Writing Prompts: Skylark Challenge & August Scrawls

I struggled with yesterday’s August scrawls word. So, I decided to try my hand at this week’s Skylark Challenge. That wasn’t any easier. Please, be gentle in your critiques.

“Get OFF of me!” Harlow angrily shook off the hands of her captors. “I’m coming, I’m coming.” With her hands cuffed behind her back, the officer firmly placed his hand on the crown of her head, in order to protect her from hitting her head as she was being placed in the car. The car pulled away from the curb on its way back to The East Portland Precinct.

Detective Ameen walked up, rummaging through Harlow’s knapsack. He pulled out a small, labelless jar, containing a deep purple fluid. Unscrewing the lid, he sniffed. The color drained from his face, leaving it pale from the acrid scent, wafting from the jar.

“This smells like poison! What is it?” He demande in a strained voice, still reacting to the sharp, pungent smell of the liquid, as he forcefully placed it on the table, just out of her reach.

“Be CAREFUL with that!” she commanded. “I don’t want the jar shattered. It’s Gouache paint and expensive to replace.”

“You’re in no position to tell me what to do,” Detective Ameen reminded. “Now, what else do we have here?” He wondered aloud as he continued to rifle through her bag. He pulled out a heavy paper notebook with sketches and paintings. There were also some posters with a Guy Fawkes silhouette, the emblem of Anonymous.

“So, we have an antisocial anarchist on our hands here,” Ameen erroneously concluded.

With an angrily defensive tone in her voice, Harlow replied, “I’m not antisocial. I’m not mentally ill! I am anti-government. It’s all corrupt. That’s just my opinion. I haven’t actually broken the law. Those posters were commissioned…anonymously.”

“Haven’t broken the law? Are you serious? You were picked up because you matched the description we received about someone who vandalized a new construction site with graffiti,” Ameen contemptuously explained. “Then, lo and behold, here you come with tagging supplies in your backpack.”

“Are you KIDDING me!?!? You’re kidding me, right?” NONE of the ART supplies in my bag are used for street art. Your forensics people should be able to tell you that, just by looking. Besides, do you see any spray cans or evidence of spray paint?” She paused for a breath and was confronted with his silence. “I didn’t think so. Now, let me go or charge me. If you charge me, let me make my phone call and get me my juvie public defender, because, I’m not saying another word.”

Quietly, Ameen turned and left the room, bag in hand. Calling over the officer who had brought her in, he handed the bag over, with instructions to log the bag and all its contents into evidence.

He entered the room behind the one way glass, with a grin.

“What are you grinning about?” his partner inquired.

“I’m grinning because this is a colossal waste of time…and we all know it, even her. I’m grinning because she’s smart, spunky, AND very talented. I’m grinning because I’m going to make sure she chooses the right path.”

At that moment, an Attorney from the the Youth, Rights, & Justice office arrived. “Hello. I’m Genice Abrams. I’m here on behalf of Harlow Belgarde. May I please see her?”

“Wait. How did you know she was here?” Ameen incredulously asked.

“My office got a call from the group home she resides at. Apparently, she had been waiting outside the store for her cohort. The store has a policy against bags and backpacks being brought in. Her friend saw her being put in a squad car and rushed to the home and tell the house mother.”

“I see. So, her friend can vouch for her and verify her location just before she was picked up?”

“Absolutely! He’s out there, giving his statement, now.”

“Ok. This way.” Ameen escorted Genice to the interrogation room, trying not to notice how attractive she was. Opening the door, he allowed Genice to enter the room first.

“Who are you?” Harlow inquired, suspicion evident in her voice.

“Hello, Harlow. I’m Genice Abrams from the Youth Rights & Justice Attorneys office. We’re going to get you out of here and on your way, in no time.”

“Huh,” Harlow huffed with skepticism, “I’ll believe that when I see it. Hey! I also want my bag and art supplies back.”

“All in good time. I promise.” Genice turned, looking expectantly at Detective Ameen. Caught staring, his face flushed a little darkly. “Ahem. Right this way.”

The three of them filed out of the room and went through the process of getting Harlow released and her possessions returned.

“Hey. Kid.” Ameen called Harlow over. “I want you to know I think you’re very talented. I have a friend in the art community, I want to introduce you to. Here’s my card. Call me tomorrow and we’ll set it up.”

He turned to Genice, “Please take my card, if you need to follow up or have any questions.”

“Oh. I will.”

She turned, placed her hand on Harlow’s shoulder and walked out.

Ameen wondered if he’d ever see either of them again.

Skylark Challenge 151: Poison, Scent, Fluid, Shattered, Pale
August Scrawls Day 8: antisocial