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Perfect Strangers


Photo from Together Stock Photos

He left his job at the post office and started his walk home. He loved to walk, that’s part of the reason he went for the job. Sure he saw a lot of the same things everyday, but sometimes, life gave him little surprises along the way. Today was no different.
He was taller than average, slim with long rough fingers from working hard in his teen years before falling in with the post office. He had been married, but they drifted apart. Now he was enjoying reading books and has his dog Shooter, who was getting to be salt and peppered just like his master. They spent their evenings strolling around local parks and chatting with other dog friends.
As he walked along his usual game trail that he had carved through an old field, he saw an impression in the grass he had never noticed before. His dark brown eyes squinted in the evening light. Whatever it was, it was large. He reached down for the box cutter he had attached to his hip as he approached. But then his hand pulled away and soon he sprinted over to the spot. 
He scrambled into the impression and felt for a pulse on the young woman lying there. He sighed with relief when he felt it. He looked at her face, she was dirty but pretty for a young woman. Her clothes were tattered and her hair was a mess of tangles. He tried to wake her and she wouldn’t wake up, so he pulled out his phone and called for an ambulance. He didn’t move from her side until she heard the approaching sirens. Once he was able to wave them down he came right back to her side, holding her limp delicate hand, telling her it will be alright.
The EMT’s checked her vitals, braced her neck and put her on a gurney very delicately. He watched it all with worry painted heavily on his face. Before he knew it, he was in the ambulance with her as the bumped away to the hospital. 
The EMT’s name was Emitt, which he found ironic. Emitt worked on the girl, looking for injuries. He held her hand until Emitt took it away from him. He checked her pupils with a pen light after putting the oxygen mask on her. He commented on how someone was home but no one was answering the door. He turned as Emitt examined the woman’s torso. He did see some large bruises out of the corner of his eye. Emitt hollered to his partner in the front as he made note of it, he said that there could be internal bleeding with that much bruising to the torso.
He frowned, the ride seemed to last forever until they finally bumped across the speed bumps of the hospital. They rolled out and he followed along, a doctor and a nurse joined the EMT’s and got the report which made little sense to him but he listened. He started to follow them back but the nurse stopped him and asked who he was. He explained the situation. She asked him to wait in the waiting room, police would be notified in a case like this and they would want to speak to him. He nodded and took a seat in the waiting room.
He pulled out his phone and called his neighbor. He asked if she could feed Shooter for him and she said yes. Then he proceeded to save his battery and people watch as he sat there for an hour before the officers were shown to him by the nurse. He told them everything, he answered their questions. He asked if they knew her name. They said no but they also could not give that out. He nodded. They said he could go home, but he was content with staying. He told them he wanted to make sure she was okay. They gave him their cards and took his information.
He waited for three hours. He walked around and stretched and drank some coffee. The nurse came to get someone else in the waiting room and saw him there. She stopped and put her hands on her hips and asked him why he didn’t go home. He said he didn’t know if she had someone to look after her and thought someone should be there for her, even if it was a stranger.
The nurse smiled kindly at him. She told him, that she was in the ICU, they had to do surgery to stop a bleed on her right side. She leaned towards him and whispered that she should be okay, and that he could come by tomorrow and see her. They would allow visitors if she is doing better. He nodded, picked up his windbreaker from the chair beside him and thanked her.
The next day, he waved goodbye to his work buddies, tossing his bag over his should and headed to the bus stop. He hummed a little tune to himself as he rocked back and forth on his heels. The bus pulled up and whisked him away. He stared out the windows and took in the sighs of the world and soon they were pulling up to the hospital. A little worry line worked itself into his forehead.
He picked up some flowers he thought were simple and nice in the gift shop and went to find out where the young lady was. He walked by the ER and saw the nurse standing there. He waved to her and she smiled brightly at him. He made his way to the ICU and asked the charge nurse about her. She said that she is in stable condition and they moved her to a regular room. He asked where, she said that cases like hers were moved to the third floor. His brow furrowed at the sound of that. He took the elevator up to the third floor and found a nurses station. He told them who he was looking for, they said that she still hadn’t woke up, but he could look in on her and told him the room number.
