Featured Fig: Clary Frost

Each week we will be featuring one member for their outstanding contributions to the Figment community.

This week we’re featuring Clary Frost! Check out five of their stories along with their interview answers below!

Clary%20FrostWhat do you enjoy most about Figment and its community?

  • Figment has a very welcoming atmosphere and you can find people of all levels of writing. Because it is so diverse, you can easily fit anywhere in the community. I’ve made so many friends here and could connect to people from all sorts of places.

What is your favorite story that you have shared on Figment and why?

  • My favorite story that I shared is “New World”. I’ve really poured my heart into creating the characters as real as possible.

Where do you find inspiration to write and keep writing?

  • I find my inspiration by reading published or figment writings. I read them and think to myself, “If they could do it, then I can do it.” Also my family and friends have been a huge support.

What is the last book that you read?

  • The last book that I read was “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child”. I’m a huge fan of Harry Potter. To any fans of Harry Potter that haven’t read it yet, you should. It was truly a beautiful book.

Do you have any advice for other Figgies looking to improve their writing?

  • Read, read, read. Through reading other works you pick up how the author shapes their worlds and their characters. Also never stop writing. The only way to get better is to write – even though you may think it is horrible. Keep it up and through writing you can find your own groove.

Congratulations again and thank you for sharing your talent, inspiration and advice with us! Be sure to check out some of their work below.

Congratulations again!

Let us know who you think should be our next Featured Fig!

