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Minor Characters

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Minor Characters

By Don Fern

Copyright 2017

Shakespir Edition

Richard, in his fifties, born and raised in the United States, was the best-selling mystery writer. After his first best-selling book, he purchased woods with a home in northwest Michigan. His house was reached by driving one-half mile on a twisted lane through woods. The house, itself, stood in an opening at the top of the 100 foot slope above Lake Michigan’s shore line.

He was known for having special invited guest weekends for fellow writers. It was Thursday evening and all guests, except Miss Liz Brown, were in the parlor. Each writer, including Richard, was in the parlor personally becoming acquainted with their counterparts. The caterers earlier filled the self-serve food tables, beside the large dining table, with the evening meal and left for the evening.

Ellen Jomer, who lived in Britain, only knew that Miss Liz Brown grew up in the northeast of the United States and was in her thirties. Still Miss Brown had several best-selling books.

Ellen asked Richard, “Did Miss Liz Brown accept her invitation.”

Richard told the group, “She did. I don’t mine telling everyone. She is one of my favor mystery writers. Miss Brown will be arriving shortly.”

Mr. Chambers, the oldest writer, now in his sixties. With his southern accent said, “I hope she does. The food looks good. I like the idea of having it out. So you can get what you want. Been to too many formal dinners. Where you eat what they bring to you. Whether you like it or not.”

Ms. Camry Ander stood by herself; since, being in her twenties, everything was unfamiliar for her. She had, only recently, sold enough copies of a mystery story to be considered a known mystery writer. So, she was surprised by Richard’s invitation. She lived nearby, in Canada, and was happy to spend the weekend with the better writers.

She recognized this was a place to speak to the other writer by saying, “Waiting for Miss Brown to arrive reminds me of waiting for her next book to come out. I always enjoy reading them. I think it’s the way she makes her characters come to life.”

Richard replied, “That’s certainly true. That’s one of the things I like about her writing myself.”

Mr. Chambers said to Richard, “You have a nice place. Right on Lake Michigan. Michigan is a pretty cold state. Must get cold here during winter.”

Richard, “It does at times. When this house was built. It was built to take the cold.”

Mr. Chamber, “Try building a house like that now. You wouldn’t be able to.”

Richard, speaking to everybody, “Excuse me. I have a few things to take care of in the study. Miss Brown should arrive by the time I’m finish. Then we can all begin dinner.”

Richard left the parlor, passed through the front foyer, and entered the open door to his study.

Francis crossed the parlor to be with Ellen. Francis also lived in Britain, and Richard’s invitation brought both of then to the United States for the weekend. They were both in their thirties with individual stories that have reached best sellers list. Their first co-authored mystery was selling worldwide.

After entering the study, Richard sat in his chair in front of his computer and waited for Miss Brown to arrive. Behind him, on the bottom shelf , was a published mystery book. The title on the cover was “Sinister: The Cult of Evil”. A large drawing of the main character, Downer, was on the cover.

This was Richard’s study. This was where he created stories. This was where he created Greta. He used the computer on his desk. Greta had noticed, there were times it was like the computer used Richard.

On the wall behind the desk there were the shelves. The top one, now empty, was waiting to place the best mystery story ever on. The middle shelf had Richard’s two best-selling mystery books on. The bottom had three other mysteries Richard had published.

The book is on the right of the bottom shelf. This was the book Greta’s been stuck in since its printing. Lang and Sally were in this book.

Greta recalled the days and months of watching as Richard created characters and setting and objects when they appeared as words on the computer screen. Greta been watching as Richard gave Miss Liz Brown all his attention. While she and Lang and Sally were left stuck in a burnt out house in the book forgotten by their creator. This wasn’t right. Now Greta as Miss Liz Brown will get the attention she deserved.

The car carrying Miss Liz Brown turned from the main road and entered the lane through the gate. Just inside the gate, a sharp boom was heard by the driver and Miss Liz Brown. The driver stopped the car, got out, and found a flat tire. He explained to Miss Brown that he needed to change the tire. Miss Brown left the car and strolled into the trees of the woods.

