torstai 28. elokuuta 2014

What Has Been Going On

Well this is something different. I'm not going to publish yet anything but I'm going to tell you what has happened this week.
I have been sick. Fever and sore throat. I didn't let that stop me.
I have been heavily editing Melanie's blues. Folks at Writing forum have been very helpful. I feel that I have really developed as a writer. Melanie's Blues has ingredients for a full long book.
Also shot out to critique circle. It's also a good site. I sent Good Day there and I got a lot of interesting and encouraging information. Thank you for that. I plan to keep Good Day short but likely it's going to get a little longer.
I'm also working on a comic named Brutus the Pig. More about that later. If you like drawing you might get a change to work with Mike!
Luckily my little brother is good at drawing also. I'm more of a writer type.

sunnuntai 17. elokuuta 2014

Melanie's Blues (raw version)

Melanie was a confident girl. Her mother had told her that she had beautiful brown hair. Her boyfriend Justin praised her green eyes.

Behind all this was great sorrow. Melanie's parents were breaking up. They had been for last four years. They fight all the time.

When Melanie was younger she tried to intervene but soon found out it was no use. Fighting had to felt someday. That day might be coming soon.

She had been escaping harsh reality through music. People said she sang blues from the heart. They said she sounded better than any white girl they had ever heard.

Melanie was bad at school. She couldn't focus on her homework.

One Friday she realized that she didn't want too be with Justin anymore. He was too typical and predictable. She told Justin that it was over. Justin got angry, close to violent. Justin's behavior proved men and women didn't belong together.

As home got worse and worse she spent more and more time at Pinky's. It was towns biggest club that had Blues every Friday. She was underage but fit in fell with older people. She didn't like to hang out with people of her own age.

Melanie had met Pinky but this was the first time she was invited to his office. Pinky praised Melanie. He said Melanie could be next weeks leading performer, but she had to show that she was all in.

Melanie moved to little motel provided by Pinky. She quit school. When she told her parents they got mad but were soon at each other again. 

Melanie shined. After the show many invited her to star at their clubs. Pinky told them that Melanie was performing exclusively at Pinky's. 

Pinky told Melanie that she would get offers from major labels in no time. If she wanted to truly hit it big she had to change things.

"You have to sex it up a little bit. Blues doesn't sell, you have to go little R&B," Pinky said. Melanie didn't really agree but went along.

Next few months went hard. Four shows in one week. She felt that she was improving every performance and crowd get more and excited. 

Her parents called. They said they had sorted things out. She had heard the same lies too many times.

Sometimes after shows some men were harassing Melanie. Her bodyguard Terry was always there protecting her. 

Terry and Melanie developed a friendship.Long nights talking about music and life get Melanie to think. She wanted to go back to blues and start making her own songs. She good do one show a week for Pinky.

After one Saturday night show she went to Pinky's office. She tried to be calm, but Pinky clearly didn't want to change anything.

"It's one blues show a week or nothing," said Melanie.

"If you take something away from me I take something away from you. I ain't gonna pay your bodyguard for one show. This is cold city. You need protection, Pinky said.

"I don't need him, I don't need you, I don't need anybody!" shouted Melanie. She burst in tears as she rushed out of the office to motel. She didn't understand why anybody didn't understand her.

3 am Sunday morning Melanie was just going to sleep after shower. Then somebody knocked. Carelessly she opened the door and immediately Rico one of the Pinky's bodyguards assaulted her. Another bodyguard Taylor was watching at the door. 

Most terrible thing was that she couldn't do anything and nobody was going to help. Regular couples made even more sound here. She wanted to think about something else but couldn't.

"Taylor! What is going on!" Shouted Rico.

"But your hands up! Melanie could recognize that voice anywhere. It was Terry! Rico put his hands up and said "What are you doing? You don't make the rules. I don't make the rules."

"I think for myself. You should try it too Rico," responded Terry. Then Terry dropped his gun.

