>Red Writing Hood: The Name Game


The assignment: Write a piece of short fiction featuring the dialogue between two people arguing.

The Name Game

“Would you stop looking at the hospital wall and talk to me?” Vanessa told her husband. She watched him pace the length of the small hospital room from the comfort of her bed.
“I thought this discussion was over. We’ve been over it and over it and over it already! ” as his voice began to crescendo, she was glad that the baby had gone to the nursery. “It’s family tradition. The firstborn son carries on the name!”
“I’m sorry, Ted, but eight Theodore Eugene Bentley Pomodore’s are enough. I’m not down with giving a 9th. What are we going to call him? Nine?” she sighed long and loud for a dramatic effect. “Nine!! It’s time to come in!! Nine!! Time for dinner!!”
“Don’t be a smartass, V. I was going to call him Ben. No one’s been called Ben yet.”
“I still don’t like it.  What’s wrong with giving him a more modern name like Brayden or something more classic like Matthew? Something that is only his?”
“We will have more babies, V.”
“How do you know that? It took 4 years and IVF to have this one! How can you guarantee me there will be more babies? What if I don’t want to go through this whole thing again? Do you have any idea the emotional toll this whole process took on me? It has aged me.”
“I’m sorry that having my babies is so rough on you, V.”
“Oh my God, Ted. You did not so just go there. As if you are the victim here! Please. Why do you have to be so extreme? Seriously? Ted, I love you. I’m in love with our son. I’m so happy to be his mom. It’s the greatest gift I have ever been given.” A small sob escapes her throat. “But, I may never get the chance to do this again. Can we not find a compromise at all?”
Ted moves next to her bed, pulls her close and begins stroking her long, soft hair. “I’m sorry, V.” he whispers. “If there weren’t so much pressure on me to carry the name on…”
“Honey, whose son is he? Ours or theirs? Let’s name him what we want to name him.”
“I really had my heart set on calling him Ben, V. It was my solace for having to saddle him with the name. He’s been Ben to me since we knew he was a boy.”
“We could always just name him Bentley Theodore. This way you are still keeping the family names, but they are unique to him and to us. AND you could still call him Ben.”
“I don’t like Bentley so much, V.” he paused. He knew that she was really compromising and didn’t love the name herself. ” Can you live with Bentley Theodore?”
She wrapped her arms around his waist. “It’s a whole lot better than Nine.”

16 thoughts on “>Red Writing Hood: The Name Game

  1. >I love this topic, being that names are so much more than names sometimes. I'm glad he redeemed himself as well, because in between the IVF comment and the decision to have this discussion at the height of postpartum hormone surges makes me want to poke him with something sharp. This could be an interesting flashback, because he says a lot about their relationship in a short bit.

  2. >I'd like to see more exposition about body language (are they both standing? is she recovering from the birth? etc) — but I found the story to be compelling and loved their individual voices.

Shoot the Poop with the Drama Mama!

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