Wit Fit Writer's Prompt for October 2nd, 2014.
Word Prompt: Scourge
Scenario: Relive the past or see into the future?
The rolling "r" sound always tripped her up. It had for as long as she could remember. Her tongue couldn't say it right, and she didn't feel like it was her tongue's fault. Her brain thought it was made one way, but when it came out she knew it wasn't right. It wasn't just the "r", really. It had to have a shrill sound right before it, or a grunting guttural vowel, for her mouth to really make mush of it.
Girl became "gourrel".
Squirrel became "skorwel".
Scourge became "skerage".
And each time her tongue tried to form the word she would blush pink, reliving the embarrassment of elementary school years that came with a brain that was able to handle the six syllable words and a tongue that couldn't even pronounce "word" without making it sound too long and soft.
Years later, teaching college level courses and presenting nerdy academic papers, she would find herself avoiding simple words. Her fear that her mouth would fail her and make a fool of her in front of a class of fifty was intense, given her confidence with the concepts and material that were the real trick of each talk.
Each mispronounced word bringing her back to pigtails and people so confused about why she was speaking of sea gulls, when all she wanted to say was "girl".