A figure can through the undergrowth as if an apparition. Upon seeing the other, Miss Liz Brown stood unmoved and silent. For Miss Brown–a writer of mystery stories– this was her doppelganger. Greta walked to her, stopped, and spoke, “Miss Liz Brown.”

Greta slowly vanished with the woods. To be replaced by a materializing room. Miss Brown sat on a metal chair in the burnt out room. The two minor characters Sally and Lang sat, on the floor, against the wall.

Lang sarcastically spoke, “Well. You’re here. Miss Liz Brown. You look just like Greta. Richard made Greta to look just like you. Richard gives you his attention. Now Greta is getting Richard’s attention. Now you’re in a burnt out room in a burnt house getting no attention. It’s your turn to be a minor character.”

Lang sat and stared at the burnt out couch, “Greta got out of the book and came to life. She will return and we will leave this book and we will come to life.”

After the tire was changed, the driver said loudly to the woods, “Miss Brown. The tire is replaced. We can continue to the house now.”

The driver saw the shape of Greta coming out of the woods. When the shape came into full view, the driver recognized Miss Liz Brown. He opened the back door for Miss Liz Brown. Greta, the minor character from Richard’s book “Sinister: The Cult of Evil”, entered the car.

Greta. Lang, and Sally only thought off what Richard wrote in the book as what they knew. Now they used what they knew to get all of them out of the book and come to life. Greta used the evil traits Richard gave to his minor characters to place Miss Brown in the book.

The driver drove down the one-half mile of curved lane through the woods and got to the front door of Richard’s house. Behind the remodeled old two story house was an excellent view of Lake Michigan below a sandy sloping hillside. The guest had just watched the sun set into Lake Michigan. Richard was in his study. Greta knocked on the front door.

Richard, after hearing the knock, immediately went through the foyer and opened the front door. He greeted Miss Liz Brown with a gentle hug. The guests, in the parlor watched the greeting. They recognized the attraction Richard had for Miss Brown. But they could not tell if Miss Brown had the same attraction for Richard.

After Greta relaxed a bit in her upstairs room, she came down the stairs to the parlor.

Richard introduced Greta to the other writers, as Miss Liz Brown. Greta was very impressed. It was the most attention she had ever gotten from Richard.

All the writers gathered their food from the small food tables and sat at the large dining table. Richard sat at the head of the table and formally welcomed them all for the weekend. Then each guest formally introduced themselves.

Richard announced he had chartered a boat for tomorrow afternoon and they were all invited to join him for a cruise on Lake Michigan.

Richard then told the writers, after completing his current work in progress, he expected to retire from writing.

Mr. Chamber replied, “That can’t be true, Richard, a writer never retires. They just disappear.”

Richard spoke to the entire table, “Of course. Mr. Chambers is correct. I wouldn’t really be retiring. I’ll be doing many of the things I have put off for many years. Somehow the desire to do the other things wasn’t as important as writing.”

Miss Liz Brown, “Are you telling us what the last mystery story is about?”

Richard, “It’s about the return of major character, Downer, in “Sinister: The Cult of Evil.”

Miss Liz Brown asked, “Do the minor characters return also?”

Richard replied, “No. They’re minor characters. Once you create and use them, you have no need for them.”

After listening to her creator, Richard, Greta was confused. Greta thought she didn’t like being a minor character. But just maybe this was not true. Maybe she didn’t like Richard. Greta decided she didn’t like Richard. Richard had to go someplace else. She will see that this will be done.

So for her response, Miss Liz Brown, suggested, “Who knows about any story? It might cause you to become the greatest mystery writer.”

Greta went into her feelings remembering that night–the night she came to life. Herself, Lang, and Sally were; in the book, in the burnt down house, in the burnt out room, sitting against the wall.

They watched Richard as words appeared on the computer screen.

Miss Liz Brown entered study and sat in front of the desk.

Greta said to Lang and Sally, “Richard wrote me to look exactly like her.”

Sally, “You could be her duplicate. Except your voices are different.”

Greta, “I have learnt her voice after listening to her the many times she’s been here. If I could find a way to get out of this book, I could be her.”

