I have a very short excerpt. I wrote this short story about Samson a long time ago, because let's face it, he is pretty awful, and I am forever trying to find ways to make awful characters redeemable, especially when they are considered "heroes" of some kind or another. I don't know about you, but I can't get behind heroes when they are total jerks, and Samson is the jerkiest of the jerks, so it was only a matter of time, really...
This scene takes place right after Delilah turns Samson over to the Philistines, who, quite understandably, have no love for Samson.
“No!” Delilah screamed. Her body was warm against his chest, her hair tickling his face. Her chestnut hair, so beautiful and soft. He drank in the sight of it, glad she would be the last thing he might see. “You said you only wanted him bound! A slave! Stop, please! I beg of you!”
“It’s all right, Delilah,” he murmured. He could not reach her with his hands to sooth her. He tried to smile through bleeding lips. “I will take what punishment they see fit. Leave me, now.”
One of the soldiers tore her from him, and she sobbed, still shouting for them to stop. Another soldier struck her across the face and she fell to the ground, still weeping. He lurched forward, but they held him back, laughing. The soldier dragged her up by the hair.
“She’s helped you, done everything that you asked. Pay her, and let her go!”
“After we’re certain she has not deceived us,” the leader said. “You think we have not learned? There are no jawbones here for you to strike us down, but if you wish her to live, you will do as we say.”
The man jerked his chin at one of the soldiers, and he came forward with an iron poker, glowing red hot.
“Take his eyes,” the leader said. “Perhaps then, like a blinded horse, he will be more easily led.”
Delilah, twisting to free herself, screaming defiance, her brown eyes wild. Delilah, beautiful and kind, begging, pleading. Delilah, breaking free of the soldier who held her back and running toward him.
He roared at the touch of the hot metal.
And then he lived in darkness.
This is a nice take on the old story! I agree that Samson was the jerkiest of jerks, but I hate how Delilah is always portrayed as an evil woman. Hell, she was probably the finest undercover operative the Philistine army had! But I like your portrayal of her as well!ReplyDelete
oh OUCH. That makes me wince a lot. Love anything related to mythology!ReplyDelete
Jen: He really is. Trying to make him redeemable is almost impossible. He is really just kind of a violent, hot-tempered murderer in the bible. They should have had a real love story. So. I tried.ReplyDelete
Trisha: Thanks! And yeah, blinding him really was kind of overkill if you ask me.
Hey! I like it! I'm actually re-reading the old testament.... call it curiosity and research, but I just can't pass this up.ReplyDelete
Sampson 'had' to be blinded. its a metaphor for the jewish faith and how they continue to turn away from god, to the worship of other idols. It's only the most common trend, in the old testament. And at the end, when they repent and turn back to god, they win the day, just like Sampson.
But when it comes to your writing... you take me somewhere else, and its great.
Samson turned away from god by admitting his weakness to Delilah? All right. I can buy that. But from a non-metaphor standpoint, it is still overkill. I mean, it probably just made him even MORE of a jerk when he got his strength back.ReplyDelete
also, Tom, if you'd like to read this one, I'll send it along. It's just sitting on my computer because I have no idea where to submit it.
Yes, ouch! Excellent scene.ReplyDelete
Holy moly, Amalia, this is so tense and dark, I wished I'd written it. Well done! Not sure if Samson is redeemed in my eyes (apologies for the pun), but he's getting there. Metaphor or not, quasi-god or not, Samson was a jerk.ReplyDelete
Wow, this is intense. You've woven a lot into this short scene. I loved it. Great take on an old story.ReplyDelete
This is a really interesting take on the old tale, which breathes a lot of new life into it.ReplyDelete
L. Diane: Thank you!ReplyDelete
VR: I think if you read the whole story, I'd win you over :P But I agree. He was a real challenge.
Loralie and Stu: thank you both! I love making old stories new again :)
That's powerful (will it piss you off if I say I kind of expect powerful writing when I hop over onto your blog? ; P). I love how you bring old tales to life.
Thank you for sharing this!!!
ps. do pop by on friday next to see who won which book! xoxo
What an intense piece. I really like the way you've used this well known story and made it your own.ReplyDelete
How rude of you to say so :P but seriously, thanks Tessa! And thanks for hosting this one, it's a great theme!ReplyDelete
Thanks Kate!! That's my goal!ReplyDelete
Wow, what a scene. My heart is still racing. This is great!ReplyDelete
I like the way you end it..excellent tension in this piece. Thanks for stopping by my blog to comment.ReplyDelete
This is extremely powerful! I don't quite buy the Delilah character; I think I might if I could see more of her.ReplyDelete
I'm going to be perfectly frank: I want more. I want to read the rest of this version of the classic story. It's good. Very good.
This passage alone has just earned you a new follower.
David: Delilah is a lot easier to make sympathetic than Samson-- I think mostly because she doesn't have a lot of power. Thank you so much for your comment! I'm glad you enjoyed the excerpt :) and thank you for the follow as well! When I figure out what to do with this story, I'll let you know!
Gosh, very dramatic! :O)ReplyDelete
Thanks for sharing! I loved the ending, with Delilah's reaction as the blinding was about to happen.ReplyDelete
If you get a chance, check out a fellow writer's zombie story and help me make him wear an embarrassing shirt next year! It's the ultimate grudge match between social media and the zombies. Details are here:
I'm all over this, Amalia! LOVED it.ReplyDelete
So painful, for both of them. You bring out the anguish well.ReplyDelete
Thanks for using the time and effort to write something so interesting.ReplyDelete
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Huh. I never thought of Samson as awful or unsympathetic. As for his redeemability, well, that was the entire point of his story. I'm quite surprised by your interpretation.ReplyDelete
Anyway, your writing is superb and I would very much like to read more.