Where Are The Rings? - writercize #92

I'm feeling ready to be back from a bit of a drought with the Group Blogging Experience - aka GBE2, managed by the fabulous, witty, talented Elizabeth Grace - at least for the immediate future.  

Summer hit me hard with blogging; I had no idea how much thinking ... and relaxing ... and refreshing ... and energizing ... I was getting in the 20 minute drive to preschool twice a week.  My deepest apologies to those whose blogs I have been lax about visiting; I shall return to you in the fall, and in the meantime, I really, truly do appreciate your comments and visits to my page!

Ok, so all that touchy stuff out of the way, this week the GBE2 prompt is a photo, and I'm a big fan of image-inspired writing.  Get ready for your photographic muse, thinking outside the box and a little short fiction!

writing exercise:  See the lovely photo of rings to the right.  Now, imagine where those rings might be.  Write a scene, poem or short story about it.

Click "read more" for writercizer sample response about two brothers and some missing rings.
writercizer sample response:

Anthony looked down the aisle to see Carl standing in front of the altar.  He looked pretty good - fresh pressed suit, tie elegant yet understated, shiny shoes, hair discreetly combed down to disguise a bit of receding around the temples.  If it weren't for the slight line of white across his knuckles from clenching them so tightly, Anthony would think Carl wasn't experiencing any of the oft-joked about groom's jitters at all.  Probably most of the crowd wouldn't notice; they'd be too busy looking at the flowers and dresses and listening to the music to eye a man's knuckles, but Anthony knew his little brother well, and he knew where his fear was always revealed.

In less than half an hour, his little bro, two years his junior, would be married to the girl they'd both been crushing on since grade school.  She was in the grade between the brothers, and Anthony had seen her blonde ringlets and dancing green eyes first.  He'd been in fourth grade, Carl in second.  It was Carl who'd had the courage to talk to her first.  It was a big deal, little pipsqueak of a seven year old boldly approaching a pretty eight year old girl on the playground one day during recess.  It was sort of on a dare between the brothers, and though Carl was small and filled with bravado, Anthony had seen the white-knuckle line show up that afternoon too.

Turned out, that was all it took to get Lexi's undying affection and she and Carl had been each other's spotlight ever since.  

Surprisingly, Anthony had never quite gotten over his little brother's win and was still secretly in love with Lexi.  As she and Carl grew up and went to separate colleges, he always sort of hoped that they would split and Carl would one day say, "Oh, Lexi?  Yeah, I remember her.  Childhood romance.  Sure bro, you can date her.  That was years ago; I'm a grown man now."

But that never happened.  They weathered long distance, new jobs in different cities and finally decided to move back home, get jobs there and move forward with their relationship.  They'd moved in right after the proposal seven months ago and today was the wedding.  Despite the knuckles, Carl was ready for this day.

In the meantime, Anthony had gained a playboy reputation.  Perhaps pushed by the realization that day in fourth grade that most girls just want someone to talk to them and have a little fun, he was charming and approachable, but as he dated his way through the phone book he couldn't quite shake the crush on Lexi.  He found himself comparing all the other girls to her, and none of them measured up, so while his brother urged him to "settle down" before he beat him to the altar, nothing had ever gotten so serious.

Oh, well, the past was the past.  Today Carl would marry Lexi, the girl of both of their dreams, but Anthony would get to party it up with all the single ladies at the reception, and that was fun.  Right?  That's what movies are made of - drunken romps with romance-induced ladies.  Somehow, it felt a little like a consolation prize, but that's alright.

The music started up, and Anthony reached his arm out to escort the maid of honor to her post as he stood next to his brother as his best man and witness to the marriage.  Deep breath.  Smile.  Quick check.  Maid of honor.  Check.  Straight tie.  Check.  Cigar in left breast pocket.  Check.  Rings in right pocket.  Damn it!  The rings!  

Ok.  Deep breath.  Deep breath.  They couldn't be far.  He knew he'd brought them to the church yesterday for the rehearsal.  Had he taken them home?  Could he remember slipping them into his pocket this morning or patting them as he entered the building?  He'd been so busy flying into a tail spin over his silly unrequited emotions and jealousy that he hadn't concentrated on the rings.  

One more deep breath.  He had to say something.  He couldn't get to the front, have the ceremony begin and then blindside Carl when it was time to slip the ring on his finger.  Now was the time, right?  God, how could he be so stupid to lose his brother's wedding rings.

He cleared his throat and bellowed out, "STOP THE MUSIC!"

Everyone turned to look at him.  

Through a few grunts, with a crimson shade creeping up his neck and over his cheeks, Anthony admitted to the 200+ guests, "I think I lost the rings.  I know.  I'm an idiot.  They were here at the rehearsal last night, and I can't remember if I saw them after that, so maybe they're in the church.  If everyone could just stand up and look around, I'd really appreciate it.  Maybe they dropped out of my pants yesterday."

