a person - quotes and descriptions to inspire creative writing
The woman on the corner was dressed like any other urban Vancouverite. She was casual, but smartly dressed in jeans, a hipster jacket and a neck scarf. Her face was made up, but not over done and her long black hair was pulled back into a pony-tail. Yet somehow Mac was drawn to watch her. There was something in the way she held herself, as if unsure of where her limbs should be in order to appear naturally placed. Whereas the average person just walked along, barely aware of their surroundings, on autopilot just as much as those who commuted by car- her eyes moved quickly over everything in front, to the sides and ever few minutes behind also. In those brief moments she was looking his way he was struck by how protuberant her eyes were and the prominence of her cheekbones, gaunt really. And then there was the little brief case that dangled at her side, small but most certainly locked. Mac was debating whether to take a closer look or not when he caught a glint of silver at her wrist,
In the shadows knelt a person despite the rain-sodden sidewalk being perennially caked in filth. Tyler paused, this was his street and he was damned of some low-life scum was going to scare him. He inserted his hand into his pocket for his revolver; once his fingers closed around the steel he entered the darkness of the alleyway. He was about to tell them to scat when the person looked up, his craggy features now softly illuminated by the glow of the many lights of the high-street. Tyler would know that roman nose and puckered mouth anywhere, it was Sal- the cop who had busted him just last week. He took a step back to leave but the gravelly tones flowed to his ears like a cold tide, "Come here, son."
Tucked away at a secluded table by the stairs, one man sits alone. He might have been handsome once upon a time, but his otherwise delicate features are ruined by a long beak-like nose that has clearly been broken and reset several times in the past. The combination of the two gives his face a somewhat flattened aspect, as though he had angered someone wielding a particularly heavy frying pan. When taken together with the dark circles under his eyes and the two day stubble decorating his jaw, he looks every inch the desperate man that contacted you.
The girl was young, black and beautiful. Jerry had to rip his eyes away from her every time she walked into the room. There was sunshine in her smile and and her voice went right to his brain like a shot of single malt. Her clothes were so casual, the ubiquitous look all the university girls had: tight jeans, wide necked sweater and cute brown boots. So how come on her those same clothes garbled his brain to mush, stopping him from stringing a simple sentence together. Like, "Hey, wanna get a coffee?" How hard could that be? She sat at the computer next to Jerry and he almost stopped breathing. His face flushed pink. She typed fast with slender fingers, a sliver bangle tapping the keyboard edge. He wanted to complement her on it, find out her name, what she studied, where she was from. He wanted to be more to her than part of the background of the library, he wanted to be a real person to her. Then he could become her friend, and later, who knows? Maybe more...
The girl stood with a hip jutted to one side, her right arm draped across her slender body, clasping the elbow opposite. Her head lolled down to one shoulder casting her bobbed hair onto the faded Prince t-shirt that was two sizes too big. It hung so low that her shorts only just peeked below the dirty hem, frayed denim cut-offs. Her static eyes had picked a patch of concrete with nothing to distinguish it from any other patch, it had the same cracks, the same weeds, the same grime. A car back-fired a street over, renting the air as good as any gun-shot, but instead of startling she stayed just as she was. Eric wanted a window into her mind, to find out what was going on. Somehow he knew that approaching her with questions was the wrong thing to do. She had to come to him, but how? How do you get a person to notice you?
When asked to describe the person to the police officer, Kayla blanched. The robber had looked like everyone and no-one. He had the kind of brown hair every other boy in school had, a nondescript face without even freckles. He hadn't been either tall or short enough for her to think about his height; he hadn't been fat or thin enough for her to note his weight or build. In fact, she pondered, he could walk back in right now and she probably wouldn't even notice. She turned suddenly to the closed door to check, before answering the question, blushing slightly. "He was white, not tall, average, brown hair." The words felt small, inadequate, even as she spoke them and the officer paused before making notes as if he expected more. She let her eyes fall to the shattered glass on the tiles, what a mess...
How could a person sink so far? Tom, who had been the one to engulf everyone in bear-hugs and tell loud jokes, now nursed his cognac year after year; clock-watching until the obligatory Christmas dinner was over. It was no secret what happened, and even his presence now put a strain on everyone else. It was impossible to broach what ailed him, no amount of wishing would bring his wife and child back. Jokes were badly received with a forced wrinkling of his mouth that did not extend to his sagging eyes. When at last he rose to excuse himself his sister, my mother, would make a fuss of making him stay; but acquiesced a little too easily when he persisted. It was a little dance they did each Christmas, awkward but necessary. It was as if he died with them all those years ago but his heart kept on beating just the same.
