dontravis.com blog post #285
Apparently quite a few of you like Pedro the Dragon as much as BJ Vinson does. Got quite a few hits. For those of you who are writers, it is a good exercise to take a scene (one of yours or someone else's) and rewrite it from another point of view. Try it.
Today, let’s have an offering that comes in well below 1,000 words. Let me know how you like it.
I left the chapel following Charles Farrelson’s memorial service somewhat spiritually fractured. Chuck, thirty years my senior, had been both father figure and lover for the past five years. For at least 250 of the last 260 Wednesdays, he’d filled my afternoons with good food, sharp wit, and loving caresses. Yet the sorrow tugging at my heartstrings felt selfish. It seemed more centered on what was taken from me, rather than his life being snatched from him.
Feeling the need for nourishment, sustenance… something. I walked past the cars in the parking lot and struck out for the Famous Four Flavors ice cream shop across the street. A tall hunky guy I’d noticed at the service entered before me. I’d picked up on him not only because he was so handsome but also because he was Chuck’s son Drake.
Restraining the impulse to introduce myself, I fell in line behind him wondering how he’d feel about meeting his father’s gay lover. Once he collected his chocolate shake, I ordered a strawberry. Keeping my eyes straight ahead, I walked toward a nearby table until a deep baritone brought me to a halt.
“I noticed you at the service.” Drake indicated a chair. “Join me?”
When I was settled, he offered a handshake. “Hi, I’m Drake Barstow.”
I grasped his hand and frowned. “N-not Drake Farrelson?”
His eyebrows reached for his dark hairline. “No. Why would you think that?”
“I’ve seen you before. Last December, I saw you and Chuck leaving Dillards. I asked him later, and he said you were his son.”
His astonished look morphed into glee. “That old dog! Now let me guess. You’re not Carl, Chuck’s nephew. You see, I saw you with him once, too, at the University bookstore.
“I’m Carl, all right. But I’m not his nephew. I was… uh, a friend.”
“Yeah, a friend. What was your day?”
“When did you meet him? Was it on a special day of the week?”
“Well… yes. We got together for lunch or something every Wednesday.”
“Yeah, or something. I was Friday. That’s the day we got together for… something.”
“You… you mean you and Chuck…?”
“That’s exactly what I mean.”
“For how long?”
“Ten years. I was eighteen when I met him. Got together with him every Friday after that except when one of us was out of town. And that wasn’t often, I can tell you.” He arched an eyebrow at me. “How long for you?”
“Five years. I was eighteen, too.”
“Apparently, that’s the age when we first grab his attention. But he was loyal, in his own way, I guess you could say. Outside of Chuck, what do you do?”
I felt my cheeks burn. “No one. It was just—”
“Sorry, that’s not what I meant. What do you do to keep a roof over your head?”
“I’m a commercial artist. You?”
“Photographer. And I’ll bet you’ve got as many intimate drawings as I have photographs.”
My cheeks really flamed then. “Uh, a few.”
“Yeah, I’ve got some scorchers, too.” His attention strayed from me to the front door of the shop. “Hang on, I think we’re about to meet Monday.”
I looked where his gaze was centered and saw the other individual who’d caught my attention at the memorial service. Impossibly young and blond, the kid was really cute.
“What makes you think—”
“Well, he’s not Chuck’s son or nephew, and probably not even a cousin. But he was at the service. What are the odds?”
We both watched the kid’s coltish, self-conscious carriage as he ordered a coke and then turned to glance uncertainly over the room. His eyes stopped on us before moving on.
“Have a chair,” Drake said.
With only a moment’s hesitation, the kid sat.
We identified ourselves and watched the newcomer’s reaction. His blue eyes skittered back and forth between us as he sank into a chair at the table.
“Confused?” Drake asked.
“Well, I’m not Chuck’s son, and Carl’s not his nephew. Now let me make a couple of guesses about you. You’re what? About twenty or twenty-one?”
“Your name’s Jake and you met Carl about two years ago.
The kid seemed flustered. “That’s right. How did you know?”
“I saw you with Carl once at the Kimo. He told me your name later.”
"You saw us?"
"Bound to happen sooner or later," I said. "Albuquerque's not that big of a town."
Jake looked as if he was about to bolt.
“It’s okay,” Drake said. You’re among brethren.”
“What do you mean?”
“What I mean is I’m Friday, Carl’s Wednesday, and I’ll bet you’re Monday.”
“I don’t know what you—”
“Come on, don’t play coy. You met Chuck for lunch and playtime every Monday, right?”
“I met him, yes, but—”
“Butt being the operative word. You got it on with him. We all did.
Now it was Jake’s turn to send his eyebrows northward. “You mean…?”
“Yep. That’s exactly what I mean. Old Chuck got his jollies every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday with us. Who knows, we might be why his heart failed. Hell, he wasn’t even fifty-five yet.”
That comment sat on the table for a moment while we all digested it. Then Drake took charge again.
"Now what we have to do is figure out the situation. You know” he turned pedantic. “Let not what Chuck sowed be put asunder!”
Jake and I blinked back at him for a moment before smiling.
“How do you know we’re compatible?” I asked.
Drake winked. “I’d bet on it.”
After raising a silent toast to our dear departed Chuck, we put our heads together and started working out our Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.
Looks like Carl started something. Nice to see enterprising participants deciding to keep a good thing going, right? By the way, has anything like this happened to you before?
Now my mantra: Keep on reading. Keep on writing. And keep on submitting your work to publishers and agents. You have something to say… so say it.
If you would like to drop me a line, my personal links follow:
Facebook: Don Travis
Here are some buy links to City of Rocks, my most recent book.
Barnes and Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-city-of-rocks-don-travis/1126419974
The next book in the BJ Vinson Mystery Series, The Lovely Pines is scheduled for release on August 28 of this year. Abaddon’s Locusts follows on January 22, 2019.
See you next week.
New Posts are published at 6:00 a.m. each Thursday.