Sunday, April 15, 2012

358/365 --Playlist Story-- inspired by "Extraordinary Machine" by Fiona Apple

The old woman waited at the crosswalk, hunched over, rain spattering down on her plastic headscarf, not watching the signal light.

"Demons!" she spat out. A ten-year-old girl standing next to her sidled backward. "Damnation." The word came out in long slither. The girl turned and ran down the sidewalk.

The signal changed to a green man. The woman glanced up at it with her one good eye and stuck out her tongue. She stepped off the curb and shuffled to the middle of the road where she opened her purse and rustled through it. The signal changed again. Horns honked at her.

"Demons!" she cursed at the cars. She drew out a small glass orb from her purse clicking it shut.

"Get out of the way lady!" screamed a man. She stuck out her tongue at him.

She looked up at the gray troubled sky, then slowly, creakily, extended her hand up, with the orb in it. She rolled forward onto the balls of her feet, in her black sensible shoes, and stood on her tiptoes. She placed the orb in the sky, and let her hand drop, sighing. The orb stayed in play, seemingly defying gravity.

"There!" she exclaimed happily.

"What the hell?!" someone screamed.

"Exactly!" she screamed back, then frowned. She closed her eyes tightly, waiting. There were more curses hurled her way.

The orb began to spin, and a tiny light formed in the center. Within a few seconds it was up to five thousand revolutions per minute and the light grew to the strength of seven suns. The woman calmly stayed in place, eyes closed, while the others in the street ducked and tried to shade their eyes. Two cars had a minor crash behind her. Then the orb flashed twice as bright and disappeared.

The woman opened her eyes. Everything and everyone was frozen and transparent, like glass, ghosts of what they were, except for her. She looked around, scanning. A dark form trembled against the far side of a nearby building.

"Got you!" she smiled and finished crossing the street. It took her several minutes to reach the far side of the building. The form, a charred charcoal dry black mass with several spindly limbs, that gave off a little cloud of black dust with it's fearful tremblings, was stuck to the glassified brick. It blinked its shiny black eyes that followed the woman as she approached.

The woman stood next to the little demon and licked her lips as if she was ridding herself of an unpalatable taste. She put her hand around its belly and pulled at it. Its feet were adhered to the brick, but with little pop-pop-pops it came free. She shoved it in a large zippered pocket in her purse and zipped it shut. The purse pocket squeezed in, the demon squealed in pain.

The old woman cleaned her hands with a soggy tissue from the depths of the purse, then the purse pocket unzipped itself to show that it was empty. The old woman nodded and smiled. Then she snapped her fingers and the world returned to its normal solid, moving form. She shuffled forward, looking for signs of the next demon to consume.
Note that this is a substitution song, replacing one from my original playlist (I'm really at the dead end of the list, having heard these songs far too often). I feel guilty about the replacement since it violates the original spirit of the projects.

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