"I trust you. Don't worry. We'll leave. Taylor is waiting in the car", said Terry.

"Did you hit him?" Asked Rico.

"I don't do violence. He listened to sense," said Terry.

Rico stared at Terry for awhile. Then he walked to his car. 

Melanie hugged Terry.

"Pack fast. I already have my stuff in the car of mine. It's big, you can take everything you want," Terry said.

"Where are we going to go?" Melanie asked.

"Where people still jam the blues."

perjantai 15. elokuuta 2014

Good Day 459 Novella

Matthew listened to "It was a good day" on his way to school.
He wasn't a popular kid but he had friends. He wasn't confident about his look. Glasses and all.
First class was math. Matthew was good at math but didn't excel.
Second class was English. Like at math he was good but didn't excel. Matthews English had been dropping. Reason was a girl named Regina. Matthew had had his eye on her since kinder garden but could never get close. Matthew wasn't good with pretty girls. He was straight up about it. 
He didn't heard a word teacher said. He was lost in her hair. Matthew's best friend Thomas said Matthew looked like a creep. He didn't care.
Third class was history. Regina was there too so it didn't really matter what class it was or how good at it Matthew was.
Other classes just flew by. Regina wasn't there but that didn't stop Matthew from dreaming. 
Last class of the day was biology. That was the only subject Matthew excelled in. Regina was also in this class.
They were asked to form groups. Matthew always worked with Thomas but now Thomas went with somebody else. Matthew might have neglected Thomas so he wasn't surprised. 
"Matthew you can work with Regina and Holly," teacher said. Matthew was ever so happy to be a third wheel. He thought that this was his change to make a move. When he went to sit next to Regina he thought he blushed. He didn't dare to open his mouth.
"So, what you know about heart?" Asked Regina. 
"Some...thing", Matthew mumbled.
After a slow start Matthew got himself together and started to shine with his knowledge.
"Do you study this on your free time? 'Cos you are really good," Regina said.
"I just stay awake most of the time," said Matthew. Regina laughed. Matthew was always wondering were people laughing with him or at him but this time he didn't have to wonder.
"I'm really bad at biology. Could you teach me sometimes?" Said Regina.
"Sure", responded Matthew. You couldn't see it from his face but he was the happiest man in the world.
Although Holly looked at them Matthew felt that they were all alone. Matthew was going to kiss her but understood that it wasn't smart.
Matthew wouldn't have wanted the class to end but knew that best was still yet to come.
Walking out of the school he dreamed about life with Regina. Just before he opened the door somebody came inside. That somebody looked old and dirty but Matthew had his mind on the best day of his life.
Bang. Bang. Then everything went dark.


sunnuntai 10. elokuuta 2014

New version of Rabies. 3500 words.

If YOU are have anything to say about this work of art please comment.
Delia Briggs

15 years. That's what Delia had to give to the young man. Though he was closer to a boy. Delia's mother said she was too humane to be a judge, she might have been right.

Delia saw her childhood friend in that boy. Her friend was still to this day in prison, because of a heartless jury. Now same was happening to this boy. 15 years was the minimum. Delia couldn't do anything else for him. Still she felt extremely guilty. 

Delia left the courtroom and headed home were her cats were waiting. They always made her happy. Dog might be mans best friend, but cat was definitely woman's best friend. Driving home, she cried. All her life she wanted to be a judge, but now, she felt more like an executioner. She never was interested in being a lawyer. She couldn't help bad people out of trouble. Maybe she should have become a public defender, but pay was really small. Her cats needed good food, and she didn't mind little luxury either.

Suddenly she heard a bang. She had hit something. Car front was all bloody. It was a dog, she started crying again. She just wanted to get home, but bad things kept happening.

The road was almost empty and only a few cars passed. None of them stopped. It was a typical white neighborhood.

Delia wasn't sure what to do.

