Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Storm Past. Chapter Two: Where There's Smoke

Today's post is chapter two of an ongoing fictional piece started a week ago. This Progressive Story Project started last December with A Holiday Story and was so successful we've decided to do it once again.

Progressive Story Project | www.BakingInATornado.com | #MyGraphics
  The way it works is that participating writers each add a paragraph to the story. The idea is that everyone can contribute a piece of the story but no one person controls it.

The first chapter was written by six bloggers. You can read it here: 
Chapter One: Darkening Skies

Storm Past, a Progressive Story Project | www.bakinginatornado.com | #story #fiction

Once again, over to the left, I've provided the name of the author of each segment and a link right to their blog. I hope you'll visit them all. They all have different personalities and writing styles, none of them ever disappoint.

Picking up the story where we left off:

Chapter Two: 

Tamara of Confessions of a part-time working mom

The morning after this nightmare Maria sat at the kitchen table sipping her coffee and waiting for her toast to pop up. She didn't feel like reading the newspaper. Instead she got up and opened the kitchen window. The sun was shining and the sky was intensely blue. The thunderstorm had left a couple of branches in her yard, and the morning air smelled fresh and clear as it always does after a good hard rain.

From afar she heard children playing and joyfully shrieking.

The world seemed to be OK.

Why did she have this dream? It felt so real. She hadn't thought about it in years and had actually hoped the incident from back then was erased from her memory for good.

After all, nobody ever suspected she had anything to do with it, she could go on with her life.

"Let's just say it was a coincidence and leave itat that" she thought. "I have a new life, a new husband and a sweet baby boy who mean the world to me."

Pop! The toaster ejected her toast slices.

Maria grabbed them and threw them on a plate.

"Holy, I almost singed my fingers. Why are those bread slices so hot today?"

Then she almost fainted. She immediately sat down. She couldn't believe her eyes.

Storm Past, a Progressive Story Project |  pic by Tamara of Confessions of a part time working mom | bwww.bakinginatornado.com | #story #fiction

 Sarah of The Momisodes

Staring at the bread, Maria felt her breath escape her lungs in a rush. "How could this be possible?" she thought.

Standing, she picked up the toaster and saw nothing out of the ordinary, nothing that would cause the "J" to be imprinted on the side of the bread. Thinking she imagined it, she turned and looked at the bread again, seeing the "J" as plain as day.

"Babe? You look as white as a ghost . . . you okay?" Chase asked, concern written on his handsone face.

"Wha . . . what?" Maria replied, looking at him in a daze, confused, trying so hard to prevent the panic attack that was threatening. Swallowing the bile that rose up in her throat she painted on a smile, just for his benefit.

"I'm totally fine. I just felt a little nauseous ther for a second . . ." she said, placing a hand over her stomach just for show.

"You don't think you're . . ." Chase started to ask but was cut off by the sound of their son running into the kitchen flying his airplane and sliding on his footed pajamas.

Swooping down to pick him up, Maria met Chase's eyes over their son's head and shrugged, knowing what his question was. "Who's the most handsome guy around?" she asked her son, tipping him upside down as he trembled with giggles.

"I am, mama! I am!" Ryan said squealing as Maria tickled him on his stomach.

"This is what my life is . . . anything before this is just a ghost of a memory" she thought, willing it to be true.

 Jenniy of Climaxed

Maria tried to go about her day like everything was normal. Ryan had to be dropped off at Lake Charles for soccer camp by 8 a.m. She had to do some grocery shopping, pay a couple of bills, run by the bank to sign some forms, and take lunch to Chase. The two of them usually had a quiet lunch together in his tiny office at the law firm, both hoping one day he would make partner and have a bigger space to share at lunchtime. The lull of a regular routine was soothing to her frayed nerves, but that didn't stop the fear that invaded her dreams and her morning from creeping in on her during down moments, at random red lights, tht line at the bank, waiting in the car lane to pick Ryan up from camp . . . Every time she had a moment to herself, that ominous dread spread outward from the center of her chest, a black weight pushing fear and burning regret through every nerve in her body until even her toes tingled with it.

By the time she got the groceries and Ryan home that afternoon, Chase had already gotten back himself. He was in his usual spot in the living room. She watched him for a moment, standing in the door with a brown grocery sack resting on one hip. He was transfixed by some show or other on television. His hair ruffled, powder blue shirt rumpled, half unbuttoned, and untucked, royal blue tie loosened and draped to the side. His blazer was thrown across the back of the couch and shoes kicked off right in the middle of the floor. Normally she would be pretty pissed at the sight of it, but today all she felt was the heat of love and desire so intense she thought it would surely take her breath away. The weight she had felt screaming through her body threatening to tear at her every chance it got slipped free under the warm radiance of the tangled emotions she felt for Chase and the boy now pulling frantically on her shirt tail asking for a bit of the ice cream she bought him from Publix.

In that moment she knew that no matter what it took, she would do anything to hold onto his life and keep chase from finding out about Jeffrey. Any thing.

"There! That's settled," she sighed a deep sigh of relief reassuring herself. "Would you like an early dinner?" she shouted to Chase over the ranting of Ryan begging for ice cream.

"Whatever." Chase was so easy going. No wonder she loved him so much. Tonight she would show him just how much she loved him. Her thoughts were racing and she was getting more excited as she prepared dinner.

If they had an early dinner, she could have a leisurely bath with candles glowing, sipping her favorite Merlot while she mentally prepared herself for a passionate evening with her lover. 

Chase was such a good dad and she knew that he would be happy to help Ryan get ready for bed and read him a story. All she had to do was to whisper those magic words into his ear during dinner and he would be oh, so ready to do whatever she requested. "Tonight's your night." Those three magic words. She never knew what he would ask but it didn't matter - those words were used by each of them when they wanted to please each other in a special way.

Her nightmare was forgotten, almost. Her thoughts were on the evening ahead and then the doorbell rang. 

She had no idea who it could be and was perturbed to be interrupted. When she opened the door, she almost fainted.

Meg of Just A Little Nutty

Maria stared transfixed at the sight of her neighbor's home on fire.

The woman on her porch was yelling for help but Maria couldn't make out her words. The sight of the smoke that billowed from the home brought her to her knees and the memories she thought she had locked away flooded through her like a tsunami.

And just like that, in her mind, she was back there again:

Marlee's breaths came in jagged desperate rushes as her heart threatened to pound right out of her chest and her lungs were incinerating from within her failing body. The blood that trickled  from the superficial wound in her neck began to slow. There was no path where she was going. Her body propelled blindly in the dark of the night, a the branches ripped against her skin but terrified rage spurred her onward towards the sounds of the sea. 

~~~ Keep reading: Chapter Three: Worlds Collide ~~~

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  1. Oh my goodness! We need to take this a step further and make this "STORM PAST - the movie"!!

  2. Oh goodness! I can't wait to add my piece, but I have no idea where this is going right now! Love it!

  3. Dang...a real suspense hanger and only 3 chapters? I'm with the others, I see a movie here.

  4. Loving all the twists and turns!

  5. Talk about bloody great I am loving this story

  6. Sorry I'm behind I've had to take a few days (weeks) off. Shared everywhere can't wait for part 3!

    1. Hope everything's back to normal for you.
      Chapter three is coming up next week!

  7. Damn girl, this one is a hottie!

  8. Love the voices of all of these authors. I can't wait to see where the story goes next.

    1. I do too, I'm just in awe of how this story fits together so well.


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