Monday November 15th, 2010

The exercise:

I'm back in Osoyoos, to bring you: the babysitter.

While we were in Vancouver we were staying with Kat's friend Susi. Susi and her husband have a little boy named Owen (yes, that's where the king's name came from) who turned two yesterday. He is adorable. Anyway, we spent some time watching him to give his parents a little break, so that's where the prompt came from.

Did more writing that I expected to over the weekend, but I'm still working on today's portion. Will update once all three days have been posted.

Update: here you go - day thirteen is here. Day fourteen is here. And today's writing is right around here.

These are really the first few chapters that I didn't properly look over before posting, so please let me know if you see anything terribly amiss.


"Harold and I went out for dinner and a movie last night."

"Oh, how nice! Who did you get to watch the kids?"

"You know Darlene, the Sutter's daughter?"

"Oh yes, lovely girl. Did your boys like her?"

"Well, I think they would've liked her better if she didn't take her job title quite so literally."


Greg said...

Welcome back! And congratulations on getting any writing done at all over the weekend, especially if you were looking after a two-year old some of the time! My niece and nephew are at a competitive age now (5 and 4 respectively) so there's a lot of picking an uncle and trying to outdo each other....
It's also wonderfully foggy here at the moment; you look out of the window and it's as though the world has ended!
Darlene sounds like an ideal babysitter to me; keeping the children firmly under control!

The babysitter
"I'm sorry dear, but it's the rules." Mrs Dardallen continued holding her hand out, and Charlene sighed and rummaged in her pocket for her state ID card. The increase in the powers of Homeland Security had been beyond the foreseeing of everyone, and the new curfews, the obligatory ID cards and the mandatory security checks -- even by citizens trying to hire a babysitter for the evening -- were draining.
"Well, that seems to be in order," said Mrs Dardallen after running the card through the swipe-reader. It beeped as though agreeing with her. "So, I just need your urine sample, which we'll send off to Homeland in the morning..." Darlene smiled, knowing that this was technically an infringement of the rules, but a sure sign that Mrs Dardallen trusted her, "...and Mr Dardallen will do the strip search and cavity check."
"More rules?"
"New this morning," sighed Mrs Dardallen.

Watermark said...

Marc: Welcome back! Laughed at your last line in your posting today :) Am heading over to protagonize after this to catch up on Jerry!

Greg: Yikes! Scary connotations but fun read :)

Here's mine which was inspired from "Wicked the Musical":

Nelly sat on the bench blinking. A man had come running up to her and in one breath had asked her to look after the baby. It had all happened quite fast and before she could respond, the man had placed a hundred dollar bill in her hand and told her that he would return in an hour. She had tried to resist but he had already run off before giving her a chance to respond. Nelly looked down at the baby that had been placed in her arms moments ago. She never considered herself much of a babysitter and this was certainly a most peculiar situation. She was just a random person sitting on a bench in the promenade overlooking the sea, reading her book and minding her own business. The baby slept peacefully. She had soft chubby cheeks and the smallest nose she had ever seen. There was just one other thing about her that made the situation all the more peculiar. The baby was a slight shade of green; just like Nelly herself. The chances of coming across someone else just like her were close to impossible. Perhaps this was more than just a quick babysitting job. Nelly started to think that her future might start to take a new turn and all she could do was to wait patiently for the man to return.

morganna said...

Greg -- rather frightening.

Watermark -- I want to know what happens next!

Marc -- Great job the last 3 days. I'm feeling rather impatient to know what happens next.

The Babysitter
She comes to laugh and run around. She feeds them dinner and ice cream, and then she puts them to bed.

summerfield said...

marc, the young 'uns liked it. no, that's not true, they LOVED it! and they are looking forward to reading more of the jester's journey when they come back in two week's time. the six-year old wants to draw "mr. dragon blackwing", although he only draws stick people. i've caught a few boo-boo's but nothing major.

the babysitter:

Cristina turns green and she starts to smell like fish drying in the sun. Oliver and Olivia know this for sure because they had seen fishes being dried at the beach the last time they visited Grandma’s home by the sea. They take two steps back. They wonder if Mommy will actually leave them with this fish person.

She grins at the twins as she nods listening to Mrs. Duceppe's instructions. Mommy waves bye at them and gives them a flying kiss. They just look at each other then sat in front of the TV and continue watching Kid vs. Kat. They hear Mommy say “Not too near!” then the door closes. They elbow each other then simultaneously looked back at the babysitter on the plether sofa, half sitting half lying down.

