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E - Everyone

Abstract thinking

by illy7896


The lightbulb above him flickered and then retired into a peaceful slumber, leaving him hostage to the night-time darkness. It had been waking up and dozing off for the past half hour and in frankness, Bowie had had enough of it. He flicked it harshly and waited for its groggy eyes to open up.

“Hey, what’s up?” It said, stretching its metallic body as the light flickered once again, growing accustomed to the liveliness of being alive.

“I’ll tell you what’s up. I need light, I’m trying to think.” Bowie held his head in his hands and massaged his forehead in frustration-he had been doing this for the past half hour.

The lightbulb looked at him curiously, and then rolled its eyes, sending yet again another flicker in the room.

“I understand that, David.” It mumbled “However, won’t you look at the time? If I were your mother, I would be very mad.” It blinked at him stupidly. When he didn’t reply, it added “Get some sleep, man. I need sleep too y’know.” It then began to yawn, expecting Bowie to switch it off.

“I have more of you, and since you aren’t reliable, I’ll switch you around. Night, night.”

Before it could retaliate, he had started to screw the bulb off, listening to its whining and screaming until he had pulled it out completely, and all that was left was silence. And darkness. He hurriedly threw it abusively into some bubble wrap, into a drawer and then snatched another one from his tool box. Reaching up from the top of his bed, he screwed it in, and after withdrawing his hand rapidly from a received burn, he sighed in relief at his new accomplice.

“Hiya there!” It started cheerily. “Sure a beautiful time to be alive, don’t you think?” It winked at him and after seeing Bowie’s grim face, carried on “Well, anyhoo, sure is for me. So, what are you doing in this fine day, I’m-”

“Hey listen, could you not talk?” Gosh, when the shop had said agreeably warm- hearted, he didn’t really think of this.

It stopped, looked slightly hurt, and then switched off suddenly, leaving him in the shadows of his room.

Maybe he really ought to get some sleep tonight.

He pulled his curtains, checked the room for intruders and then kept his bat by his side. It really was an old tradition, but still he followed it religiously every night despite the crime levels heightening ever so gradually each day. Whilst doing these assessments, the radio activated to life. “And in the early hours of morning, we find ourselves goggling at the star- spangled sky and-”

Before Bowie could even fully react to the voice of the tv presenter and the static indicating the radio’s liveliness, the channel switched over and another more clear, distinct voice started beside him.

“Always hated the news. Radio’s there for music.” It said in a low tone.

David turned to the voice, staring with bewildered eyes at a black cat perched up on his bedside table.

“Never understood that, y’know.” It commented, inspecting its nails and swinging its legs that were hanging over the edge, “Why can’t they let people listen to the rock’n’roll.” It surveyed the room with its beady eyes. “That’s also why I don’t understand jazz music.” It looked at him inquiringly, and Bowie jumped up in delayed shock. He gripped his duvet cover and could not help but leave his mouth hanging open, almost like it had no jaws to hold it upright. The cat switched the channel over. “Now this is more like it.” Stairway to Heaven was playing. It rocked his head to and fro. “Got a lotta soul, dontcha think?” Bowie still stared, open-mouthed. “But then again,” It began to file its nails “All humans do.” It grinned at him kindly and when still, no reply was given, it began to doubt his recent studies on human behaviour. ‘Maybe not quite as much soul as I thought,’ it mumbled.

“How did you, who are, why are you..” Bowie stuttered, relaxing his mouth a little more however still gawking.

“I could say the same to you. How, who, and why? But perhaps you’re insecure, so I don’t. There are social requirements, you see.” The black cat glared at him decisively and then smiled once again. “But, oh dear, you mustn't keep on gawking like that.”

Bowie returned his two lips together and clenched his teeth. “Sorry?”

“No need, no need. I am quite used to it.”

The song began to die away and the cat switched it over to another station. “Ah. This is my favourite.”

