Running a bit late today, sorry for the delay.
Baby You Just Got Slapped (Compiled)
Thanks so much to Chuck and Brian for contributing. I’ve added my own little piece to keep the narrative going, but a story needs an ending, one that only you can provide. Add your own ending to the comments section of this post and we’ll vote for the best next week. Thanks!
Jean’s cheek throbbed, the skin already beginning to redden. Jess just glared, her hand poised for another attack. Her eyes were lit like fire, but her face was blank, expressionless. She seemed almost as shocked by what she had done as Jean was, and yet was still prepared to do it again. Her white leather gloves creaked as she flexed her fingers. Even protected, the impact had hurt her too. Others might take this hesitation as an opportunity to strike back, or even to run away, but Jean knew deep down that Jess had good reason to be angry.
“Violence doesn’t solve anything,” said Jean, her flat tone betraying only the faintest hint of mockery. “Now, I wonder who told me that?”
Something in Jess’s eyes flared and was still. “Do you really want to lecture me right now?” she said softly. But her hand dropped to her side.
“Look,” Jean continued, glancing away, “for what it’s worth, I really am sorry about what happened. That’s not an apology, but it’s as close as I can give. We couldn’t have predicted the experiment would generate those kinds of side effects.”
“Then you shouldn’t have done it.”
Furious, Jean met Jess’s gaze once more, and wondered if a little violence might solve something after all.
After all, was not violence the reason behind the experiment in the first place? Violence in all its forms: Individuals against others, groups, the world, nature. But most especially, one on one, the mindless beast that rages in all of us. Violence we mindlessly hurl against reason that in the end returns to harm only ourselves.
The slap hurt not only Jean’s face, but continued to reverberate in Jess’s soft an supple gloved fingers. Fingers which now slowly dropped to her side in silent supplication.
Jean, seeing the violence leach out of Jess, noticing her body slowly relax and embrace remorse also changed posture and stepping in close, enveloped Jess with arms of welcoming forgiveness.
As they kissed it became clear to them both the line between love and hate was thin. Violent action that for a moment pushed someone farther into the other camp, only caused them to bounce back like an elastic cord was tied around their waist.
Jess laughed and Jean looked at her puzzled.
“I was just thinking,” Jess explained, “if pushing someone into hate causes them to bounce back into love, then what if someone stood on the line, pushing again and again. Like that ball and paddle game we played as kids.”
“No one’s good at that game. The string always breaks.” Jean replied.
[Insert your own ending here]
Couple Of Quick Shoutouts
If you enjoy fractals (and who doesn’t really), then you won’t want to miss Brian’s feature on the Mandelbrot set next week. Brian will take you through the equations, the programming, and make it all seem like peaches and cream. And if not, I’m sure there will at least be plenty of pretty pictures.
I also want to give a brief shoutout to BJ Kerry. Glad you’re writing again. We all have droughts. The important thing is that we come out the other side. I appreciate your comments here and your work on your own blog. Keep it up.
That’s all. Have a good weekend (first one in a while that there’s no traveling for us)!