Chapter 25: The Tragic Case of Albert Hobson

As promised. An excerpt from Chapter 25. Now you can never say I’m not a man of my word. (Well you could but I’ll just deny it

Albert Hobson was an accountant. A humble accountant from Seattle where the majority of his life had been rather, uneventful. He was born. Spent some time as a child, then as a teenager and eventually became a young adult. He met a girl or two, but nothing ever really became of it on either occasion. Albert went off to college, studied accounting, because it seemed the sensible thing to do, and soon became an accountant. More years passed, and Albert Hobson became Mr. Albert Hobson and then just Mr. Hobson. Before long Mr. Hobson was a man approaching midlife and his only regret was that he did not have any particularly interesting stories to tell at cocktail parties. That is until roughly two years ago when he met, at a cocktail party, a particularly interesting man.

This man of interest was named Phillip and spoke mostly in low grumbled growls. Albert remembered distinctly having 2 drinks with Phillip in the hopes that the mumbling and growling would lead him to some type of interesting story to tell at the next tell cocktail party. After the second drink however Mr. Hobson’s memory of that particular night became somewhat fuzzy. As a matter of fact the remainder of the night was a complete blank, which was peculiar because that had never happened to Albert before, not even in college. And even more peculiar was after that particular incident, Albert Hobson had begun to experience, on multiple occasions, losing large chunks of time, during the likes of which, Mr. Hobson could not account for his actions or whereabouts, nor could he explain why after these blackouts, he would awaken, often times nude and almost always covered in dried blood. Dried blood and yet no open, or even recently closed wounds from which the blood could have escaped to cover him and then dry. This specific detail seemed to bother Mr. Hobson above all others, as through his expertly honed powers of deductive reasoning, skills attained through his rather electrifying career as an accountant, he had quickly come to the conclusion that the dried blood that covered his hands and face, particularly his mouth and chin, did not, in fact, belong to him.

Now ordinarily Mr. Hobson would have been delighted to be so knowledgeable about a man who suddenly begin to experience random ad unpredictable black out spells where at the conclusion of which the poor sap would awake stark naked, covered in some unknown person or animal’s dried blood and have absolutely no recollection of the past 24 to 48 hours. Such knowledge of a possibly murderous and blood-obsessed narcoleptic psychopath would have made for excellent storytelling at any cocktail party Mr. Hobson had the social status to attend, as well as for the ones he did not. Mr. Hobson, however, told no such stories. He never said anything to anyone about these occurrences. On the contrary, he went through great lengths to convince himself that these isolated incidents were no more than a reoccurring dream, a very odd dream that he hoped to soon wake from, forever.

“Hobson wake up.” said a foreign voice in a harsh and raspy tone.

Albert Hobson stirred but dare not open his eyes, the dream hadn’t ended yet.

“Hobson! I said snap out of it!”

Mr. Hobson felt a hard, heavy handed slap across the face.  He opened his eyes immediately.

“Wha? What’s going on?” Mr. Hobson asked from his back, his voice trembling as he spoke. He felt dazed, but couldn’t tell if it was because he was still half-asleep or if it was due to the slap across the face. Mr. Hobson put a hand to his stinging left cheek. “Whooo are you?”

Albert was staring into the face of a very intimidating man, his face and head covered in thick silver hair. An expertly trimmed beard and mustache created a framework for a ruggedly square shaped face. Mr. Hobson couldn’t help but think of how the silver mane looked almost more like fur than facial hair.

“I’m Greyman.” The silver haired man growled.

Well of course, thought Mr. Hobson that seems sensible. Hobson sat up. “Is this a dream?” He asked.

“What? No you idiot. Pull it together, it’s almost time.”

“Time? Time for what? Where am I?”

“You’re home.”

“Home?” Mr. Hobson became even more confused. “This isn’t my – What’s going on here? Have I been kidnapped?”

“Calm down pup! Bleeding Sensors, always claiming the victim. If you bastards had known what you’d done to get here, well you’d be singing a different song.”

“Oh God did I black out again. Jesus why does this keep happening to me?”

“Ahhh enough of that, those times are over now. Things’ve changed.”

