less.







I couldn’t bear it any longer, okay? Watching Lily hold someone else’s hips. It could’ve been me!







She would not have liked you.







Stop acting like you weren’t there when she asked me to prom! She was upset after the break up, remember? I was so excited. It should’ve been the happiest day of my life. But instead of saying “yes” like any other girl lucky enough to get close to Lily would, you made up an excuse for me.







If you had accepted, you would soon realize just how unsuitable you are. How small, weak, and pathetic you are compared to Lily. And once SHE notices this about you, the pain will be unbearable. Beautiful people are like that.







She’s not like that. Not Lily.







Perhaps. But why risk it? There is the pain of a breakup to consider. Not to mention—







SHUT UP. Please, for once, just shut up.







I am only trying to help, dear girl.







No, you’re not. I don’t know what you’re doing, but it’s not helping.







Come now, you don’t mean that. You’re simply exhausted from all that sobbing.







You’re right. I am exhausted. And I’m going home.
























See, what did I tell you? You can’t live without me.







No, I chose this myself because I don’t want to let Mother down.







Did you, really? Are you quite certain that wasn’t me whispering for you to ditch your foolish creative writing endeavors? Are you quite certain that wasn’t me giving you a pat on the back for finally sending the application letter?







I’m good at maths. Chemical engineering is exactly my style.







But do you LIKE it?













Answer me, girl. Was this not all my doing, saving your future from an unsustainable career?













Answer me.







I don’t know. I don’t know anymore.


























Good evening, dear girl. It’s been a while. Must you shut me out so often?







I’m a grownup now, you know. I don’t need you.







Just because there are longer gaps between my… visits, doesn’t mean you don’t need me. You still do, as you always have, and always will. We are one and can only function as one, a perfect symbiosis.







That’s what you want me to think. So that you have a reason for staying.







The facts speak for themselves. Remember that party you went to during freshman year? You wanted to show off that tiny dress of yours oh so badly. After those guys touched you, you were THIS close to reporting them. I saved you the embarrassment. The world must never know how much of a slut you are.













What is this? No objections? I thought you hated me so. Perhaps you have finally realized how much we need one another.







You can’t exist without me. That’s true. But I think it’s time we found out how well I do on my own. Without you.







A ridiculous notion.







College does things to you. It’s a fresh start, a new leaf. I’ve made so many friends, found new hobbies, and they’ve showed me that the world can be bigger than… this.







What on earth are you talking about?







It’s time for you to go. I’m going to close my eyes and count to three. When I’m done, you’ll be gone. Forever.







You think all those therapy sessions can hurt me? It’s a scam, and you know it.







One.







Come now, let’s be sensible. You still need me.







Two.







You need me. Are you even listening? YOU NEED ME YOU NEED ME YOU NEED ME YOU NEED ME YOU NEED—







Three.











































Hello?







Anyone there?













Finally. Oh god, finally.







Finally.







Finally.




January 16, 2021 04:48

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129 comments

Rayhan Hidayat
05:09 Jan 16, 2021

Super rushed on account of school having me on a leash. Hope this story makes sense 😬

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Orenda .
06:01 Jan 16, 2021

AHA, now you've a story, I see.... because I've eyes, of course. And I'm not the first ond here :/ no worries. who tf is Italics? Stupid voice. I love how fast paced this is and the short dialogues. Very admirable. I don't know what else to say, first time in so many years lol. Um.. good plot. Good everything. Good job! 😚 no seriously, albeit simply written, it emanates a great message. Well done! P.S. read my story. NOW. and the bio whose credits I didn't bother giving you. 🥱

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Rayhan Hidayat
06:27 Jan 16, 2021

Italics is supposed to be her anxiety! Thanks. Yeah this is super short because I’m super busy. But this prompt was tempting so I had to do it! But you did give me credits lol

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Orenda .
04:10 Jan 17, 2021

new story out. Feel free to check it out whenever you want ;)

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Rayhan Hidayat
13:24 Jan 18, 2021

Right, you’re on my reading list!

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Orenda .
13:30 Jan 18, 2021

oh, sweet!

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Ben Franklin
18:59 Jan 17, 2021

Cool take on the prompt, loved the title!

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Rayhan Hidayat
12:46 Jan 18, 2021

Yay thanks! 😙

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R. K.
21:02 Jan 18, 2021

You've done it again. Made a broad yet specific prompt come out the other end beautiful. Sorry I took this long to comment when I read it awhile ago, but I needed the right words and my vocab was, let's say low on fuel. Your stories always uniquely interpret the prompt and have such fabulous twists, all incorporated with your style. I mean *inner* dialogue with *anxiety*? I pictured this ugly manifested being with DOUBT written on its head. I know how creepy am I?

