This piece emerged from a prompt in my creative writing class, which asked for a story about a man or woman who’s had an affair in a hotel room the night before, only to wake up beside their spouse. The action was to take place entirely inside the hotel room, with no significant back story.
I got through about 3/4 of the writing of this piece while in class and had a decent response to it during the sharing and workshopping session, so I decided I’d go ahead and finish it up. I did that just this evening, along with a little polishing on the first section from the night before, and all in all I’m fairly pleased with it. What I wanted to get at in this piece is the idea that people don’t (usually) cheat merely out of a desire for simple sex or orgasm, but because they have a deep need inside that isn’t being met in their home life. That’s not an indictment of blame, incidentally; sometimes it’s just a matter of how people’s lives evolve, and my take is that mutual understanding and meeting of needs, not blame, guilt and penance, is the more mature way of coping.
I hope you like it; please feel free to leave a comment and tell me what you think!
A Night in Memory
Carl awoke with a start, the unexpected warmth of sunlight playing across his eyes through the half-open blinds of the Prudence Hotel and Bakery. He breathed deeply and smiled, reveling in the warm scent of sex that still permeated the room, a remnant of a night spent entwined with the most passionate, intense woman he had ever met. Still afflicted by the hazy, early afternoon sunlight that danced across his face, he closed his eyes for a moment and remembered, with fondness and an emerging desire for round four, the beautiful, vivacious redhead he pictured sleeping quietly beside him. She was everything his wife had never been: adventurous and experimental, open to touch and be touched in ways and places the mother of his children never had, for hour after hour into the night. The way her body responded to his worship of her every sensual part made him feel, for the first time in years, like a powerful, competent lover, like the man he thought he’d forgotten how to be. This new woman, he thought, was a little piece of bliss.
So, in my college pursuits, one of my classes is Introduction to Screenwriting. As an exercise in this class, I was assigned the task of writing a short scene in which two people at a cafe have some kind of expositional dialog. At the same time, while preparing for Diversity Day, which was sponsored by the student government (I’m a member,) I learned that there was a need for some skits to be written highlighting the issue of racism. There were already a couple of skits written by other folks, of course, but there were two complaints discussed in one of our planning meetings: First, that the existing skits were a bit…provocative in their language, and second, that both entailed white students attacking minority students, which is, of course, not how things always roll.
Well, it occurred to me that perhaps i could combine these projects, and moreover, that I might be able to assemble something that would be a complete short story wherein not only is the perpetrator of the racist act not a caucasian student, but the racism involved isn’t even meant in a harsh or hurtful way; it’s simply a matter of culture and traditional values clashing with the modern world. The following story, written more or less in Screenplay format (I’ve made some modifications to make it easier to read in this medium) using CeltX, was probably a little too subdued to justify being performed live on a campus (indeed, it wasn’t,) but is nevertheless, I think, an interesting short story.
A Question of Culture
A WHITE MAN and an ASIAN WOMAN walk together,
laughing and chatting casually. They appear very
comfortable together and seem to be enjoying each
other’s company a great deal. They are coworkers
at a Computer Services consulting company.
Boy was that guy funny in the meeting today. What in the world made him think that server would work online without a network card?
I don’t know, sometimes people at this company are so silly! The look on his face when you explained it to him was so funny, though, you almost made me laugh out loud!
Was I rude, do you think?
No, not at all, I thought you were very polite. You’re always polite…and sweet!
Well, you make it easy to be sweet. You’re so smart and funny all the time!
The two sit down at a table, still smiling and
happy. A waiter approaches.
Kaitlin Thomas reached across the bed as the first rays of dawn began to light her bedroom. She slipped her hand under the sheet and softly stroked her husband’s abdomen. She smiled, thinking of how he had felt in her last night; how he would feel in her again within moments. With a tenderness that whispered of great love mingled with lust she softly caressed his chest and nipples. A smile grew on her lips as the sheet above his pelvis swelled and twitched with an unconscious rhythm.