Literary Lion: The Solo

August 10, 2015

Literary Lion is a 400 word “challenge” to write a story off of a given prompt. You can find out more about this challenge over at I Smith Words.

Without further adieu, I am again for another Literary Lions short story challenge. This week’s word is dance.


The Solo

Though she currently was the only one occupying the facility, she could feel the scorn of the head mistress burning across her skin. She’d danced for years with nothing but harsh rebuke for her efforts. Now she was largely ignored, her instructor’s silence a telling response to her many attempts to execute the choreography.

The lack of encouragement had long ceased to pierce the girl’s heart. She’d come to accept that she lacked her people’s inborn rhythm and grace. Years of practice had only culminated in less clumsy maneuvers as her wayward feet gracelessly carried her across the stage.

Like so many before her, she wanted to make the elegant leaps and twirls in concert with her chosen match, her partner both on and off the stage.

Taking a deep breath, the girl stood in the first position. She imagined herself making the first series of spins before leaping into the air. She’d land gracefully before making another set of complicated leaps and turns, which would be mirrored by her partner.

However, reality was as harsh as her head mistress.

The girl knew another failed attempt was on the horizon. Years of dark omens were about to come to fruition, that much she could feel in her soul.

She began the complicated series of steps in her own inept way. Her leaps were clownishly executed; her turns mockingly displayed her incompetence on the stage.

The girl knew a new role was being made just for her—a title she’d wear for the rest of her days. She’d be the prime example of what happened to those who failed to master the steps of the Lovely Dance.

The girl turned to face the mirror and stared hard at her reflection as she struck the beginning pose.

However, unlike her previous trips around the stage, the girl let her body guide her in its feeble attempts at the grace she didn’t possess. She no longer reached for the unobtainable. She danced a new dance, a dance all her own.

She heaved herself around the stage, letting a new fate be made in her new clumsy steps.

When she came to a fumbling stop she studied herself and the dancer she’d become. Gone was the girl fighting for a partner in which to share the stage.

Now stood a proud woman, a woman ready to face her debut as the soloist.