Writing Prompts

The Doorknob: A Short Story

It wasn’t supposed to be like this. Perpetually overlooked, constantly stepped on, and always longing for someone to notice her. It had been too long. It feels like a lifetime of being hidden. She wouldn’t be ignored anymore. Tonight, will be the night that he finally sees her.

She’d been watching him for a long time tonight. It wasn’t a good idea to spend so much time staring at him, but she couldn’t help it. She knew the moment she saw him that he was perfect. He’d be her first.

Forcing her gaze away from him, she needs to focus on her task. Besides, he is hazy right now. She is ready to see him clearly and up close. This task is going to take all her energy. She has been rehearsing for weeks. A few recent successes are why she chose tonight. It must be tonight. She couldn’t fail.

“Focus!” she screams.

His sudden movement distracts her from her task. Her eyes snap to where he sits, but she still cannot see him clearly. He stares at the door for a moment only to return to his work. The pounding of the keyboard is jarring to her ears. It was too much work to ignore the sounds around her and focus on the task at hand. She must clear her head and remember why she is here.

She’d been preparing for this moment. Many late nights, she wanders around campus, jiggling a handle here, clanking a lock there. Her recent successes gave her the confidence for tonight. No one had seen her, though. But he would. He would not ignore her any longer.

She could feel her energy waning. The later it got, the more she needed to leave. This was not where she was supposed to be, and every minute away would drain her.

Staring at her hands, she watches as they move towards the doorknob. Slowly she pushes them forward, extending her fingers to grip the doorknob, but they miss. She takes a deep breath and tries again. It’s like they don’t want to cooperate.

Again. And again. She lifts her hands, and with every ounce of her being, she focuses. Visualizing her hands making contact with the knob, she rejoices when her tiny fingers feel the icy coldness of the metal. Just as quickly as she jiggles the doorknob, her fingers fall through, the moment passing quickly. A joyful squeal escapes her lips.

As quick as a flash, he is at the door, his hand hovering over the doorknob. His head is tilted to the side as he listens hard. Her eyes are large as she watches him through the door. This is it.  

“Open it,” a silent pray, willing him to open the door.

The door flings open with a whoosh of air breezing past his face. His eyes narrow as he peers into the darkness of the hallway. He sees nothing.

All of her hopes dashed. She was optimistic he would see her.

Progress has been made, though. She floats away slowly to rest. Indeed, he will see her tomorrow night.


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