Introspecting one’s life can open doors… Question is if you walk through them…
By TeraS and makuta15
Eric eased himself off of the couch and sat down on the floor next to Tessa as she spoke, shifting a bit uncomfortably as he settled on the old floorboards. He flushed at the implied compliment, grinned at the use of the hot dog as a pointer. Wherever she had come from, however far she had traveled, it certainly hadn’t damaged her sense of humor. Still, Eric had to wonder about her. How much had she told him, really? Only that she often traveled and spent nights alone. While he found her utterly charming, Eric had to admit that she was still something of a mystery. And she always tensed up on the subject of change…
He was about to truly cross the line between casual conversation and prying, about to ask her to reveal more, but was cut off by her own unexpected question.
“Well, of course I…” he began, and then stopped. He tried to look Tessa in the eye, but ended up just looking into his own lap. One hand reached into the bag of marshmallows and began just squishing one around between his fingers. He bit his lip, shook his head and spoke again.
“Look, to be perfectly honest, I don’t know. I just… I had to do something, and this was the only thing I could think of. This shouldn’t be a, I don’t know, a kind of trophy I guess, something I can say I did and never have to do again, but life can surprise you like that. I really…I just had to do something. But I guess doing one thing different doesn’t really guarantee actual change, now does it?”
Eric threw the marshmallow he had been fiddling with into the fire with a derisive grunt, then exhaled deeply. He hadn’t meant all that to come out, but…
He apologized weakly – a mumbled “sorry, I shouldn’t have…” and then went back to staring awkwardly at the fire.
Tessa gave him a bit of a stern look, “It guarantees that you have a spine and a will. Not that many people out there have that. Or if they do they don’t know what to do with it. Put your doubt aside and don’t let it eat at you.”
A slight shrug, “It’s not the way to live your life. I know that doesn’t mean squat, but think about it.”
The puff of smoke as the marshmallow burst into flames emphasized her next words, “Doubt kills dreams and hopes and futures. They go up in smoke at the first chance and don’t come back. Learned that ages ago the wrong way.”
She put her stick to the floor across from her and then shifted around to look at him watching the fire. She let the fire be the only sound for a minute or so, the silence not actually uncomfortable, but it was needed to marshall her thoughts for him. Then she asked, “If you could choose one thing to change about your life. What would that be?”
Before he could consider his answer she raised a hand into the air and held up a finger, “Be clear on that. I don’t mean something stupid, arrogant, or impossible. I mean one thing you could actually do. All that other stuff needs a miracle, or selling your soul.”
She smiled, “I’m not interested in that possibility just yet.”
Ah but will she ask for his soul? She is a Succubi after all isn’t she?