– The Figment Team

One thought on “Featured Fig: Clary Frost

  1. Red Hair Dye
    Ty Milne

    Red hair dye. That’s how the end began. Somewhere along the lines of finding myself and shedding my ignorance I lost my best friend, and it started with a box of red hair dye in mid November. Sometimes it takes a lot to realize you’re alone. Sometimes it takes pushing someone away- it takes distance- to see the whole picture. My first little shove at Mary was when she dyed her hair bright red. I distanced myself from her. It might have been petty, but I couldn’t condone to her conformity. We always based our friendship on our individuality. Copying this red hair dye trend got me thinking, but however much I disliked it, I kept her around. We were best friends after all. There were others of course; we had our mutual friends, Becca, Tommy, Kyle, Lexi, Aaron… all those people. But it was us who were inseparable. Until we got in the way of ourselves.
    Then it became more than that. It happened little by little, and I probably should have said something sooner, but Mary’s fragile state prevented me. Her deep rooted fear of confrontation that she learned as she grew older stopped me from preserving my own mental state. So I suffered in a bored silence as it went from red hair dye to new music, new movies new shows, and remained our same old boring routine. Forcing circular conversations, like talking to a mirror. It was always one sided. For Mary it became systematic. She needed me because she knew I wouldn’t walk away, and I needed her because I feared change. A match made in hell.
    Suddenly for me it became about realization of the lack of connection, and I couldn’t handle it. I found comfort with the kids that parents warn their children to stay away from. They introduced themselves as Kenny, and Cassie. Kids from my neighborhood. At first it was nothing but heart break. It was dramamine and red eyes in hotel rooms while Mary was living it up with our friends. She was going out with Becca and Kyle while I was losing grip on myself, and I was clueless.
    I swear the hotel walls and the intense silence, are closing in on me as I await my brothers two day hockey tournament to end. We are utterly alone, everyone else wanted to go watch the game. I never enjoyed the games, as they made my nose wrinkle at the smell of stale sweat and bad popcorn. The people mindlessly cheering, shrieking with joy into my ears as their child scores.
    Cassie is aimlessly flipping through the tv channels, looking for something worth watching as she runs a brush through her bleached blonde locks that cascaded down her back like a harsh waterfall. She does this often. It’s one of the things she always has on her, a hair brush. It seemed to flow along nicely with her ditzy personality.
    I shuffle through my bag hunting for my sleeping meds, as it was nearing one in the morning. The sound of celebration was wafting up the stairs from the party room. I would typically be celebrating my brothers victory with the rest of the guests but instead I settle for a much needed sleep.
    Cassie looks over at me, a sympathetic yet typically charming smile painted on her face. She knows I’m struggling without Mary, but her awkward stature shows me she doesn’t know what to say, and neither do I. So I keep my mouth shut. The tension hangs heavy in the air as I prepare to crawl into the comfort of the bed.
    “Just sleep.” She pauses, her voice far too casual for the looming nature of the room. “You’ll feel better when you wake up,”. I agree softly not wanting to fight her on the fact that by morning I would be in the same state if not worse . Sleep will surely cure this depression that I’m spiraling into. The lights flicker off, the way they would if we were in a horror movie. The worsening empty feeling was seeping in through the cracks on the ceiling. I’m finally being embraced by the soft arms of sleep when another vise like grip yanks me from the consolidation. I hear an all too familiar ring tone. Mary. We hadn’t texted in a week, and for some reason I still allow her name to show up as Best Friend on my luminescent screen. The words twisted themselves into a panic in my brain. What could she possibly have to say to me after this long. Just as I was finding happiness.
    Cassie peeks over from her bed, giving me a curious look, as she wipes her raccoon eyes from the heavy make up. I shake my head slightly as I open the message. I don’t want to bother Cassie with my deteriorating friendship. Keeping the two of them as clueless about each other as possible seemed like a good way to go. With Cassie I get the rose tinted glasses that she’s looked through her whole life. My eyes fleet back to the phone.
    ‘hey’. That’s all it says. My expression fades from nervous to a disappointed scowl. After a week of ignoring each other for whatever unspoken reason she thinks ‘hey’ is a good approach. Then another message appears, ‘you’ve been distant, you ok?’ then a third ‘I just egged a house btw lol’.
    It all hurts. This was the kind of excitement I craved when we used to spend time together. She would never egg a house with me. She would never do anything fun with me. When I brought it up she scoffed and tossed her red hair as if I were joking. I always attempted to get her out of her comfort zone. Never for me.
    In all my infuriation I end up sending a terse ‘Good for you.’ I then switch off my phone, letting the screen go dark, as I roll back over in the scratchy sheets. I know I hear the phone buzz a few more times, as I try to get to the lucid state I was in before. I can feel Cassie’s eyes on me the entire time, waiting for me to falter, or shed a tear. But my sadness had suddenly shifted, draining my agony and turning it into a burning anger and sick jealousy that left a horrible ache in the pit of my stomach.