Lang, “Richard named the house the house of evil. Then the townspeople burnt it down to get rid of the evil. It was like they were doing it themselves without Richard writing the words on the computer screen.”

In the study, Miss Liz Brown spoke to Richard, “You’ve had two best-selling mystery stories in the last two years. Hard to believe anyone could write that many so quickly. How do you do it?”

Richard, “I’m not quite sure. I sat at the computer and the words just seemed to appear on the screen.”

Liz, “Sometimes it’s hard for me to believe writing can be like that.”

Richard, “What’s hard for me to believe is how you can write such life-like characters.”

Liz, “It just happens. I think there’re a combination of characters others have written and people I know.”

Richard, “Whatever it is you can really make your characters come to life. I’ve never been able to do that nearly as good.”

Richard, “We’ve better get going the dinner reservation is for eight. It’ll take about twenty minutes to drive there.”

After Miss Brown and Richard left the study, Greta harshly said, “Liz gets all of Richard attention. And we’re stuck in this book. We need to get out of this book.”

A late evening, days later, Richard was at the computer as words appeared on the screen of ways to get your characters to come to life. Richards looked at them and deleted them. Then he tried others each time deleting the words on the screen. Finally he gave up. He relaxed, sat at his desk and fell asleep.

On the screen the words, that were the instructions for making characters to come to life, appeared.

Greta followed the instructions and left the book and materialized in the study beside the book.

So, Greta, with the evil traits Richard gave her and following computer’s instructions, had come to life.

The instructions disappeared from the computer screen. Greta sensed Lang and Sally could see her from the book. She thought she was in the book and returned to the book.

Lang, “How did you do that?”

Greta, “I just followed the instructions that were on the screen.”

Lang, “What were the instructions?”

Greta thought and replied, “I don’t know.”

Lang , “Can you do that again?”

Greta thought herself out of the book and she was in the study. She then thought herself in the book and she was in the book.

Greta, “I can. I thought of myself as being out of the book, then I’m in the study. Then I thought of being in the book and I’m in the book.”

Lang and Sally both thought of themselves as being out of the book several times. It didn’t work for either of them.

Greta returned her feelings to being with the other writers in the parlor.

After the dinner each spoke of their writing achievements and failures, to all in the parlor. Then they had a variety of drinks, light snacks, while talking with each one to one.

Mr. Chambers talked about how his career took a down turn with Richard’s first best-selling book.

Then Mr. Chambers asked Richard, “Is the boat a fishing cruise?”

Richard answered, “The charter company doesn’t have fishing cruises. This company has sightseeing cruises. They’ll take use anywhere we like to go since it’s considered a private tour.”

Mr. Chamber, “I usually go fishing on lakes in Tennessee and Georgia. Sometimes they’re biting sometimes they’re not. Depends on the time of year. When was the last time you were fishing.”

Richard, “I have never been fishing.”

Mr. Chamber, “You haven’t. And you have a great lake out back. There probably good fishing somewhere in it. It’s not called great for nothing.”

Richard, “ I guess it’s just not one of my interests.”

Mr. Chamber, “Everyone needs something more the setting at a typewriter typing or now at a computer computing.”

Richard, “When computers became available, it was one of the best days for writers.”

Mr. Chambers, “I guess you’re right. There are certainly a lot more books around now then use to be.”

Richard, “I spent much time on some books thinking, while writing, they would never get finished. Some books never got finished, the ideas however were put into other books. While other books seemed to write themselves.”

Miss Liz Brown, who did not talk as much as the other writers, did learn by listening to the other writers.

Ms. Camry Ander, after getting over her fear of the unusualness of the writers, brought up very interesting topics about writing that the others listen to and did not talk about herself.

Camry, speaking with Ellen and Francis, “I read yours and Ellen’s book. I always though co-authoring was hard to do. Your book seemed to be very good for a co-authored book.”

Francis, “We were both surprised at that. The book is selling better than we expected. We first thought about using one penname for our first book, but decided against it. We both have had books that sold and we figured to use both our names because of their familiarity would be better than using a unknown name.”

Mr. Chambers, “I’m glad to see someone selling something. I could sell a book myself.”