People stood up, kneeled down, crawled around.  Two hundred panicked people worried that any minute the bride to be would get suspicious of what was taking so long for the ceremony to start and run into the frantic ring search and rescue mission.

Just as Anthony was getting desperate and ready to ask random guests to borrow their rings for the occasion and promise his brother and Lexi that he would buy them new rings when they got back from their honeymoon in the Seychelles, good old Grandpa Howard piped up.  He hadn't been searching, but that was to be expected - his hearing wasn't so great and he was often a little confused these days.

"Well, I'll be.  Someone must've changed their minds.  I reached down for these here coins and pulled up a couple of golden rings.  Isn't that the dickens?" he said.  

Anthony rushed over to his Grandpa and snatched the rings right up.  He could see the engraving inside was right.  

"Thanks Gramps.  They're Carl and Lexi's.  You're a saint.  How'd you find them anyway?"

"Well, something felt funny under my shoe here under the pew; my foot was sliding back and forth, so I figured I'd turn up a couple of quarters and that's what I found.  Carl and Lexi's?  Did they change their minds?  Is that what all this fuss is about?  I wondered why Grandma was standing up and poking and prodding at me to get up, but I just figured the show hadn't started so I'd best stay put," said Grandpa Howard.

"No, Grandpa.  They didn't change their minds.  You just saved the day is all.  Let's get this going," Anthony said.  Then he turned to the pianist, "Music!"

He ran back to the church doors, grabbed the maid of honor's hand and rushed on down the aisle, promising himself to get over Lexi before he made any more trouble for his little brother daydreaming about something that wasn't ever meant to happen.


  1. that was beautiful!! how sweet!

    and stop by if you'd like to pick up an award =)

  2. Nicely done! Oh, and I'm glad you're blogging...I love reading your stuff!

  3. Chuckled over the Grandpa character. Nice work :o)

  4. Love it and I think I know "Grandpa" LOL

  5. Want to read the rest of this story. I know it doesn't end here.

  6. Loved it! I don't know why but I really liked the line "Somehow, it felt a little like a consolation prize, but that's alright." Genius!

    I treaded on the passionate side and came up with the following:

    While they sat opposite eachother in a booth at the diner, Amy stared into his brown and amber speckled eyes... watching his fire glow. They silently spoke with only their eyes, searching for an answer. Without haste and almost simultaneously, it came to them. They both knew what was to be done. Amy and Ryan always seemed to have a telepathic way of communicating. One could say their relationship was an intense whisper, a love so deep but sadly too short-lived for reasons only demons in Ryan's youth could explain. Even after the seasons in between, their fire never grew low.

    Ryan grasped the ring around his ring finger with his right hand's thumb and index finger, slowly pulling and turning it counter-clockwise. As the ring slid past his knucle, Amy could see a band of pale skin right where the ring had embrassed Ryan's finger for so long,ten years to be exact. He placed his wedding ring on the table, right between them.
    Amy followed suit. Her freshly manuicured finger nails grasped the cold bottom edge of her own wedding ring and with one effortless motion she slid it off. She placed her wedding ring on the table too, half overlapping Ryan's ring.
    They sat in silence, staring at the rings. Two distinct and separate lives finally reunited to form a conjoined life, just like the three areas fromed by the two overlapping rings.

    Ryan reached out for Amy's hands over the table and leaned in to kiss her just like he did a decade ago in his dorm room.
    They got up hand in hand, and walked towards the double-glass doors to a new beginning... leaving behind a ten year mistake.

  7. yay! thanks tara!!
    beth - aw shucks. i'm glad you're blogging too. :)
    jo and gil - i think grandpa's my fave too ... glad he gave you a laugh :)
    angela - thanks lady! as of right now, that's where it ends ... but you're right it has all sorts of space to twist and turn for as long as it likes. i compose as i post, so it's just what comes out each day!
    alma - oooh, i want to know more! what did they do? why a mistake? how are they getting through? i'm so very curious about their mysterious story. love it.

  8. I know, the story is missing much of the background information, but I intentionally left it out so the reader could fill in the gaps for themselves based on his/her imagination.

    My interpretation of the two rings, one on top of the other, sitting on a Formica looking table made me think of two a man and a woman who once loved each other very much but due to life's circumstances could not be together and married other people. Then, by sheer fate, they came in contact and picked up where they had left off 10 years ago. Of course, by then they had already married other people, but on that night at the diner they decided to leave their spouses behind and make things right between them. To live life as they were meant to-- together.

    What was your take?

  9. Great story, Alana, I love Gramps! But I'm wondering whether Anthony ever did over Lexi. This could be the beginning of a great romance novel!

  10. Great writing, Alana! I'm fairly new to the group, so I'm just starting to get to know people. I really look forward to reading more of your work. I agree with Paula, this could be the beginning of a great romance novel! :)

  11. Nice story. Lucky Gramps came to the rescue! Outcome could have been different.


  12. I love reading your stories! They are always interesting, entertaining and well-written!


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