Last week at my local writer’s group, we did a short writing exercise based on the series of prompts about the origins of myths (suggested here). Below is what I came up with:
Gerald and Mavis were sat on the beach, star gazing. Mavis had her head on her boyfriend’s shoulder, as she listened to his long-winded explanation of how the earth came into being.
Drifting in and out of sleep as he went on and on, she caught a few key words and phrases.
“…all started about a hundred years ago, you see… when the ice blasts died off, and the grass overtook everything else… water wasn’t discovered until much later, of course.”
“Of course,” she affirmed, groggily, before really processing the words.
Ice blasts, grass, and then water? Her eyes scrunched up at the thought. Either she was more tired than she realized, and had misheard rather a lot, or her boyfriend was an idiot.
Surreptitiously, she forced herself awake enough to check the flask that had rested between them for any signs of alcohol.
All the while, Gerald carried on. He was talking about the moon now, and how it changed shape because of the fluctuating pressure of the sun.
Mavis was wide-awake now, staring at him.
Finally noticing this, Gerald paused. “Are you alright, dear? Don’t you find the moon fascinating?”
Shaking her head, Mavis held up her finger and pressed it to his lips, in an effort to halt any more words from escaping.
“Firstly,” she began, “The moon doesn’t actually change shape, it just looks like it does and-”
Gerald pushed her finger aside to ridicule her. “Don’t be ridiculous,” he said. “Things are exactly as they appear. You don’t believe in the airy-fairy nonsense they teach kids on TV these days, do you?”
Suddenly horrified at her taste in men, Mavis did three things: one, decided not to let her friends pick out blind dates for her ever again; two, to start making potential suitors take aptitude tests and, three, she stood up.
“Gerald,” she said.
“Yes, my dear?”
“That thing you’re looking at?”
“Yes?” he said again.
“It’s a satellite.”
They drove home in silence.