Mr. Chambers, gesturing at Richard, “Until this guy steals all the readers.”

Ellen, “Nobody steals readers. The readers decide what they want to read. There’re always people who want to read a mystery story. “

Mr. Chambers, “I still write the stories people read. But that’s mostly in the south. There’s a lot of good story writers in the south. They’re getting better and I’m getting worse.”

Ellen, “Lot of people follow alone with the current things. Like cell phones and computers. Just about every story has one or both in it now. It fits in the story. Thirty, forty years ago the story would have to be a science fiction story.”

Mr. Chambers, “Thirty, forty years ago they wrote decedent science fiction stories. Like dreams of meeting space aliens coming true. Now the space monster lands and eats everyone’s face off.”

Ellen speaks to Camry, “I guess everything is new to you and the newer people with the cell phones and computers go ahead and buy something of yours anyway.”

Camry, “I don’t know who reads anything that I write. Somehow people just do. I just write what I write. It’s really not writing to anybody.”

Ellen, “It certainly took me longer then it has you to get that first book out there that people buy.”

Camry, “There seems to be people in Canada buy quite a bit. Then it’s sells in the United States too. There’re very few sales in Britain or Europe. And around the world there’s nothing. I don’t know how anyone can write something people around the world read. You seemed to have done that with your stories.”

Ellen, “When you live in Britain you have the concept of always having great writers throughout history. Like some of the original know writers around the world. People can automatically buy stories because of that.”

Camry, “Hope I can write other books and not only the one selling now. I don’t seem to be able to write anything now.”

Ellen, “That happens to everybody. You start again when it’s time to start again.”

Richard and Liz were across the room talking.

Richard, “One of the things I’ve have gotten to like about your writings. You’re good at getting your characters to come to life. Just how do you do that.”

Liz, “They seem to do it themselves.”

Richard, “I wish a few of them would do that for me.”

Liz, “Maybe you should treat your characters better. There are the ones seen in the book by the reader. Not only put there by the writer.”

Richard, “True. But the writer needs to put them there so the reader can see them.”

Liz, “You’re certainly right there.”

Ellen and Francis standing by themselves speaking with each other.

Ellen, speaking to Francis, “I don’t think Liz has as much attraction for Richard as Richard has for Liz.”

Ellen, to Richard, “Are you going to show us the study, where all those mysteries were created?”

The writers walked to the study with Richard.

He again told Miss Liz Brown how he tried to get the minor characters to come to life but it just didn’t happen and said she always made her characters to come to life.

Richard, “How’s that done?”

Miss Liz Brown, “I don’t know. Somehow they just do it themselves.”

Ellen told Francis that Miss Liz Brown was a character in the book “Sinister” The Cult of Evil” Richard put her into the story as the description of the character Greta.

They ask Richard questions about Cult of Evil. The writers mentioned the scene where the cult leader Downer and the three followers Lang, Sally, and Greta were in the cult house right before the angry mob attacked and burnt the house down.

In the fire and the leader, Downer, perished. They say that the leader was coming back and it was expected in the first book because of how he disappeared in the fire. The writers remarked about the last scene a little where the three members were found amongst the ruins at the end of the book and the leader was not there.

Richard did not claim Greta or any of the minor character was burnt to death. Greta and the characters in the first book were “writing the story for him”. The cult leader did disappear in the flames and the cult members did not.

Richard, “It’s like I spend my entire life setting in this chair writing on the computer. It’s going to be good to get away for a while. I think in five or six weeks I’m can consider the writing of the return of Drowner done.”

Mr. Chamber, “It’s always helped me to have that feeling of completing something. Then after a while I start something new just to complete it.”

Mr. Chamber after seeing the top empty shelf pointed at it and said to Richard.

“You seem to have an empty shelf there. What’s that for?”

Richard, “Right there is the empty spot that will have from me the greatest mystery book ever written. I have the feeling it’s the one that will be completing in 6 weeks. “

 

Camry, “In the book. It’s about a cult leader, telling the world about an imminent disaster. But still there were only three members of the cult group mention. It seems to me the cult group would have many members.”