She didn't want to look at the dog, but from the corner of her eye she saw that dog's mouth was leaking saliva. She decided to call 911, dog was probably dangerous to the environment. ”Do not touch the dog”, emergency center employee said. Wasn't going to, Delia thought.

Delia left the dog there and headed home. She felt guilty for driving while crying, it was like driving drunk. On the way she saw lot's of dead dogs. Why do people not keep them on a leash. Delia felt like this was worst day of her life.

Once she arrived to the flat she turned the radio on. People were advised to keep and eye on their pets and to immediately seek medical help if scratched or bitten.

Delia's cats Kiki and Sienna were safe and warm, lying on the couch. They were beautiful persians.

Her thoughts were back on the case. A young male attempted to rob a pawn shop with a toy gun. He failed miserably. He was just trying to feed his family. Delia wanted to help not to imprison people like that young man. Maybe she had chosen the wrong career. She felt like she had a world on her shoulders.

Delia went to sleep quite early, news were worrying but she had her mind on other things.

Jack Garrett

Jack was playing golf like always. When he ain't working he'll be golfing, that's what his friends use to say, but nowadays he spends most of his time with Dorothy.

About six o'clock, he started heading to Dorothy's, like always, driving his trusted golf kart, Wallace. On the way, he adored the beautiful Florida spring.

Immediately after parking Jack heard strange sounds coming from the house, he grabbed his five iron and opened the door. Thank god Dorothy doesn't lock the door, Jack mumbled.

What Jack saw when he opened that ornamental door, was the most disgusting thing he had ever seen. At least it came close. Dorothy’s dog Sammie; was eating a cat, its mouth was covered in foam, he acted fast with one strong swing at the bloody dog. Jack started to wonder, where is Dorothy? As the dog laid unconsciously on the floor he put it out of its misery, then he ran through kitchen to the bedroom, on the bed was the worst sight imaginable, Dorothy's body completely ravaged. At least the dog had spared her beautiful face. He cried and called 911.

He didn't want to clean this up.

Jack was told that cases like this were happening all around town. Jack got worried and decided to go to his house and get his gun.

Jack's home wasn't far away so he got there quick. On the way he saw a man beating a dog, normally he would have rushed to protect the dog, but it had the same strange glee in its eyes that Sammie had. It's mouth was bloody, it had killed too. Jack was driving slow, and he saw more than he would have wanted to.

Jack went back to Dorothy's house to see if police had arrived. He also wanted to warn neighbors because radio wasn't telling the whole story.

Dorothy's street looked like Mogadishu, crashed cars , bodies of both men and animal. Some people he recognized. Mostly old folks who lived in this gated community.

No help had arrived and it looked like nobody is going to arrive. Jack sat in his car and thought: So long I have worked for to get to good neighborhood, and once I get there it collapses. Damn.

Jack sensed world had changed. He had to change with the world, like he always had.

Orlando looked so apocalyptic that Jack decided to leave the town and head to his cousin's at the countryside. His cousin Arnold lived in the small town south of Orlando. It was few hours away but it might take longer because of mass escaping that Jack predicted. Good thing Arnold is allergic, thought Jack.

While driving Jack called Arnold, Arnold's wife Louise answered, ”Jack! Are you OK?”

”Yes, can I stay at your house for a while. Orlando has gone mad”, said Jack.

”Of course you can. According to news whole country, probably whole world has gone mad. But Johnsonville is peaceful, though”, Louise coughed, ”We had to kill a lot of dogs, and cats to make sure it whatever it is doesn't spread. Arnold can tell you more when you join us.”

Roads were emptier than usual. Guess people were dumb enough to obey the news, thought Jack. Jack didn't stop matter what he saw, and he saw some terrible things. ”Looks like people out here have realized how bad it is”, said Jack to himself. It always eased the stress.

Arnold was smoking his pipe when Jack arrived. After they had greeted they told each other what they had seen. They talked late to the night.