He walked to the room and heard the machines. He rounded the curtain and saw her laying there. She only had an IV and a heart monitor and oxygen flow monitor. He saw that there was chart. He looked around and then picked it up. Her name was Dorothy Kane. She was 22 years old. His brow furrowed again and he set the chart in it’s place at the end of the bed. He saw no flowers or cards around her bed and found a place for them on a side table to her bed. She was cleaned up and her long brown curly hair was in a braid. She laid there peacefully, he said hello to her and took a seat. He set down his bag and opened it up and pulled out a book. It was Dave Eggers The Wild Things. He began reading to her. His voice was soothing but he still invoked the emotion of the book while he read it, painting the picture of the story Max and his adventures in a far away land as an escape of the life he didn’t want to face.
That’s how he spent his evenings for a week, one hour every night, he would come by and read to Dorothy while she laid there peacefully.
On the sixth day he walked into the room and said hello to Dorothy and patted her hand before sitting down and reading. He was on the last two chapters and had Orson Scott Card’s Ender’s Game waiting in the wings. He began painting the picture of the climax of the book when something caught his eye. He looked up from the book to see a pair of hazel eyes looking back at him. He lowered the book to his lap, keeping the place with his finger, and said hello to Dorothy. She said hello and asked where she was, he said she was in the hospital. He said that he found her in a field in a pretty bad way and got her help. She tried moving and winced. He told her they had to perform a small surgery to stop some bleeding. Her brow furrowed. He scooted close to her and asked her if she had any family. She said no, her parents had passed some time ago and she had recently moved here trying to find work. She was supposed to start work tomorrow. He frowned and explained she has been in a coma for six days. By the end of it, her eyes were pooling with tears. He got her some tissue and apologized for having to give her all the news. She asked his name and he realized he never introduced himself. She thanked him and put her hand on his. She said that she heard him. She heard his voice and followed it through the fog a little at a time. Tears began to roll down his face. Then his eyes widened and he said they should call a nurse. He hit the button.
A detective came by and talked to her about what had happened. She admitted to being caught by some men, beaten and then they had their way with her semi-conscious body. She described what she could remember of the men and the incident. He came back after the detective was done and she was looking out the window of her room. She said that it didn’t seem real, almost like it was a bad dream. He said that maybe it was just the way her mind was coming to terms with it and dealing with the trauma. They talked about everything else for the following hour. He made her smile with his funny tales of being a postman. She would tell him about her life and how it was always one little adventure after another but she just wanted to try and find a place to live.
Two days passed and he came and visited Dorothy and they would talk until visiting hours were over. He even brought her some things from her apartment for her on the third day because she was supposed to be leaving the day after. What he saw on the door of her apartment was an eviction notice for non payment. He stared at it before using her keys to go in. When he arrived at the hospital he handed her clothes and sighed before he told her the news. She swallowed hard and started choking on tears. It was too much, she just wept. He sat down and held her, letting her cry as he rubbed her back. When she was done she looked up to him with eyes that looked a hundred years old. He smiled, reaching up with a tissue and wiped away her tears.
He reached into his pocket pulled out her keychain and put it in her hand. She looked down and saw a key she didn’t recognize. She looked up at him, his soft smile warmed her wet cheeks. He said that she was going to have a hard time getting around until her side healed up all the way and he was sure that his dog Shooter would love the company. She tried to tell him that it was too much. He stopped her, he told her that he was alone in the world and so was she, they could help each other and they wouldn’t be alone. She would have a place to stay until she got on her feet and he would have company, so really no one was losing out on the deal. Plus he was sure he could probably fit all of her things into his spare room. She smiled with tears in her eyes and hugged him as hard as she could without hurting herself. He gently hugged her back and told her it would get better. And you know what? It did.
“Perfect Strangers” by Rio Martin