Richard, “The cult does have many members. Since they’re a cult all the members are alike. There’s no reason to mention any more the two or three since their all the same.”

Camry, “But each person is different. That’s what makes stories interesting.”

Richard, “For some type of stories. For this story the thing that keeps the reader reading is the idea of an oddball type of person. A cult leader can do that better than any of the followers. He’s the one to original think the odd ideas that people like to see. So concentrating on him makes this story work.”

Camry, “Looking at it that way makes sense. But everybody doesn’t look at everything in the same way.”

Richard, “When writing a story you don’t need to included everything in a story. The amount that sells books is what you need in the story. Everything else is extra.”

Ellen, “All that’s true. But in this story. The leader seemed to be the only one doing anything. Like in the scene with the angry mob burning the house. You write of the fires effect on the cult leader only. The three follows are there. They have a reaction when they’re in the fire too. Nothing is said about them.”

Richard, “The reader of the book already knows that. You don’t what to emphasis something the reader knows already. It’s the unusual things that keep their attention.”

Mr. Chamber, “I don’t know what’s usual for readers or anybody. But for me I usually get to bed before this. It’s been a long day for me. Getting here and everything. So I’ll be calling it a day.”

Mr. Chambers left the study and went to his room on the second floor.”

A bit later Ellen and Francis excused themselves.

Ellen and Francis left the study. In the foyer Ellen said, “The Greta character described in the book looks just like Miss Liz Brown. Richard made Greta to be Miss Liz Brown. I read the book. It doesn’t seem that Greta and Richard get along well at all. I don’t think it worked out very well.”

Francis, “I have noticed.”

Then Camry retired to her room.

Richard started a conversation with Miss Brown.

Greta did not want to talk to Richard, so she said, “I had a long day. I think I’ll get some sleep also.”

After all were in their rooms, Francis’s door opened. Francis quietly walked to Ellen’s door.

Francis, whispers through door, “Are you there?”

Ellen, opened door, “Yes.”

Ellen and Francis quietly walked to back window at end of hall. The stairway beside them led to the backdoor. The moon was over the lake.

Ellen, “That was a long flight. It would have been better if we stayed home.”

Francis, “It’s the first day. We have the weekend. I made the reservations to go the Nassau on Sunday.”

Ellen, stood closer, “That makes it worth the trip to get here.”

Ellen and Francis looked out window. Then they both entered Ellen’s room.

Greta opened her door, and watched as Ellen’s door closed. Greta quietly crept down the stairs, across the foyer, and into the study. She walked to the book on the bottom shelf and thought herself into the book.

Ellen and Francis were with Camry in the backyard. They kept near the house while watching the night. The air has turned cold. Cold winds, came off the lake. Clouds rapidly soared by the moon as it dimed its light.

They all listened to the strange swishing noise above as it got louder. Camry looked up and saw a dark unusual shaped object falling from the roof top. Francis grabbed Camry and pulled her out of the way as the tree branch hit the ground.

Camry being startle did not say or do anything.

Francis, “We better all get inside.”

All of them returned to the parlor. Richard and Miss Liz Brown were there. As a group they sat around the table in the light of the candles and reflected on what has happen since their arrival for the week end.

Inside the book, Lang and Sally sat on floor. Miss Liz Brown sat in the metal chair.

Greta stood and said, “I see everybody here.”

Lang, showed his anger toward Richard, “Yes. We’re still here. Richard created us. Put us in a cult house. Burnt the house down. And left us here. We don’t have any place to go.”

Greta, “It’s not that bad.”

Lang, showed anger towards Greta, “It’s that bad. You’re the one that can go in on out the book anytime you what. We’re stuck in the book. It’s that bad.”

Greta, spoke as giving orders, “Your just have to wait. I’ll get you both out of here. It just takes time.”

She left the book and stood behind Richard’s desk, looking at the computer screen.

The computer screen was where the words were written and then things happen in the books according to the words. Greta sat at the computer she types the words “The pencil holder moved to the left.” She looked at the pencil holder. The pencil holder moved to the left.

