The Fifteen Minute Novel 2023: Day 51

Welcome to the Fifteen Minute Novel. Each morning I spend fifteen minutes writing on a singular story line. Each morning starts with the last line of the previous day. The goal is to get a (very) rough draft out of the simple story idea and to avoid letting the story idea languish in limbo forever, actually writing it out. This is the third year I have done this writing experiment and each year I learn just a little bit about myself and the way I write as well as creating a framework for the story. But without further ado…

Day 51: She could hear the sentence echo in her head now.

She could hear the sentence echo in her head now. She repeated it out loud just to hear it. “Lisa decides what she wants to do and Gwen makes it happen.”

She shook her head.  “Lisa is going to have to make her own things happen from now on,” Gwen decided.  “From here on out it is going to be Gwen decides what she wants to do and Gwen makes it happen.”

She took a deep breath and felt braver for saying it.  She felt a little part of her quiver as it felt like a scary statement, but she didn’t take it back.  She instead stood up, shook out the dress and hung it on a hanger. 

She continued through her clothes and reached her running gear.  Oddly the shoes and running clothes were the first items that she put into the suitcase.  She thought an argument could be made that she put the items in first because they were already clean and didn’t need to go through the wash before being packed, but if she was honest, they were the first items she grabbed in general.

“Because I miss running,” Gwen said.  “And I am not going to miss anything I want to do anymore.”

She still didn’t know what getting to know her grandparents entailed but she was certain that there would be time for her to do some running in the mornings.  She checked her cell phone and noted the time.  It was early but not too early and she still didn’t hear anything from outside her room.

“But grandmother said they were extra insulated,” she said.  Gwen hurriedly put the last of her clothing away and put her shoes and the empty suitcase in the bottom of the closet.  She went to the door, finding she was tiptoeing as she approached.  Gwen rolled her eyes at herself.

“If it is so insulated you can’t hear them moving about they can’t hear me walking to the door,” she reminded herself.  She eased her door open and listened.  She heard the soft murmur of conversation drifting down the hall.  Someone was up. 

Gwen slipped into the hallway and walked towards the main living area.  In the living room she found her grandmother and her grandfather sitting on couches sipping from coffee mugs and talking to each other.  As she entered her grandmother looked up and smiled. 

“Morning, I hope we didn’t wake you,” She said.

Her grandfather snorted.  “The rooms are insulated, I don’t she heard anything Maggie.”

“Hush, George,” she told him. 

Gwen smiled. “I didn’t hear anything,” Gwen said.  I’ve been up a while but since I didn’t hear anything I thought you might still be asleep.  So I unpacked.  Then I remembered the room was insulated and opened the door to check.”

“Told you,” George said.  He smiled at Gwen.  “So how did you sleep?  Any tossing and turning in a new bed?”

“No I think I I was just so tired I conked out.  I did have a weird dream about a game show and a man wearing plastic hair.”

George laughed and ran a hand through his thick white hair.  “No plastic here, all mine is natural.”

“Are you hungry?” Margaret asked. 

“Not really,” Gwen said.  “I think I am still on a different schedule.  My body hasn’t caught up with the time zone.”

“Ah, I can see that. We’ll I was thinking we could go out and have a brunch and maybe do a little shopping for your first day here.  Make sure you have all that you need and maybe make a list of things you might want to do.”

“That sounds great,” Gwen said.  “I only brought travel sized toiletries and I am almost out.”

“Excellent, so we have a place to begin,” Margaret said.  Gwen took a seat on one of the arm chairs and realized her grandparents didn’t have much of an idea what to expect either.  Somehow that calmed a lot of her nerves.

“Maggie mentioned you liked running?” George said. George said. It was half a statement, half a question.


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