Delia Briggs

Around 4 am Delia was waken up by gun shots. Shooting was scary but what was even scarier was the fact that nobody arrived, at least Delia didn't hear any sirens. TV advised everybody to stay inside but she felt like it was time to go. But where?, she wondered.

Delia didn't have many close friends. She was the only child in a single parent family. Her mother had past away fairly young few years ago. But there was one person she had to call. Her best friend Marlene.

Marlene didn't answer, Delia tried multiple times but nothing. Delia got even more worried. She decided she had to get out of potentially collapsed town. She started packing.

She gathered herself and ran down the stairs straight to her car. Delia's cats followed her. They were smart cats.

Streets were scary empty, but Delia didn't stay to think about that. She didn't know where she was going. She decided to head to the south. Less people in south means less dogs which means less trouble, thought Delia.

After few blocks she saw an old lady stumbling on the street. She couldn't leave her there, she stopped and shouted from the car, “Are you all right?”

“I'm good thank you”, old lady mumbled.

Lady had hard time walking. Delia asked, “Where are you heading?”

“To Johnsonville, that's where my son lives”, said the old lady.

“Is it in the south?” asked Delia.

“That's right, are you headed that way?” said the old lady.

“If it is in the south”, said Delia with a smile on her face.

Old lady stepped to the car, cats seemed to like her. It was much nicer to travel in company, Delia discussed with the gray headed lady. She found out lot of things. Her name was Agatha Perkins, she was 81 years old and claimed to be very healthy. Delia had her doubts about that though. Agatha's son Elmer was 56 yer old. Agatha was from Johnsonville , but had lived for decades in Orlando.

Delia felt a deep connection between her and Agatha.

As Johnsonville was only few miles away Delia dared to ask the question, “I really have no place to stay, to be honest I have never been to Johnsonville.”

Agatha was quiet for a moment, but then her big smile returned,“Of course you can stay with us. Elmer has a big house!”

Jack Garrett

After breakfast Jack and Arnold went to the big meeting at the town hall. At town hall man named Erick spoke about plan for the future,

“As most of you know our mayor was killed by his own dog. That's tragic, and what's even more tragic is the fact that all of our councilman, expect for me, were at the meeting in Orlando. Our councilman have messaged us, that they are going to wait for things to clear up before they dare attempt to return home. I myself, don't believe that things are going to get any easier. These vicious dogs and cats that we have seen, are only the beginning. If you ask for my humble regular Joe opinion, I think that someone want's us, as people, to collapse. What ever it is that threatens us, we need to stand strong against it. That's why I think that the best plan right now is to chose me as your mayor so that we can figure this thing out. Everybody that thinks that they are strong enough to face these demons put your hands up!”

People seemed to agree with Erick and he got huge round of applause. Jack didn't like his style at all.

“He is the towns priest. Quite popular, especially in time of need like this one”, said Arnold.

Preacher and a politician, Jack couldn't imagine many combos worst than that.

After Erick, Erick Black was chosen to be the new Mayor, he handpicked the new temporary councilmen. Arnold was chosen. They headed to the “war room”, also know as former mayors living room. Jack was allowed to join them. Apparently Erick thought he might have some inside information about the city. Jack liked the guys Erick had picked, first of all everyone of them carried a gun and they were past the middle age. Type of guys that follow their brain, not other parts.

Erick presented his plan, ”Our area is small, about 1000 people. Realistically we can build a wooden wall, and after that we can destroy all non-livestock animals. I know it's harsh and I know only cats and dogs have gotten the disease that makes them mad, but this is something we have to do. If everybody do their job I think wall can be ready in few months. We need to close the roads first so that we can regulate immigration. We don't want the whole world to move in to our precious town.”

Despite being an preacher Erick proved to be a really good guy with a clear. That's what Jack liked.