The computer has been causing things to happen inside Richard’s books. It also can cause things to happen outside of the books. Greta decided she will cause things to happen to the writers, including Richard. She remembered she didn’t like Richard. Richard wasn’t her creator. The words on the screen created her. She can deal with Richard now by typing on the screen what will happen to Richard.

Greta returned to her room and slept comfortable the rest of the night.

Mr. Herald Chambers awoke at 3 am in the morning. He saw, out his window, the moon light lighting up the lake’s waters. He left the house. Once out of the house the cold wind coming of the lake hit him, he got a coat. Outside, he went to the edge of the slope and saw the waters being push over the sand and onto the rocks below he leaned over a bit to see the splashing of the water. He was in the air. He slid down the sandy slope. Ending on the rocks covered with a fine layer of sand.

After he spent the night in Ellen’s room, Francis returned to his room before the house guests awoke. Camry saw Francis leave Ellen’s room as she was going down the stairs to take a morning run on the beach.

After sunrise, Camry ran on the padded sand by the water and saw the writer on the rocks not moving. She called for help. The ambulance arrived. The medics found that Mr. Chambers was serious injured, but still alive. They hurry him into the ambulance. The county Sheriff arrived while the medics put Mr. Chambers into the ambulance. The other writers were on the beach. Richard was on the beach.

The Sheriff walked across beach to the writers.

Sheriff, “They said he’s alive. Their getting him to the hospital as quick as they can. That’s all they know. Were any of you around and seen what happen.”

All guests looked at each other, shrugged to indicate no one seen him.

Richard, “The last time I saw him he left the study going to his room.”

Sheriff, “Anyone see him after he went into his room.”

Ellen, “I saw him go into his room upstairs later in the evening.”

The Sheriff walked to Camry , “You said you came down the beach stairs early this morning. Was the sun up or was it before dawn.”

Camry, “The sun was just getting up.”

Sheriff, “Did you see Chamber when you came down the stairs?”

Camry, “He wasn’t there when I came down the stairs.”

Sheriff, “What do you mean he wasn’t there. Did you look. Over there. He path goes this way at an angle.”

Camry, “He could have been there. I never seen him.”

The sheriff checked the area of the beach. Then said he needed to find the place Mr. Chambers fell from. He was going to the house and.

Sheriff, while pointing to top of slope and down the slope to where Chambers was found, “From what I can tell he was at the top of the slope and fell or slid down the slope and ended up on the beach. I’ll have to drive to the house and look around the back to see if I can figure out what happen. I would like everyone at the house in case I need to ask about Mr. Chambers.”

The writers walked up the wooded stairs to the yard behind the house. They waited and the sheriff arrived. They all went to the area where Mr. Chambers fell from. It showed someone had fallen. After looking around and asking questions the sheriff figured Mr. Chamber slipped in the dark and fell by accident.

After the Sheriff left, Camry was with Richard in the parlor.

Camry, “I had made arrangement to stay the entire weekend. After seeing Mr. Chambers on the beach, I feel I would like to arrange to leave today instead. I hope you don’t mine if I left early.”

Richard, “Of course not. There are trains that stop about 18 miles from here. I can drive you over to the station. You can use the computer here in the parlor if you would like to make a reservation.”

Camry brought up the train website and saw that a train was leaving at three that afternoon.

Camry, “It says a train will leave at three pm. Would that one be ok.”

Richard, “Of course.”

Camry made the reservation for the afternoon train.

Ellen and Francis joined them in the study. They were talking with Richard about Mr. Chambers.

Ellen and Francis saw Miss Brown come into the foyer from upstairs and enter the study.

Richard didn’t see her enter the study.

Greta walked to the “Sinister; The Cult of Evil” book and thinks herself into the book.

Greta, “Are you doing something with Camry?”

Lang, “How can we do anything? We’re stuck in a book. How can we do something with anyone out there.”

Greta, “Funny things are happening. It might be the people on the outside or us. It’s hard to tell.”

Lang, “It’s probably us. After all we can only do the things Richard has told us to do.”

Greta, “Yea. I don’t think Richard is as good of a writer as he thinks he is.

Ellen and Francis seem to think this also. It’s hard to know what Camry thinks about things.