“What? What’s changed? What’s going on? What do you know?” Albert jumped up and grabbed a hold to Greyman’s jacket lapels, partly in panic, partly in an attempt to shake the information out of him.

“Git yer paws off of me.” A brisk back hand caught Hobson across the face and sent him flying back to the ground. He rubbed the right side of his face that now stung just as much as the left.

“Listen here pup, I’m going to explain everything to you but if ye ever touch me again I’m going to rip you’re bloody throat out myself.”

“I’m – I’m sorry, I’m just so confused.” Hobson dropped his head into his heads. His heart trembled, he felt himself on the verge of tears.

“Calm down boy, I’ll explain everything, but you have to understand, we don’t have much time. So no questions eh?”

Hobson nodded in agreement his face still buried in his hands.

“First off you need to know what ye are and that’s a class A Sensor, top of your class actually, which is odd considering what a whelp you are.”

Hobson looked up from his wallowing only for Greyman to read the confusion written across his face.

“You’re a scout, like a mole, a sleeper agent.”

Nothing…

“You’re a monster mate, a predator, a wolf in sheep’s clothing, both literally and figuratively.”

“What are you talking about? I’m not a monster.” Hobson almost laughed. “I’m an accountant!”

“You’re a BEASTMAN boy! A bloody werewolf! A cross between a man and an animal. You ain’t a man no more, Haven’t been for quite some time.

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The Lost and Found

I found my notebook!

You know the one that I told you about losing a couple of post ago. I found it and I didn’t even have to burn the city down, which is good because arson can carry a pretty heavy prison sentence. (although that would give me ample time to focus on writing)

So my notebook has been found and in the process about 3 chapters recovered. That was close, because having to rewrite those chapters would have been a massive set back but now that is no longer a concern. Aside from that I have dived headlong into chapter 25 and I have to tell you things are getting pretty hairy. So much so that you know what, I’m going to let you read it. Well i’m going to let you read some of it.

I know, I know in  the last post I went on and on about how I couldn’t let you read anything until I was done. Well guess what, I lie. It’s a large part of the job description of a fiction writer, besides rules are made to be contorted to fit your own selfish needs and desires right? Right?

And now I know what you’re thinking “What about the ‘Honesty in Writing’ post you put up a few weeks ago?” And to that I have a two-part response.

1. Stop using my past blog post against me.

2. You’re taking that post out of context.

Besides we’re not talking about what I said we’re talking about what I’m saying, and I’m trying to tell you I’m posting an excerpt of Chapter 25 once the chapter is done. Don’t worry, there are no spoilers or anything. Just a perfect point in the story to introduce you to my writing style and give you an idea of what type of book I’m actually working on. Now with that being said, let me get out of here. I’ve set a goal to write a chapter a week and my deadline is fast approaching.

Until next time,

Lefty

The Completion of Chapter 24

It’s time for a book update. Which is good because I have an update for you. It would have been awkward if it had been time for an update and I didn’t have one. Then I’d have to make up excuses as to why I didn’t have what I was supposed to have. Then you’d be looking at me with that look that you have when I show up without something when I’m suppose to show up with something. Like that time I showed up without my pants.  Haha do you remember that? You should have seen your face, that was a crazy night, but that’s neither here nor there. What is here however, is the book update.

So I finished chapter 24. Yep, finished it. And just to fill you in, during the last book update I informed you that I had completed chapter 16. Apparently I’d written 8 additional chapters between now and then but life got crazy so I didn’t get to blog about it then. But I’m blogging about it now. Quit complaining.

24 chapters complete and on the books. (ignore that pun) And I tell you, the second half of chapter 24 was an experience. It was deep. It is deep. I want you to read it. Now. Like right now. I want you to read the second half of chapter 24 right now. But you can’t. And I can’t let you. But I want you to, if that counts for anything. It probably doesn’t but I wanted it noted that I put it out there just in case. Anyway chapter 24 is done and I’m making my way to Chapter 25 immediately. I’m going to finish it and then I’m going to finish the rest of the chapters and then I’m going to edit them and then I’m going to get someone else to edit them and then you can read them all. I can’t wait. You shouldn’t be able to wait either. You have to wait but you shouldn’t be able too and if you are then there is something horribly wrong with you. But alas, if you’re normal and I suspect you are (except for that night with the whole missing pants thing, with the police and the riot squad and the guy from Best Buy [that night was legendary you were pretty awesome] ) then the wait shall soon be over… eventually.

