MUSED
BellaOnline Literary Review
Keegan by KJ Ward

Fiction
Red

Tessa Smith McGovern

Pastiche of ĎGreení by Virginia Woolf

The red, chapped skin cracks. A rivulet of blood slides down over whorls of lines and settles in a single, red bead. All day long gleaming pink lesions split and shine, tributaries twist and trace maps of crisscross waterfalls. The sharp blades of razors, reflecting red, flicker and flame, flip-flap against red leather straps, stinging loud in the afternoon sun. But the thickening blood runs faster, drips onto the leather, the beads of red shimmer in the setting sun; the dogs careen through them, lacing the dull earth in red paw-prints; flat wheels beam florid, thin string of gossamer metal threads, beads like a necklace on unbroken, coffee skin, one shoulder lifts in disdain, an eyebrow goes with it; the sudden punch jerks her chin up, flips her back, she lies there, watches the red sky until the stars come out, unbroken. Evening comes, and a field grows from seed, new flowers puff up into glossy red blooms that wave and sigh, the ruffled surface of a blood-red ocean. No ships come, no one to save her, waves curdle beneath the gaping sky. Itís night. The rivulets leak and spill beads of white. The redís out.

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