collab: running

The amazingly talented Tash Evens and I collaborated on a story-writing post. We each wrote a 100-word beginning of a story, traded, and finished them! Here’s how my story (with Tash’s beginning) turned out. Tash’s words are in italics πŸ™‚ And don’t forget to check out her story next.


There they go again – arguing, I’m sick of it. Sometimes I wish that I was a different person, sometimes I wish I was dead. Sometimes I think the only thing that will stop them arguing is if something awful happened to the family.
I shout downstairs, “I’m going out!”
As I leave, I slam the door as hard as I can and run. I run as far and as fast as possible. I didn’t know where but I didn’t care.Β 
I reached a fairground and took in the sights and smells around me.

Then came the screams. Then I ran…

With only the new moon as a light, I headed into the forest. Branches slapped my legs and my feet twisted as they landed on sharp rocks and stones. I didn’t care though, they needed to be reminded that there were other people on the planet.

I could hear the beating of my heart in my ears, and as I focused on putting one foot in front of the other, I realized that the forest was getting thicker and thicker. I stopped.

Standing under the leaf silhouettes and smelling the crisp, cold air. It tasted like loneliness. My back slid down one of the many tall Western Hemlocks. I hugged my knees and I sat there, numb to everything but my thoughts.

I’m a runner, I said in my head, I run away from problems. I can’t help it. It’s so easy to just ignore it until the last minute.

I heard another scream. It came from behind me. Slow and quite, I walked towards the scream. The forest started clearing, and through a layer of leaves and branches, I saw a girl.

She lay on the ground, in a lake of wine. Before I could react, I saw something else in the corner of my eye.

A red Honda Civic lay on the ground, just like the girl. Flipped over with its windows shattered, I saw a women hanging in the drivers side. The car erupted into flames, blinding me for a moment. I smelled gasoline and blood. And then, a siren.

I turned around and ran. They were going to be fine, I thought, the police and ambulance are here, they’ll be okay. I kept running, along the road but still separated by the layer or foliage.


“Last night, police found a red civic in flames on the side of the I-100 highway. Officials say that the owner was Brenda Sheldon, a 42-year old women from Eugene. Both her and her daughter where in the car when it crashed and are now in the hospital suffering severe injuries. Police say Ms. Sheldon was under the influence when she crashed”

“As police conducted their investigation, they had found that Ms. Sheldon’s husband, Sam Sheldon, had been charged with domestic violence in previous states and is not facing federal charges.”

I turned back to the cup of coffee I was gripping in my hands. The diner was practically empty, only bikers and road-trippers inhabited this road-side food joint. I threw five dollars onto the table and went outside. My phone told me that I was only two miles from my house. I started walking, and didn’t stop.

I turned the key and the door opened. 9 am on a Friday meant my parents where at work, one of the only times when they weren’t arguing. I lifted my body up each step until I was at my parents bedroom. I left a note and went into my own room.


Finally home, I thought. I just wanted to plop down on my bed. I didn’t want to argue with Darrell anymore and my daughter had been gone missing. I dropped all my stuff at the base of the stairs. Darrell’s gonna hate that, I thought. And no dinner ready for him when he gets home? Oh he’ll be pissed. I trudged up to my room.

On my bed was a note. It read:

Stop running.

30 thoughts on “collab: running

  1. I’ve always enjoyed doing collaborative writing like this – the fresh perspective seems to pull things out that you never even knew were there. I love the sensory-charged images you created.

  2. Pingback: favorite blog post of 2014 | zhou


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