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The Color (A 15-Minute Writing Challenge)

April 17, 2018

Note: In case this has never been explained before, a 15 minute challenge is a writing challenge where you give someone a location and a color and they have to create a story based around those two things on a fifteen minute timer. It's a good warm-up and can lead to interesting results. 




The color was offensive. It was offensive to the eyes, to the brain and to most everyone who had to look at it and suffer. It could have, perhaps, been better if it wasn’t for the drone of the professor who held no regard for the interesting and wore a suit that clashed with the hideous teal of his backdrop. The room could have been bearable if the students hadn’t been packed in like sardines, sucking up what little oxygen there was and leaving behind heat and silent misery.

She stared intently out of the dingy window on her left, chin in hand, elbows resting on the brown desk she was lucky enough to snag and wished she were anywhere but there. The voice of the professor was little more than an annoying buzz in the back of her mind which wondered far away from that repulsive room to somewhere untouchable by all else.

He watched her from across the classroom, his hand moving over the sketch pad with gliding effortlessness. He penciled her short brown hair, the jade earrings that dangled from her lobes to the plain red t-shirt she sported. The desk was a brief line, in the way of what he wanted, forgotten as soon as the stroke was completed so he could move down past her jeans, to her sneaker covered feet, dusty and used. He craved to know where she was, staring out of that window, desperate to join her. The noise coming from the professor’s mouth was clear as a bell, but it moved in one ear and out of the other as he continued to create and wonder. 

Blue eyes watched his beautiful hand move across the white crisp paper with an ease that made her ache. She was attempting to pay attention to the lecture, but her eyes kept finding the young man drawing the short-haired girl by the window. She considered what he was so captivated by and wished, only for a moment, he would look her way and notice her. Time ticked by as the simple portrait blossomed with life and seconds compacted into minutes until they had all but run out.

“There will be a quiz on this tomorrow.” It wasn’t the voice alone, but the shift of bodies, the scraping of chairs that drew each one back to reality.

Three pairs of eyes focused, three heads turned and looked to the front of the class, and all were blinded by that hated teal.

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© 2016-2018 by Katie H. Weill