Monday, May 16, 2011

Where I Have Been

You may have noticed that I haven't posted much lately.  There are a couple reasons for this:  My baby is no longer a baby; he is a rifle-through-the-junk-drawer, toilet-paper-unraveling, everything-eating, naughty toddler and for me to write something I have to ignore the damage he's doing and that's not easy; and also, the writing contest I've been in for the last several months is really heating up and I'm spending more time thinking about what to write so I don't look like a talentless hack.

The contest  has been a great experience- I've been forced out of my comfort zone, and gotten great feedback, read some awesome stuff, and simply had fun. Anyway, since I haven't been posting much but have been writing, I'll start posting some of my entries here.

The challenge last week was to take two popular stories and mash them together. For example, one might have Romeo and Juliet riding along with Dirty Harry. Hilarity would ensue, no?

"Romeo, Romeo where for art thou Magnum? And yes, Harry, I do feel lucky, stop asking!"

Or one could mash up Forrest Gump and Silence of the Lambs, as I chose to do:

                                                        Forrest of the Lambs
                                    

Clarice walked down the long hall towards the most evil man she knew.  To get to him she first had to pass several other sociopathic men.  She steadied her gaze on the far wall and concentrated on walking confidently.

“MMM…I can smell your shrimp,” whispered a black man in the first cell.

Clarice stared straight ahead and picked up her pace.  Someone had placed a chair in front of the last cell.  Her hands began sweating as she neared the end of the hall. She was going to be mere feet away from a man who ate humans, a monster. When she reached the chair she looked at the floor and sat down. She took a deep breath and looked up.

“Hello, Clarice.”

The man was standing in the middle of his cell, hands behind his back, smiling eerily.

“Hello, Forrest.”

“You met Bubba.”

“Yes.”

“He is my best good friend.”

“Okay.”  The hair on the back of Clarice’s neck stood up. Here was a notoriously cunning criminal yet he looked and sounded like a common idiot.

“You didn’t come here to talk about Bubba, Clarice. Ask me the question.”

“Where is Lieutenant Dan, Forrest?”

*******************************************

The house was small and plain, its tidy exterior keeping the hideous acts within a secret.  A woman crouched at the bottom of a deep pit in the basement. She pleaded with her captor.

“Please, please, let me out,” she cried, “I have a son who needs me. I won’t tell anyone where I was.”

“Jenny puts the lotion in the fucking basket!”

“Please, no.”

*******************************************

“I don’t know where he is, Clarice. The better question is:  Why is he doing what he is doing?  Why amputate his victims’ legs?”

“I don’t know. It thrills him?”

“Stupid is as stupid does, Clarice.”

“They are his trophies?”

“No.”

“Why do you think he does it?”

“Quid pro quo, Clarice.  Do you like chocolates?”

“Yes.”

“Do you…”

“Quid pro quo, Forrest.  Why amputate the legs?”

“Because he lost his in the war. Just before something bit me.”

“I don’t understand. Is he jealous of people having legs?”

“No.  He’s trying to build magic legs, Clarice.”

*******************************************

Clarice left the prison relieved. She had stared evil in the eyes and not blinked.  And she had gained valuable insight into Lieutenant Dan’s motives. She crosschecked databases of men who had received prosthetic legs against a list of veterans, and was pleasantly surprised when her research produced only one address.

For reasons too lame to explain, Clarice found herself barging into Lieutenant Dan’s lair alone. Even though he was prepared for the possibility that the authorities may come pounding on his door one day, Lieutenant Dan went down pretty easily. Yes he had turned off the lights and wore night-vision goggles. But he had no legs and couldn’t reach his gun, so Clarice simply walked around behind him, grabbed his arms and put him in hand cuffs. She went to the pit and looked down at Jenny, who was reciting a prayer over and over.

“Please God, make me a bird so I can fly far, far away…”

“You're safe, Jenny. Little Forrest is at the police station. I hope you use your second chance at life to quit stripping and get a real job.”

“I will, I will. But I have AIDS, so it doesn’t really matter.”

*******************************************

Clarice found Forrest standing in the same spot as before, as though he hadn’t moved.

“We got him.  Jenny is safe, though dying. Little Forrest is safe, too.”

“Is he, is he a, ah, a sociopath?”

“No, Forrest. He’s a healthy little boy.  I see the prison has a new warden?”

“Yes. I loved the last one.  I ate his liver with a box of chocolates and about 15 Dr. Peppers.”



 


2 comments:

  1. R&J, and Dirty Harry? Hell, that's another solid concept you had waiting in the wings, though it might be tough to nail the language...

    Thy know'st what thou thinkest;
    Six pricks with the happy dagger, or five~?

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