Thursday, August 17, 2006

Exercise in Microfiction

Swift, a blue blaze on winged feet, leaps through and past the flashing sirens'
call. Cries for help come early to one with the sense of velocity.

Ancient gray stone and pillars arrive in an instant, and a gaping maw of a door. An instant more, and the speed sense guides Swift to a chamber of clocks, all stopped. And in the center of it looms a shade, the alarm tripper. Widdershins. Swift pauses to meet the gaze of stop watch eyes, but quickly averts it.

The shade's cloaked right hand rests upon its jeweled timepiece quarry. The left hand begins to gesture, and stop watch eyes stare at the figure in blue.

Swift, always impatient, leaps past Widdershins into a dusty grandfather clock. The loud clang interrupts the spell, and Widdershins spins sunwise to silence the echoes.

The sirens draw closer. Widdershins, unbalanced by the spin, struggles to concentrate on a new spell. Swift focuses on the enemy, rocking imperceptibly on heels and toes.

This time, Swift is more patient. Widdershins focuses on the clocks surrounding them now, and slowly with surprising stealth one second hand clicks backwards. Then another. Then another, and Swift senses a pause of time no noise can interrupt.

They are beyond noise.

They are not beyond movement, though, in a field of time out of time, and Swift moves. Widdershins, whole attention on jewel-encrusted prize, does not expect a collision at Swift speed.

Knocked back, Widdershins drops both clock and field. The uniforms storm and secure the exhibit, place silver bracelets on the ever-patient Widdershins. Stop watch eyes never leave the door.

Swift is gone as though Swift never was. Other sirens beckon, after all. But they will meet again. They always do.

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