My THEME for the A to Z challenge 2017 is an ongoing speculative fiction story featuring telepathy.
Each letter post is titled and inspired by a commonly misused word or phrase.
The story started with All Intents and Purposes.
Am I more ashamed that dad caught me thinking about my failure with dating, or that I was thinking a teacher is my only closest thing to a friend, or that I could have been thinking of ways to prove the Homeland Security Mind Task Force should be dissolved? A pointless thought, a self-pitying thought, or a thought I didn’t even bother to think of — what carries the most shame?
I’m supposed to be sleeping. Instead, I’m wondering about my powers. If I did send a shock through my dad earlier, that means they’ve expanded. What else can I do now that I couldn’t do before? Will I really be more powerful than both my parents? Will I ever find someone with more mind powers than I’ll eventually have? Do I owe it to my kind to mate with someone like me, or do I owe it to my future children to mate with someone normal so they have a small chance of not inheriting this? Eww, do I have to mate at all? What if I just get some cats? Is that too cliché? What about frogs? Maybe I can be the crazy frog lady.
That is, assuming I actually have a future. I’m assuming the HSMTF won’t find me and take me to their little holding area near Hawaii, never to be heard from again. Which seems less likely if Mr. Bennett keeps assigning journal prompts that have me writing confessions. It’s illegal for me to exist. I didn’t go out of my way to get this skill. It’s not like basketball or violin, I didn’t learn how to do it and then practice by studying what experts did. No, I was born like this, and the powers are growing as I grow. I can’t prevent it any more than I could prevent getting taller. I could slouch, but even that would only get me so far.
I watch Dad’s dream for a while. He’s seeing the reporter eating oranges. She hasn’t put her dress back on. Gross. Not her, I think she’s brave. But seeing her eating oranges in his dream, juice dribbling down, peel stuck in her hair, it’s just… eww.
Spying on dreams isn’t nice. I know that. People can’t control their dreams. Well, most people. Grandma could. She had all sorts of dream powers. Will I get any of those? I miss when she’d come into my dreams to give me praise. “Kudos goes to Anah for the unicorn drawing in art today. Great work with the glitter, sweetheart.”
It isn’t that my parents didn’t love me. They just aren’t great at appreciating small stuff. At all. Ever.
Yesterday’s entry was partly based on a true event. A television reporter uncrossed and recrossed her legs under a desk which, from her point of view, was solid black glass, but from the camera’s point of view was clear glass. For this simple human movement, she was ridiculed by the public and lost her job. I was raised differently from those who feel this is fair and justifiable treatment, from those who feel shifting legs for improved circulation is so humorous that it deserves to go viral, and from those who believe that a human can become unworthy of an intellectually-based career due to a normal limb movement. I cannot understand the other point of view, nor have I figured out how to reshape the world; I can, however, create a character who has the chance to take a stand. I considered changing her to a male and having his fly undone, which would be an equal reason for termination and extreme public ridicule. Yet, somehow, it felt like that might not have made the same point.
What do you do most often when you should be sleeping but are awake?
by J Lenni Dorner
Reference and Speculative Fiction Author
A to Z Challenge Co-Host
Operation Awesome Debut Author Spotlight Organizer