Extreme Writing Challenge #26: “Deja Vu”

Today’s post is a little different than usual, but a difficult challenge nonetheless!  I’ll reveal it at the end…although some of you just might catch on to this one.  😉


Riley stood in the middle of the room in only a flimsy piece of Barbie pink lingerie.  At her feet, her fiancé Jonas lied face down in a plash of thick vomit.  Riley was still until she heard that Jonas was still breathing, and then she crossed the room and retrieved a bathrobe from the armoire.

Downstairs, the soiree was still in full swing.   Riley tiptoed down the spiral staircase, careful to remain overlooked as just another object in the background.

Riley found Desdemona sitting on the kitchen counter.  Desdemona wasn’t her real name, but she had a pair of black eyes that told you not to ask about it.  She wore a silver couture gown that she’d purchased in London; the sleeves were longer than her arms were and one of them twisted around the ice cubes in her glass of vodka.

Riley picked a red rose from the bouquet surrounded by prefilled shot glasses.  She held it up to Desdemona’s face.

“How was your little rendezvous?” Desdemona asked in a faux British accent.  She changed her accent daily.

Riley leaned in close so that her lips touched Desdemona’s ear.  “Dez,” she whispered.  “I’m having the strangest déjà vu.”

Desdemona picked all of the petals off the rose and sprinkled them over Riley’s hair.  She asked, “Where’s Jonas?”

Through the frosted windows, Riley watched the silhouettes of people dancing poolside in the back yard.  She longed to move among them, to let the wet summer air tickle her skin.  Instead, she picked up the phone and dialed the number of Desdemona’s chauffer.

“Darren, it’s Riley.  Will you come and pick us up?”

Desdemona leaned forward, knocking over a tray of half-eaten hors d’oeuvres.  “I’m not ready to leave!”

Riley avoided looking her friend in the eyes, afraid of admitting she saw through Desdemona’s façade.  “We’re moving the party to a new venue,” she said to her feet.

“Where at?” Desdemona asked.  Then she tugged at a strand of her yellow hair and said, “Do you think I’d look good as a brunette?”

With Darren en route, Riley grabbed Desdemona’s hand and led her up the stairs.  The two of them lifted the unconscious Jonas from the floor and carried him down to the front door, where they waited for Darren to arrive with the car.

They sat against a wall next to a papier mache sculpture of a giraffe.  Desdemona would not stop talking about blueberry crepes.  Riley squeezed her fiancé’s flaccid hand, noticing for the first time how petite her fingers were as they twisted through his.

When Darren arrived, Desdemona put the papier mache giraffe in a headlock and carried it to the car.  Riley protested, but Desdemona wanted a souvenir from the last best night of her life.

Riley wept softly on the way to the hospital.  She wonders if she ever really knew the two people on either side of her.


The challenge in this story?  In less than 500 words, I used 20 different terms that originated from the French language.  Oh la la!



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