Jack was sent to guard the northern border, the road he came through to Johnsonville. His job was to decide who to let through. Erick had ordered them to be harsh. Only relatives in, outsiders out.

Luckily, only few cars came. Jack ordered them to follow radios orders and head to north. Some clearly weren't going to go back, but were scared of the sight of angry man with guns.

Then came grey car, Nissan. Driver was a black female next to her sat a old white lady. “Hi!" said the female, “Can you let us trough?" "I think you and mam there should head back to north”, said Jack. “Can't you let us in? My son Elmer, Elmer Cronin lives here”, said the old lady. “What about her? She isn't a relative is she?” asked Jack with intentionally threatening voice. “She is my best friend Delia Briggs, and my name is Agatha Cronin”, said the old lady. “Understood”, said Jack.

After they had left Big Ron, one of the guards working with Jack said, “We have already one family of those, boy always causing trouble”. Jack didn't care about the girls race, but he didn't like her attitude. She was trouble maker for sure. Jack was good at reading faces.

Delia Briggs

Elmer was a really nice man. So was Elmer's wife Ann and his daughter Memphis. Ann looked quite regular with her boring brunet hair. Memphis was beautiful 9-year-old girl. Delia wondered how two parent looking like that could get a child like that. Delia understood that her opinion was quite controversial so she didn't say anything.

“Let me show you your room,” said Ann. Their guest room was wonderful. Their whole house felt like a palace.

Now alone at her room she let her cat's free. She had hidden her cats when she saw men with guns. Now she has to find what Elmer and the folks think about cats. Thankfully Agatha wasn't going to say anything. And her cats were smart, they knew when to shut up.

At the dinner table they talked things that seemed pretty irrelevant in this situation, but Delia understood that they wanted to spare Memphis. When Memphis left the table tone of the discussion changed. Delia discover that locals had killed all of their pets. Elmer didn't seem to agree with all the killing, but Ann thought they were necessary. Delia decided that she should talk with Agatha to Elmer.

Soon after dinner guys with guns came to recruit Elmer to join the guard. Elmer who apparently didn't even own a gun wasn't interested. Still guys gave him a shotgun for protection against animals. Elmer reluctantly took it. Guard told about the Town hall meeting tomorrow Thursday. Evenings atmosphere was very tensed. Agatha played with Memphis like nothing had happened, Ann watched TV tried to get as much information as possible. Delia talked with Elmer. Elmer didn't seem very worried about the situation.

“Seems like some kind of Rabies epidemic. Animals that get infected don't live long. This animal issue doesn't last long. I'm more worried about people. This kind of crisis reveals the worst in people. I hope that government takes care of the people who follow their instruction, because if they don't. Well you know what happened after Katrina, when Busk flew over New Orleans. This time it's much bigger. According to the news this only happening in Florida and army heading to Orlando, they are already in Miami. This is going to end soon, I just hope that people calm down,” said Elmer.

Delia felt little better now. Guess things were going to be okay.

“Do they know what caused this?” asked Delia.

“They don't know. My guess is some kind of mutation of Rabies. I'm not any expert in these issues. I don't think anybody is in Johnsonville,” answered Elmer.

Thursday morning Delia knew she had to talk about the cats sooner or later. She didn't want ruin good relationship she had with Cronin family. Maybe she could just tell later when things calm down.

10 am they went to town hall for the meeting. Agatha stayed with Memphis. Elmer tried to protect Memphis but she heard the news, she sensed the fear of her mother but she didn't say anything, she was smart girl.

At the meeting preacher Erick who had become mayor was speaking. He praised the guard that had about 100 men. That means 10% of the folks living in Johnsonville are walking around with guns. All of them were male. Erick talked whole lot of nonsense about devils ans such and such.

Town hall meeting felt like a waist of time.

Jack Garrett

At the Town hall meeting Jack was named the head of the guard. For a man who preachers against outsiders he trusted Jack a lot. Arnold was ordered to check out if the farms in the east were okay. Phone lines stopped working during the night but luckily electricity still worked.

