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:iconalizabith: More from Alizabith

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March 12, 2011
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Before you ask, no, my husband doesn't know.
Some of them have known about me in the past, they've known my name, but in modern times they don't tend to believe it anyway, and marriage to me doesn't tend to last. I don't take to it. It's like trying to give a cat a hot bath—there's nothing wrong with a hot bath, in fact they're quite nice, but cats, well, they don't like them much, do they? It's nobody's fault. It's just that they're cats. It's not in their nature.
For coyotes, it's the same thing.  We can be monogamous for a time, but once that time is over we can't any longer. And like it or not, Coyote is what I am.
This time, the man calls me Cat. It's funny that I picked that name for him, but it's a joke that's been going on too long. It's wearing thin. So when I wake up next to him and he's asleep, I whisper my real name in his ears.  I've been doing it for as long as I've been marrying. Sometimes I gotta get caught, and when I do I want them to know who they're catching. Big ego. Someone told me that about myself one time. Narcissist. I told them nah, that's not me, that's some guy on the other end of the world.
This morning I'm not waking up next to the man. It's somebody else, a kid from the bar. We're in a Best Western, and he's still sleeping. He's a lot different from the man, though. He's red-haired and skinny and smaller, and by smaller I mean his whole self. Down to his toes. He's got baby's toes.
I hunt around the sheets for my underwear and find them under his foot. I've got real light fingers, though, so I lift his heel and drop it and he doesn't feel a thing. I can't find my bra, so I let it lie. It wasn't my best one or anything.
He wakes up while I'm stepping into my pants, which is my fault because I tripped and knocked up against the dresser. He's got this lost look, like he can't remember how he got here, and it doesn't completely go away even after I see him remember. He knows he's screwed up. Maybe he hadn't done it yet before last night, and that's it. I'm not going to ask him.
"Hey, um, hey," he says, trying to be a gentleman. "Breakfast?" He's seen this happen on television before, I guess.
"Nah. I've got to go."
"Oh. Can I see you again?"
"Married." I start putting my socks on.
I'm not looking right at him, but I see him go white out of the corner of my eye. I pull my shirt over my head.
"I didn't know—"
"That's because I didn't tell you," I say. Then I do look at him. "And I didn't want to tell you now. But it was fun." I grin, showing all my teeth. They're very long, white teeth. And then I raise my hand and I show him my wedding ring, as if it's been there all along.
"Well, I'd have liked to s—"
"I know," I say. I'm in my coat and shoes now, and I walk out the door without looking back.
I've always been at the beginning and the end of things.
I walk home, stepping between shadows the way I do if I don't want to be seen, and I watch an old woman yell at her daughter on the sidewalk, calling her a whore, stupid bitch, all those names while the daughter holds her whole weight upright. With nobody seeing me, I knock the old lady's cane from under her and she goes down like a sack of wet cement, letting her daughter have a free shoulder for just a minute. The poor sap pulls her mother up soon enough, but maybe the old bat will watch her mouth in the future.
I'm not a nice woman. Hell, you could say that I'm not even a woman, not completely. I'm not completely anything. Some people say I invented women, but that's another story.
I get back to the man's house pretty quickly and slide into bed with him. He's still snoring the way he does, like a pig snuffle but really quiet. He's dreaming.
I can't look at him, so I put my arms around his shoulders. My head sits in the hollow of his neck, and I lean into his ear until my mouth is almost touching it. "I need to tell you the truth, now."
I tell him a story about Coyote, and not one of the nice ones where I come out on top. One of the ones where I'm a total ass, and I get what's coming to me. He laughs at the end, in his dream.
Then I begin to explain, and he doesn't laugh. He doesn't wake up either.
"I don't always like being Coyote. I can't change it. I might be a liar, but this time I'm telling the truth for once." I bark a laugh. "You made me tell you the truth. You made me feel. You tricked me and trapped me."
I'm quiet as a breath, and I pick up his hands, real slow, so he doesn't wake. "So here's what I'm gonna do. I'm gonna tell you to forget, and you'll do that. You'll forget I was ever here, ok? And you won't have to get hurt by me." I kiss his lips.
"But sometimes, you'll dream about me. And they'll be sweet dreams. And when you wake up from them you'll feel good and not even know why. And we'll both go on like we ought to have done the day we met."
I slide out of his bed, and his arms lose the shape of me. He doesn't miss it.
I leave. And for me, that's the easy part.
Edit: wow what this got a DD oh my god can I just kiss all of your faces

For :iconscreamprompts: #12

I didn't think I would get this done in a satisfactory manner. And to be honest, I'm still not sure. But I FINISHED it, and that's cause for celebration. See, this prompt was only a couple of weeks long and the rules were very strict. [link]
But I think I followed them all. If you notice I missed one, please let me know about that.

