I wrote on Twitter on Thursday that I wanted to write a book this weekend and of course that didn’t happen but I did write more than 800 words of fiction and it probably sucks but I don’t care so here it is if you’re interested.
Wanna hear a story?
Let’s tell each other a story – I’ll start.
Once upon a time, there was your average, everyday hooman and her name was Rence. It’s pronounced “WREN-see”, in case you’re curious. I always like to know how to pronounce character’s names in books, and I thought you might like it, too.
Anyway. Rence was pretty much average in every way. Her hair, her clothing (but not her footwear), her apartment, and her bank account were all as you might expect from a 40-something who worked a desk job at a family oriented company with tons of flexibility but not always the best pay.
Her footwear, being not average, was a spectacular pair of combat boots with pink piping up the back and sparkly pink laces. They sported steel toes and the leather was soft from kind treatment and years of wear.
Rence was saving for retirement, as one does, and had put away enough money that she probably wouldn’t have to take a job in retirement, but would also probably have to pinch more than a few pennies.
Rence was always telling herself she should look for a better job but figured she’d never find the extra benefits anywhere else so she was probably safer where she was.
Rence attended a weekly book club at the library but never really got settled into friendship with anyone.
Rence had no pets and didn’t particularly want any.
Rence played way too many video games, and her friends through them were always at arm’s length, as was wise for single women to do when playing online.
See? Ordinary hooman.
In addition to spectacular boots, though, Rence had a pretty active imagination. Sometimes she thought she should channel it into painting or maybe crochet, but those things never stuck. Instead, on her walks to work, she had fantasies.
One time a perfectly normal man held the door for her at the bank when they approached the door from different directions at the same moment. She smiled her thanks and then went about her business, but the whole time she stood in line her head started spinning stories.
The man who had opened the door for her might be trying to rob the bank. What would she do? He was standing just behind her, so perhaps he’d grab her and put a gun to her head. She, having taken a self-defense class because – hello! Single woman living alone, duh – would be able to drop to the ground, get the guy off guard, get his gun, and save the day.
Or maybe he wasn’t the attacker. Maybe he was just a guy, but the bank was being robbed but the teller couldn’t hit the silent alarm because the robber had a gun pressed to the small of her back. Rence would have her turn and see the teller’s panic and her sweat-soaked brow and be the only one who noticed there was a problem. She’d take care of her business, quietly, and then saunter out of the bank. The moment she cleared the doors, she’d pull out her phone and dial 911, and the guy who had held the door for her on the way in would be so grateful he’d ask her out on a date after everyone was safe.
More than once, Rence left the bank quite wound up from the fantasies she’d spun in her head.
Or the coffee shop, or the corner store, or wherever she’d been caught up inside her head.
Rence sometimes felt like she was prepared for anything since she was always imagining random scenarios of doom, destruction, and generally anything where she could save the day. Someone with a degree in psychology, she imagined, might diagnose her with some kind of savior complex.
Maybe. Ultimately, though, she came back to reality. She knew she only had three years of self-defense, and that was enough to scare off the stupid criminals but not the determined ones.
She had three years of self-defense, and a really big hole to dig in Minecraft.
Rence was looking forward to the long Easter weekend. She hadn’t been invited to Easter dinner at her grandmother’s house in years, and it was entirely possible that her grandmother was dead at this point, and she actually hadn’t been invited to her mother’s Easter dinner in years.
After twenty years of non-contact and more than a few changes of phone numbers and addresses, it was hard to keep track of people you didn’t give a rat’s ass about.
She was going to be free from work for three whole days and decided to spend her time online. Rence considered the project she was working on in her video game. She had taken some inspiration from the stepped wells in India, and was in the process of, as previously mentioned, digging a really big hole. It was a serious project, but if she worked for the 72 hours available to her, minus six hours a day for sleep, two hours a day for food and walking around, and minus the odd minutes she’d lose going down to check on her laundry, she stood a chance to get the excavation completed and the steps at least started with some of the stone that would end up overflowing her chests.
And that’s it. It doesn’t go anywhere, it was clearly looking to be a book but didn’t make it, but oh well! Something horrible was about to happen, I’m pretty sure.