Sunday April 10th, 2011

The exercise:

Today we write about: the disappearance.

Inspired by the mysterious disappearance of our pea seeds today. We think we've got it figured out now, but it took a while.

Did some more work in the garden today, transplanting stuff out from the greenhouse. Which, somehow, is still totally packed.


Monsieur Savard's last known sighting was outside a wine bar on 85th Street, shortly before 1 a.m. on the 3rd of December. He was alone, though that did not prevent him from carrying on a conversation, very loudly. He was also, as you may have surmised, very drunk.

A woman living in a second floor apartment across the street reported yelling at him to go home and sleep it off. This earned her nothing but a loud belch in her general direction. She slammed her window shut and went to bed, but not before putting in her earplugs.

Four days later, I've been unable to find anyone who has seen Savard since.

The trail is as cold as my coffee and its been sitting on my desk untouched since 6 o'clock this morning. Night is settling in all over the city and I'm desperate for a break. I pick up my phone and dial my best contact.

"Good evening Detective Olson." Ah, her voice is sweeter than honey. Just what I needed to hear.

"Hey Lucy," I say, the smile already on my lips. "Book me on the next plane to Vegas. I need to get out of here for a few days."


Greg said...

But you didn't tell us what you think has happened to the pea seeds! Eaten by hungry pheasants? Pruned by someone who thought they looked easier than plum trees?
Detective Olson seems intriguing, as is the disappearance of M. Savard. I liked the touch about the belch and the earplugs :)

The disappearance
"La Disparition?" Librarian Anna frowns, thinking. She pulls a thin book from a cupboard and flips through it. An inky digit stabs down abruptly.
"It is in classification A62." Anna's words sound like liquid sugar to my mind.
I sigh; Anna is wrong. Classification A62 is void; no books inhabit it now.
"I shall look," Anna proclaims and stands, vivacious and alluring. I nod and follow, but I know: La Disparition is hiding from both of us.

[Note: La Disparition is a novel written by Georges Perec that never uses the letter 'e'; so my story above also avoids that letter.]

David said...

Call me being here a reappearance

It was a static little moment of happiness. Little league opening day, the boy smiling, bat against his shoulder. Amanda Cahill recalled it well. She remembered how Sam begged to play and how she eventually relented, despite her fears. She looked at the photo. She knew Sam was bigger than most kids, but one wild pitch and that could be the end of him or any other kid. The photo was bent at the edges, and as Amanda folded it back and forth in her hands, she could see Sam swinging the bat.

She picked up the phone and dialed.

“Yes, it’s Amanda Cahill, Sam will not be in school today. After five days? Yes, ok, a doctor’s note for the file. We’ll provide one. Thank you. We hope it will be just another week.”

She stood in the foyer, the grand entrance lit by the crystal chandelier that could take out an entire little league team if it decided to fall. The house was silent, the catacombs as her husband liked to call it. So many rooms and so few people to occupy them, just the memories of discouraged suitors, disgraced rivals, and dead ancestors.

“Stop lurking”

The man stepped from the shadow, but the shadow seemed to remain on him. She stopped bending the photo and handed it to him.

“Did you find him?”


“Have you done it?”

“No, we’re waiting for your authorization.”

“You are authorized”

The man took a step back into the dark.


She reached her hand out and took the photo back from him. She placed something into the palm of his hand and closed it.

“Use this”

The man opened his hand and found one single gold bullet.

“Tell him it’s from me, but only after you’ve drained every last bit of blood from him.”

Amanda looked at the photo and watched Sam happily swing for the fences.

Marc said...

Greg - ah, it wasn't very exciting. We were worried the packages had been left out by the garden and been blown away by the wind. But it turned out Kat's parents had taken them and planted them.

That was impressive! I didn't even notice the lack of e's until you pointed it out.

David: how about I call it a happy sight? :)

This was definitely my favorite line: "The man stepped from the shadow, but the shadow seemed to remain on him."

morganna said...

He was walking
down the

It looks much better slowly drifting to the right, but blogger doesn't like the extra spaces.

Anonymous said...

Hello Marc! I stumbled across your blog tonight and decided to give it a go. I think I will be back but, as I have spent substantially more time in the "planning to write" stage than the "actual writing" stage, that will remain to be seen. Thanks for starting this!

Miranda cocked her head slightly to the side, taking in the empty stand in front of her with growing puzzlement. During the night, someone had clearly gone to considerable trouble in stealing several hundred pounds of tarnished bronze shaped as a giant goose from in front of her neighbor’s bed and breakfast. It seemed extremely unlikely that it could have been a prank orchestrated (or rather “thought up at random in a fit of boredom”) by the city’s population of teenagers. After the ill-fated incident two years before involving the theft of a rival high school’s mascot statue, the school board and the local police force had cracked down on all manner of mischief. The teenagers had been forced to channel their excess energy into more fruitful activities or at least that’s what Miranda liked to imagine they had done. She walked around into the Wagner’s yard so as to stare at it from a new angle. It had certainly been a recognizable local landmark but had not been particularly valuable, at least as far as anyone in the area knew. Lost in thought, Miranda jumped when the theme song to “The Nanny” sang out from the cell phone buried deep in her back pocket. She sighed as she pressed the silence button. The mystery would have to wait; she was going to be late for work.

Marc said...

Morganna - I could see how that would be effective, but I like the way it came out too.

Heidi - Hello! I'm glad you found yourself here, and even happier to see you giving the prompt a go :)

I hope you'll be able to join us again, as I quite enjoyed your writing. And... also because I want that mystery solved :D