Musings and Writing of GG Alexander

Savage Writing: A New Start

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I write my own fanfic sometimes. This is a piece I modified from one which is meant to take place after the events of one novel, because it fit the theme of “A New Start.” I edited all the spec. fic elements away because it wasn’t exactly necessary in a domestic scene, and changed a few names. Second piece I presented to the Leeds Savages.


This was the house. On a normal street with a grey sky above the roofs, it was a narrow semi-detached house, with a tidy front garden and a blue front door. As the taxi pulled away from the kerb behind him, he suddenly wanted to run. He didn’t belong here. This was the world of birdhouses and school runs and taking the dog for a walk, not the world of flips and parallel bars; not the world of screaming fits and crushed beer cans; not even the world of champagne and opera that he’d so recently stumbled into. The wind rustled the bushes, cars hummed by in the distance, and here he was, outside a normal house in a normal street in a normal area, and he was so alien to it all.

The front door opened, and she appeared.

‘Ty? What are you standing there for? Come in, come in!’

It still surprised him, how much his mother looked like his older sister – or rather, how much his sister looked like her. They shared the curly red-brown hair, the button nose, the eyes that crinkled when they smiled – even their haircuts were similar, though that must have been coincidence. Only the grey in her locks and the tired look in her eyes distinguished the older woman from her daughter.

But of course that similarity should still surprise him. He had only met her for the first time the other night, when they all went out for dinner. God, what a mess that had been.

He walked down the stone-slab path and when he came to her she stepped aside to let him in, her lips pressed tight as she tried to repress a smile.

The first thing that hit him was the most delicious smell. He couldn’t quite place what it was, but it was warm and sweet and enticing. She apologised for the messiness of her perfectly normal, not-very-messy home, and led him through the narrow hallway to the living room at the back. Everywhere had pale walls, white, yellow blue, and oaky varnished floorboards. In the lounge there were old mismatched armchairs of differing back heights and cushion depth, including a rocking chair, and one couch with cracked leather on the arms. There were framed quotes on the walls and a picture of the Virgin Mary over the mantlepiece. Rugs! Scuffed rugs, not like the perfection he’d seen at Chris’s holiday home when he visited, rugs that were stepped on in a house that was lived in. It was as imperfect and homely as he could have wanted. He was even surprised when a blur in the corner stood up and came over to sniff at his legs.

‘Oh, don’t mind Jasper. You’re not allergic, are you? Have a seat, have a seat. Everywhere’s bit of a mess at the moment – I’m baking for a cake sale at the church this weekend and what with work and meeting you and Cathy, I’ve barely had the time. I hope you’re okay with tasting some for me!’

He almost cried at the idea of not being okay with it. Of course the smell had been home baking. Cathy had tried baking a cake for his birthday a few years ago and it had failed hilariously, and he hadn’t had anything like it since. Chris probably would have ordered him all the cake and sweets he desired, hand-moulded by French chefs, if he had mentioned it, but he didn’t like to ask too much of him. It was early days, after all.

‘Th-that would be amazing,’ he managed to choke out.

She beamed at him and went into the kitchen. He sat on the couch and held his hand out for the terrier to sniff, and scratched its neck, only sensible to the sound of Diane moving tins and cups in the kitchen, the dirty fur under his fingers, and that mind-altering smell. He was glad Cathy had refused to come today. He had just wanted to talk to his mother for the first time in his memory, but instead their dinner had devolved into a court scene where his mum was the defendant and his sister the prosecutor. We find the defendant guilty of abandoning her two children to a father not worth the ground he was buried in. Her sentence is to continue to never see her two children, on pain of verbal abuse from a twenty-two year old. Fuck that. Cathy might be right a lot of the time, but she couldn’t stop his curiosity about the woman that had given birth to him, and she couldn’t stop Diane from wanting to see her baby boy.

She came back through with a plate of assorted biscuits, with crumbling bases and icing dripping off the sides. The first bite exploded sweetness into his mouth.

‘Is it okay?’ Diane asked. He nodded, violently stuffed two more into his mouth before he had finished swallowing the first.

‘My, is it that good? If everyone responds like this, we should do well!’

He finished his mouthful, had a few swigs of water, and proceeded to cough for five minutes.

‘Are you all right?’ she asked after he had finally finished.

‘Yeah, I’m fine,’ he said. ‘Sorry, um, if I was rude or anything – ’

‘Oh, no, no, they’re there to be eaten –’

‘It’s just, well, I’ve never really had home baking before.’

You’d think he had said he’d never worn shoes before, such was the mortification on her face. She hugged him tightly, and like with Cathy, her hair tickled his face.

‘I’m so sorry,’ she said. ‘I…you know what I said to Cathy the other night. I don’t expect you to forgive me. I know what your father was like, and you…well, you know what he was like.’

The best thing the vindictive bastard had ever done was die. Diane forced herself to smile.

‘Anyway, enough of that – we had too much of it the other night. I feel I barely got to speak to you then! Tell me about yourself. I couldn’t believe it when I found out you were a gymnast – but of course you are. Look at those arms!’

She pinched his biceps and he smiled. Sinking back into the cushions, she gave him a knowing look.

‘I’m sure you get all the girls with those. Tell me, is there anyone special in your life?’

Only a boy with blonde hair and more money than could fit in this house. Only a boy who played piano and covered his mouth when he laughed. Only a boy who listened to him when he talked about his father. But even Cathy didn’t know about him yet.

He shook his head modestly and she teased him, and as he patted the dog and reached for another biscuit, he thought about what he would tell Chris when he phoned tonight. He had been so happy yesterday, when told that Ty had arranged to meet her alone today.

‘It’s only right,’ he had said. ‘She’s your only mother after all. And this is a chance for a new start with her, after everything.’

He blissed out of the conversation on the first bite again, and merely watched as his mother talked at him, surprised at how content he felt. A new start. He had always laughed at the idea, but maybe his boyfriend was right. Maybe it could be all it was said to be.


Written by G.J.

14/06/2012 at 7:20 pm

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