Sailing through the half-way mark and having fun with the challenge. In the last 3 days I wrote an epistolary, a crime noir, and prompt-combo tale. Happy Valentine’s Day!
This story is PG.
February 11, 2012 I just have to get this all down. Then I can look at it in writing. SO… I have to accept the real deal that I could be am crazy. Or could be. Either that or… (I dont know, maybe all this is real??!) Ill have to think about it more. For a few days. If I dont freak out and tell some body what I did and the men in white lab coats with the big butterfly nets come get me. But maybe telling wouldnt be so bad. As long as I don’t show and tell. Or maybe I should show some body. Get it over with. I cant hide it for ever (or can I??) I dont know IM JUST SCARED. This has to be a crazy dream. Im dreaming and Ill wake up. Please God let this be just a nite mare. Amen. Anna May Lee. – – – – – February 12, 2012 Damn all this shit to hell. I didn’t wake up (yet?) from this nite mare. Why did I have to build the damn thing?? I was BORED?? HA look at me now. Or maybe I was just dumb. Messing with that freaky spell book. But I dont understand WILL NEVER UNDERSTAND how clay can come alive just by wrapping it in algae and saying a spell over it. And adding the blood. ANY BODY READING THIS: I did NOT kill any body or any thing. I swear on a stack of Bibles. I swear on my life. It was my own blood. That part of the book spell was very clear. Even tho I am only 13 I know what they are talking about when they say first virgin blood of an unformed baby. And if you figured it out too yeah its GROSS I KNOW but get over it cause if you are reading this there are bigger problems. And if you didnt figure it out and still think I killed a baby or some thing NOOOO. But Im not gonna spell it out for you. Except to say this * . * And that is all. Anna May Lee. – – – – – February 13, 2012 Really having a hard time. And even mom and dad said some thing to me. Are you feeling OK? They said that twice. But I cant tell them so I said Im fine. I check on the thing 3 times a day. When I get up from no sleep when I come home from school and when I go to bed. And the thing is still alive every time. I hate that. But Im too afraid to say any thing even to mom and dad. Because them going down in the basement clay room can only lead to 1. Either they will see it is just a lump of clay that looks like the shape of a person (NOT ALIVE) and that means Im crazy or 2. They will see the clayperson is really alive. And that will be the end of my normal life. Even tho my normal life is already gone. Why did sis have to leave her clay at home? She cant use it at college? Or donate it to a school. Or just give it to some body who can use it not just leave it sitting there!! (and now standing and walking HA) And why did I mess with that creepy spell book under the floor boards?? That book is evil. I should have known better. So now what??? OK maybe forget try to forget about it and just pretend nothing happened. When my sis comes home for summer vaca she will go through her stuff. She will open the clay room door and every thing will be normal. OK that is my plan. Maybe I can sleep now. Good nite (I hope). Anna May Lee. – – – – – February 14, 2012 I was up all nite, thinking about the thing. I check on it 4 times a day now. I don’t know why I keep checking, it scares me! Its still alive every time, I should know that by now. Mom asked me why I keep going in the basement. Dad looked at me funny. I know I have dark circles under my eyes. I don’t say any thing just shrug my shoulders. I cant stand this secret. And I think I know which secret it is now, I read ahead in my biology book and there is NO WAY that clay can be alive. But I see it sit up and walk around. At least it doesn’t say any thing and it doesnt try to walk out of the clay room. OMG I just read what I wrote ITS NOT REAL ALIVE! I am crazy I know it now. It doesnt walk. I just think it walks. In my imagination. So Im some kind of a psycho or some thing. I cant take this any more Im gonna tell mom and dad tonite when they get home from their dinner. Oh yeah I even forgot today is Valentines day. The day I tell my parents Im crazy cause I think I made a clayperson that’s ALIVE. CUCKOO yeah thats me. So any body reading this HAPPY VALENTINES DAY! That is my final message before they take me away. Love, from the crazy girl, Anna May Lee. – – – – –