Lillie had been a person once. By grade seven she had been the school celebrity, doll-like proportions with double D breasts. Boyfriends were easy to come by, as were free drinks in every bar; who was to know she was underage? Her twenties and thirties went by in a blur, one man after another. She knew why they all liked her, but it didn't bother her one bit. But from forty she began to unravel. Her self-esteem was superglued to her beauty and for the first time she realized how transitory it was. Her bathroom was a mess of expensive face creams- miracle wrinkle solutions. She barely ate and worked feverishly at the gym. She partied like a twenty year old and dated a man young enough to be the son she never had. When fifty hit, roots greyed and wrinkles deeply etched the cosmetic surgeries began. Now, at sixty-one, broke, abandoned and homeless, Lillie is one of the unseen who walk in broad daylight, clothed by the Salvation army and vying for a spot in the winter mat programs....
His callused skin was oddly juxtaposed to the crispness of his suit, tailored to perfection, likely in a high end London taylor's shop. His eyes had a look of long yearned for mischief beneath heavily wrinkled lids. He walked with a slight stoop, yet moved swiftly into the marbled lobby of the restaurant. He greeted the stiff maitre d' with nod and a hand shake, faltering somewhat when the greeter became mannequin-like instead of mirroring his joviality. His smile waned, then came a raucous cheer of welcome from a flower adorned long table to his right. The maitre d' visibly jumped and turned sharply in the direction of the noise, his skin a shade more pale. The old man's gnarled skin broke into his customary smile, radiating an unabashed joy. He took the hat from his mottled scalp and handed it to the server who appeared to have frozen momentarily and made his way to the table unaided. Dad, Grandpa, brother and Wing Commander had arrived; now the celebration could begin.
“Yes, what do you want?”
“Well, Melony LaSalle, I know that your real name is Susan Jordon. No, no, Girl, don’t close the door. You’ll just have to go someplace else to start over, and Susan, I will find you there…unless.”
Susan opened the door a little wider. “Unless what?”
Diego entered the apartment. “Unless we can come to some arrangement. Susan, I know that you left with 600,000 dollars in stolen property. That money belongs to your husband’s business. Now, you fly from New York City to Oakland.” Susan finished his sentence. “And you want…how much money to be quiet?” “Susan, I believe that, 40,000 would be my lowest price for silence.”
Susan’s move was quick, like a tiger leaping on a water buffalo. Diego saw the flash of the knife blade. It hit, and he was went down.
As Susan left with her carryon bag, she looked down at Diego, the now silence skip tracer. “Name’s not Susan, it’s Melony ”
The doctor was built like a neanderthal. Gran's fingers gripped her handbag tighter and the smile on her withered lips drained faster than her morning coffee. Her eyes rested on the tattoos that played peekaboo up his sleeves. His ears had holes for piercings, as did his nose. I was expecting him to talk like a biker but he spoke so eloquently I began to imagine him squeezed into an posh school uniform instead. His voice was baritone and rolling. Under the wild black hair that stuck up from being ruffled every few minutes with his spade-like hands, his eyes were a warm brown- the kind that reminds you of all things soft and sweet. He explained everything in words even my kid brother could understand and rounded the whole thing off with a fist bump. Gran smiled like the act pained her and enquired if the “real doctor” would be coming soon. I expected him to take offence, but he beamed like Christmas had come early. “Madam, I am the consultant. Junior doctors will also be checking in.”
Grace didn't like the doctor. He was thin and ginger, that's all she needed to know. His voice came out like he had a grass reed for a tongue and he was too skinny. He walked like his legs were stilts with a hinge at the knees. When he spoke she stared at his head, "Too small," she thought, he can't get much of a brain in there. She wanted to reach right out of her bed and snatch the concerned look right off his freckled face. A strong slap might do though. She wanted to block his words right out but the nurse was looking and she didn't want to appear rude.
"Mrs Davey, I have been doing some checking around and we have found you the private bed you requested. I have asked my good friend the lead surgeon to take your case, you're going to be in excellent hands. Is there anything we can do to make your stay more comfortable?" Grace's fist curled under the blanket. She knew now why she hated him. He was just like that guy she'd dated back in school. Untrustworthy filthy liar.
The teacher had the look of middle-aged housewife gone to seed. She peered at the class through unmade-up eyes that had developed crows feet. Her eye-brows were so thin as to be barely there and her eyelashes were short and stubby. As such her pallid skin aged her beyond her years. She had the misfortune to be a blonde, and no doubt that had been attractive in her youth, but now she simply looked washed out. Her cardigan was tight about her middle, perhaps when new it was loose, but in the light of the mid-morning it looked worn and shabby. The mid-blue wool had a furry texture and at least one button was missing. Her eyes were so washed out that it was hard to tell their hue, and to be frank, no-one cared to look at her long enough to find out. She smiled at the class in that way people do when they'd rather be sitting at home with a cup of coffee, door locked and day-time TV on. When she spoke her words limped out in all their monochrome glory, separated by extended pauses...