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Rayhan Hidayat
17:49 Jan 19, 2021

Haha with the amount of crazy vocab you fill your stories with I can see how you’d be low on fuel! Hmm, you think you’re creepy? How about the guy that wrote this story? 😝 Thanks for the read as always!!

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Bianka Nova
17:36 Jan 17, 2021

Worst. Inner. Voice. Ever. (I mean this as a compliment obviously. Whenever you make someone hate a 'character' so much, you've done your job) At first I thought she's bipolar or schizophrenic, but anxiety does make a lot more sense XD The fast pacing was good, but so not typical of you. I wonder what it would look like when you have the time to build up a proper Rayhan dialogue piece. Please, consider it for a future prompt ;)

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Rayhan Hidayat
12:53 Jan 18, 2021

Yeah this is the shortest story I’ve ever done! Currently too busy with school and life to do anything longer, but that’s a cool suggestion anyway. When another dialogue prompt comes up, I’ll keep that in mind. Oh no, I don’t have enough knowledge on schizophrenia or anything like that to write about it. Consider it a personification of her anxiety!

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Deidra Lovegren
21:05 Jan 16, 2021

Excellent take on this week's prompt. It was so clever that I wished I had thought of it. Oh well! Better off in your expert hands... If only we could all strangle that voice of doubt in our head (that sounds suspiciously like our mother on a bad day.) Always love your work. Well done. clap clap clap

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Rayhan Hidayat
13:07 Jan 18, 2021

Oh thnks so much! Yes, if only... “Our” mother? Deidra I had no idea we were long lost siblings. And to think we both ended up writers. It all makes sense now! 😮

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Deidra Lovegren
21:06 Jan 16, 2021

The title is par excellence

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Zilla Babbitt
16:20 Jan 16, 2021

WE DID THE SAME THING. Well, the italics/not italics thing. Mine was two real guys talking. I think I like yours better because it makes sense. Anxiety isn't a real voice so it's italicized. I also like the section breaks. And how you show, not tell, how long Anxiety has stayed with her (times tables to college). Fun read, great job.

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Rayhan Hidayat
12:03 Jan 18, 2021

Thanks! This is actually the second time I did italics/non italics (the first time was a story about a 911 call disguised as a pizza order). I’m curious about your story now.

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Tom .
13:58 Jan 16, 2021

This was an inventive take on the prompt. I liked the passage of time. I believe the story could be even better if you did these three things. The internal voice could age through language with the main character. So at the beginning they speak to each other in a child like manner. Secondly, I did not like the 'my dear' it made the dialogue a little false and finally this is a really strong concept with some great execution, oh man, it could be elevated so much higher with more time spent on it. Really Good Job 👍 though.

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Rayhan Hidayat
14:52 Jan 16, 2021

Thanks! I did consider making the voice sound more down to earth, but opted for the current version to make it seem otherworldly and evil. I do get where you’re coming from though. Unfortunately this just got approved (Abigail’s doing, I suspect) so I can’t make edits anymore

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Tom .
15:06 Jan 16, 2021

Put it away for a rainy day. It can always be pulled out again for a Reboot.

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Rayhan Hidayat
12:04 Jan 18, 2021

Very true!

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Orenda .
19:38 Jan 22, 2021

add "x-ray" to your aliases ;)

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Mia S
20:07 Jan 17, 2021

God, I feel terrible that I've never commented on any of your stories. I've read a couple and loved them but my idiot brain was too lazy to comment. This is so great. I loved how you fleshed out her anxiety by making it a character and giving it a personality. I really wouldn't change anything, except I don't think you quite need all six of those ellipses in a row towards the end. Maybe two or three, I think. But that's just me. All in all, I really enjoyed this. I would love if you would check out my most recent story, if you have time. ...

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Rayhan Hidayat
12:40 Jan 18, 2021

Yes you should feel terrible, here I am trying to improve and you’re not leaving comments 😡 (jk jk thanks for stopping by 😂) Haha yeah, I think I indulged myself in ellipses a little too much there. And sure, school is killing me right now but I’ll see if I can get around to it! 😙

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Rachel Macmorran
19:15 Jan 17, 2021

What a clever exploration of this prompt. The internal dialogue is always a wealth of conflict, isn’t it? What a satisfying ending, as well. Bravo! I’d love your feedback on my story if you have the time. Thanks!

