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The Downside of Loving the Written Word
“So I’m going to die?” He asked, perched on the edge of my bed as I sat at the computer.
“I’m a writer Luke.” I said calmly. “It’s what I do. Don’t take it personally.”
“Don’t take it personally?” he asked, his voice rising. Oh no, that’s not what I wanted. Luke mad might scar me mentally; he was, after all, my first born character, my best friend. Luke Samuels was loyal and strong, pensive and intelligent. He was a hunter of the supernatural, a father, and a husband; he was everything I’d ever made him, and what he was…well he was just the best.
“How can I not take it personally?” He snapped, already on his feet, angry.
“Sit down.” I called, trying to not show emotion. “Or I’ll do a re-write and crash your car.” Luke sat down immediately; jesus, anything for that car.
But it was a nice car; he deserved to drive the best, and when I’d been writing it, the Ford Bullitt had been one hell of a car. Not that it wasn’t now, it still was.
Luke was the kind of guy who treated his car like it was a member of his family, and threats to the Bullitt…well it would make him do anything. “Actually,” I said, and smirked. “I might just give it to a hobo.” Luke grimaced.
“That’s not funny Nic.”
“Neither is you being here.” I snapped, and moved away from the computer, hands shaking as they left the keyboard. “But obviously asthma and mental chatter wasn’t enough. I had to actually visualize my characters talking to me…” Luke watched me as I crossed the room and knelt before the mirror on the wall, applying make-up. “What a shallow attempt at a normal life…” I murmured, blinking as I applied mascara. “Thanks a lot big guy…” I said, and stared up at the ceiling. “Thanks a ton.”
I swore when I accidentally stabbed myself in the eye with the mascara brush.
“I still don’t understand why I have to die.” Luke whispered from behind me. I looked up into the mirror, wiping away mascara from my face and eye.
“because.” I murmured, looking down. I couldn’t tell if I was crying because he was sad, or because I’d just stabbed myself in the eye. Either way, the situation sucked. I left the mascara alone and went with the eye liner, I couldn’t screw that up. When I was done, I put on some skin colored eye-shadow.
I like comfortable, plainness.
“You’re not real Luke.” I told him, and got up, turning around. I’d run my hands through my short hair, messing it up a little bit. That’s how it was supposed to be- short, spikey, messy. “You’re the main character in a story I’m trying to tell. That’s it. You don’t exist.”
“Don’t you wish.” He said, and laughed darkly.
Oh wow, the way he laughed. Normally I would have described it as a deep chuckled, and explained the way he smiled cheerfully, and ran a hand through his thick hair self conscious of what he was thinking…but this…This wasn’t every Luke-like, he’d never…
“You wish we’d be just a figment of your imagination,” he continued on. “You wish that the car I drive, the gun I shoot, would never pass you on the street, you’d never see it in a store, or face to face…But the truth is, Nic, that we’re real.”
“We’re so real.” Came a light voice, and Oliver was standing on his right, smirking that crooked half grin. A scar, long and broad, ran from the top of his brow, down to the tip of his mouth on the right side, it even punctured his eye.
I knew this. I knew that he had a hard time focusing his eye, and shot mainly with his left.
Just like I would know he weighed one fifty, and was six three, though he could bench press two sixty.
“We’re real enough that we sit with you at Orchestra concerts and calm you down, right?” Richelle asked, stepping forward out of nothing to become Luke’s left shadow. “We’re real enough that we make you laugh when you cry at night, and we make you strong when you feel like you’re all alone.”
“I am alone.” I whispered, and she shook her head slowly.
“You’re never alone, not when we’re here.” Richelle told me.
God, I wanted to believe her, I wanted to know that she was right, I wanted to relish in the fact that Luke Samuels, Oliver Stokes, and Richelle Carmichael were real, badass people…But I knew that they weren’t.
“But I am!” I shouted, moving away from them. “I am so alone because you’re not real! You’re about as real as Pamela Anderson’s boobs! I’m bonkers, I’ve pretty much figured that out- last week I went to school dressed as a KISS member!”
“What’s wrong with KISS?” Luke asked, offended.
“IT WAS COLOR WARS!” I yelled, growing red in the face. “I was dressed in leather and white face make-up while other kids were wearing their class colors!”
“That’s not that bad…” Richelle murmured.
“I spent five hours on the computer yesterday,” I hissed, stepping back to face them, voice low. “You know what I was doing?” I baited, and they just stood there. “I was creating false e-mail accounts in your name, giving you myspaces, picking out music for your profiles, uploading your pictures. I spent fifteen minutes creating the dialogue of a fake conversation that I sent back and forth between you and Oliver! That’s wrong, that’s so wrong.” I took a deep breath. “You’re not real, and I act as if you are, I created you to be a fictional character, and I know that’s all you are, even if you try to convince me otherwise.”