Long Last Victory, a short fiction
Bruno tied the broken strap of his backpack, threw it over his shoulders and stomped off, not pausing to see if Sasha was keeping up. “We can’t be late to the ceremony,” he called out as he picked up his speed. “This is the one Sasha. I can feel it this time. This. Is. The. One.” The last sentence came in between massive inhalations for air as he struggled to keep his over-sized frame in motion.
“The one, what?” On a normal day, Sasha could have kept up with Bruno, just by walking briskly. But he had roused her from a deep sleep and without any caffeine, she was held back by her own mental fog. Plus, in the time it had taken her to stoop down and tie her shoe, he had gotten nearly a half a block ahead of her.
“Today everything changes for me. Today I become new.”
“What the hell are you talking about?”
“Do you have any idea how tired I am of watching an endless stream of worthless hacks parade past me, climbing mountains, solely on the basis of their ability to ejaculate pedestrian prose onto any forum that will have them? No more! Today I receive what is mine.”
Sasha shook her head as she finally caught up to him and matched his stride. She offered no response or argument though, and Bruno plowed on through his tirade.
“It isn’t my fault that the literary establishment is too small-minded to recognize the brilliance of my verbiage. Forgive me if my work isn’t childishly linear enough for them. Big five publishing houses? More like five abortions of taste.”
“Maybe I should send the editors a toy along with my submissions so that their attention would be sufficiently occupied while reading.”
“Or maybe I should start a series about sexually curious, adolescent vampires trying to make it onto the US ping-pong team. That sounds marketable.”
“We’re here.” Bruno ran up the stone steps, two at a time and threw open the doors. They walked into a large ornate lobby and Sasha immediately heard the sound of applause. Bruno jogged ahead of her and threw open the doors to the auditorium. Just as he did, she could hear the amplified voice emerging from within.
“…and this year’s selection, by a narrow margin, is Bleeding Rose Petals That Sing My Name by Bruno Hoppenfeifer.” Sasha followed Bruno into the auditorium and stopped short. The first thing she saw was the banner reading, “4H Annual Youth Creative Writing Contest.” The second thing she saw was that the crowd of fellow writers in the contest that Bruno had evidently entered was a crowd of grade school age children with their parents. The man up at the podium had removed his glasses and was looking around the room, likely waiting for whichever ten year old he assumed was the author.
Finally, she saw Bruno, racing down the aisle to accept his award, arms waving back and forth, hooting like a maniac.
“Suck on that you little bastards!”