Thursday, July 17, 2014

Araby: How We Would End It

Hi, everyone! Have any of you read Araby by James Joyce back in college or in high school? During my Human Literature class last year, our professor paired us up and tasked us to read Araby, a short story and give it a little twist. She asked us to write a flash fiction of the story. Flash fiction simply means to write a brief story out of something, and our professor asked us to write an additional ending to Araby, and here is our version. I hope you guys like it, it’s a team effort! (A team of two, haha.)

But FIRST, I would like you to read the original Araby here!

Date written: June 10, 2013

As the boy sees himself grudging, he turned around. He paused and took a deep breath, closed his eyes and calmed himself. He didn’t want to go home and sleep with such anger in his heart. He walked away slowly further and further until the lights from Araby slowly fade away. He didn’t want to spend the money that his uncle gave him only to ride the train without anything else left in his pocket so he decided to walk home for him to take his mind off things, cool his head, and just think; think about the girl whom he was supposed to buy a souvenir for.

He walked passively along the dark roads where the sky seemed so limitless, but unfortunately, that night, there were no stars twinkling in the sky. There were very dark rain clouds above his head and the moment he smiled upon remembering the face, the dress, the hair of the girl who calls out Mangan at night, thunder rumbled.

 It was probably the worst night of his life. Rain started pouring but he didn’t attempt to outrun the rain. He thought he would just savour the feeling of cold breeze blowing as the tiny raindrops fall onto him. However, he started feeling cold, he thought he could make it without passing out be he felt his sight getting blurry and body’s shivering from inside out.

He decided to sit on the pavement before he actually passes out and bumps his head somewhere. After a few minutes, he felt the raindrops seized on bothering him. It hasn’t stopped raining; it actually became stronger with the winds blowing harder. He was confused. “Have I passed out already? Am I dreaming?” To his surprise a certain someone was holding an umbrella when he looked up. She was covered with dark clothing and he could barely see her face. He even only assumed that she was a woman because of her petite body; until she spoke to him, “O love! O love!”

Mangan’s sister was standing right in front of him, her beauty radiating despite the gloomy weather. She scanned his face again until the boy replied to her. When no words passed his lips, she decided to sit down beside him on the pavement, not minding that her dress is now soaked and soiled from the rain like him. Still sitting there agape with his train of thoughts in the midst of crashing, he finally spoke.

“Why are you here?” he asked. She cracked a smile to him. “The retreat was called off in the last minute. I asked money from my brother, but I it took me a while to search for him. I hopped on the train at the last minute as well, hoping to come with you,” she explained. Unbeknownst to the boy, Mangan’s sister was in the train along with him. “When I arrived here in Araby, it was already closing, and it started to rain. I was supposed to go home, and then I found…you.” She finished. “I’m sorry I didn’t get you anything,” the boy apologized, and the girl shook his head and chuckled. “I am fine. Let’s go home shall we, love?” She stood up, all drenched regardless of her using the umbrella. The girl reached out her hand to his. He plastered a smile, and she did as well as he reached out hers. She called him love.

Today was a good day after all.

The end! Did you like it? I hope you did! How would you continue Araby? Let me know!

More from James Joyce | Meet my partner (as in, my partner who co-wrote this flash fiction with me) Patrish Dizon

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