The man's nose was the star of his face, and not in a good way. It stuck out like a pinch of clay fashioned into a beak. It was arched, but in a way that looked irregular rather than regal. It reminded Sammy of a carnival mask painted in fleshy tones, it was odd to see something that shape covered in real skin and stubble. The look was made more pronounced by the thick black eyeliner he wore day and night, so that his eyes seemed to peer from behind his face rather than within it.
Warren's nose was a consequence of his love of rugby and his propensity to tackle hard. It had started out the way many millions of euro-caucasian noses do, kinda straight and narrow. Now it was more bent than an old stile warped by heavy rains. Every time he broke it he'd joke about having to change his passport photo all over again, or perhaps that with his new face he could be a spy again. His wife would just wince and keep replacing the gauze until the bleeding stopped, his kids laughed along, telling him how awful he looked.
The teacher had the look of one who had grown too fast in his youth, his bulk never catching up to his bones. He had to duck on entering the room, before edging toward his vinyl desk in his corduroy jacket and decade old flared trousers. The kids couldn't look at him without being reminded of Basil Fawlty. He had the same waning but wild brown hair and the way he held his lanky frame and gestured with his hands screamed comedy. Within seconds of entering the room the kids had spread picnics on the table and begun loud conversations about last nights television or a favoured computer game. Only the four girls at the front listened and read their text...
The teacher had a hawkish air about her. Even her nose was curved and beaky. She had eyes of palest blue that fixed you in ice should you dare disagree or talk out of turn. She was willow-wand thin, so stick-like that it was hard to imagine her eating much at all, at least not without wiping her narrow lips after every bite. Her hair wasn't so much blonde as a washed out brown, like it just couldn't be bothered to be any colour at all. Like many women of her age she had it cut short to hide its lack of volume. There was no way in the world this woman had a happy home-life. If she had a husband he was hen-pecked. Every movement she made betrayed her internal frustrations that bounced inside her like sound in a deep cave. In the classroom she was a chained monster, bound by rules and statutes. A century ago she would have been brutal with the cane I'm sure.
There was a person on the street corner. Ordinarily Augusta would walk right past, as a child of the downtown core she'd seen it all: pimps, druggies, hookers and worse. But this guy seemed to suck in the light around him, standing in his own personal gloom. He stared her way, not really at her but through her to the graffiti on the liquor store behind. His black jacket was almost to his knees and shabby, it bulged in several places it shouldn't and that always meant weapons. She slowed her pace and pretended to check in her bag before doubling back. As she turned she caught a fleeting look on his face, wider eyes and tension. Soon, under the noise of the traffic, came footfalls strong and quickening. Before she could react that coarse fabric was wrapping around her waist and she was falling to the sidewalk with the man on her back. Augusta screamed but it was lost in a hail of bullets and wails from the end of the street. "I'm a cop, stay down," he said as if his voice box was leather
The person behind Claire was a young man, asian, handsome as hell. He was clad in a tight black t-shirt and jeans, all as perfect as the day they were purchased. She could detect the scent of an exquisite cologne lingering in the air. She closed her eyes momentarily and took a small step backwards. The aroma was enough to flood her brain with endorphins, it was heady, perfect. She glanced downward as if to check her charm bracelet and in doing so scanned his hands for a wedding ring, none. With a slow exhale she turned to face forwards again. She considered how to start a conversation: bumping, fainting, dropping something on his feet. Without realizing she had formed a decision she turned, her bracelet now in her hand. Just before release the blonde guy next to him threw his arm around his shoulder. They two men exchanged a doe-eyed look, the slightly repressed grin on one face exactly mirrored on the other. Love. Damn it. She curled her fingers tight around the silver figures...
Somewhere around forty-four Elise had ceased to be a person. Men used to hang on her words and laugh at her jokes, she had enjoyed male company and assumed her personality was simply superior to her more plain friends. But since the crows-feet and the lines that ran from her nose to her thinning lips became more pronounced, she'd felt like her skin had been painted as beige as her mother's sitting room. Unless she dressed up and went somewhere older people were more welcome, like an expensive car showroom, she was considered as interesting as any other middle-aged woman. It riled her no end, she was still in shape more or less; a few more pounds really, but that was all.
