The Morning After

He leans toward me – “I can’t hear you!” His hands flutter toward his ears, along with a slight shrug of the shoulders. Bringing him nearer. I say it again, repeating myself too quietly. Deliberately.

Again, he moves closer.

“What did you say?” I can see his lips moving, in a language I can’t quite understand. Not over the top of the hubbub rising around us, threatening to engulf us beneath it in a frenzy of barely controlled lust. The crowded streets make an audience unaware of our presence. An audience uncaring.

I smile. Take hold of his hand. His eyes flick past me, his smile spreading at this moment of victory in the pursuit of happiness.

They’ve been following us around all night – I keep catching glimpses of them lost in the melange of people wherever we go. I can almost see them now, sitting behind me, as though there were a window in the back of my head. They are so obvious, fitting into little cliched types, high-fiving one another, flashing him the thumbs up. Living vicariously on through his sexual success. A taxi is hailed through the downpour, the driver moving too quickly over rain-slick streets. Smirking at our self-obsessed small talk. We are his favourite type of distraction.

He stumbles up the stairs, his hands frantic in his pockets, searching for the key. He whispers something, and I lean close to him, his words drowning in the echoes of the graffiti-scarred concrete stairwell. Shadows dance above us in the early light of dawn as we slip through his door, laughing at our little secret.

My dress is creased, crushed underfoot as we tore at each other before collapsing into the bed. Too-high heels for the early morning commute – my hair defeated by the frantic, desperate pawing. He fell asleep, finally overcome by the increasing entropy of a night stretched too long into the next day. They all now know what happened, as surely as if he had shouted it out over his balcony slung high, like a diving board above the train-line. The smell of vodka rises from my skin, mingling with the cloying perfumes of mini-skirted receptionists and power-suited executives, forced to share this space with the sweat of early-morning gym junkies and already-dirty tradesmen. The swirling, heading incense of the train.

I think I’m going to be sick.


Adding my own odour to the miasma on the train.

Good morning, world.

This story came out of a post by Chuck Wendig over at Terrible Minds: 25 Things You Should Know About Writing Sex because the only thing I could think of and/or write were sex scenes – this one (hopefully) fulfills number 10: Implicit not Explicit, because although I don’t mention the actual sex, you got the picture (didn’t you??) I also used some of this week’s Inspiration Monday prompts, namely The Pursuit of Happiness, Falling up the Stairs, Increasing Entropy and Window in the Head. Thanks to Steph as always for her wonderful prompts.

As usual criticism is always welcome…

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8 thoughts on “The Morning After

  1. Oh, nicely done! After your warning, I was afraid I was going to have to read this “with one eye shut,” but that was not at all the case. You definitely capture the feel of the scene (two or three scenes, really) vividly, without getting explicit. I’d say you fulfilled the rule perfectly.

  2. ElizabethM says:

    I really enjoyed this. It actually started to sound like one of my memories as I read further – ha!

  3. timvansant says:

    And so begins the walk of shame. Nice one.

  4. Lynne Ayers says:

    Definiely implicit rather than explicit and, I think, a more enjoyable read for it.

  5. KP says:

    Oh, yuk! I definitely feel the suffering! Super use of all the prompts.

  6. […] The Morning After by ChrisWhiteWrites ~ @chriswhitewrite ~ Slice of Life […]

  7. elmowrites says:

    I must admit i found the imeline and tenses quite hard to follow in this piece, but in a way that was one of the things I liked about it – we seemed to be stumbling along with the narrator through her night of passion and the morning after. I thought you captured that well and I totally agree about implicit sex scenes. Nicely done!

Comments and criticism always welcome!

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