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In The Night

Cleaning up, recently, I came across the following very short story. It’s the only style of fiction I’ve ever found interesting to author: writing an entire story on the front of a single sheet of paper. Very little description, and the details of the story are left up to the reader. At least, that’s the idea. Every time I think I’ve got it right, it seems to be a little too post-modern and pretentious. Whatever.

Flipping his hat on top of an empty pop bottle, he sat down at the typewriter. Maybe this would make more sense on paper. His press pass glared at him accusingly. He slapped it away so the other side faced him, as blank as his conscience.

“They,” he typed. What did that even mean? Who was they? A week ago, he had some idea, but now? Was it still Hibbert, or did he have help?

He let the first word stand and then added, “were here first. I only first discovered their existence about a month ago, doing a day’s research for a two-sentence brief about a suicide on the East side of town.”

He stopped clicking at the typewriter momentarily when a mighty gust of wind blew open the window, splashing cold evening air over his unshaven face, and extinguishing the electric desk lamp sitting beside him. In the pitch darkness, he had the presence of mind to hit the carriage return and type out the deliciously melodramatic, “They are coming.”

Groping for his hat, he stumbled away from the window. He felt the sweeping burning up his back as he realized that he’d backed onto a knife. Its owner pulled the blade out and put it to his neck.

She sounded pretty. “Are you familiar with the practice of human sacrifice?”

“Do you mean the practice of spilling a man’s blood over pagan symbols to disguise murder as ritual suicide?”

She paused. “Well, well. At least I know I have the right man. And you’ll get the satisfaction of knowing why you had to die.”

“Yeah, like it matters.”

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Categories: Uncategorized
  1. Grandma
    July 23, 2008 at 2:34 pm

    I like it. And at least I can understand what you are talking about, which isn’t the case when you are discussing gaming. (That isn’t your fault, of course. It is a consequence of my ignorance about gaming.) Anyway, it is interesting to realize how much one can deduce about your character, even though you reveal so little about him, and to think about ways in which the plot could go.

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