The nurse entered the room without slowing her stride at all. One moment she was in the corridor, her eyes dead ahead and the next she was grabbing Jessie's hand to take a pulse. In this exchange she neither made eye contact or spoke; Jessie began to feel sub-human, as if she no longer qualified as a person at all. The nurse's face was like an overstored apple, round, full, yet crinkled worse than a brown paper bag after all the candy is gone. Her eyes were small, mean, bereft of any make-up and she smelt of detergent. She made a clicking noise with her tongue before pursing withered lips, finally hiding her yellow teeth and cutting off the smell of garlic. Jessie began to open her mouth to ask when lunch would come but before she could the nurse had bustled off, disappearing down the corridor as rapidly as she came.
Jayda was a person of uncommon gifts. She was like a bird in flight, making something so impossible for others appear easy and natural. On the ward she calmed patients deemed "difficult" by other nurses. Once glance at her ebony skin against that starched white uniform and their respirations eased to a more relaxed rhythm. Nurse Miller never hurt them, never became impatient or belittled their pains, physical or otherwise. She spoke to them like they were still people, people who mattered, not just withered old bones too stubborn to die any faster. When her gaze fell on them it had the warmth of a daughter's eyes and her voice was deep yet honeyed. Her speech had a liberal dose of terms of endearment: "honey, sweetie, sweetheart and love." With just her presence their pain medications worked better, their appetites improved and they slept more deeply.
Tony's quiet demeanour belied the grit underneath. Overlooked by almost everyone he was almost invisible in the classroom. Each returned paper he would turn over to hide the perfect score. Even after acing half the course he still felt the burn to study the next night and the next. This was his ticket out of this dump, he was a person going places. He had university mapped out, Ivy league on full scholarship. He ran his hand through his tight black curls and slumped in his chair, his usual surly repose. Then pretended to flick through his ipod songs. It was on of course, but muted. He sat there soaking in every word the teacher said, silently cross-referencing it to what he had read, restraining himself from making corrections when she got it wrong.
My sister curls up, cat-like by the fire. After a long night of raging at our mother she is simply exhausted. I wonder if her dreams beg her to calm down in their nonsensical ways, or if they egg her on ever further into the abyss she's headed for. I almost laugh, in sleep her face is like my lil' sis, the one who'd bring me flowers while I was studying for an exam, or tell me so honestly why they guy I was dating was an idiot. I miss her, I want her back. Mom says she'll reappear when her teenage hormones die down, we just have to keep her on the right road until then. I told Mom there's no way I was this bad, she just laughed. Now we're playing good cop, bad cop. Mom lays down the law and I'm the shoulder to cry on, that way at least we know what's going on in that addled brain of hers...
Melony LaSalle had discarded the identity of Susan Jordon. She had cast it into the trash bin of her deceptive past. She had not only disappeared with six hundred thousand dollars from her husband’s business, but she had killed the “skip tracer” that he had sent looking for her. She pushed the speed limit to get away from Oakland. The clear highway invited speeds in the nineties. However, the skip tracer, Diego, had not died. The wound was bloody but superficial. When he came to, he quickly checked his computer in the van and activated the tracer devise he placed on Susan’s car. The computer locked onto her position. The bleeding on his side stopped, and now, the determined anger of the hunt was driving him. Susan checked into a seedy motel, just north of L.A. Exhausted, she fell into a fitful sleep. Next morning, she went to her car, searched for her keys, and looked up. Diego was waiting, leaning against her car.
“Hello, Melony LaSalle. Lady, you are busted.”
Beautiful hair, like threads of gold, cascaded down her back as it caressed her bottom in gorgeous ringlets. Her chocolate brown eyes were outlined with a perfectly practiced cat-eye, as her delicate eyelashes kissed her rosy cheeks. High cheekbones gave her face a symmetrical look, with lips so red and so alluring, it was very difficult to resist.
She stood there in her Chinese white gown, as it hugged her upper torso and fell freely like a waterfall, pooling around her ankles. There was absolutely no need for heels, because she stood at a height of ‘5”4. Stars twinkled on her wrist in the form of a band. The gothic black nail polish contrasted with her pure white dress. A circlet, made of silver with pearls, adorned her head making her look like the Greek Goddess Aphrodite – the goddess of beauty.
She wore a smile so bright; it could make the sun cower in fear. Her beauty is indescribable because it is so radiant that it makes the skies look dull in her presence. She had a sort of a natural scent to her, something like honeydew melons. Her personality outlined her beauty even more, for she did not care only for herself but for everyone around her.
They say that a butterfly sits on the most beautiful flower that it can find. If it were up to me, I believe that every butterfly will be writhing in pain because they have yet to find Kresha.