All along the floor, in between strips of staging tape and wires, lay shattered pieces of glass. Cloudy little prisms reflecting light back up into the rafters where the remaining lights still hung, still cast shadows. Among the fractured bits lay pieces of hair and skin and, farther along, streaks of blood.
"I can't fucking believe." Damien's voice was low, steady. To hear him speak you'd think he'd just watched his star slip on a banana peel in the middle of a particularly long, complicated take. Instead, the ruined remains of Cynthia Castica lay crumpled before him, her skull and face fractured beyond recognition. The blood and bits of brain that drained out of her no longer gushed with the thrum of life, but instead spilled out at a dribble, the tepid remnants of a long-desiccated river that no longer fostered life, had been sucked dry, and was now simply having its last drops extricated from it.
It was almost embarrassing, Damien thought. Insult to injury.
"For fuck's sake, someone clean her up."
His voice echoed through the dingy set.
When he and his crew first arrived at the abandoned warehouse, they believed they had struck gold. Cassia, Damien's cinematographer, marveled at the natural light streaming through the old factories giant windows. The grime and dirt clinging to them only added an ambience she had been terrified they would not be able to capture. Now, as the last strings of evening's light faded behind the woods outside the building's west side, she wondered if all that ambience and their terrible crusade to capture it, had somehow conjured this terrible accident, and cost Cynthia her life.
"For fuck's sake," Damien said again. But his command was quickly shut off.
"We heard you the first time!" Nell stood shaking near her co-star. She had been only a foot away when the light came crashing down and crushed her friend. Blood dappled her pale skin. Bits of what might have been bone and unidentifiable grime from Cynthia's skull clung to the short hair of her pixie cut. Her eyes on Cynthia--they had never left her, not when her body convulsed under the weight of the light, not as blood rushed from her body in great torrents, not as it slowed to an interminable drip, not even now as the the color color and warmth drained from Cynthia's body and the signs of rigamortis, once completely unknown to everyone on set but now forever set in their memory, began to set in and turn the vibrant twenty-six year old into a gnarled mockery of life.
Her knees hurt. That was the first thought to enter Nel's mind since watching her friend die. This is what it must feel like when it happens, when your body stiffens in death. The thought that nothing feels like anything when you die crept up on her until a shuddering wail frightened it off. Go to her. It was the only sane thought. Cynthia was the only person there she knew before they answered the ads to audition for the movie and now she was the only person she wanted to be near.
When Nel lifted her shoe it made the sick, sucking sound of a movie theater floor. Soft drinks and vomit. She placed it back down, lowering her heel slowly as if she had committed some embarrassing faux pas. Blood surrounded her. Thick and dark, it had pooled around her shoes, drenching them. She could feel it in her socks. I thought it was just sweat, she told herself, as if she needed an excuse, something to tell herself for why she allowed her friend to die alone. I thought it was sweat.
No one spoke. Since Nel's outburst everyone stood still, a fragmented constellation with Cynthia at the center. Her blood a grisly Milky Way.
The breathing. Damien could feel it building. Everyone's breathes billowing in and out, a gaseous symphony building toward some horrible crescendo. He tried shallowing. Nothing. Even spit failed to crawl down his throat. It was all that breathing, he thought. He clutched at his throat like there was a limited amount of air, and all these people could do was suck it up as they stared dumbly at her. They were stilling his air, he thought. Taking it from him and wasting it.
He was going to say something. He could feel it building in his chest. It was puffing out and in as he reclaimed what was his, gathered his strength back and took charge. "If you fucking heard me then clean her the fuck up!"
Booming, his voice bounced off the walls, racing up the ceiling where it startled a nest of birds. Wings fluttered and three black shadows circles, squawked, and left through one of the skylights.
No one moved.
It didn't matter. Damien had spoke. He'd broken the spell Nel had cast over him when she interrupted him a moment ago. Now he could continue on and be the director again. "We need to get
The following challenges were completed during the writing exercise:
Begin Start typing to begin
Location A movie set
Words Reach 50 words
Words Reach 100 words
Words Reach 200 words
Words Reach 300 words
Words Reach 400 words
Words Reach 500 words
Words Reach 600 words
Words Reach 700 words
Words Reach 800 words
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