This was perhaps a somewhat surprising competition for me to choose to enter, but I really wanted to push myself and try out a genre that was well outside my comfort zone, and a spoof romantic short story based on a character that I did not create so had to study the voice of most definitely did that.
As it was an audio story, or rather it had to be written in an audio friendly format so that it could be read out over the radio, I elected to mix Celia's voice with that of a story, so Celia is speaking to us while reading the story.
The inspiration came from a rather surprising place, I had in the past for university tried to write a romantic short story and it was awful, it was clichéd and just horrible. And that's what made it brilliant, Celia reading this clichéd and horrible effort at a romantic short story.
The prize was the story being read out on national radio by Celia actress Penny Lamport, along with a cash prize which was cool, as it was the first cash prize I'd ever won.
The Want for a Kiss
Well, let's see what we have today, no doubt it'll be another clichéd wildly romanced love story. And there we go 'The Want for a Kiss...' I better get started then, I have to leave for work soon:
As Princess Mary-Jane lay on her bed-
A Princess, well there's a surprise, there'll no doubt be a knight in white shining armour too. Anyway, I better read on:
She couldn’t believe she was alone on her wedding night; however, her father had found them. So what could she do? Her dad was the King after all, and her boyfriend was but a poor Englishman, so what chance did they have. And now, while she was locked up in her dad's villa in Greece, she did not even know if her new husband had escaped the guards after they had stormed the church and robbed her of her consummating kiss-
And there's the knight, in the form of a pauper, with a dastardly dad thrown in for good measure who robbed her of a prized kiss... Didn’t see that coming... really. No more interruptions now, I need to stay focussed:
"Mary," whispered a voice. "Mary?"
"What is it...?" she said. "What time is it?"
"Shh, it’s 4:30 in the morning. Now come with me."
She couldn’t believe it, it was Jack, was he crazy. She hugged him tightly. "Oh, I was so worried."
"What, you didn’t think they would get me did you? Now come on."
"Wait, but I’m not dressed."
"Shh," he said, firmly pressing his index finger against her lips. "You need to be quiet or you'll wake the guards. Now come with me."
"But I’m not dressed," she whispered.
"It doesn’t matter."
"Ok... but where are we going?"
Before she could think, he grasped her hand with his powerful grip and hurriedly led her over to the balcony- Suddenly he pulled her down behind the rails and put his finger to her mouth, for a guard was passing below.
"Come on," he said once the coast was again clear.
"Where are we going?"
Jack did not answer, instead, to her shock, he jumped off the 10ft balcony to the ground below. "Come on," he instructed, quietly, "you need to be quick."
"You have got to be joking..."
"Come on, hurry up,” he demanded. “Don’t worry I’ll catch you."
"What, you mean like last time..."
She took a deep breath and looked at the drop, but he was so excitable, it was impossible to say no to him. "I must be mad..." she said before jumping into his powerful arms.
"You alright?" She nodded. "Good," he said, then offering her no choice, he took her hand and led her into the densely tree covered land that surrounded the villa, far into the night.
"Where are we going?" she asked.
"I've told you, it’s a surprise."
After running for a few minutes through the darkness, a path that led through a patch of dense undergrowth came into sight. "Right," he said, "close your eyes."
"What, why? Oh where are we going, Jack?"
"Just close your eyes, go on."
The intense stare in his eyes left little doubt to the fact that he was not going to tell her anything. "Ok," she said, "but this better be good."
"It will be."
He firmly wrapped his arms around her waist and began to guide her-
Ah, now here we go, finally to the good juicy bits- Sorry, back to the story:
His strength and power could be felt in every crevice of her body. She felt more alive than ever, and her body was more acute, for every touch of his body through her silk night wear sent a tingle through her; and she could hear the gentle rhythmic ebb and flow of the nearby ocean waves caressing the land, and with the soft almost therapeutic noise only getting ever louder, it left little doubt to the fact they must be walking seawards.
"Ok," said Jack, after they had walked about twenty paces, "you can look now."
To her complete amazement, before her was the most beautiful secluded little cove with a picnic mat and champagne basket in its centre-
Well, that's nice for her, the closest I get to that is a £13.99 bottle from the supermarket for New Years... Anyway, should be at the good bits soon so on we go:
"No way..." she said. "How?" It was impossible for this to be, but there was even a guitar there-
Sorry, a guitar? I hope this isn’t going where I think it is... One way to find out, read on:
How could he have done this? It must be a dream; however, when she pinched herself, it hurt. "Just how?" she stuttered.
"I told you I would do everything I could to make you happy, and if you want a proper wedding night, then that is what you will get." He took her hand as a gentlemen would and led her to the picnic, and after sitting her down, he popped the champagne cork and poured her a glass. "Cheers," he said, raising his glass to hers. "Oh, here, this is yours as well, I forgot."
He handed her a piece of paper. "What is it?" she said.
"I wrote you a poem about the day we met- Actually, shall I sing it to you?"
It was too late, he had already picked up the guitar and begun strumming a romantic beat-
I guess it was going where I thought... a bit farfetched though, I mean he just comes out with a poem then turns it into a song: sounds like some girl's wet dream. Well, actually, it probably is- No wait, it was written by a man. Oh dear... Better read on:
She couldn’t believe he was going to do this. He truly was just so uncontrollable, so spontaneous, whenever she was with him, he did something totally unexpected. But this time, he had surpassed even himself-
But then, it would nice if a man would do that for me, the closest I get to a song is my husband's snoring... that's quite rhythmic... Oh, did I say that... hehe... I really had better read on:
His voice was so powerful, yet so soft. It made her eyes unable to do anything but gaze at him as he serenaded her, he had stolen her senses and her heart, again-
Oh, times getting on, better skip the song's words. Ah, there we go:
It was as he said, the story of the day they met, when he just appeared in her room dressed as a servant. She still remembered him taking her by the waist so powerfully before he made his grand escape -- he was a thief after all. But from the moment he gazed into her eyes she was his. It was the same powerful gaze he was giving her now-
Someone's been watching too much Aladdin... Oh, is that the time, truly no more interruptions:
His hand reached out and caressed her cheek, it turned her weak at the knees. For she was his, now if he would just kiss her, and give her the moment her father stole from her at the church, if he-
"Get ready," he said.
"What?" It was too late, he had pulled his lips back and robbed her of the kiss she so desperately desired. The kiss that would consummate their marriage-
I feel your pain, girl, happens all the time... Oops, I did it again, I'll never reach the end at this rate. Back to the story:
"I said get ready."
"Look over there."
The sun popped its glistening head onto the horizon and sent an arrow of warmth onto them, and within moments, it was lighting the skies and ocean with a majestic golden glow. "It’s so beautiful," she said.
He returned his powerful gaze to her eyes, then once again brushed the back of his fingers across her cheek. She was desperate for him to kiss her, but still he held back, instead, he ran his fingers through her hair. "You really are so beautiful," he said, cupping her cheek in his hand-
Oh just kiss him already, I need to get going:
She smiled, it was all she had the strength left to do. Just kiss me her mind demanded as her eyes fell shut and his lips finally began to close on hers. "I love you so much, Jack."
"As I love you."
Then finally his lips touched hers and she fell into his powerful world of joy and freedom, for as they basked in the rays of the golden sunrise, they spent their first true moment together alone as man and wife. The end.
Is that it, but it was just getting to the good bit. Typical. I knew I should have tried that 50 Gray thing, at least I would know what's coming then... Hehe, anyway... off to work.