A Thousand Words, Euclid, Military Surplus


A drabble written for the "Discovered in a Sketchbook" challenge, and two written for the 2-Day Drabbles challenge, on the discoveredinalj livejournal community

A Thousand Words

I don't usually try to draw his face. I never was much good at portraits; don't have the true artist's eye for subtlety. The wrong slant to his mouth, and he looks like a sulky spoiled child. Shadow his eyes too much, and he's a brute, cold as any terrorist.

But his back--that tells the real story, in simple strong lines that carry the weight of life and death with grace. Nothing subtle about the power in those shoulders. Deadly competency can be beautiful.

I can only say stuff like that when he can't see my face.


She was beautiful.

Don't think I ever said more than that about her: Krivas killed her and she was beautiful.

And here's Doyle, grey as a ghost and thin as a rag, hair all snarled and flattened, covered in bandages and tubes coming out everywhere. And he smells.

But he's breathing.

He's so full of painkillers his eyes are all pupil, and he can't get them more than half-mast as they drift aimlessly all round the room. I know he's not really seeing anything.

Then he looks straight at me and smiles.

Christ, I never knew what beautiful was.

Military Surplus

Doyle loathes decorating with a passion. Wallpaper, paintbrushes--carpet samples, for God's sake. It's enough to send any normal man round the twist. Just because he can paint doesn't mean he has to.

He's got too many memories of a childhood in a house where the pristine state of the walls and floor mattered more than a growing boy's need to play. He firmly ignores Bodie's moaning about living in a tip.

That is, until the day Bodie arrives home with two cans of paint--one battleship grey, one camouflage green--and politely inquires which he'd prefer for the bedroom.

-- THE END --

September 2007

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