#love #father #writing

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Wild Ones


There was a river deep in the woods where the wild children played. They had no rhyme or reason just playfulness in their hearts. They all had dirty faces but it was offset by their beaming smiles. Their wild eyes sparkled with amusement as they played on the river’s edge. Tali, the biggest of the small ones had climbed up an oak that hung over the river and hung a vine rope so the wild ones could swing and laugh. His red dirty hair stuck off of his head like fire colored straw. He slid down the vine and hollered a mighty howl at the wild ones, “Come and swing, it’s a fine day for a swim!” With that he launched himself into the soft current of the easy river, disappearing in a cloud of dirt. He popped back up a ways down the river to see Nala fly off the shore and grab the vine. Her long dirty brown hair flowed in the wind behind her. She squealed with glee as she let go and fell backward into the soft catch of the water. One by one the wild ones flew off the vine into the happy river. It smiled with joy at all the joyous souls playing in it’s old winding body. The children romped and stomped and plopped through the river. Tali climbed onto a rock at the edge and smiled as he watched his family have their day. It was everything he had hoped for. A simple vine can bring a world of fun and all they needed was to see that. He stood up and called his family to the edge, “Tonight we feast until our bellies pop, for the farmer have harvested their might crop.” He howled into the air and the wild ones joined in the event. They soon were damp but moving quickly to the village edge. Nala told them all to shush as she peered over the hedge. Tali took a gander as well to see what he could see. There was a wagon filled with goods and no person guarded it. There was no big person to stop the wild ones tonight. So with a quick flick of his wrist they were on the move. With muddy smiles they crept in the shadows towards the wagon. Hoping for a meal Tiler one of the smallest of the rushed before the others and grabbed apples and pears. They all froze as he shoved an apple in his mouth. Seeing no one stop him, the wild ones sprung into action. They filled skins with anything new they could carry. Suddenly a light flickered in the cabin window. Tali and Nala signaled the others. They sprung off the wagon with their goods and hurried back to their camp in the woods. They settled down and laughed at the good times. They shared their bounty and feasted through the night, finally collapsing from the shear amount of food and their bodies need to digest. Meanwhile, more lights came on in the cabin and a couple came out and looked at the wagon. The woman had tears in her eyes. She looked to the woods and asked, “Do you think they got enough to eat? I would hate for them to starve in those woods.”Her husband put a hand on her shoulder, “We didn’t die when we were their age, they will better for it.” She hugged him and they went back into the nice safe cabin.
“Wild Ones” by Rio Martin

#wildones #writing #children

He walks through the door to his mind.

Have you ever heard the expression, “My mind is like a bag of cats”? Well mine is, at anyone point in the day I am running at least eight windows open with eight different worlds and a million characters in my mind. Lose stories faster than I can write them down. I have been this way my whole life. I honestly can’t remember a time when my imagination hasn’t been cranked up to 11. 

Sometimes I wonder if it’s just a biproduct of my ADHD. Or maybe my ADHD is a biproduct of my imagination. Chicken and the egg sort of business I guess. Anyway, I am a writer in the process of finding a publisher for my first book and in the process of working on my next. I wanted to find a way to share my journey with people and see if others had ideas or interesting anecdotes about the twists and turns of being a writer.

I heard that some publishing houses have idea men/women. People who came up with ideas for authors. They would put together the story and the author would write it. Seems like a fun job but also one that seemed a bit sad that someone else was working a story that you created. But I think with an imagination factory like me, I have plenty of stories to spare. Maybe if I get my foot in the door somewhere I can become one of the idea people. 

I hope you enjoy my blog and my adventure and I hope that you will be entertained! Thanks! 

-Rio Martin

#adhd #dealing #writing

Moonlit Love

”Twas a maiden with bright red hair

With skin so beautiful and fair

She danced with delight 

In the shadows and moonlight

That anyone who saw her was taken

He was a wilted wandering minstrel 

With nothing to show ‘cept his tale

He strummed his tattered guitar

Walking out of town and a little to far

In search of a full moon to partake in

He found a lone hill in the glow of the night

As he strummed he beheld a wonderous sight

The fair blazened hair beauty began her dance

Her grace and her perfection sent him into a trance 

For when love is involved there can be no mistake in

He played his guitar with passion he’d forgotten

She came towards his song her pulse he’d begotten

She twirled on her toes around the smitten

Such a creature like her could never be written

She paused and stared at the awestricken

He saw her figure in the full moon’s light

Her smile brought him feelings of pure delight

She laid a soft hand to stop him from playing 

And whispered so softly no one but he heard her saying

He played her heart song and felt it awaken

She kissed him gently on his bristle bound lips

Then pulled him up and placed his hands on her hips

The song could be heard without touching a string

It was made by their hearts and the rhythm they sing

They danced off in the shimmering moonbeams

With minds full to the brim of a future and dreams

“Moonlit Love” by Rio Martin

#romance #poetry #writing

Researching

Last night I spent the evening toiling away looking for an agent for my book. I realized since it was my first book and I have a regular job, that an agent would be the way to enter the fray. I have a list of 8 solid looking agencies that I am putting packets together for. Thankfully most agencies and publishers do a lot of email work. Much less money out the door in printing countless copies. Tonight I will be working on putting packets together and perfecting my query letter. I am excited but also extremely nervous about the whole thing! In the immortal words of Han Solo, “Here goes nothing!”

Hallelujah

Leonard Cohen wrote this sad and beautiful song. It is my feels song, whenever I want to really tap into the bucket I go to YouTube and find the hardest hitting soul draining version of this song and drag out whatever is clawing at the inside of my chest.
Now I’ve heard there was a secret chord

That David played, and it pleased the Lord

But you don’t really care for music, do you?