    I had no idea that Mary was okay without me, and even now I cringe at the thought. I later found out that she was with Becca that night, and that wasn’t the first time I had been excluded from the activities I desperately needed. She never invited me. I never asked. The month’s post that interaction tore me apart like no other.
    Mary holds on to the fraying threads of our friendship with every last fiber of her being, without even asking what was happening to her alleged best friend. That was no change however. We had our inside jokes but we never touched our feelings. I was guilty as well. I avoided feelings like they were a hell on earth, but I knew when it was necessary to address the problem. It became necessary when getting older began to tear us apart. I needed change and she didn’t know what she wanted. Mary was always a follower. She stole credit for other people’s work, and followed unoriginal trends, that at first seemed very appealing to me. It clicked with me because I was the same way for a very long time, but I began to see through it. Her unoriginality, her painfully ignorant bliss. As I became real she became fake. Much like her hair color.
    The snow is melting, retreating back into the ground as it runs from the sunshine. My sadness is melting, burying itself in the back of my mind as it runs from my recovery. It’s been five months since the hotel. I’ve been so wrapped up in my own head, getting better with my new friends. Living a life I’d seen in movies, the kind of excitement Mary never offered me. We still talked in the hallways and we both still clung to the title of best friends like it was the only thing we had left. Mary still didn’t notice my absence or care enough to address it let alone fix it. Both of us can see the fear and neither of us do anything to stop the rapid slipping of our relationship. But I’m having too much fun to care. The sun shines almost every day, and my happiness is almost as radiant as the great star itself. Cassie and Kenny are the light of my life, and we live on the edge. We go on adventures and we have a connection. We don’t even talk about Mary or what she did to me. It was in this state of mind I finally agreed to hang out with mine and Mary’s old friends again. Becca invited me to Tommy’s party to catch up.
    I enter the familiar basement, ready to lose myself in the sea of conversations. The how have you beens the what have you been up to’s. The memories of this basement have permanently reserved a place in my heart, and the nostalgia was a bullet in my brain that sent bloody regret all over my face. Smiles are exchanged, game controllers passed out, music turned up- I’m okay.
    “Where have you been these days?” Becca approaches, her typical demeanor telling me nothing has changed. She always leans forward as if she’s anticipating something crazy. The tone in her voice was small talk, not concern. “We’ve missed you like crazy!” Her voice is bright and happy, and I have to stifle my laughter. If they all missed me so much why wasn’t I invited to more events. The first blow of melancholy. I tell myself over and over again that I can do this.
    “I’ve been around,” I elbow her playfully on the ribs to keep the interaction from falling into the hostility that was consuming me inside. She gives me a quizzical grin, and hands me a glass of orange crush tossing her frizzy brunette locks behind her bony shoulder.
    My gaze shifts around the room anxiously, and I can practically feel my heart start to beat faster as I realized how big of a toll this was going to take on me. Every person I talk to takes some of my insides away. My joy was leaving me.
    The room was far too crowded, everywhere I turned there was another person’s skin brushing against mine. The whirring in my head flusters me enough to make me move to the couch to escape the machine of people.
    There next to me, is a girl with a mess of Red Hair Dye. I’m paralyzed, any hint of a smile on my face- any hope that I could do this disappeared. Mary didn’t tell me about this. Mary didn’t let me know there was a party. Mary didn’t move either. Mary didn’t tell me about all those times she left me alone while she made memories in my place in Tommy’s basement.
    We aren’t looking at each other but we are well aware that we’re inches apart. She knows her wrongdoing but she keeps quiet until she can’t take the tension anymore. Until the weight was just too heavy.
    “I didn’t know you would be here,”. That is a dagger in my stomach. All I can manage is biting my tongue with impressive force and push up a smile through my breaking exterior. Though I know my eyes are dead, when I turn to look at her. That’s when Mary lost me. In that moment I decide I’m done. The threads of emotion that stuck to Mary were cut, and suddenly her Red Hair Dye didn’t look half bad.
    “Yeah. I’m here.” I manage to tell her. It’s a lie through tightly grit teeth. Her eyes are wider than the full moon making an appearance through the open window. Her shock-guilt- whatever it is that flowed across her face in waves is the equivalent of my burning pride and smug expression. I finally caught her in the act. Someone would get hurt and the only thought going through my mind is ‘it won’t be me’. I try to brush off the encounter. It’s my final straw. All my feeling for Mary removed itself from my chest and I can breathe for the first time in a long time.
