Hi all. For those of you who don’t know, I occasionally dabble with writing (see my book as exhibit one http://www.amazon.co.uk/Robert-Mr-Marcus-Evans/dp/1495975606)
Anyway I found a short story I started about a year ago and which I had gotten about a page and a half into when I got distracted. I’ve dusted it off and included it below and I want some input from you all…. won’t that be fun :).
I want you all to come up with a genre and an event and I will pick the best one and modify the story in that style/around that event. Please add your own and go crazy on the ideas. Just type them in the comments box, as the other box doesn’t work.
I will then post it up in a few weeks with the best idea donater clearly labelled.
Maria pushed her gritty blonde hair out of her eyes before stretching her back to a cacophony of cracks. With a grimace she squatted down once more, taking the small brush in her hand, and began to gently dust the ground. Her back and all of her muscles ached to tell her that she had spent to long doing this. She had taken archaeology at University because it sounded interesting, she hadn’t expected this much sitting in one place and dusting the ground. Sure part of the reason she took this on was to get out in the fresh air, but she had expected to be more Lara croft that Tony Robinson.
It was her mother’s fault really. She had always wanted her daughter to be a famous archaeologist ‘just like the man who discovered Troy.’ Maria could almost hear her mother’s voice in her head, her slightly rounded vowels jostling for space with Maria’s cramp. Well she could now tell her mother that it was in fact Heinrich Schliemann who discovered Troy, not some man. Not that she would. Her mother was sweet really and had only pushed Maria so hard because she had never had the opportunity of a University education. Hence the dusting. Still Maria had maybe found something. There was definitely a shape appearing from the round in front of her myriad brush strokes. Something boring no doubt.
Maria looked at her watch. Exactly three minutes and forty seconds after she had last done so. The air felt like it was as much dust as breeze and the sun beat down on the arid ground of the dig. The soil was a rich orangy brown and all spread out across the site there were tens of students scraping and digging away. Most of them seemed really intent, like they had deliberately signed up for this dog labour and actually enjoyed it. Maria stretched again. Well not her.
A shadow abruptly fell over her and she squinted her eyes. The earnest and creased face of her lecturer suddenly occupied her vision. He was nice enough but was a bit old and crusty for her liking, the kind of man who carried a handkerchief and drank Real Ale. ‘So Maria, how are we today?’ She shrugged ‘Great thanks professor, I think I may have found something.’ She didn’t really but couldn’t resist the impulse to show that she was interested, after all it must help her grades to have the prof think she cared. ‘He squatted next to her. ‘That’s super, let me have a look.’ Maria moved her hands away from dusting gratefully and stood up. The professor didn’t even notice, so engrossed was he with the object. ‘My, you do have something there, let me see….’ He tailed off as he often did when interested in a picture during lecture.
Maria glanced around. Her gaze fell upon Sarah and they exchanged a look which involved rolled eyes. Maria smiled and brought her attention back to the professor, Sarah knew the score. At least there was someone here she could get drunk with at night and didn’t want to endlessly talk about the Roman bloody coin that had been found that day.
‘Keep at it. I think you might have a bone of some kind here.’ Maria refocused on the lecturer, that was more like it. ‘Really, you think I might have found something?’ He nodded giving her a smile‘ yes and if it is a bone it could be a real find. Sifting is always 99 percent perspiration but just occasionally you make a noteworthy discovery which makes it all worthwhile.’ Maria nodded, her fashionable hair once again falling in her face. ‘I’ll keep at it.’ He patted her shoulder ‘That’s the spirit old girl.’
Maria didn’t notice him leave as she was back on her knees scrapping. Her dissatisfaction of the last few days had been brushed off for the moment as her initial enthusiasm raised its head once more. She imagined the other students talking about her discovery. She would find the missing link or the fully preserved body of a king. She snorted. Well maybe not, better to not get carried away, it could just be a rabbit bone for all she knew, but still. No one else in her class had found anything worthwhile yet.
The sun moved across the sky as Maria continued to brush away. After an hour or so she could definitely see that it was a bone. It was curved and yellowish, with only the very top of it visible. Even when they made a find they couldn’t rush it. This had been drilled into them. They may disturb something around it or damage the sample in some way. Slow and steady was the key. The rasping noise of the brush filled her ears and she forgot how much she needed a drink. More of the bone slowly came into sight and… yes… she could just make out that it was curved and thin. Almost like a bowl.
Maria examined it intently as she rested on her knees. It was round and curved, it might be a skull or a hip or something. Suddenly there was a tap on her shoulder that made her jump.