Hello again! I said I’d be back today with my Write at the Merge response, and here I am. First, a little news: y’all may remember the poll I opened last week, asking which character you’d like to hear about alongside Gideon. You guys did a good job of responding, and the overall winner was Alesander Ekaitz (from Thief) with 71% of the votes. In second place was Ryan McLaughlin, and third was a tie between Cillian MacNamara and Aedhán O’Riordan. Starting next week, one prompt response will revolve around Gideon, and the other will feature Alesander.
In the meantime, however, the editors of Write on Edge are out for the week, and Mandy has taken over, delighting everyone. Her prompt (combined with a giveaway) this week was bubblegum, and the word limit was 200. I couldn’t think of anything related to my gang of characters, but this little bit popped (geddit?) into my head, and I hope you’ll enjoy.
Word limit: 200
I was six and he was seven when I had my first kiss. The neighbour’s boy hadn’t yet heard of cooties and girl germs and, being persuasive, I wheedled a kiss out of him, because how could he know yet if he didn’t like it or not?
It was a sweet little peck that tasted of the bubblegum he’d refused to share. He forever complained I spoiled bubblegum and any other kisses for him. I was pleased as punch.
There were other kisses, sometimes with other boys—smelling of summer in a parked car, of whiskey after a night’s dancing. But that first kiss stayed with me, long after we’d kissed in front of family and friends and become man and wife. Through the years I remembered sticky hands and lips, a tentative pucker.
Now, so long after his passing, our grandchildren kiss my old, papery cheek, and the stickiness and the smell of the bubblegum they chew is the same as it was then. For a moment, I have him back with me, and then the children run to play and the memory is gone. Soon I’ll be gone, too, but the reminder of bubblegum kisses will remain.