Writing Prompt: Perturbed

Yup, I get to break out one of my favorite gifs for this one.

(If you don’t like Stitch, we can’t be friends. :P)

This is one of those words that means different things depending on the context.

You can be angry, annoyed, concerned. It’s a really versatile word.

Hmmm, what can I do with this? I wonder…

If you have been victim of abuse, tread carefully. This prompt inspired me to make a rescue story, and it does contain abuse.

Blake tapped his fingers on the mattress while taking slow deep breaths. His eyes were closed.
He was doing his best to tune out the noise of his neighbor’s lawn mower.

It was 6 in the morning on his first day off after working 80 hours, and now he had put up with his neighbor’s lawn maintenance.

Gloria turned her head to see the look on Blake’s face. The lines on the around his eyes and his crunched up mouth told her he was fighting with everything he had not to get out of bed and yell at the neighbor. Her lips were drawn down and she held his free hand.

The last time he lost his temper, they wound up in court. Blake had gone next door and punched the neighbor for doing the same thing, mowing his lawn. She recalled him being off after another 80-hour stent that time as well.

Blake felt his wife’s hand on his left one. He took another deep breath and let it out slowly.

What he said issued through gritted teeth, “I am really trying here, Glo. I am going to need your help, hun.”

“I know, Blake. I can either stay here or try to talk him into quitting until you’re up.”

“Just stay here. You tried the other last time, and it didn’t work.”

“Yeah, he told me to stuff it.”

Blake turned his head and opened his eyes, “And that’s when I walked over there and popped him one.”

Gloria nodded, “Let’s not do that again.”

The mower’s noise got louder as it approached their window. Blake’s grip tightened on Gloria’s hand. The closed mouth was now a sneer. She took her free hand and stroked his hair.

“He’s almost done.”

“I swear he does this on purpose. He knew this was my long weekend.”

Gloria looked out the window to see the neighbor’s wife standing on the porch waving her hand in the air. She looked to be shouting something, but Gloria could not make it out over the roaring of the mower.

Having finally noticed his wife, the mower was cut off.

“What is it woman? Can’t you see I am busy?” The tone of his voice was gruff and short.

Blake balled his left hand.

“Can’t you…um… Wait until later, Harold? You’re just doing it to irritate… Blake because he hit you… for t-telling his wife to shut up.”

The sound of anxiety in Faye’s voice had both Gloria and Blake on edge. Blake was out of bed now watching the exchange. Gloria left the room.

He turned to face his wife, “You didn’t do shit. You could have backed me up.”

The wife was standing in front of him now,, “It w-was his weekend off… l-like this one is. Would it k-kill you to be c-considerate? I-is it a p-personal hobby of yours to m-make us the most unp-popular c-couple on the street, Harold?”

“Give me one reason not to finish the lawn until around 9. I’m waiting.”

She tried to stand straight but couldn’t make eye contact or stop slouching.

“I c-can give you th-three. Y-you haven’t had your c-coffee or b-breakfast yet. You h-haven’t read your paper, and B-blake is now standing in his w-window glaring a hole through the b-back of your head.”

She pointed behind Harold as she was finishing the third reason.

Harold froze and moved in slow motion to see what was behind him.

Blake was standing with the window open with his hands crossed in front of him and his eyes slits.

Harold spread his hands apart, “What?”

“Apologize to your wife, or I am going to jail again.”

Harold tilted his head to one side, “What? I talk to her like that all the time.”

Gloria was already out of the house and walking up their lawn. The skillet in her hand and purposeful stride told Harold’s wife all she needed to know.

“You h-heard, didn’t you?”

“I hear it all the time when you’re out here with that asshole.” That’s when Gloria noticed the attempts to conceal a bruise around her eye, “Faye, did he?”

Her gaze immediately went to the grass.

Gloria strode up to Harold, “Did you hit her? DID YOU?”

Blake had never seen Gloria that angry. He made his way next door.

“She ran into a do-” A low ringing noise came from the impact the skillet made with Harold’s head.

Gloria turned to Faye, “Come here, honey. How long has he been hitting you?”

Faye’s eyes darted from Harold to Gloria and landed on Blake as he strode up the lawn and stopped where Harold was picking himself up.

Blake looked at Faye, his tone was soft, “You don’t have to be scared of this ass anymore. If you need help, we’re here Faye.”

Faye started crying and held onto Gloria. Blake called the police. When he got off the phone, he yanked Harold off the lawn and into a lawn chair on the property.

“Sit, or I am going to jail for beating you half to death.”


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