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26 October 2012 @ 07:54 pm
Original Fiction: "Some Other Weather"  
Title: Some Other Weather
Original Fiction
Author: HalfshellVenus
Rating: G
Summary: The obvious is not the only truth.
Author's Notes: A team_prose entry for writerverse, on "Umbrella" and "Loss," and for writers_choice (also "Umrella").


Most believed they offered shelter. The shape, they said, and Note the height, the handle. Their function is entirely clear.

But others knew there were more secrets to be found: Open them, and see what you learn.

Flowers fell out for one man, money for another. Laughter might come pouring down, or tears, or simply the sound of angry whispers when there was a history involving a wrong. You might be pelted by a hail of question marks, or enfolded by the fragrance of a sunny afternoon. Or you might be one of so many whose umbrellas offered nothing but empty silence.

Some people kept them closed, an extended postponement of knowing what kind of message hid inside. Others tried theirs out repeatedly, each result just one in a series of fortune-cookie futures they were never that serious about to begin with.

Mine has been opened. Twice. Perhaps I believe the message will not come true unless I know it, or that knowing it beforehand simply won't help.

Music spilled out the first time I opened it, and a shower of baby booties the second.

My child is three now, soft-skinned sweetness and an endless dreamer of all things. To hope for more happiness would be hubris.

To fear the loss of something so wonderful is altogether human.

----- fin -----

cindytsuki_no_bara on October 27th, 2012 03:55 am (UTC)
i love the idea of umbrellas as fortune-tellers! and that the narrator didn't want to open hers (or his, i guess the narrator could be a guy) because if she didn't know her future, it couldn't come true.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on October 27th, 2012 04:23 am (UTC)
I was really drawn to the inverse idea of umbrellas, that instead of keeping rain off/out, they might release something meaningful to the person holding them.

because if she didn't know her future, it couldn't come true.
It seems so superstitious, but if you don't know it beforehand, you can deny the possibility that it could be true. I understand that completely!
Danmuchtooarrogant on October 27th, 2012 05:53 pm (UTC)
This was lovely, particularly your closing line. All too human indeed.

The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on October 28th, 2012 06:42 am (UTC)
Thank you! It was an unexpected story, but sometimes prompts lead you to strange places!
Danmuchtooarrogant on October 28th, 2012 07:27 am (UTC)
Those are, in my opinion, the very best prompts! :)

whipchickwhipchick on October 27th, 2012 08:04 pm (UTC)
Such a beautiful, beautiful piece, and so very original.

Reminds me of a pair of street acrobats, who play English gentlemen - the finale is one standing on the other's head and opening an umbrella, which rains a shower of sparkles. An equally magical moment :)
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on October 28th, 2012 06:49 am (UTC)
I loved the idea of rain coming from inside the umbrella rather than falling around it, and the possibility of the rain bringing something symbolic rather than literabl.

I can see why it would remind you of the acrobats-- there's a piece of that concept in here!

Thanks so much for reading and commenting. :)
Lose 10 Pounds of Ugly Fat...  Cut Off Your Head.n3m3sis42 on October 28th, 2012 04:49 am (UTC)
Wow. This was lovely in so many ways. I adored the cadence and also the concept. I identify with your narrator. I don't want to know what's coming. I wan to make my choices and hope for the best.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on October 28th, 2012 06:52 am (UTC)
There's kind of a fear of "jinxing" the good things, and knowing the bad might just destroy the present.

I'm glad you noticed the cadence-- that was very much a part of the style of this piece, but I think most people are unaware of the effect.

Thanks for reading!
unwritten_museunwritten_muse on December 5th, 2012 11:31 pm (UTC)
I really like this. The premise is extremely interesting, especially coming from a family where my mother always told us not to open your umbrella in the house because it was bad luck. With that in my head, adding in this idea that opening an umbrella can tell you about your future becomes even more fascinating. I'm particularly fond of the narrator's reasoning for never opening their umbrella again. It's a really great piece.

(And I'm kind of dying to know, even though it's not important to the narrative at all, how the music related to her life. *g*)
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on December 12th, 2012 12:57 am (UTC)
Thanks for coming back to read this one! I noticed that it still fell under the read-and-review guidelines (the timer runs on the comment, not the fic), which means I can go back farther in doing my own catching up!

That notion of not opening umbrellas when you don't "need to" is part of what inspired this story-- the ideal that they're not just keeping the rain off, they might also be holding something in.

I'm particularly fond of the narrator's reasoning for never opening their umbrella again.
It's the exact opposite of the people who frivolously treat their umbrellas like fortune cookies. Once you have something or someone you're terribly afraid to lose, NOT knowing that a tragedy might lurk around the corner is the only thing that keeps you sane.

I added the music in probably because I'm a former musician myself, but also because it seems like it could work as a directed message (several messages, depending upon the narrator's life and history). It has the capability to serve as a meta-concept, which fit really well with some of the other ideas here.

Thanks so much for reading and commenting!