Thursday, April 26, 2012
unfinished nanowrimo part two, the first part.
Day One Forty-Four (144)
He places the plastic box of micro cassettes onto the table. Opens it. He places the recorder on the table and presses the eject button with his index finger. He removes one micro cassette from the package and inserts it into the tape recorder. Next to the the tape recorder he placed a worn copy of a paperback science fiction novel. The front cover was torn down the center. He walked to the counter and took a yellowed coffee cup off the hook above the sink. He poured a cup of coffee. Three sugars, no cream. He carried the cup back to the table and placed it beside the book. The only light in the room is coming through a small frosted window above the white door. He opens the book and begins to read.
Deactivated robots lined the walls of the Aerobarn, it had been nearly 15 years since they’d been in service on the Crone TEN. The robots were used to maintain and fly the great balloon during the war with Planet 4. Jason had known about the Aerobarn since he was a boy, it was located a mile or so from his parent’s farm.
He looks away from the book the novel and takes a sip of coffee. If we were there we’d see his eyes look towards the white door and up to the window. We didn’t notice earlier, but the window has a crack that matches the tear on the cover of the novel that sits on the table. This has no significance.
He takes another sip of coffee. He looks at the cuffs of his shirt, they are unbuttoned. Using his weak hand he tries to button one of the cuffs, only to realize that the outside button is missing. Using the other button will make the cuffs too tight. He lets out a frustrated breath and his eyes return to the window. He picks up his cup and pours what remains into the sink. He then heads to the white door patting his front pocket to make sure he has his keys. They’re there. He reaches the door. He is going to exit the room.
At this point we should name our character. We want to identify with this man. The man takes his hand from the knob and turns back to the table. He picks up the recorder and slides the battery cover off the back placing it carefully on top of the novel. We see that glued to the battery cover is a label, the kind from one of those label makers that people get from the department store. The things that only see the floor just before the holidays. The label says “Property of Markland.” Markland goes to the drawer beside the stove, moving his hand through the collection of old keys, binder clips, paper clips, thumbtacks, electrical tape, masking tape, scotch tape he grabs two triple A batteries and pulls them out. He puts the new batteries into the recorder, replaces the cover and places the recorder into his pocket. Markland leaves the room. It takes him 47 steps from his apartment door to the curb outside his building.
Once outside the building Markland walks three blocks east. He compulsively checks his pocket for his keys and the tape recorder. At the corner of Bird St. and Breakstone Ave. he takes a seat on the bus bench. He checks his pockets again. 13 minutes later, Markland is always early for fear of missing the bus, the small city transport bus arrives. He boards and deposits the $3.25 fair for the ride to the County Seat Mall. Markland choose the seat furthest from any other passenger. He checks his pocket. Over the hum of the diesel engine he begins to hear two gentlemen in the front of the bus conversing. Markland pulls the tape recorder from his pocket, presses record/play and slides it into his sleeve. The men were talking about a local homeless woman. Apparently the city had closed the parklet she was sleeping in. They wanted to turn it into a Welcome Center for tourists. Man A, the older of the two, long black coat, mustache, sunken eyes, pock marked cheeks, etc, etc, was arguing that the REAL reason the city had closed the parklet was to kick Marnee out of her corner. While Man B, brown beard, purple baseball cap, hooded sweatshirt, jeans, glasses contended that the city was just trying to make everything nice and neat to increase tourism.
“Street people are not nice and neat.”
Man A rolled his eyes and turned to the window. Markland slid the recorder into his hand and pressed the stop button. No other words were spoken between the men. The only sound was the engine of the minibus as it chugged up the hill to the mall.