Writing Prompt 2

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The Countryman's Corpses

The challenge: write a story to go with a randomly-generated title and first line.

The title: The Countryman's Corpses

The first line: He vowed to write her, and he put on the mask.

He vowed to write her, and he put on the mask. It had taken years to get the thing to fit right: the wide contours didn't suit his narrow chin, and the narrow eyes restricted his vision. So he'd padded the chin, set up mirrors for his eyes. It had taken years to learn speech, years to want to be around people. That was all after the first bout of depression.

He pushed away from the low desk and donned the rest of his disguise: the stilts for his stubby legs and blue jeans. Time to surprise her with a second date. She wouldn't mind; in her text, she'd begged him to write soon if he couldn't come.

Could these legs even square dance?

He didn't care. This was the happiest he'd been since awakening from that first concussion to find his crewmates dead, their ship half-buried in a stripped coal field. Whatever square dancing was, it could never be as bad.

He whispered farewell to the caskets and slipped out to his stolen car.


Everyone said Roswell was the UFO capital of the world, but Jez never thought of it that way. Roswell was to his ranch like roller coasters were to jet fighters: an unrecognizably far cry.

He'd done the best he could to blend in while querying about any other ships from his navy. The most he'd ever gotten was from a white-haired couple: oblique allusions, followed by answers that "if anything did crash at Kecksburg, the Air Force long since picked it up and took it to Wright-Patt."

He still hadn't found a map showing the nearby town of Right Pat.

This prompt let me use more of my usual writing style, although it has more summary than I usually prefer. I kind of want to see how Jez's date goes, maybe combine this with an old short story...

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