The speaker in this one is Coyote, a trickster god from numerous Native American cultures who is typically (but not necessarily) a man, or at least male. Not this time, though, I wanted to show his or her (ok, screw it, I still think of Coyote as male and I'm gonna say "him." I apologize if this confuses anyone.) HIS good side at the end. Trickster gods are known for being as spectacularly rounded as characters as they are for being... well... nymphomaniacs, and Coyote is one of my favorites. You should read up on him if you're not familiar.
It was tough trying to put all his many facets into one 1000 word story, but I think I did okay. I might do a longer piece with him later.

Ok, questions: is there anything that confuses you? Plot, character, anything?
Do the characters seem believable to you?
If you know of Coyote, have I painted him with at least some skill?

And thanks for reading, as always, guys.
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Daily Deviation

Given 2011-10-14
Coyote's 1000 words by *Alizabith is a perfectly package piece of flash fiction. ( Featured by Halatia )
TheSkaBoss Featured By Owner Sep 7, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
TwistedAlyx Featured By Owner Jul 4, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
I had a coyote too. Exactly this way, except he was a man. I knew he was a coyote, too--called him that, wrote poems and poems about coyotes--and I let him do his coyote thing anyway. I think you got the trickster mentality down.
FireFaerieTalia Featured By Owner Feb 2, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
damn. i just spent 2 hours looking through all the daily deviations since august to find this because it wasn't in my favourites and i wanted to reread it. so worth it!
Alizabith Featured By Owner Feb 4, 2012  Student General Artist
Oh wow, that's really flattering, I'm glad you enjoy my work so much!
LiliWrites Featured By Owner Nov 24, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
Congrats on the DD! I was going to suggest it after reading the first paragraph, then got to the end and saw it was already done. xD :)
averrose Featured By Owner Nov 1, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
Coyote reminds me of Anansi from what Neil Gaiman has written of him, if you have read Anansi Boys or American Gods.. I actually was crying at the end of this, it was very believable and I feel like Coyote was fleshed out subtly but well and thoroughly in so few words. I think you did a great job writing this, and I like how you resolved the "bad news" to be benign to the husband. Very sweet of Coyote to be merciful.
And gg on teh DD! I think you deserved it!
Alizabith Featured By Owner Nov 9, 2011  Student General Artist
Yeah, I'm a huge fan of him. It's kind of ridiculous, actually. He's been a big influence on my writing in general, although I already loved magical realism before I started reading him, he really fleshed out my love of mythology.
Thanks for the read, and I'm thrilled that I got such an emotional response from you! I wanted to show Coyote's light and dark sides in equal measures here, because trickster gods so often get the short end of the stick from writers. Coyote has always read like the quintessential magnificent bastard to me, he's wonderful and terrible all at once, and he has his own strange moral compass that he doesn't always bother to follow. His character was a joy to work with, and it's great that I'm getting such a positive response to it!
And thanks again for reading and commenting, it brightens my day.
OuroborosRagnarok Featured By Owner Oct 24, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
This actually reminds me a lot of an ex of mine. It didn't end quite as well as this story did, but it was a nice thing to read. I really like how you fit little details in. Especially her conversation with the kid as she got dressed. Something about that seemed really natural, while serving a purpose.
Alizabith Featured By Owner Nov 9, 2011  Student General Artist
Yeah the word limit forced me to be very sparing and to try and convey a lot with a little. It was a great exercise, I'd recommend it to other writers. I love writing dialogue, and you can convey so much with the way two characters interact. There was a piece of writing advice I heard somewhere that went "never leave your main character alone" which means, basically, that a character reacting to something shows more of them than a character sitting and thinking about the things they already know, which was a principle I tried to put into play here. Thanks for the read!
OuroborosRagnarok Featured By Owner Nov 10, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
Yeah, I'd kill to be able to write dialogue half as well as you did here.
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