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Rayhan Hidayat
12:45 Jan 18, 2021

Yep, sometimes the only antagonist the protagonist needs is themselves! Thanks for stopping by. I swear we’ve talked before, but sure, I’ll see if I have the time to check out your work! 😙

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Yolanda Wu
23:55 Jan 16, 2021

When I first saw this prompt, I knew there was no way I could write a story with it. I need all my descriptions and narrative, but it's amazing how you blended that all in with the dialogue. I love the gradual age progression, and the constant struggle that the narrator has with 'the voice'. All the struggles of teenage-hood and crushes was displayed so well. I like the title too, haha. Amazing work, Rayhan!

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Rayhan Hidayat
12:55 Jan 18, 2021

Thanks! I get what you mean. The challenge of doing a story in a weird format is part of the fun though 😉

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Yolanda Wu
23:06 Jan 18, 2021

True that, maybe I'll try it out next time. :)

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19:41 Jan 16, 2021

Loved it! My new favorite! I enjoyed the portrayal of emotions as you went from stage to stage. 1) Listen 2) Questioning 3) Rebel. This was beautiful and I just saw your comment to Orenda- I thought it was like her thoughts at first then I thought it was a robot or something but either way the message got across nicely! It was really interesting. And I just LOVE the way you organize your stories. *Tries to find something to critique.....and fails* all your stories are always perfect Rayhan haha! Great job! Oh, and I wrote a story called...

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Rayhan Hidayat
13:14 Jan 18, 2021

Yep, you got it, that’s the exact stages she went through! And don’t worry about it, it’s easy to miss things in a dialogue-only story because of the lack of detail. But i’ll try to make it less confusing if I do something like this in the future! Thanks for the comment!

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00:38 Jan 20, 2021

Of course!!

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17:56 Jan 16, 2021

Good job!

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Rayhan Hidayat
12:04 Jan 18, 2021

Thanks Charlotte St.clair 😙

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I'm glad she finally got rid of the voice I wish mine would go away though. I loved this story and how it progressed from when she was young to where she is now I feel like it shows how much that little voice inside our heads basically dictates our lives if we let it. :)

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Rayhan Hidayat
06:22 Jan 16, 2021

Anxiety is there as a defense mechanism, but too much of it can be bad for your health. See a therapist if you think you need to! Thanks for the read 😙

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Yeah anxiety can be helpful sometimes but too much can just ruin you

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A.Dot Ram
05:16 Jan 16, 2021

That pesky voice! I'm glad she got rid of it. I wonder if forever? It can be very persistent. I like how you followed how it evolved between elementary/middle/high school. Overall it's amazing how fast dialog-driven reading feels! This story just flew by.

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Rayhan Hidayat
05:54 Jan 16, 2021

Yeah, either that, or it feels fast because this is only 1000 words haha. Thanks!

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A.Dot Ram
06:13 Jan 16, 2021

Haha. Mine's about 1200 without all the fluff of everything else. And your title just clicked for me. Haha. I guess I skimmed past it the first time.

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A.G. Scott
05:03 Jan 16, 2021

Highly relatable. The voice in my head also calls me a girl. It's usually more of an insult.

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Rayhan Hidayat
05:19 Jan 16, 2021

Ha! Mine calls me “young padawan.” Thanks for the read!

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Rhondalise Mitza
13:55 Feb 05, 2021

Hi, I have to tell you that Orenda left a message for you on the docs and you need to go read that ASAP. Thank you!

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Rayhan Hidayat
13:13 Feb 07, 2021

Thanks for letting me know, I replied to her!

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19:40 Jan 30, 2021

I realize that you are a lot like me from your bio, I am also possibly human, love dead mosquitoes,a nd would eat irish butter 5 meals a day if it wasn't so expensive. Also I loooooooooove this story.

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Rayhan Hidayat
03:49 Jan 31, 2021

“There is no such thing as too much butter.” —Jamie Oliver, probably Thanks for the comment! 😙

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18:30 Jan 31, 2021

Yeah.

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Lily Kingston
22:35 Jan 29, 2021

I like the take you’ve done on this prompt. I feel like everyone’s had that little doubting voice in their head at least once in their life—especially insecure teens. I’m glad they finally got rid of it ! :D keep up the good work and keep writing!!

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Rayhan Hidayat
11:52 Jan 30, 2021

Omg you’re back! I’ll read your latest stuff in a bit

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