Thirty in Thirty Day 15
The prompt I am using today is the one actually posted for today on storyaday.org. Well, except for one little name change. The prompt is “Trudy hadn’t heard the news.”
No Trudy in my stories or on my radar, so Trudy became Reuben. You may wonder who Reuben is. Well, that’s the new name of Josiah, a character I wrote about on Day 4. I realized I had named the parents Mariah and Josiah. Oops! Obviously in a dystopian fantasy, rhyming names like that would cause problems. It makes it sound less serious. So Josiah is now Reuben.
I digress. So my prompt for today is “Reuben hadn’t heard the news.”
I am still exploring characters and trying to decide which point-of-view to use. The first 50 or so pages were written in third person limited POV. After taking a break from that project and then picking it back up, I began to toy with the idea of using first person POV of several characters. Using the Thirty in Thirty to explore that has been quite valuable. The jury is still out on which way it will go.
Today I am using third person limited POV for Reuben, just to see where it will take me.
Reuben was glad to be back in Tirren after a long, exhausting trip. It was not a warm, friendly town or even a comfortable one, but it was home. He would be glad to see Mariah and Olen and to sleep in a warm bed and rest by his own hearth. His wife wasn’t perfect but she was a good woman. He regretted the way he had left two weeks earlier, with him shouting and Mariah crying. And he was sure Olen had overheard from his bed in the loft . Still, both Mariah and Olen needed to be more careful with their words and behavior. It was dangerous to challenge or ignore the laws made by The Council.
As Reuben trudged toward the cottage he noticed that other folks seemed to be turning away from him or looking down rather than returning his greetings. It was odd. Folks were not overly friendly, but usually the Harvesters were given a receptive welcome when they returned from their trips. He noticed a few people whispering behind their hands and pointing. What was going on?
When he arrived home the house was empty and cold. No dinner, no fire, no Mariah, no Olen. That was odd. Mariah rarely left the house. That was one of the things they had argued about before he left. Perhaps she had heeded his pleas and gone to the Market to shop. Maybe Olen was with her or in detention after school again.
Reuben walked around the cottage to see if is wife or son might be in the back garden. There were clothes on the line, but they were stiff as if they had been hanging there for a while. That was unlike Mariah. He looked over the back fence toward the cemetery to see if she was there, as she often was. He noticed a new gate had been erected at the entrance with one of the Council guards on duty. Mariah wouldn’t be there. She avoided the council and especially their guards who were known to enjoy enforcing the laws a bit too much.
A small spark of panic ignited in Reuben’s chest. Where was his family? He headed toward the town square. There were few people in the streets now as curfew was drawing near.
As he reached the edge of the square Reuben felt a large hand clap on his shoulder. He turned to see Elder Phineas, leader of the Council glaring at him. “Reuben, the Council requests a meeting with you.”
A chill seized his heart. “ What is it? Where are my wife and son? I cannot meet now. I need to find them.”
Elder Phineas sneered and tightened his grip on Reuben’s shoulder. “They’re gone. Two span ago while all of the upright citizens of Tirren were at the required council meeting. Slipped out of the gates somehow.”
Would love feedback as I decide on which POV to use. Do you prefer 1st person or 3rd when you read? Any particular reason?