Garden of Theater
Sergeant MacGuffin whips off his sunglasses and stares at the ground. “Skip, this is the work of Hitch the art thief,” he says to the reporter. “But don’t quote me on that.” “Sure thing, Sarge,” Skip says, scribbling in a notepad. MacGuffin points to the large hole at his feet. “Another questionable piece of art- if you could call it that- stolen from a collection. Only this time it’s not from a museum or gallery. Hitch is expanding his repertoire.” His gaze sweeps over the exotic and rare bushes, flowers, and trees. “You know, I’ll never understand modern art. And this ‘Garden of Theater’? A bunch of plants as performance art?” He kicks a clump of dirt. “Actors performing on stage in a play- yeah, I get that. Acting is art. But plants just sitting there? How is that art? Plants aren’t even, you know . . people!” Skip nods. “I think it has something to do with how the plants are arranged,” he says. “The curator told me different plants interact differently with each other. You just have to open your mind and tune into the plant performance . . or something.” MacGuffin frowns. “Sounds like mumbo jumbo to me.” “Yeah, well . . I don’t believe the stories, I just report them,” Skip says with a shrug. —– MacGuffin stands up in his Jeep, flips on his bullhorn, and peers across the nighttime desert. “Hello Hitch,” he says through the bullhorn. “This is Sergeant MacGuffin. I know you’re out there. Hitch, I know you’re too much of an art lover- er, performance-plant lover to risk jeopardizing the life of that actor plant you stole from Garden of Theater. That’s how I know you’re here. You think you’re gonna replant the plant out in the desert and watch it, uh . . perform. Now, I don’t know what kind of performance you think you saw or sensed that plant do back at the garden. That’s not for me to judge. But no matter what you thought you experienced with that plant there, the fact is, it’s just a plant. And an expensive one at that. It doesn’t belong to you, Hitch. You stole it, and in the process, vandalized a garden. MacGuffin spies a tiny light in the distance. “Is that you, Hitch?” he says through his bullhorn. The light flickers twice. MacGuffin slowly drives toward the light. He sees a figure standing next to a giant pitcher-shaped plant. He puts his Jeep in park and hops out. The headlights illuminate the art thief and his prized heist. “The show’s over, Hitch. Give up the plant and we can forget about this whole thing. Garden of Theater is willing to drop all charges in exchange for the return of their unharmed pitcher plant. “The show’s not over, MacGuffin,” Hitch says. “In fact, it’s just begun.” Hitch reaches into his jacket and pulls out a baby rabbit. He takes a step forward and holds it up in a beam of the headlights. “What you see here is a cute, fluffy bunny, and what you see back there is a Giant Nepenthes rajah, a hybrid plant engineered to dissolve and digest meat- big chunks of meat- almost instantaneously. How would you like to see a plant perform with an animal tonight, MacGuffin?” “You wouldn’t dare,” MacGuffin says, stepping toward Hitch. “Not so fast,” Hitch says, stepping back and dangling the rabbit over the plant’s gaping pitcher. MacGuffin reaches into his jacket and pulls out a small Venus Fly Trap. He takes a step forward, pulls out his gun, and points it at the tiny plant. “Drop the rabbit on the ground or the Fly Trap gets it.” Hitch gasps and drops the rabbit on the ground. MacGuffin throws the Fly Trap at him and Hitch jumps to catch it, but it sails over his head. He trips and tumbles backward into the pitcher with a splash. “I finally understand modern art,” MacGuffin says, applauding. “Encore, encore,” Hitch calls from the pitcher.
