past weekend, I entered a flash fiction contest on Operation Awesome's website. If
you're a writer and haven't been there, check it out! The other entries were
great. Operation Awesome has loads of tips and tricks for writing, plus
this contest, the piece had to be 500 words or less, and had to somehow include
the writing prompt "learning how to walk."
my winning entry:
Learning How To Walk
twelve-hour operation was over hours ago, but the anesthesia hit Amit harder
than me. My first chance at freedom? Spent in bed, like always. It didn't
matter that the nerves and ligaments and muscles were all in the right places
now or that the nanobot results were stellar. Until Amit opened his perfect
eyes, we wouldn't be doing any walking.
nurse hurried in and checked our file. I bared my teeth at her. She scurried
our right hand, I poked Amit's cheek. Dead to the world. How could the drugs
affect him more than me? My twin and I shared half our organs.
poked him again, then gave up.
was stupid. Internet was stupid. Amit had twice as many followers on Twitter.
His smile never forced anyone away.
turned to him. Maybe Amit's popularity would plummet...if they saw him drooling
on his pillow.
held my phone so both our heads were in the picture and smiled. Damn. Even with
drool his face was friendlier. I clicked anyway.
Waiting for sleepyhead so we can finally learn to walk.
later, I had twelve faves. I had fans too.
Mahesh." Amit's voice sported that edge that said he was seconds from
fine," I told him. "They're ready when you are."
rubbed his eyes with our left hand. "And the nanobots?"
says they're working as they should. Give 'em a wiggle." I held my breath.
That had been the hardest part of watching him sleep: waiting to see theory
turn into reality.
right toes flexed, then our left. With a grin, Amit lifted each leg in turn,
bent each knee. "Have you tried?"
swallowed. "Doesn't work for me. But that's what the docs said to expect,
leaned his head against mine. Before he could try to say something to make it
better—nothing could make it better—I pressed the call
same nurse skittered into the room. "Yes?"
kept my face neutral. "We're ready."
I'll let them know." She smiled at both of us. But longer at Amit.
you imagine, Mahesh? We can go anywhere now. We can walk into a restaurant.
Stroll through a park. Where to first?"
closed my eyes. Wide blue water, sparkling under the summer sun. Would it feel
different from the hospital pool? "Granny's lake," I said.
beamed while he paddled happily with our feet. "The lake it is!"
bumped fists, and I cursed myself. Amit didn't deserve an asshat brother. With
a shallow breath, I scrolled on my phone. Twitter. Own tweets. Delete.
team of doctors stormed our room. "Gentlemen, who's ready to learn how to
squeezed into the corner, his camera ready. My cheeks stretched wide, even
though I knew what it looked like to outsiders. Amit and I pushed ourselves up
from the oversized hospital bed. We were ready.