It goes like this

The fourth, the fifth

The minor fall, the major lift

The baffled king composing Hallelujah

Hallelujah

Hallelujah

Hallelujah

Hallelujah

Your faith was strong but you needed proof

You saw her bathing on the roof

Her beauty and the moonlight overthrew her

She tied you

To a kitchen chair

She broke your throne, and she cut your hair

And from your lips she drew the Hallelujah

Hallelujah

Hallelujah

Hallelujah

Hallelujah

You say I took the name in vain

I don’t even know the name

But if I did, well really, what’s it to you?

There’s a blaze of light

In every word

It doesn’t matter which you heard

The holy or the broken Hallelujah

Hallelujah

Hallelujah

Hallelujah

Hallelujah

I did my best, it wasn’t much

I couldn’t feel, so I tried to touch

I’ve told the truth, I didn’t come to fool you

And even though

It all went wrong

I’ll stand before the Lord of Song

With nothing on my tongue but Hallelujah
“Hallelujah” Original Author Leonard Cohen
This version I am linking some that really hit me… Also, I blame my Pandora station for doing this to me right now. But I blame dragging myself through this on me.

[Kate Voegele|https://youtu.be/sDJgxE-0PZI] 
[Rufus Wainwright (ouch)|https://youtu.be/xR0DKOGco_o] 
[Jeff Buckley (GDI)|https://youtu.be/y8AWFf7EAc4]

Dollar for Dollar


The fire and brimstone dropped from the tip of his cigarette. He stares at the red glow as it slowly eats away at the cylindrical paper filled with shreds of brown cancer. He lifts the coffin nail up to his dry lips and takes in the sweet treat and breaths out a bit of his soul into the night sky. He watches it drift away into the oblivion of the star speckled night sky, like a ghost finally finding it’s way to heaven.He looks down to see a pair of raccoons raiding the neighbor’s bird feeder like thieves in the night. He watches the furry felons flipping around as they dangle and hang from the feeder, shaking the seeds out like a four year old shaking the coins from their piggy bank. He smiles at the though how mad his neighbor would be at finding the mess in the morning, he might stomp his bunny slippered feet with his varicose vein stripped legs bobbing in and out of his acrid bathrobe.

He sucked the thick death into his body and held it there and slowly let it flare from his nostrils like a darkened face of an old Chinese dragon, left to smolder in an alleyway after a festival. He had seen the darkest part of his days drift through his mind and he tried to burn them away with fire and drown them with malt liquor. The taste of the beer was bitter as the golden liquid slid past what was left of his working taste buds before traversing the torched remains of his throat.

His phone shook around on the ground, he knew the number, he knew what she wanted and he simply didn’t care. Setting the 40 ounces of freedom on the ground with a glass grinding clink he tapped another cigarette out of the pack as he held it’s predecessor in his lips. He pulls the dying cigarette out from his lips and it sticks to his top lip for a moment before releasing it’s death grip. He lays the fresh smoke between his puckered lips and uses the old to spark the new. He dragged deep and the end flared with life. He sent the glowing butt through the air with a mighty flick towards the criminals on the bird feeder, they quickly dropped down as it hit and sparked on the ground, disappearing into the shadows.

A smile parted his lips at the sight of the dashing neerdowells and pulled his smag from his lips and lifted the bottled up and took a mighty swig. The night air started to get a chill but he didn’t mind. He liked a good chill, made him feel alive. The phone shook again on the ground, the dull glow of the screen lit up his right side. He didn’t dare glance at it, it would be giving her power over the moment that was his. It was his moment. Dollars for dollars he wasn’t giving in again. He wasn’t going to look. The bottles hit the ground hard but unflinching. He took another heavy drag of the cigarette, heavy enough that his lungs gave a little scream, then he blew out the fury inside into a massive mushroom cloud erupting from his mouth. This was his death, his life, his eternity and he was done letting anyone tell him how to live his sad existence. 

His emotions betrayed him as the first tears fought it’s way out of his eye against his will. It traversed the stubble and made it’s way to his shirt, disappearing into an off colored splotch. Within seconds it had many friends joining it, painting his chest a darker color, drop by drop.

The cigarette bobbed in his fingers while his body shook. The beer sat still as placid in the it’s safe little world. When he finally stopped, he lifted his head, his cheeks flushes and shined in the moonlight. He saw the cigarette had died along with his spirit. So in a fight for his soul, he shook another one out of the pack and grabbed the lighter from inside the pack. He dragged his finger across the flint, the flame illuminated his wet face that was soon shrouded in a cloud of grey smoke. He smiled behind his safe veil, the chill of the night bit his wet cheeks, he felt alive and a now a little more free.
“Dollar for Dollar” by Rio Martin