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Friday, April 5, 2013

D is for Dead Line

I have joined the group  "Blogging from A to Z.  This is a  a month long challenge to write a short story everyday and each day corresponding to the letter of the alphabet.  I have linked up the site - simply click on the name so that you might read any sort of short story from the huge line-up available.  the stories are supposed to be short so that many can be read, quickly.  Simply a titillation of talent.  Happy reading, and thank you for joining me.  

D is for Dead Line

He smiled that million dollar smile.  “Just sign right here, initial here and we are done with the contract.”  Those eyes, I could get lost in those eyes.  I am so happy I met him.  He has helped me so much, since coming to this city.

I landed in Philadelphia, without much money, not prospects and fresh from the heartland.  Wet behind the ears, I had moved to Philly to become a writer.  I would show all those hicks I left back home.  I would be world renown and they would still be dirt farmers or factory rats.

My eyes were filled with starts.  My head seemed to burst with stories.  Everywhere I looked, I could see a new topic.  I had nowhere to go but up! And then reality set in.

After finding the cheapest, smallest broom closet they called an apartment, I really had no money left.  I had budgeted my life based on living in small town Hicksville.  Not this cluster of mankind the city proved to be.  If you weren’t losing your hoarded funds to pick-pockets, they broke into your meager living quarters desecrating your home and stealing what little you may have been able to assemble there.  It’s tough living downtown in what my Mother would call, “the big city”.

Then I met him.  Actually, I stumbled into him while walking down the sidewalk looking for employment.  We “met” head on, in front of the “Daily Gazette” a small newspaper I had been stalking for a job.  Every day, I would walk from my futon adorned apartment to the hallowed halls of the “Gazette”, step up to the Admin and ask about openings.  

Every day, Linda, (I asked her for her name since I was seeing her daily) would look at me shaking her head and holding out the basket of muffins she had on her desk.  Every day I would palm two of the muffins and head back out onto the street.  

I had today’s muffins, blueberry, in my pockets and was exiting the building.  I ran right into him.  My manila folder filled with my resumes fell onto the sidewalk, sheets of paper fluttering on the wind.  He was first to his feet and rather than scolding me, or worse swearing at me, he held out his hand and gently apologized.  He acknowledged that he too had not been watching where he walked. 

He told me his name, Louis De Cypher.  Louis.  I like the name Louis.  De Cypher, so he is French.  His eyes are so golden.  His voice so rich.  He tells me he is going to place an employment advertisement with the newspaper.  He must have seen it run across my face….I was desperately seeking employment. 

That was two months ago.  I signed the contract happily.  I have been faithfully turning in one story per day.  I have been happily spending my paycheck!  Food, what a joy, food! I even splurged on paper towels this past week.  Today, though, I am late.  For the first time I have missed my story deadline.  With a small tremble in my hands and a bit sluggish step, I am heading to his office.

“Well Miss, I see you didn’t make the deadline.  Now I have to take the next step.”  His eyes were not smiling.   His lips were curled most cruelly.  My legs began to shake.

“Next step?” 

“I shall take your soul, as per our contract.”  His grin began to broaden, but his eyes were still hard.

“Soul?”  My whole body shook and I started to turn towards the door.  My mind finally began to think...Louis De Cypher....

The door slammed before I could even reach my hand out for the handle.  “You cannot miss a deadline without becoming part and parcel of the Dead Line.”


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