 

Till next time,

 

Lefty

 

P.S. Don’t forget your pants.

Blood, Paper and Ink

I have an odd obsession with paper. Paper and Ink. As weird as it sounds, when I’m writing, I have to actually physically write and in a technological age such as ours, with all of our smartphones and tablets and laptops and desktops that makes me a bit of a dinosaur(a Tyrannosaurus Rex to be exact). Nonetheless, I can’t write by typing my ideas directly into a computer, well I can but I don’t like too, I like to write. There’s just something about a blank page that I find inspiring, intimidating and alluring all at the same time. As a result of this infatuation I have piles and piles of notebooks lying around the house. Some filled to the brim, others still empty, eagerly awaiting to be filled with new ideas and new stories. And I love that, I guess filling up another notebook gives me a certain sense of accomplishment that makes me want to just write more. I’m even obsessed with the buying of new notebooks, its like a guilty pleasure. And I don’t mean composition notebooks or spiral college rule notebooks. I mean the good stuff, the moleskin type notebooks, just a smidgen-of-quality shy of those leather-bound journals. When I see them I gobble them up, I need them, have to have them, as I said, it’s an obsession, (I’m not even gonna go into my thing with pens and other writing utensils).  Keep in mind, once I’m done writing I still have to type out the handwritten text into my laptop, but I don’t mind the extra step, it gives me an additional opportunity to proofread if nothing else. Now this little writing quirk would be fine in of itself, only now disaster has struck…

I’ve lost one of my notebooks! My son was born in April, I put my notebooks aside, we moved out of our condo, I put some stuff in storage, I put some stuff in my dad’s attic, put some stuff in my father-in-law’s attic, moved into a house, I hadn’t written a words in months, I figured I’d get back to work once things got settled, I got settled, I was ready to work, and I looked up, AND I’M ONE NOTEBOOK SHORT! Dear God why did this have to happen to me, I’ve tore my house apart looking for it. I’ve tore my dad’s house apart looking for it. Now I’m going to have to tear my father-in-law’s house apart looking for it! (Which is going to make the next family gathering a little awkward) But I must find it, it’s got like three or four chapters that I have to transcribe outta that bad boy!

Ah well, it’ll turn up, or I’ll burn down this city to find it!

Till next time,

Lefty

Honesty in Writing

Life is chock full of deception. Little white lies, black fibs and colorless lies of omission are all over the place. You tell people they look nice when they don’t, you tell them you had fun when you didn’t,  and for the most part these are harmless half-truths, not even full-blown lies really. These everyday dishonesties are just the cordial terms or communications needed to keep out society civil, and I’ll be the first to say they’re all desperately needed. Imagine if you told your boss what you really think about his tie, or if you told your wife that that dress does make her look fat (of course there is no dress in the world that has ever made my wife look fat, she’s perfect she looks good in everything… (hi honey!)). Point is, if we didn’t keep up appearances the world would descend into chaos, a chaos of petty insults and minor injuries, made all the more painful because we know they’re true. We’d kill each other inside of a week if everyone expressed honest opinions openly and freely.

But not in writing, as cliché as it may sound, on the page honesty is the best policy. The writer is liberated, completely free to be as honest and as forth coming as they would like, as a matter of fact I have found that the more honest the more unrestricted the writer is, the more fulfilling the text. When writing, you don’t just say a character stinks (or neglect to say a character stinks when the characters does in fact ‘stink’) No, you describe, in raw unadulterated detail how the character smells. How your olfactory receptors are being attacked by the stench, how you can smell the  buckets of sweat that have dried and transformed themselves into layer after layer of caked on dirt and grime. You would not hesitate to mention how the unnatural body odor intermingled with the ever-present scent of sour clothing have now joined forces with what is undeniably the smell of trace amounts of urine and human feces which have not only invaded your nose and sense of smell but have now crossed the threshold of the senses and have gotten into your mouth and sense of taste and now have you seriously considering how to remove both your nose and tongue from your face if you are not able to breathe fresh air immediately.

