Tuesday, May 15, 2012


            Bright green grass spread out in all directions, warmed by the yellow sun and dotted with vibrant flowers of red and orange. A brown deer ran towards a grove of trees, which were heavy-laden with rich purple plums. The world sang in a melody of colors.

            Azul opened her eyes and wept. Every morning it was the same. She would wake slowly from a lovely dream, feeling happy and contented. In that moment, everything would be perfect—because every morning she forgot. And then she would open her eyes and the awful truth would overwhelm her.
            Squeezing her eyes shut, Azul took a deep breath—willing herself to be strong. And then she looked.
            Her room was still much the same—with a poster of a unicorn on her wall and a fairy lamp between the two beds. In the other bed, her sister, Violet, slept.
            “Hey there, Redhead!” Azul said in a sing-songy voice, trying to keep up her façade of cheerfulness, “It’s morning my yellow sunshine.”
            Violet stirred. She looked blearily around the room.
            “Something’s missing,” she said.
            “Yes.” said Azul.
            “What is it? What’s missing?”
            “You tell me, Redhead.”
            Violet plucked at a lock of her grey hair, puzzled. “Redhead?” she repeated—and then she remembered.
            “The color.” Violet stared around the black-and-white room in horror. “Zu, somebody took the color!”
            “Yes, dear. I know.”
            “What are we going to do?”
            Azul gave a sad smile, and repeated what she said every morning. “We’re going to get it back.”
            Slipping out of bed, Azul went to her closet. Looking through her clothes, she concentrated very hard—trying to remember what color they had been before. At last she chose a white-grey sundress, which she recalled was once pink.
            Once the sisters were dressed, they went outside. Their father was watering the grey grass.
            “You’re taking great care of the grass, Dad,” Azul commented, “It’s a lovely shade of green.”
            “What?” Her father looked up at her, his brow furrowed.
            “The grass,” Azul said, “Doesn’t it look especially green this morning?”
            “Oh, it does,” said Violet, catching on.
            “What are you talking about?” Their father asked.
            “And isn’t the sky a brilliant shade of blue?” Azul went on.
            “Must you speak nonsense, Anna?”
            Azul flinched at her father’s use of her new name, but pressed on. “And Mom’s tulips have come in great – they’re so yellow.”
            “As yellow as the sun,” Violet agreed.
            “Listen, I don’t have time for your games this morning,” said their father, “Why don’t you two go find something constructive to do?”
            “I was thinking it would be nice if we painted the fence,” Azul said in one last valiant effort, “We could paint it blue.”
            The two girls walked away from the house, down the grey side-walk, surrounded on either side by grey houses and grey trees. Above them, a grey sun shone dully in a grey sky.
            “He doesn’t remember color,” Violet said.
            “I didn’t remember either, this morning. Why didn’t I remember?”
            Azul didn’t answer.
            “Zu, how long has color been missing?” Violet’s voice trembled.
            With a shrug, Azul said, “A couple months.”
            “Months?” Violet’s almost-white eyes widened, “How could I forget that?”
            “Everyone forgets,” said Azul, “No one remembers color, except me. And every morning I try to get people to remember, but you’re the only one that does.”
            “Why us?”
            “I don’t know.”
            Violet was silent for a moment. Then she asked the question Azul always dreaded: “If we’ve been trying to get color back for so long, how come we haven’t fixed it yet?”
            “We just haven’t found the solution yet,” Azul said, trying to sound as though she was certain they would find it soon. But she was waiting for Violet to come to the same conclusion she reached every time they had this conversation.
            “Maybe there isn’t a solution.”
            “Don’t say that. Of course there is.”
            “How do you know?”
            “I just know.”
            There was another silence, as Violet tried to come to terms with the thoughts in her head.
            “How come I don’t remember anything?” she asked at length, “I forgot color, but I also forgot that we’ve been looking for it.” She froze in her tracks. “I don’t remember anything!”
            “I know, Red. I know.”
            Tears began pouring down Violet’s grey face. “Nothing! How could I not remember anything? And not even realize I didn’t remember?”
            “I don’t know. But you’re not the only one. I have the same conversation with people over and over, and none of them remember.”
            “Wow,” said Violet, “That must be really frustrating.”
            Azul laughed. “It does make things a little dull,” she said, trying to make it sound like it was no big deal. The truth was, she felt as though she were stuck in a black-and-white movie that she had seen so many times it was no longer entertaining.
“Well, where should we go today?” she always asked this question, even though Violet always said ‘I don’t know’ and Azul always ended up choosing where they would search for color.
            “The palace,” said Violet.
            “We could go—what did you say?” Azul stared at her sister. Violet couldn’t remember anything—how could she know about the palace?
            “The old palace gardens,” Violet said, “That’s where we should go.”
            “But how do you know about them?”
            “I… don’t know,” Violet frowned, “I feel like… maybe I dreamed about it.”
            “But we went there just the other day,” said Azul, feeling frightened though she couldn’t have said exactly why, “And I don’t like to go there. It’s so sad to see all those flowers in black and white.”
            “I’m telling you, I have a good feeling about this,” said Violet, “Someone there can help us.”
            “No one can help us,” Azul said—she had discovered this for herself. No one remembered the color but them. They were on their own.
            “Someone there can,” Violet insisted, “I’m going whether you’re coming or not.”
            “Alright, alright. We’ll go see.”

Today's Novel Idea Prompted by: "Color." Courtesy of Young writers -- a fantastic Facebook page for writers! This piece tied for first in a contest held by that page. The piece was also greatly inspired by the above picture, courtesy of my fellow Admin on Creative Teen Writers.   

1 comment:

aras said...

LOVE! No other words needed :D ^.^