Saturday 3 December 2016

Day 3: Crank the Sun by Nathan Spicer

“Crank the sun,” her boyfriend said.

She reached a pale hand toward the circular light switch and turned it. Above them a domed lampshade burned brighter; she’d painted it a riotous swirl of blonde and orange and crimson.

Lee was lying on his back on the living room floor, black hair neatly parted on the side, bow tie skewed. “Thanks,” he said.

She had met Lee (officially, because she’d seen him a thousand times around campus), while working on her final project for her fine arts degree. She’d painted a line of forget-me-nots on the outer wall of a barn, her plan being to cover the building with numerous species of flower, all grouped in primary colours and arranged into diamond patterns.

She had started painting, and each time she disappeared around the edge of the barn, Lee, supported by a couple friends, skulked to the wall opposite her current location, and wrote in Sharpie above the forget-me-nots, I forget the name of this flower.

She finally circled the barn and returned to her starting point. He was smiling smugly at her. She saw the line of painted flowers with that little phrase over each of them. She felt stricken and sickened, marched around the barn, and saw the phrase was everywhere.

So she chased Lee with her brush.

She intended on stabbing him in the heart like a wooden stake through a vampire, or at least smattering blue paint in his hair. She pounced on him and sent both of them tumbling down a grass slope until he rolled once more and pinned her down.

His then-longer hair dangled in frozen dark waves over her face. His eyes were of shifting greens, changing purities of hues based on how much light fell in them, like trickster eyes, warm and kind but with a twinkle that could mean anything at all.

“One,” he said. “I will help you paint over what we wrote. Well, I won’t help cuz I’ll only mess it up more, but I have a few friends in your program who’ll help.”
“I’ll fail if people assist me.”

About the author 

Nathan almost died when he was born. He lived for seven weeks in an incubator while his parents read to him. He eventually got out, moved to Pittsburgh, grew up, and kept reading on his own. Eventually he started writing. And then he found he could not stop writing.


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