Jack sent Big Ron to the northern border. Jack wanted drive around town and learn the area. He was going to stay here for awhile.

In few hours Jack got to now a lot of folks. Shop keeper Maurice Erickson was a nice elderly man with thigh mustaches. He seemed quite hopeful about army coming to save everybody. Jack was more pessimistic, he didn't trust governments ability before and he definitely didn't trust it now. Jack also didn't like all that god talk that Erick and others spoke. It wasn't the devils disguised as animals, it was people acting like people act. Viciously to get to there goals. Who was behind this he didn't know and really didn't care. Idea of isolating from the outside world by building walls seemed pretty good.

Then suddenly Benjamin, member of Arnold's crew came in shouting, “Jack, Jack!”

“Calm down. What has happened?” said Jack seemingly worried.

“Arnold and everybody, they are dead, slaughter, at Clayton's by PIGS!” Said Benjamin and nearly fainted.

Maurice helped Benjamin and said, “I think you should do something fast. I will tell folks, but I'm going to avoid creating panic. We don't need that now.”

Because phones had stopped working connecting between groups was hard. If Benjamin's information was accurate Jack had lost 9 men. Jack formed a group of eleven men that were doing minor things around town. Jack left few guys on watch for animals. Jack had learned Johnsonville didn't have much wildlife, although it had some woods.. That was a good thing, and if this was Rabies squirrels and other small animals weren't going to be a problem.

On the way to Clayton's farm, one of the five farms of Johnsonville Jack was glad, that Johnsonville was a small town. It was fast to move and control the town. Farms were going to be important for the future of Johnsonville. Fact that farms were close to each other was a gift and a curse. Currently definitely more of a curse. Jack was starting to regret that he didn't tell Erick anything about this, but he had to make quick decisions.

They arrived to the farm, the had tree cars and nine guns. They parked front of the house, they went to check out if the Clayton family had survived. House was completely empty. Jack saw glass of milk on the table. Looks like somebody left in hurry. “We need to move quick, some can still be alive”, said Jack.

They split in to groups of three and started investigate. Jack went with Lucas and Adam, Lucas looked like a reading man with his Steve Jobs classes. He didn't really know anything about Lucas, not even his last name. Adam Allen was also unknown. Jack thought he should get to know his guys.

Jack's group headed to the pen. If pigs really were attacking this was the most dangerous place, good thing they had big guns. Pen was quite big, it was empty, at least Jack didn't see anything. They investigated the place and then Adam shouted, “You should take look Jack!” It was a skeleton of a child. “It's probably Jack Clayton's body. He was nine I think.” said Adam. “Pigs most likely did this, they eat meat, even each other. In “happy” farms like this they shouldn't, kinda ironic.” said Lucas. Jack didn't even care to answer but Adams was seemingly angry. “We should meet others, see if they have found something.” said Jack.

They met others at the front of the house. Others had founded something at the other pen. Jack already knew what to expect. Scene was horrible and smell was going to be even worst. There were eleven skeleton, guards and Jack Clayton's parents. There were also numerous dead pigs. Jack estimated there were about twenty.

“How many pigs did they have?” asked Jack. Adams answered, “Must be close to hundred.” “What about the other farms?” asked Jack with a growing fear in his heart. “They must have fifty to eighty each. Worst case scenario we have four hundred flesh eating killer pigs on the loose. Sounds like something of a horror movie”, said Adam.

Then one of the guards said angrily, “We should have killed all animals.”

“There is no need to wonder what has and hasn't been done. Whole town is at danger. We need to get back to center and prepare for a longest night of our lives. Somebody has take a car and head to southern border. Tell'em immediately to leave and return to center. We need to give information to people living outside of center. Everybody needs to move to center as quickly as possible. I don't want anymore dead”, Jack was trying to sound confident, but he sure as hell didn't feel confident.