All that he could hear was what sounded like waves, or feedback. It was rather beautiful, however he wouldn’t say that he would spend hours listening to, unlike the cat, from the looks of his concentrated face. Light had begun to slip through the crack in his curtains, and he widened his eyes and flopped his head back on the pillow. When he looked back, the cat had disappeared, leaving only the electric pulses of the digital waves. Switching the radio off, he rubbed the back of his head, pondering how time had just melted away so suddenly. With people to meet and places to go, he changed and left the small apartment block, unwilling to justify the strange events of that night.

“Just another high morning monday” he breathed, opening his umbrella to shield himself from the pouring rain.


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9 Reviews


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Reviews: 9

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Sun Feb 28, 2021 9:30 pm
julia002 wrote a review...



The personification of unhuman things always makes me happy. It feels childish and fun in the best way. I can imagine this short story being a children's book. You did a great job of giving the lightbulb and cat a personality right at the start and it didn't take long to like them.

"It commented, inspecting its nails and swinging its legs that were hanging over the edge,"

I like just little things like that, it makes it seem so casual and cheery. I think the ending of a story is the most important part that always finishes it off in the best way. In my opinion, the ending makes or breaks a story. In this case, it definitely made the story.

“Just another high morning Monday” he breathed, opening his umbrella to shield himself from the pouring rain.

The ending just adds to the light-heartedness of the story. Overall, I really enjoyed the writing and the visuals that came along with it!




illy7896 says...


Thank you so much, I also love that writing style of childish imagery and casualness. I'm so glad that you enjoyed it.



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51 Reviews


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Sat Feb 27, 2021 5:23 pm
Spearmint wrote a review...



This short story is awesome! I love the feel of it, and how the character Bowie talks to the lightbulbs and the cat and then the next morning is like, “just another Monday.” I guess the strange events of the previous night were too much for him to process or something XD. Anyways, now for some specifics:

“Hey, what’s up?” It said, stretching its metallic body as the light flickered once again...

The personification here is great, and it sorta makes me wish my own lightbulbs could talk. They would be like pets! (Actually on second thought, maybe not— they might be rather annoying...)

Gosh, when the shop had said agreeably warm- hearted...

I get what you’re saying here— that the shop had described the lightbulb’s personality— but I think the phrasing could be a little clearer? Maybe something like, “Gosh, when the lightbulb store had advertised their products as ‘agreeably warm-hearted,’ ...”

And one other small thing:
...it began to doubt his recent studies...

Is the cat an “it” or a “he”? Just a little confused about that.

Overall, great job! I love this writing style, and I look forward to reading your other works! :D




illy7896 says...


Thanks a lot, I'm glad that you enjoyed it. I guess the cat would be a he yeah. I'll also take your suggestion on the shop bit, I too thought that that wasn't as clear as I would like it to be and your sentence sounds really good. Thank you



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Thu Feb 25, 2021 7:05 pm
hannah0528 wrote a review...



Hello illy7896! Hannah here for a quick review. Hope it's helpful!
Grows:
"'Hiya there!' It started cheerily." "It" shouldn't be capitalized. And I have a question: is "It" it's name? If not, you could just say "the lightbulb." or something rather than "It."
Glows:
This was deep! Great job. I have a question: is the lightbulb actually talking or is it him imagining in from lack of sleep?
“I could say the same to you. How, who, and why? But perhaps you’re insecure, so I don’t. There are social requirements, you see.” The black cat glared at him decisively and then smiled once again. “But, oh dear, you mustn't keep on gawking like that.”

Good job on this paragraph.

I hope this review was helpful! Keep writing wonderful things like these and have a great day!


Hannah




illy7896 says...


Thanks a lot. I guess that the lightbulb talking was his imagination, however, it's open to interpretation. Thank you so much for your suggestions, I'll be sure to edit my work.




“Such nonsense!" declared Dr Greysteel. "Whoever heard of cats doing anything useful!" "Except for staring at one in a supercilious manner," said Strange. "That has a sort of moral usefulness, I suppose, in making one feel uncomfortable and encouraging sober reflection upon one's imperfections.”
— Susanna Clarke, Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell