Alright, so I wrote this about a year and a half ago for one of my creative writing classes. Some could say it's because the same teacher made us read the book another time prior, or because I actually enjoyed the book. Yes, "The Great Gatsby" is full of symbols and underlying emotions/possibilities. BUT, this fanfic is not. I was going to aim at making it like the story, but instead, I made it AFTER the original story.
Ohh Daisy, how most of us hated your close-minded, self-gratifying, lifestyle searching character. So selfish and all about herself and her image. Tom obviously was the safest choice as a family, but it always made me think, was Gatsby even actually love to her? WELL NOW I BRING MY OWN IDEAS. Here is: After Gatsby By: Narissa Gran The first time I saw Jay Gatsby he showed up outside my house alongside dozens of other soldiers amid the war, looking for nothing more but a good time and someone to help pass it; but it seems that time stayed with him forever. It whispered promises of eternal love and booming hope, only to have it shattered much later on. The second time, it was fate, or maybe even chance, that we met by a mutual acquaintance. Nick Carraway, my cousin, kept him in his house and invited me over. Gatsby was not prepared for it, and had been far too nervous not to try and run. Only to return and enter the room, on a cool rainy day. I’ve never seen a happier man that could still be so childishly stupid. He was blinded by love. Getting himself into even more trouble than before, and he didn’t know until it was too late. Nobody gave him a second thought, and nobody acknowledged his memories or reminisced on the good times he had. It seems that they, even myself, turned a blind eye and a deaf ear. It was like he was the nobody he started out as years ago. As a young boy he ached and longed for wealth, fortune, and glamour. He wanted to make a name for himself, but now as a man, he strived for nothing. He had wealth, fortune, and glamour. The illusions he presented himself with were no longer illusions, but reality. Nobody really talked about him after the incident, and I don’t blame them. He would blame himself. He was always the one to blame himself. He was such a gentleman despite how many people chiseled away at his armor, leaving scratches and scrapes that couldn’t be buffered or fixed. Long gone were the magnificent Gatsby parties that consisted of undeniable fun; long gone were the times of wine and nights in, and women that he simply just enjoyed talking to. None of them showed to his funeral, not even I, none of them probably care to remember Gatsby. He always had a way of making me feel undeniable, beautiful, and carefree. I knew that I was always on his mind, taking up permanent residence in his heart, no way of shaking the thought of me free. It seemed as if that’s the last thing he wanted to do. After his death, this guilt built up inside of me. The funeral was missed because Tom didn’t want us going to a murderer’s funeral. He didn’t want to see the man who supposedly hit his half time lover. Tom didn’t know that I, of course, was the one who hit her; that this was all a mishap. That I should be the one shot dead, not Gatsby. I couldn’t let a murder linger on my family, but I didn’t even try to stop it from happening to Gatsby. He was more than willing to take the blame, and I let him. It eats away at me. So, before his funeral, we moved. Nick called the house numerous times, but we ignored any ties to Gatsby. Six years have passed, and I can only cry over the helpless encounters we had. The memories of bliss and misery. I got rid of the white dress I wore when him and I first met. The yellow dress that matched my three-pointed hat that I so clearly remember of our second meeting, is now also gone. I cut my hair, so it wasn’t long and cascading down my shoulders, but now just past the tip of my chin. I went out on my own today, no longer wearing the bright vibrant colors that made me stand out. Today, I wore a lacy pale blue dress that hung shapelessly on my body. It was almost “grey, the color of sadness, of woe, of guilt and longing and forgetfulness”. That’s how Tom would describe it, and he could never be more right. I began to daydream as I walked down the sidewalk. My eyes inadvertently staring down at the cracks. I can imagine meeting Gatsby again, that maybe by some small chance he was still alive. He wouldn’t be wearing a uniform, nor a pale suit soaked to the bone with nervousness and excitement. Maybe he would be in a suit, one of navy and white, like the white that would streak his slick hair. A smug smile across his face as he’d approach me, trying to be confident. He always saw me first, but this time, I would see him. I would cry and laugh of happiness and relief. I would run to him, hug him, and kiss him followed by leaving Tom in a heart beat. As I thought that, I sat down. I placed my hand over my lips, biting my bottom lip nervously. “Would I really do that?” I thought to myself as I leaned forward, resting my elbow against the cool marble table. My other hand came up to rub my forehead, “My family…”. I was wrong, that’s what I would want to do. Gatsby will forever be the one that I’ll want, but forever be running away from. Now, I’m running from the memory of a ghost, something that haunts me and won’t let me forget. I was always oblivious to the things around me, and back then, I couldn’t focus on anyone more than myself. Did I look good? Did anyone miss me? I was very self-centered, but I knew Gatsby looked passed that while Tom just accepted it. A waiter arrived causing me to jump. He offered to take my order, my forehead still resting in the crevice of my hand. As he left, only to arrive seconds later with a glass of water, I heard the chair across from me scrape and someone take a seat. Curiosity took over as I lifted my head and looked at the pale sleepless face of my cousin. His hair was thick with grey to match his grey suit, his tie a nice checkered pattern. “Nick?” I asked as if it was an illusion or my imagination, “I thought you went back home?” He stayed quiet for a long while, the waiter bringing him a glass of water as well. Nick dismissed him with a small nod, leaving us alone in the cool spring breeze. “I’m kind of traveling. Odd to find you in a small town like this,” he said abruptly, making me jump a bit. “It’s actually funny, finding you in a town not too far from the cemetery Gatsby was buried in.” My heart jumped to my throat, realization springing through my numb expression. Again, I stayed silent. My voice sealed behind my lips, which was an odd thing for me to do, and only echoed in my head. “How are you, Nick?” When he chuckled, I realized that after all these years I’m still trying to avoid confrontation. His finger traced the rim of his glass, “Lately, I’ve been doing okay. But when I saw you sitting here, I was filled with anger,” he trailed off. “But then again, I’m thankful to have come across you,” he looked straight into my eyes, piercing the shield I had held up. “I was visiting Gatsby’s grave a while back, have you been there? No, wait. The real question is,” Nick sighed sympathetically, “What happened?” My lips did not move, nor did I even try. As if irritated by my silence, he took a sip of his water and set the glass down rather loud. “Nick,” I started, “Of course I loved Gatsby… I was going to leave Tom. If you look at it from my view, I had a daughter with Tom. It’s hard to leave someone that you’ve built a life with.” He chuckled again as he peered off into the distance. He traced a finger on the rim of the glass as a squirrel crossed the street nearly being struck by a car. My facade of happiness was doomed in front of Nick Carraway. He always knew what happened. He knew because immediately after seeing that squirrel Nick shook his head. He cleared his throat to speak, still peering off, “No, you wouldn’t have left Tom, Daisy. Fine if you weren’t going to, but don’t sit here six years later and tell me you thought about it.” I was appalled by what he said to me, but I had no right to be. I could see that anger stained his face, knowing he had more to say. “Let it out Nick,” I say as I take a drink of water. He looked at me again, then away, his hand wrapped firmly around his glass. He was hesitant as he watched the squirrel carry a nut up the tree. Did that squirrel even know it almost died? Nick took in a deep breath, “That night you hit Myrtle. You knew Gatsby was waiting for you. He wanted you, Daisy. He wanted to talk to you. He was ready to take the blame for you.” His eyes were red, his face pink with frustration. “Because that was the kind of man he was. The kind who would go to jail for the one he loved. The kind who took the cruel rumors, the loneliness, the fake friends; all for you.” After he said that, tears streamed down my cheeks. My veil of self pity lifted as the tears left a hot trail on my face, soon cooling with the breeze. I brought my hand up, wiping them aside and collecting myself. As if some answers would come from it, I look into Nick’s eyes and say, “Where’s his grave? No, I haven’t visited it. Can we go to it? Together, Nick?” I was weak, vulnerable, and knowing that this may end up helping both of us I saw some reassurance. That must’ve been what Nick wanted because he smiled, polishing off his glass of water and stood up. “That’s what I’ve come back to do,” he held his hand out to take mine, “come with me.” My mind wandered as he walked me over to his car, but immediately my attention was brought back. I put a hand over my mouth noticing the cream colored vehicle that Nick stood by and held the door open to, “Come on.” As if frozen in place, I felt a pull on my hand as he led me up to the opened door. “It is Gatsby’s old one, the one in the accident,” I got in as he continued speaking, “but think of it as closure.” Closure? How could I think of this vehicle as closure? As soon as I sat in the passenger seat, I felt relaxed. Odd that I felt no tense, uncomfortable, awkward emotions. Nick slid into the driver's seat, started the car and drove out of town. The trees were illuminated by the sun’s rays as the blurred images of birds and phone lines passed by. I was calm, until we approached the turn to the cemetery. It was as if I heard of Gatsby’s death for the first time again. Memories of us flickered in my head, causing me to drift back to the summer of 1917. Remembering the love that was strong enough to make a man love me unconditionally up to the year of 1922; the love I so coldly pushed away. Before I knew it, the car stopped. As if a lost child, I looked to Nick for reassurance again before he got out. He walked over to my door and opened it, taking my hand like a baby would need to take it’s first steps. Finally, I felt my slip-on shoes sink into the green grass. While leading me down a few rows of random, meaningless names, we finally stopped at a tombstone that read James Gatz, and nothing else. Nick started, “No caption, no soliloquy about what he did with his great success. No excerpt about how much he was loved; no ‘loving husband’ or ‘caring father’. There’s nothing that talks of his wealth, or of the hardships he overcame for it. Anyone who didn’t know him for his parties, anyone who came across this mans grave will think of him as ‘Mr. Nobody from Nowhere’.” I looked up at Nick then back to Gatsby’s grave, “That’s how Tom said it.” I croaked out and stared at the distant name, a smile across my face as warm tears streamed down once again, “that’s how a polo player would say it.” The memory of the time Gatsby made Tom look inferior to him made me laugh to myself. Only this time, I’ve realized I was blinded by my own sense of self pity; I didn’t even consider how Gatsby felt. I’ve come to terms with Gatsby’s death. I’ll never forget the man who could’ve given me the world even if I pushed him into space.