Pain Veil Stillness: use these three words

Welcome back to the daily prompts. The third for this week.

Pain Veil Stillness: use these three words

He waited, back turned, staring at the elaborate cross which hung above the far altar. Music softly played, tunes he didn’t recognise, tunes she had chosen. She had tried to involve him, made him listen to endless pieces of classical music as they drove from wedding barn to castle to fancy hotel, contemplating which would best capture their happiness, and deciding in the end to risk a marquee in her parents’ garden and get her cousin Sally to organise the catering because Sally was the best party-giver in the whole upmarket suburb where she lived.

Bridal couple

He waited, back turned, for the music to break into the song he did know. The one he had chosen when he imagined her walking down the aisle towards him, her beautiful face hidden by a gauzy veil. He would be stillness personified, calm, smiling as he greeted the rest of their life together.

The music changed. He turned, watched the pallbearers walk down the aisle, pain blossoming anew as he greeted the rest of his life, alone.

Follow the daily writing prompt on Facebook or Instagram.

Find Cheryl’s flash fiction and short stories, including audio versions of some, here!

4 thoughts on “Pain Veil Stillness: use these three words”

  1. This is part two to Tim’s story of pain and suffering:

    Contacted by his rescuers, a helicopter arrived shortly after to airlift Tim to hospital.
    A pain killing injection helped enormously with the agony he had been experiencing and soon it was a distant, unpleasant memory.
    The operation to re-set his leg took several hours and Tim’s next memory was waking up in the recovery room before being whisked off to a ward where he would spend the next few weeks learning to walk with the aid of crutches.
    When one of his fellow patients inquired about what happened, Tim was quick to explain how the safety rail gave way sending him plummeting down the mountain side.
    “Who was responsible for maintaining the rail?” his new friend asked.
    “Don’t know,” replied Tim. “Maybe the national wildlife service.”
    “You should sue them,” his friend, named Nat, said. “At the very least they should pay for the operation and for the pain and suffering you have gone through – not to mention any lost income while you are off work.”
    “Not sure how I am going to do that,” Tim responded. “I wouldn’t know where to begin.”
    “Don’t you worry, mate, I’ve got a friend who’s a lawyer. He’ll know what to do.”
    Tim was silent while he digested what Nat said. “I’ll give it some thought and let you know,” he finally said.
    Later that day the doctor who had performed his operation came to visit and said that Tim’s leg had been so badly broken it would be many months of recovery and physio, and any thoughts of returning to his job as a gym instructor was out of the question.
    Tim reflected further on Nat’s offer and decided to take it up.
    True to his word, Nat contacted his lawyer friend who next day came to see Tim in hospital.
    “Open and shut case,” he said after Tim explained what happened.
    “They won’t have a leg to stand on – pardon the pun – and I think you will be looking at, at the very least, a six-figure sum given the amount of time you won’t be able to work.
    “In fact,” added the lawyer, “you might have to start thinking about a different career all together – one that is not quite so physical.”
    Tim sighed, somewhat disconsolate. Being a gym instructor was a true passion with an accompanying social life second to none.
    After the lawyer left, he gazed at the ceiling and wondered what sort of future life now held in store for him.

  2. How sad to lose the love of your life so early.

    My contribution:

    The pain was excruciating and Tim immediately knew something was terribly wrong.
    One minute, he had been admiring the stunning view from the lookout – had even taken a few photos on his mobile phone – the next the safety rail on which he was leaning had collapsed and he was plummeting down the mountainside.
    A tree branch with a tenuous foothold in a crevice broke his fall and he was able to cling on for dear life, the treacherous chasm yawning beneath him.
    Birds startled by his fall had disappeared and a veil of stillness descended on the scene. It was then Tim noticed his left leg at a grotesque angle to the rest of his body and the source of the pain became apparent.
    No one else had been at the lookout, so Tim knew there was little likelihood of rescue. And his mobile phone, let go when he fell, now smashed to smithereens on the rocks below.
    How long could he expect to cling to this feeble tree branch, he wondered, particularly as the pain was beginning to take on a life of its own and it would not be long before he passed out.
    A voice from above, calling something, or perhaps he was imagining it.
    “Hello, hello,” it shouted, “are you all right?”
    “No,” yelled back Tim. “I think my leg is badly broken and I am not sure about this tree branch, either.”
    “Hang on for just a bit and we’ll get you out of there.”
    With the overwhelming pain coming from his leg, Tim was finding it difficult to maintain consciousness – only willpower keeping him from falling further.
    A rope appeared beside him, joined shortly after by a cheerful young man complete with climbing harness.
    “We were climbing one the cliffs nearby when we saw you fall,” he said, as he fitted the harness around Tim’s body.
    “Ok, haul away,” he called up to his colleague and Tim felt the rope begin to tighten.
    As he ascended to the top his left leg dangling uselessly, he offered up a silent prayer of thanks.
    Perhaps the day was not going to end so badly, after all.

    1. Very dramatic! Part 2: how much Tim received in compensation over the broken safety rail LOL

Comments are closed.