A brief note before I show Part 7.2. Having gathered some constructive criticism from some friends and fellow writers (you know who you are, m'dears) and having looked it over myself, I realise that the last ending may have been a little too extreme. I was testing out my capability to incorporate shocks and stings into narrative flow and obviously, for this particular writing experiment, it failed.
So, as to compensate for the disappointment which some of you may be feeling, I have made a second alternative ending. I promise that this one is much more nourishing to the human mind and soul without all the bird-chomping yuckiness of the original. I hope that it is, at the very least, a more tactful ending:
I came back that way again, this afternoon. I know the cobbles too well and they know me. I’m not going to look at the place any differently now, though; don’t need to. I got her back and in the sweetest way. A night together. Enough.I don’t see her anymore. She eventually got away from me. Flew off in the morning, like the rest. I hope to catch her again sometime. I won’t.
The magpies have gathered in their favourite spot. Never seen so many. As I approach them, six fly away. One remains on the grass, laid down on its side. It has been there since the evening, it had stared at us. Indignantly. I tried shooing it, but it didn’t move far.
I pick it up with spotless palms. Maybe a little bit of it went with her. I bring it close, brush aside the feathers. I gaze into its black bead eyes; all glazed over, and see it. See her lips part open, see her fist reach out, see her fall under. It’s all too shiny, these curving reflections. Shiny and upside down. They’re boring me.
I carry the dead thing to the bin and drop it. A little feather clings on, curling between my middle fingers. I blow it away.
Her giggle passes overhead, but it’s just the birds.
So, what did you think? Aside from a few bumps and knots in the narrative, I'd say it was quite a fair success. Who knows, I may even broach the world of (semi)realistic contemporary serial fiction again sometime. Maybe...