Summer Evening

by Carina Droste (class 10 Creative Writing Project - 2016)

This story was inspired by “The story of an hour’ by Kate Chopin (1894) and Edward Hopper’s painting Summer Evening (1947)


“What are your plans for the future?”, the boy asked turning his attention from observing the starry sky, to the girl, leaning next to him against the white painted porch. “What?”, a confused expression covered the girl's face as she lifted her diverted gaze. She wasn't expecting the boy to actually break the embarrassing silence, surrounding them for the last ten minutes.

“I mean, didn't you say you've just graduated high school? What do you want to achieve in life?” It was a good question. The girl, Madison, turned around and leaned her narrow torso over the white wall of the porch. Now it was her turn to contemplate her surroundings.


Even at this late hour the thick and heavy air made it hard to breath. Therefore, most of the wealthy guests of the vacation resort had spent the evening in their cool cottages or in the air-conditioned common rooms where numerous evening activities took place. Madison had decided to go to the bar with the dance floor where the guests could show their dancing skills that they appropriated at the dancing lessons during the day. But on such a hot and sultry day only a few people had taken advantage of this possibility. And after a couple of songs, as drops of sweat had been rolling down their exhausted bodies and they nearly hadn't been able to find fresh air to fill their aching lungs with, they had disappeared too, one after another. In the end, Madison had been left with three guys of the resort staff, some of the few people on the area that were about her age. She had moved her position from the abandoned dance floor to the small bar counter where she had met Aiden, the young bartender.


“I don't know”, she finally answered, her gaze still on the dark environment. Nobody wandered on the dry grass covering the resorts area. Once, it must have been green but now it reminded her more of sand than of grass. The shade was a mixture of light brown and ocher. Out of a sudden, memories of former vacations at the beach near her grandmother’s house surfaced. Those were precious memories of a good time, maybe the happiest time of her life. Madison wished she could turn back the time to her childhood when she had built great sandcastles in the hot silk-soft sand and her grandmother had brought her fresh homemade lemonade, her absolutely favorite summer drink. When she closed her eyes she still had the sour and sweet taste on her tongue while she heard the roaring sound of the waves breaking on the rocks of the small bay before leaving a salty trail on their way back into the ocean. Her grandma had always made sure that she had never waded too far into the pounding waves when she wanted to refresh herself from the hot weather.

These vacations had been bright spots in Madison's superficial life. They had been the only times she had felt save and loved. She had had the opportunity to escape her parent's lifestyle that showed absolute perfection and actually had been able to be herself, a normal happy child.

However, these days were long gone. After her grandmother's death her parents hadn't left her a choice than to fully integrate herself into their lifestyle. Since then they've spend three weeks at the vacation resort every year. Three long and boring weeks in which her father had met other wealthy business men while the young Madison hadn't had a clue what to do with the time given to her.


“What do you mean, you don't know?”, Aiden's perplexed voice disturbed her absent thoughts, “You have to have a plan on what to do next. With your father's money and relations - you have every option! At least you should have a wish.”

Madison turned around again to face him. She discovered an expression in his bright blue eyes she hadn't seen for a very long time, curiosity and concern. Aiden was really curios what she would reply on his statement but also concerned why she acted so unaffectedly even though he asked her about such an important topic.

With a deep sight she swept the sweat drops from her pounding forehead. She wouldn't be able to resist the sultry heat much longer. The fact that the evening hadn't exactly developed as she had planned supported the emerging headache even more. Aiden had simply knocked her off her perch with this ordinary question.

He was generally different from any other boy she had met before. His oval defined face never showed the slightest bit of the greedy expression Madison perceived on other boys' faces. Instead his overall appearance just radiated a positive aura she had never seen before, revealing his excitement over life in general. Madison wished she would discover this aura every morning if she looked into the mirror in lieu of her dull and tired one.  


Aiden still eyed her with a questioning look. She had to decide what she should answer him. Thoughtfully Madison turned away her gaze. Somehow Aiden's charisma had led her to the point where she was sure she could trust him. Something she had just felt in the presence of her grandmother before. She raised her determined view and looked directly into his soft azure eyes. “Honestly, I wish I could just leave this place, disappear from my old life, leave everything behind me and simply never look back again.”

Summer Evening

by Nico Fenske (class 10 Creative Writing Project - 2016)

This story was inspired by “The story of an hour’ by Kate Chopin (1894) and Edward Hopper’s painting Summer Evening (1947)



“I am going to war”, he said, leaning at the small birch wood wall, the porch. He didn’t want to reveal his call to arms that early, but after they had headed back to his place, there was nothing left to do. He couldn’t stand the silence surrounding him.

So he told her, expecting an immediate reaction, a burst of emotions, of feelings in an empty space. But the silence stayed, only interrupted by a breeze moving the branches of the few trees still standing on the plains, sole survivors whom withstand both tornados and the farmers cruel greed for profit, or the frequent noises made by the grasshoppers.

He became really nervous really quick as her face looking old and exhausted from last years boredom and loneliness remained emotionless. Helpless as he was he started to jam down his fingers at the birch fence in a frequent matter, his eyes still focused on the face, searching for any expression.


There was a sudden moment of shock when after five minutes she slowly turned her head with her eyes now fixed at his. Although at first excited about her finally moving and probably reacting to his words: “Such luck, am I right? Finally getting rid of this old world, of these people known for so long. There is nothing that may hold you here.” She spoke without anger or fear and her eyes appeared bright and cold, glancing over the land around the cottage. She then walked to the small stairs leading to the dry dirt path which connected most of the cottages with the main road. He heard her steps on the lifeless dead ground until they were completely devoured by the night’s

unforgiving silence. 


And so he just stood on the porch, stunned, knowing this was the end of a relationship already decayed long ago. He felt the silence slowly invading him, the lack of action now growing even bigger.


Again the silence was not disappearing. It just grew stronger over time, completely embracing its power when he was laying in the sand of the Normandy. This silence was eternal.