Author Archives: candidcameron

The Seamstress of Verona

Cameron had the following prompts to choose from:

Amy- A red Harley Davidson and a time machine

Erika- I can’t find my favorite pink blouse

Wendy-  Unicorns, Mermaids, and Faeries, Oh MY!

Jen- Why do birds suddenly appear

…. And with Erika’s prompt, she wrote some “fractured Shakespeare” …

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16 July, 2013

Dear Diary,

I cannot find my favorite pink blouse. It is not simply a blouse, however; it is a lifeline. Let me take you back some several hundred years to its beginnings with us.

Romeo and I never, across these four centuries or more, learned from whence the pink silk received its magic. Draped as it was outside the tomb, my Romeo and I questioned not its existence; rather, we simply assumed advantage from it.

You see, on our escape from the tomb that late-July night, we possessed no dressing gowns or proper clothing to cover our frames. The embalming fabrics had proved worthless in both form and function; impractical in every possible sense. Romeo had graciously helped unwind the dressings from my slight frame just as readily as I offered assistance to him.

As sunrise approached and the time for our great escape drew necessary, we pushed aside the stones that covered the opening to the tomb and happened upon a lovely surprise: Drawn up in a massive heart-shaped bunting outside the tomb were more than a dozen yards of rose-colored silk.

Romeo, ever the gentlemen, wrapped me carefully in nearly all of the silk, tying the bodice tightly but leaving the skirt loose enough for me to run and climb. He spared only enough of the pink silk to fashion a modest codpiece for himself.

And away we ran. Through the catacombs, up to the surface of the burial grounds, and past the grave markers of simpler folks, we sought our freedom. Over the rolling hills and through olive groves we made our way to the remote village outside Verona that would be our eternal home. There, with little more than the silk that covered us and the love that sustained us, Romeo and I began our lives.

We had planned this part of the journey: We would live out our days in relative anonymity and poverty but would remain wealthy in our love. The poet, William Shakespeare, you see, did not know that the young lovers he created had ideas of their own. Suicide, we knew, was no admirable behavior. Defying the literary tragedy the poet wrote for us, we instead pooled our intellectual resources and chose destiny over fate. [Ask any writer of fiction and she will tell you of the autonomous ways of fictional characters-in-the-making.]

But I digress. The Bard of Avon created a tragedy filled with romance, rebellion, drama and a few healthy sprinklings of comic relief. Romeo and I, with the aid of the magic silk, created eternity. That eternity was unplanned.

In the early decades of our forever-on-Earth we suspected the silk’s power, noticing that only when wearing the silk did our health and stamina thrive. Without the silk, we developed weaknesses and ailments only cured by replacing the silk. Therefore, when our baby girl was born the April after our escape, I developed my talent as seamstress. Over these many years I have crafted, assembled, disassembled and remade the silk into hundreds of patterns to adorn not only myself and Romeo, but our beautiful daughter, Romiet. As she grew, I kept her safe with a piece of silk close to her body, only removing it to allow her to grow in body and mind from time to time.

After all these centuries, however, we now find ourselves at a stopping point. Romiet is 14, as, oddly, am I still. We are a family made up of three teenagers, two of whom are parents wielding no influence over the third.  Can one imagine any dynamic more destructive – even in the presence of the magic silk? Nevertheless, this is where we find ourselves on this late-July night in 2013.

Romiet has stolen the blouse.

As family dramas go, and as dramatic tragedies are written, daughters rebel against their mothers.

Romeit has stolen the blouse. She has stolen it to protect her own eternity.

My loving Romeo and I must now rest, at last. We have bathed in our 420-year romance and now it is time to succumb to Shakespeare, who wins the tragic ending to his tale.

If there is justice to be found in this tragedy, it lies in this truth: The beautiful young Romiet – who never bothered to learn my seamstress trade – must now live out her remaining centuries in a vintage pink blouse with poufy sleeves and a hideous, ornate collar – circa-1593 meets circa-1984.

Love,

– Juliet

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This post was written by Cameron, who has not been writing enough fiction this past year for her own liking, but is grateful still to be counted among the BBB Gals and who, oddly, has referenced Shakespeare in two of her three bbbgals posts.

A Riddle without a Rhyme

Cameron had these prompts to choose from…

Amy- Create a character- any type, anyone… make a new being!
Erika- When the shoe no longer fits
Wendy- Moon Cheese
Jen-  A time when a Bluetooth fails at the critical time but that ends up saving the day

And just look what she made…

(some of the usual, twisted, wacky, short-short fiction from Cam)

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Bernard looked from the business card to the addresses on the storefronts and found Hai Yoga at 575 Camino Real. The sign outside the studio read:

Free yoga classes

Rediscover your true self

No balance required

He opened the door to enter, having to squeeze his six-foot-three, 230-pound frame sideways through the inordinately small entryway.

The room was sparse, with pale wood floors, white walls, and beige floor mats. The only item of color Bernard saw was a peculiar painted bird house hanging from the wall. On the outward-facing side of the odd bird house, Bernard noticed the hands of a clock, showing the top of the hour was approaching. A smiling young blonde woman dressed all in white appeared from behind a screen and greeted him, speaking so quickly he questioned the relaxation benefits of yoga.

“Here for One O’clock? We’ll have a nice group for sure. It’s beginner day,” she said, holding out her hand.

“That’s right,” Bernard replied and shook her hand. “I’m Bernard Strawberry. My doc–, um my friend referred me to you.”

“Yes, welcome, Bernard. It’s a delight to meet you. Ready to get Zen?”

He’d never considered himself the type to go for forced relaxation. Perhaps this was why his psychiatrist had prescribed twice-weekly yoga classes to combat the stress that kept him awake nights. As a detective with the San Diego Police Department, an alimony-paying divorced father of four, and at least as great a fan of chocolate donuts as he was of weight-lifting in the gym at the station, Bernard had never thought to make time to sit on floor mats with Zen types.

“It’s good you’re early,” said the instructor. “I like to know my clients. Oh, here’s Elijah!”

Propped in the doorway was a tanned, buff man about a foot shorter than Bernard.

“Hi, Hai! How are you?” Elijah greeted the instructor, but all Bernard heard were two greetings. “Oh, and who do we have here? Your first time at Hai?”

“Sure is, Elijah,” Bernard replied hesitantly and glanced toward the pale woman in white. “Wait. Your name is really Hai?  Japanese descent?”

“Wonderful, Bernard,” Hai replied in a lively tone, leaving Bernard’s befuddled look unanswered. “I see you’ve found your rhythm. It’s time to start now.”

When the reality of the situation struck him, Bernard recoiled, shrinking into his own shoulders.

“No, I can’t do this,” he said, eyebrows raised, eyes darting between Hai and Elijah. His neck muscles tensed as he turned to leave. “I can’t keep up this rhythm. It’s way too stressful.”

A woman passed him in the doorway as he exited. Before the door shut behind him, Bernard heard the woman say, “Hi, Hai!” just as a plastic bird emerged from the piece on the wall and called out, “ku-ku!” between the woman’s words.

Contributor’s note: I am sure you literary types figured out the riddle early in your reading!

For this and more silly fiction, please encourage Cameron to finish her novel, Social Studies, which she shelved last fall.