    It was then I realized I was done with Mary. I was done with not connecting. I was done letting her constant lack of effort into our friendship tear me apart while she was perfectly fine. I was done trying to spark actual conversations with her in the halls. I was done trying to be her friend. I was done. I couldn’t help but wonder what she thought, or if she cared. But I could only assume she didn’t because as expected Mary didn’t try. She never did. She simply stared with her moon eyes, watching as everything crumbled, and waiting for me to do something about it. But I wouldn’t. Because I was done with Mary.
    I was with Cassie and Kenny everyday, forming real memories, enjoying real life, and new things. Having fun. They cared enough to make an effort. As school ended I learned to be friends with Becca again, and the sunshine came crawling back into the sky. The less I talked to Mary the brighter my days became. Cassie, Kenny and I had the entire summer ahead of us.
    I’m not a hundred percent sure what Mary did over the course of the summer, and my best guess is she didn’t do anything, because at the very end of August she texted me, asking if I wanted to come over and catch up. Everything about that situation screamed desperate. There’s no other way she’d have had this type of initiative. . She said she hasn’t hung out with anyone the whole summer. In a sick way it made a smirk tug at my lips. Oh how the tables had turned. A stone cold jab in my chest told me that this time I could handle it. This time seeing Mary wouldn’t break me. I wanted to see how miserable she was now that I wasn’t holding the weight of us both over our heads.
    When I arrive, she’s standing on her oh so familiar front porch. Red hair pulled back in a sloppy ponytail, and her sweater paws wrapped tightly around her waist. The most genuine smile I can offer makes an appearance on my face.
    “Hey.” The greeting isn’t as warm as I’d imagined it to be. I pictured her to have some sort of apology speech or at least a new sense of self. Some sort of change. “I figured we could have some snacks and watch horror movies. Like old times.” Mary’s suggestion is a bittersweet noose around my neck. I’m not sure why I expected change.
    “Yeah. I’d like that.” I tell her in all my false sincerity. The hum of mosquitoes irritate me at frequencies I can barely hear through the thick air. I would say I’m glad to be entering her house but Mary’s family didn’t use their air conditioner, so my clothes still cling to my skin uncomfortably as we enter.
    “You can just bring your bag to my room.” Her voice is saturated with the soft tones of eagerness. A tone I can’t match. My overnight bag is a last minute concoction of pajama pants and a blanket. Just in case things click, and I want to spend the night.
    Mary’s room looks just the same as it did the last time I was there. Never changing.
    “How’ve you been?” I speak up.
    “Things have been good! Mostly just binge playing video games. I haven’t really hung out with anyone.” This isn’t news to me. My bag falls to the floor with a thud, and I know what comes next. “What about you?” My breath hitches in my throat. Do I tell her that I’ve found happiness without her? Can I say that to someone?
    “I’ve been- amazing. I’ve never been better.” I can.
    “Oh well that’s good.” She didn’t bother to ask why. I can’t feel it. The click isn’t there. The fun is gone. The little bit of connection we had disappeared that night so many months ago at that party at Tommy’s and I can’t feel anything for her at all. I can’t help but think she did this because she’s desperate. She wants the human interaction she wants me to try to fix this, but won’t do it herself. I stare at Mary, eyes searching for something, anything that might show me her motives. She just picks at her fingernail, and looks around for something other than me to focus on. Her big brown eyes darting across the room the way bugs fleet across the surface of pond.
    “Why did you ask me to come here, Mary?” My words intertwined with a sigh I didn’t know I was holding back. I can see the shock flow through her, her posture straightening in defense, her eyes looking up from behind her thick mascara.
    “I- I don’t know,” Mary stutters out. What I wouldn’t give to be inside her head at that moment right then. I want to map out her thought process and learn what’s behind those lies of her. A part of me knows I would end up empty handed.
    “This isn’t going to work. I can tell. You asked me to come here for what? To bust open and old wound? To try to rekindle our friendship? I’ve been trying to do that for a year. Nothing worked. I took a step back from all of this and I’m… Finally happy. I’m more than happy. And it doesn’t feel like you’ve tried at all. I always have to do everything. I’m sick of it.” Once I start speaking I can’t stop. Things I’ve wanted to say for ages were sky lifted from my lungs and fresh air was poured into the room.
    “You’re happy without me?” It’s written all over her face. It’s a childish look of hurt or some sort of epiphany that was really just the disguise of fear. I nod slowly knowing I probably just destroyed her feelings. “Then why did you come here?!” I literally take a step back, amazed by her snappiness.
    “Because I thought we could still be friends. Even if we aren’t best friends.” Finally the truth surfaces.
    “Well can we?” Mary knows the answer.
    “I don’t think so.” I could see the tears filling her eyes, and I knew I had to leave immediately. I couldn’t deal with the guilt.
    I left her on her bedroom floor with tears falling down her ivory skin, red hair dye sticking to her damp face. I exit with a heavy heart and a head full of clarity. The situation would leave us damaged at best. Denying change does nothing but ruin people, and I wish I would have let her go sooner.

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