“What you lookin’ at?” Cristina says, but the twins hear a menacing guttural sound. They turn to face the TV again, their hearts racing. Olivia, the bolder of the two, cups her hands on Oliver’s ear and whispers, “I love you. I can’t believe Mommy will let us die like this.”

They hear a menacing hiss this time. They hold hands and close their eyes tightly waiting for the strange babysitter to kill them or eat them. When nothing happens, they open their eyes and look behind them. Cristina fiddles furiously with her iPhone, and without looking at them, she says, “What, you look at me like I’m some kind of an alien or something. Do you think I'm an alien?” Before their very eyes, she turns all yellow, and two antennas sprout on each side of her head.

Eyes wide and bulging, they get up slowly and walk towards the dining area then around the kitchen; when they reach the stairs, they run, shouting, “Good night, Cristina alien!” They close the door shut when they reach their room, change into their pyjamas and tuck themselves to bed. They hurriedly say their prayers and promptly fall asleep.

At midnight, their mother arrives home and hands Cristina her $50.

“Ghee, Mrs. Duceppe, the twins are the best children I’ve ever babysat!”

Marc said...

Greg - yeah, Owen has a cousin who's only a few months older than him. It'll be interesting to see them at that age :P

And hurray for thick fog! I love it (as long as I'm not driving in it).

What a terrible future you've depicted. Let us hope that is terribly inaccurate. Otherwise, I'm moving to the moon.

Watermark - ooh, intriguing beginning! I wouldn't mind seeing where it goes from there.

Morganna - jeez, when you put it that way, babysitting sounds like a pretty sweet job :)

Summerfield - that totally made my day. And will be great motivation to keep going until the end :)

I think you perfectly captured the overactive imaginations of little kids :D

Zhongming said...

"Are you sure you don't need a babysitter?" he asks his wife with his hands on her shoulder, looking at her face full of worries.

"I'm glad you ask. That's something I very much wanted to have." she look rather relieved.

"Alright, I promise I'll get a babysitter so that we can have more freedom and alone time for us" he further reassure his wife by giving her a hug.

Thanks, I love you hubby!

Heather said...

Marc- Sadly, too may baby take at least the second half of the title too seriously.
The babysitter is my arch enemy. He has been for a long time. I just wasn't aware of it until recently. It was my children who brought it to my attention.

The day I finally understood the rivalry between us was dreary. Cold drops of water fell from the dark sky, keeping us inside for the entirety of the day. The children and I sat snuggled in my bed. The last hour before bedtime seemed to travel slowly, without mercy. My husband had been out of town for 4 days and I was exhausted.

As I began to read the next chapter, the children began to giggle and wiggle. I thought they were just restless. I nudged them and reminded them to listen. The giggling and wiggling continued. Slowly, their heads disappeared under the covers.

"Are you guys done listening?" I asked gently, peeking beneath the blankets. Neither answered me. Both had mischievous grins on their faces. "Isn't the story fun anymore?"

"Mom,last night, when you were gone, Frankie let us build a huge fort with all the blankets and chairs in the house and it so much fun! Can we do it again?" I smiled, glad that they had enjoyed themselves in my absence. Not so much that they had enjoyed themselves, I guess, more so that they hadn't been set mindlessly in front of the TV.

"Not tonight, it's getting too late. Let's finish the story. It's almost done, okay?"

"Ugghhhhh," said the youngest one, "Frankie is the most fun ever. All you ever want to do is homework and reading!"

"Yeah!" intoned the other one before I had fully processed what was said.

"Homework and reading are important. We have to do that. But we do have fun too!"

The conversation went on, the children proving their point over and over. It was loud and clear. I was a parent, a guardian, the adult in their life who told them what to do and when to do it. I was fulfilling the role that the experts said children needed, but the experts must have been wrong. Children wanted and needed friends.

So, Frankie, if you are reading this, we are now enemies. You've been sly, deceptive, and are clearly far ahead as the fun factor in my children's lives. But I wasn't playing the game then. You just wait! I am going to be the most fun person my children have ever known!

Marc said...

Zhongming - that's a sweet little scene.

Heather - love that finaly paragraph.

Anonymous said...

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