Saturday, June 03, 2006

Round Robin: Pandora's Box

Sorry guys, a day late again. My excuse this week is a real one. My dad's been in the hospital and I've been spending time out there letting him know he's loved and we're all anxious for him to be on the mend and back home. My mom has been his angel, hovering over him and making sure the docs and nurses at Mayo Hospital give him good care. He's doing better now and I'm hoping he'll be back at home next week.

Anyway, on to the story. If you haven't read it yet, Kallie has put it all together on one page. I have to admit, I'm really excited about it. I'm thinking if it keeps up this way, the four of us, Kallie Owens, Kaia James, Calista Fox (aka Ava McKnight) and I should seriously think about making it into the real thing--a book.

What do you think?

Okay, to catch up on the story, go here:

And here is my addition....

The digital readout on the dashboard of Aaron’s 4-runner showed it was almost three am. It had taken longer than it should have to get the pictures downloaded from the blow-up doll’s phone and then review them. He supposed they’d both hoped that once the pictures were enlarged, a clue would jump out at them. Some big reason why Suzy had been abducted. At the very least, a big who. But nothing more had been revealed. With few options, Aaron had suggested they take the pictures to Fat Franks. With any luck, Frank would still be there and he might see something in them that Aaron and Leanne had missed. A big might, but neither of them had a better idea.

He glanced Leanne. She’d changed out of the flannel pajamas in record time, emerging in black trousers with crisp pleats and a pale silky blouse the color of oysters. She’d tamed her hair into a coil at the back of her head and looked ready to go in for her nine-to-five, not to track down the maniac who was threatening to let crabs eat her sister alive.

“What the hell do you do?” he asked her suddenly.

Surprised, Leanne looked at him. “I’m a public affairs aide to Dr. Willem Goldwater.”


She smiled. “Golden Billy?”

Christ, Golden Billy? THE Golden Billy? The Golden Billy who claimed his company had developed an alternative fuel that would run in any car—without modifications—and would cost pennies to the gallon?

“Do you know what it’s made of?” Aaron, the scientist, asked.

“Of course not,” she answered primly. “And I can’t discuss it with you.”

Suitably reprimanded, he pulled into the lot of Fat Franks and shut off the engine. They sat in deep silence for a moment, staring at the place.

Fat Franks Tooney Salooney looked exactly like one would expect. Large and box shaped, it had been added onto over the years until it had a maze-like feel too it. It was the last place you wanted to be if there was a fire.

By way of decoration, music notes had been painted all over the front in varying sizes and Looney Tunes characters cavorted among them, blowing more notes out of enormous trombones and miniature trumpets. On the roof was a super-sized hotdog bun with Bugs Bunny lounging in the center. Aaron always wondered if Fat Frank had bothered to get usage rights for the characters or if he’d just decided to go with it and wait until someone sued him to take them down. Aaron would bet the latter.

The place was closed now and bathed in darkness the cartoon characters looked eerie, their frolicking positions somehow sinister. Like gargoyles perched on the walls, ready to swoop. He smiled grimly at himself. He sounded like one of his female students, scared of the dark.

But whether it was manly or not, Aaron was scared. Scared for Suzy, who he’d only met once or twice, but had liked. Scared for her sister, Leanne, who was huddled against the passenger side door, staring out at the black night like a lost child. And, damn it, scared for himself and this mess he knew he shouldn’t be getting into.

With a deep breath he looked at Leanne. “You ready?”


Calista Fox said...

Great job, Erin! Me likey! Whole lot of sinister things about to happen... I can just feel it.

Hope your dad's doing well.


Cynthia said...

I'm popping in here to shout out a great big hi to you, Erin! This is Cindy (from CK2S Kwips and Kritiques) commenting with the 'other' me (aspiring author side).

I'm enjoying the RR you've got going on here. Good stuff!

Hope your dad is recovering well and will be able to go home from the hospital soon.