Real life would never allow you the opportunity to be that honest. But in writing you’re free. Everything that goes unsaid in reality can be openly expressed in writing. What I find interesting is that I write fiction, which is all lies, large over arching lies, but they’re honest lies. So I guess that makes me an honest lair and since we’re being honest… I can live with that.

 

Till the next lie,

 

Lefty.

Back in the Saddle

I have been waiting to use this expression for some time now. It first struck me as an utterly remarkable phrase while playing Call of Duty Modern Warfare II. You complete the opening mission and gain the in-game achievement “Back in the Saddle”.  The phrase came up again while I was playing Final Fantasy XIV, as the name of a particular mission when a once long gone character makes a rather grand return. (Notice an odd trend with me and video games…) In both instances this phrase struck a cord with me primarily because it brought on a feeling of familiarity with nothing more than a few simple words, and to initiate a feeling solely with the proper positioning of a few key words is writing in it most powerful form.

Enough stalling! I’ve been away for a little more than 12 months an entire year and now I’m back in the saddle! (of blogging and what have you) And now so are you, so buckle up cowboys and cowgirls we’re about to ROLL OUT! Get along little doggies! (Maybe I’ve taken the country western cowboy theme a bit far…)

Okay more writing about writing coming soon. Welcome Back!

See you soon,

Lefty

Storytellers and the Stories they Tell…

I’ve come to find out, writing in itself, is nothing more than storytelling. A fairly straightforward concept I know, but that’s the reality of it. So the first prerequisite to be a writer is to simply be a storyteller. And at least that part I have down. I’ve been a storyteller for as long as I can remember, and not just the lying type of story telling. That doesn’t count.

My earliest memory of story telling goes back to maybe the third or fourth grade. For some reason the teacher gave me free time to do as I chose (only God knows what she was thinking) and I, being the studious young man that I was, decided that to write a story. A comic book actually. And I did. I wrote a captivating tale about a villain with a skull for a head and buzz saws for hands. (Yes, two buzz saw hands!)
I even animated it, I drew the characters inside little story boards within the margins of the yellow sheets of notebook paper than stapled them together along the edges. It was amazing, even if I do say so myself, but it wasn’t only me who said so. I showed my teacher and she was so… so… I don’t know what she was, I guess “impressed” is the best word to describe it. But she was so, whatever she was that she had me read my story to the entire class. I got to sit up in the front of the class, you know like it was story time and the class sat around me and I read my little story to them all.  I would look up between horribly formed sentences and terribly drawn doodles and see eyes wide with excitement and intrigue, waiting in eager anticipation to hear what happened next.
I remember distinctly at the end of the story the Villain or Anti-Hero being violently kicked out of a window and falling to his death, or perhaps not actual death, I can’t remember if I was already planning a sequel or not but you get the point. Skull Head-BuzzSaw Hands goes out the window and my story ends. And afterwards the little handmade comic book goes into the unknown void that was my little desk and was lost for the remainder of the school year. That is until, nearly the last week of school, when everyone is cleaning out there desk and cubbies in preparation for summer vacation, I pulled out this crumpled little yellow comic book, and in retrospect quite foolishly, announced to the class that it was up for grabs before I flung it carelessly into the center of the room. I suppose I was half expecting that no one would be interested in a homemade book and it would go into the trash with a thousand other un-submitted homework assignments, failed spelling test and everything else we would stuff into our desk in hopes of never seeing again. However much to my surprise, my classmates jumped on the crumpled little comic with so much fervor and enthusiasm that it was ripped into a prime number of little pieces and taken by multiple kids as a souvenir for them to remember the school year. Which means they probably forgot it even existed the moment the last bell rang or perhaps they didn’t but I know for a brief moment in the fourth grade I was a storyteller in its purest form. So I guess that’s the feeling I chase now every time I write, to simply tell a story I love and hope that someone else will love it too.
Sometimes I wish I would have kept that little handmade comic book, but I’ve come to realize that’s what stories are for. Not necessarily for the storyteller, but for the tell-ee or the audience, or the reader or whatever the case may be. Once you tell your story, once you get your story out, it’s no longer solely yours alone, but it then belongs to everyone who loves it, and I think I like that.
Anyway.
Till next time,
Lefty