“Thanks for inviting me, Mike. I’ve never been to a recording session before.” Lucinda pops open her beer, sips, and squints at the guests in the smoky room. “So when are you guys gonna start recording?” “We’re recording now. It’s gonna be an enviro-rock album. That’s the kind of music we play- inspired riffs mixed with random environmental noise. This recording will be Antikythera’s debut album. You might even be on the album, depending on what our sound mixer decides to use.” Mike winks. “That’s why you and everybody signed a waiver before you came in.” “That’s cool.” Lucinda smiles. “So how did you guys get the name of your band?” “Antikythera is the name of a computer my grandfather discovered.” “Discovered?” “Yeah. In 1900, he was part of a diving team that found an ancient computer at the bottom of the sea. They named it Antikythera.” “That’s an odd name.” “It’s the name of an island near Crete. That’s where they found it.” “Are you making this up?” Lucinda says, shaking her head. “No. Honest. And my granddad even gave it to me. It’s in the basement. Wanna see?” Lucinda nods and takes another drink. Mike leads her through the kitchen and down the basement steps. What’s that smell?” she says, wrinkling her nose. “Just a small sewer leak. It usually doesn’t smell this bad. We’re supposed to get it fixed after we start selling albums. Mike flips on a light. Against the fall wall, a large rectangular device inlayed with dozens of gears whirs and hums. Lucinda slowly walks up to the metallic machine. “What does it do?” “It’s supposed to calculate astronomical positions. Cool, eh?” Lucinda gently presses her hand against the side surface. “It’s beautiful.” “It’s the only one of its kind,” Mike says. “You say it’s for astronomy?” “Yeah, something like that. But that’s only the official story. My granddad believes it’s a machine made by an ancestor of his. He says he feels a connection with it, like it was meant to be passed down in our family. He said the ship that originally carried it sunk.” “Do you feel a connection with it?” Lucinda finishes her beer. “Yeah. It’s the name of my band, after all. Maybe it will somehow help us finally explode onto the music scene.” “Shouldn’t a computer as old as this be in a museum?” “Yeah, it should. And promise me you won’t tell anybody what I’m about to tell you.” “I promise.” “The machine is officially in a museum. But the real story is the museum has the replica. What you are looking at is the real McCoy. Granddad restored the original Antikythera- what you see here- and donated the replica to the museum.” “All the turning gears are mesmerizing. Like a giant clock. What does it run on?” “My granddad said it has two separate engines, one with ammonia and one with some kind of nitrate. He said no other device in the world can run on those things. This is lost technology.” Lucinda slips off her jacket, revealing a black-sequined bustier. “Have you guys decided on a cover shot for your debut album?” She strikes a pose in front of the machine. “Me and the guys thought about just having a picture of Antikythera.” “How about something representative of your music?” she offers. “Like a contrast between something old and something new?” Mike shrugs. “I dunno. I guess I could ask the guys.” Lucinda leans back against the machine. “Just think, when I become a famous model, you can say my first modeling job was posing for your debut album cover.” Her hair gets caught in the gears. Screaming, she flails at the machine as its gears grind and tangle. Mike grabs a knife from a toolbox and chops at Lucinda’s hair. Free, Lucinda whirls around and falls backward. The machine whines, groans and shudders. “Your hair is binding the gears!” Mike yells. “Let’s get outta here!” He grabs Lucinda and they run up the stairs. —– Good morning, and welcome to Wave 3 News, the latest of Louisville’s breaking news, headlines, weather, and sports. This just in- exploding sewers! Early this morning in the downtown area, miles of sewers exploded, sending rubble, wastewater, and unmentionables into the now ripped-out city streets. Although no casualties have yet been reported, Mayor Fischer has declared the city a disaster area. Authorities are now investigating the cause of the explosions. More details after the break. —– “Hey, Lucinda. Thanks for coming to see me.” “No problem. Besides, all this is my fault. I mean, I shouldn’t have messed with the Antikythera. I’m sorry I triggered the explosion.” “Don’t worry about it. At least we all got out alive. And my doctor says I can leave the hospital tomorrow.” Lucinda smiles. “I also stopped by to make sure you and the rest of the band knows your album is number one.” “Number one? How can that be? It’s only been one week.” “The exploding sewers have been all over the news. You guys are known as the sewer bomb band. I guess there’s something to be said for explosive debuts.”