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writingMy wife is a writer. Because of her, I have become involved in writing and the writing community. All of my writer friends keep encouraging me to write, so…







Twenty-Three Bolts

Posted by on Jun 1, 2013 in Writing | 0 comments

Twenty-Three Bolts

I wrote this for the Surrey International Writing Conference short story contest in 2010. It didn’t win, but I like it. It was really cathartic to write, and help me deal with some things I was struggling with at the time. It’s very autobiographical if you can’t tell. The story takes place in one of my wife’s universes. She won the contest in 2007 with a story set in this universe, and hopefully will return to it at some time. Hope you enjoy: Twenty-Three Bolts by Jason Douros 2010   Twenty-three rust rimed bolts hold the eight centimeter steel plate that serves as my bedroom ceiling in place. I’d counted fourteen times before giving up on the entire notion of sleep. It’s amazing the things you notice when rest eludes you. I slipped out of bed, habitually careful not to disturb the vision of beauty beside me. Cooper hair cascaded over a stiff military issue pillowcase. Not as radiant as it once was, punctuated with wisps of white. Three years on a voyage through the silent reaches of space will age a person. A once slim and athletic figure gave way to the sedentary lifestyle of a captain’s wife. Her beauty survived the arduous journey, but the changes haunted me. I can’t believe she chose to spend her life on this insane journey. She gave up so much to be with me. It wasn’t always like this. We were content and happy on Earth. I’ll never forget the night we met.   I had returned from a supply run during the last Continental Wars. It was nothing out of the ordinary, your typical drop and dash. I wasn’t a soldier, only the captain of a small Ballard class freighter. I contracted out to the North American military effort. I didn’t really care about the war, but it was good pay. The pub was virtually deserted that Thursday night. That’s why I went. I was examining the ancient gashes and dings on the real wood bar mulling over my carrier choice. My cheap Scotch was almost drained when she slipped in beside me. Startled, I turned as I heard her order. “Dirty martini, really dirty.” Red hair cascaded nearly half way down her back. She wore it lose and it beautifully matched her pale skin. Bright blue eyes dancing with life met mine, and a lopsided smile parted her thin lips. I must have been staring, with jaw agape, like a drunken fool. Her brow crinkled in the middle and her mouth quirked a bit. “You going to be ok there, cowboy?” her eyes sparkled mischievously. “Huh…oh…um…yeah, sorry…I was ah just…” Fidgeting with my glass I took a deep breath. “Can I start again? Hi, I’m John and I’m blithering idiot.” “I like an honest man. I’m Katrina.” Her full smile emerged. “Trina, actually.”   Pulling on my clothes from the day before, I meandered into the small office adjacent to my quarters. Three bottles of Highland Scotch rested comfortably on a shelf, the last of the twenty I’d brought with me. The past two years sucked them dry at an alarming rate. Grabbing the open one, I filled a dirty glass with the pungent liquid. A flash of reflected sunlight drew me to the small office window. The massive...

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