- Milton Keynes, UK
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- Joined: Aug 21, 2010
This is a rough draft....so I can edit more if people wish...or not at all...if people also wish! As per people's responses I can revise....or just leave it to rot to death.
This story begins with "Once upon at time", as these stories often do. But this story is different in the fact that it doesn't end in "happily ever after". And the story is true, or at least to an extent.
Waldo Pearson was a man of high station living in the center of London. He wore nothing but the finest of clothes (ascot always included) and read only the finest, most high brow poetry. His room was decorated with nothing but shelves, and upon them were books stacked so high that one had to get a ladder to reach the very top.
Successful, though he was, Waldo was lonely, indeed. He spent his days crunching numbers for miserly old accountants who grumpily handed their numbers over for the crunching.
Waldo spent his days like this. Dressing in his ascot, moving with the masses of London to work and crunching numbers for misers. Ascot, masses, work, crunching, numbers, misers. Ascot, masses, work, crunching, numbers, misers. Ascot, masses, work, crunching, numbers, misers. His world of grey spun around him like a toy-top, or like a carousel he longed to stop.
As his life moved ceaselessly forward into the abyss of life, Waldo began to notice something interesting. While tying his ascot one morning, he noticed the polka dots that usually sat upon this particular article of clothing had run away, like ants at a picnic. Baffled and horrified (for he paid a good sixty pounds for his ascots), Waldo pulled all of the ascots out of his closet, searching in vain for an answer to his missing polka dots. After tugging and tugging, he found nothing, but opened his hands to reveal a rainbow of colors. His neck-ties had bleed to death on his hands, bored and dreary with his ascot, masses, work, crunching, numbers, misers routine.
Begrudgingly, Waldo tied his now-grey ascot (although it no longer went with his blue suit) and headed off to work for another weary, meaningless day.
As the weak wore on, Waldo began to notice things. Slowly at first, but steadily picking up speed. His apple at lunch had lost its color completely. The flowers on his window sill, which had once been a bright shade of violet, had turned a dull, sullen grey color. His pens only wrote in grey ink. His luxurious flat's a la mode floral wallpaper turned one hue.
Mr. Waldo tried everything he could to remedy this situation. He went to the zoo, only to find the animals monochromatic. He tried to read all of his favorite books, but their already grey pages couldn't seem to bring anything else back to life.
Resigned, Waldo returned to work that Monday, much more gloomy than usual.
As he sat at his desk, his pencil busily sketching the grey numbers his clients always needed, he found himself utterly depressed.
"There is no color in the world!" he shouted.
All of the other misers turned their heads to cock an eyebrow at Waldo. He gulped. Had they not noticed it? Was he, indeed, going mad? Waldo gave a false laugh to his colleagues and returned to the crunching section of his day.
"I have tickets to the theater tonight," Mr. Armstrong, the man who often sat across from him announced. His grey, chapped lips moved slowly and exaggerated every word, making the colorless world all the more unbearable.
"Oh?" Waldo feigned interest. Really, he was using his stash of colored pencils to try and make a rainbow, but it was just coming out alternate shades of the grey variety.
"My wife can't go. Perhaps you'll join?"
Waldo pondered the thought for a moment. Having not been out in quite a while, with only his books to keep him company, Waldo accepted the invitation hastily.
That evening, when he finished his mind-numbing work, Waldo pulled his finest clothing from his closet. All grey now, Waldo made sure they were at least of the exact same hue. He carefully combed his hair, brushed his teeth, shaved and even dabbed on some aftershave. That part stung so badly he thought he saw what he remembered to be orange for a moment. But it was only his pain.
At 8PM, Waldo and Mr. Armstrong took a seat in their box. Using his binoculars, Waldo struggled to see the actors, but couldn't see much beyond indistinguishable characters of grey.
Bored with the act, for the theatre wasn't his thing, Waldo began to scan the crowd. He saw a bald man yawning, a lady of society using her program as her own personal drawing set and a child asleep in her mother's lap. Red.
Had that been a trick, too, just like the orange? Waldo scanned the crowd until he saw the flash of Red again. It was like a signal, its own pulse pulling him to it in a world of total grey and misery.
RED RED RED RED!
At intermission, Waldo left his seat before the lights even went down from Act I. Without saying a word to Mr. Armstrong, Waldo ran downstairs to find that splash of red, that color.
As the crowd filed out of the orchestra section, he saw the RED. Not only was it red, but it belonged to the most beautiful woman he had ever seen. Her blonde hair was twisted up into a bun and flanked by red feathers, her red dress cascading to her ankles. Waldo's heart lept. She was color. She was his color.
"I'm Waldo," he told her, without even waiting for her to approach him. "And you're red."
The woman looked at him with incredulous eyes. She slapped him on the face with a white gloved hand, putting her hand in the crook of her suitor's arm.
"Why, I never!" she exclaimed.
Waldo watched her kiss her escort, their lips meeting wildly and passionately, before the pair exited into the grey, twinkling night.
And Waldo knew he had lost his one chance at color, but prayed it would not be his last.