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Short story: <i>The almighty embarrassment</i>



No. 4, Everywhere st, August 1.

"Breakfast!" Tiff stood at the kitchen sink, wearing a demure floral print sun-dress that came in at the waist and dropped to just below the knee. Wearing light pink slip on sandals that were both comfortable and complimented her outfit.

Wearing a gold locket, a wedding ring, and a small pearl bracelet. Wearing her hair piled on top of her head. Wearing oversized pink rubber gloves that dripped soap and water back down into the sink and still made her hands look wrinkly when she was done.

Mack sat at the kitchen table, the family meals table, the sharing table, the games table, the table where five people stared at each other every night and tried to work out what not to say. He was wearing weekend khaki shorts, with car keys and a packet of Nicorette gum in the pockets. Wearing a polo shirt with a fake crocodile over the left pec. Wearing designer plimsols, but he wouldn't call them plimsols. Wearing a chunky silver watch that could dive five metres and enough hair product to hold his carelessly tousled hair in a hurricane. He was pretending to understand the financial pages in front of him, and eating toast with cashew fruit jam, because it was exotic.

"What are you doing today, Reese?"

Reese slunk in from the staircase, grabbed a plate, and threw himself dejectedly in a chair opposite Mack. Reese was wearing baggy jeans that rode down and showed off his boxers. Wearing skater shoes with skulls printed on them. Wearing a baggy hoodie, a desperate act of rebellion sleeper in one ear, and a plastic watch. Wearing a bored expression and an ipod. So he didn't hear the question.

"Mum, can you drive me to town today?" Kath sashayed down the staircase, wriggling her hips. Kath was wearing her hair flicked out around her face, the tips newly tinted at a hundred bucks for the lot. Wearing a little denim mini. Wearing a little turquoise halter neck that exposed her tanned rebellious-slash-sexy belly button ring. Wearing bare feet, red toe nails, and a fake tattoo on her ankle. Wearing almost exactly the wrong shade of eyeshadow, lipstick, and eyeliner and not knowing it. Wearing a devious smile.

No. 6, Everywhere st.

"Breakfast!" Julia stood at the kitchen sink, wearing a demure floral print sun-dress that came in at the waist and dropped to just below the knee.

Dave sat at the kitchen table, the family meals table, the sharing table, the games table, the table where four people stared at each other every night and tried to work out what not to say.

"What are you doing today, Mike?"

No. 8, Everywhere st.

Jess was wearing light pink slip on sandals that were both comfortable and complimented her outfit.

Jack was pretending to understand the financial pages in front of him, and eating eggs with the cholesterol removed.

Michelle sashayed down the staircase, wriggling her hips.

No. 10, Everywhere st.

"Breakfast!" Rachael stood at the kitchen sink, wearing a demure sea-shell print sun-dress that came in at the waist and dropped to just below the knee.

No. 4, Everywhere st, August 1, several years later.

"Breakfast!" Tiff stood at the kitchen sink, wearing a demure floral print sun-dress that came in at the waist and dropped to just below the knee.

A great flash lit up the sky, even though it was morning. A great roaring sound, a great wind, a great howling, gnashing of teeth, a great profusion of noise and devastation and general finality abounded. There may have been a judgment, or sense of profound peace, or ascendancy, or similar. But nobody really had time to notice as they were reduced to tiny particles of absolutely nothing and swirled off into the nothing forever.

Then, there was... nothing.

God sat back (metaphorically speaking) and looked at the blank slate that had been his creation, and was now ready for a do over. Maybe he'd gone a bit far, wrath-wise. Alright, he was feeling a bit embarrassed about what had just happened. How had it come to this? Where had he gone wrong? But he felt, all up, as though it was probably for the best. Now he just had to figure out how to do it a bit differently.

This is the result of a thirty minute writing exercise. This week I have been given the seven deadly sins as themes and a corresponding set of locations for each one. Today's sin and setting were: wrath and a middle-class household.

Image courtesy of crownjewel82.

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