Mr. Chambers seemed to be tired of all the writers. I guess he’s been at it such a long time.”

Lang, “I think. That I don’t care what a bunch of writers think. Just get us out of this book. Like you said you would.”

 

Greta, “What your thinking is right. We need Richard to do the things in the book. To do things ourselves we all need to get out of the book.”

Sally, “That’s right. He created us and just left us here. That’s not right. All of us need to get out of here.”

Lang, speaking to Greta, “And we tried the way you did it. It just didn’t work for us. It’s something to do with Richard too. It’s ridiculous he created us and just left us. To fix this we need do something to take care of Richard. You’re having a great time outside the book. You need to do something to deal with Richard.”

Greta, “Lang. Your right. I know. I just don’t know what to do. I spend years in this book. It’s not only yourself you know.”

Sally, “Both of you. We all need to stick together here. We all what the same thing. It’s we don’t understand what these people outside the book are doing. If we knew what they’re doing we should get out of this book.”

Lang, “How do we do that?”

Sally, “Use your brain. You have a brain you know.”

Lang, “Right. But Richard gave it to me. I don’t want to use anything from that guy. He’s the reason we’re stuck in a book to start with.”

Sally, “We have to see what the other writers do. They’re the only ones here. We can’t do anything else. During the night, Mr. Chambers slipped and fell over the cliff. Now because Mr. Chambers fell of the cliff, Camry got frightened and is leaving. Richard is getting something from the other writers. After all that’s why he invited them, for the weekend. The other writers being here keeps us away from Richard.”

Lang, “So we cause people to leave by frightening them. This should be easy. They don’t even know we’re here. Then Richard is left. Then we’ll deal with Richard.”

Greta, “Richard knows how to scare people. He’s always writing about it. In one of Richard books a storm in the dark of night causes fright. So we’ll have a storm. We can have it this afternoon. It will get dark a little early. That will help. I’ll use Richard’s computer to write it.”

Sally, “And we can start the scary things after the storm is here and it’s dark.”

Greta, “Sometimes I think Richard was writing his autobiography and didn’t know it. He wrote about a guy that gained insight from the wisdom of wandering in the great lakes of the United States and Canada. While traveling to Florida during the cold months. Then receiving his “messages of impending world collapse”. And then he “warned all he could” by selling overpriced emergency supplies. Well the world collapsed ok when “the angry mob burnt the house while the leader and his three remaining loyal followers huddle in the emergency-shelter room.” And we’re all in Upper Michigan. I think the angry mob burnt the house to keep warm. He should of put us in Florida.”

Greta, “Richard needs to get the message, he’s not wanted here. Better get to the computer and write the storm. I’ll see you both tonight sometime.”

Greta thought herself out of the book. She sat at the computer and wrote the storm.

In Ellen’s room Francis and Ellen were talking. Ellen, “It seems like Camry had something to do with Mr. Chambers falling. But that doesn’t make sense. It could be she is in an environment with a bunch of writers and she doesn’t know what to think or do. But there’s something going on. Just don’t know what it is.”

Francis, “There’s something going on. We have nothing to do with it. We’ll have to make the best of the weekend. Should have stayed home to beginning with.”

Ellen, “I really don’t think Camry has anything to do with what is happening she just somehow caught up with it.

Francis, “I know. It’s Richard. He’s not the writer he thinks he is. Everybody is seeing that. As they see more and more of it, stranger and stranger things are happening.”

After she finished the storm, Greta entered the parlor. Richard was there. So were Ellen, Francis, and Camry.

Richard saw Greta, as she entered, and said, “There you are. I won’t have to look for you. The charter boat company called and said the boat was cancelled. They said an unexpected storm was to arrive during the afternoon and they consider it unsafe to be on the lake.”

After she listened to Richard, Greta thought how she really didn’t like Richard anymore. So she looked forward to the storms arrival. It was time to get rid of Richard. Just as soon as the real writers were gone.

As the afternoon approached, the weather band short wave radio broadcasted gale warnings were out and the storm was approaching.

Near 2 pm, Camry received a message on her cell phone that the afternoon train had been cancelled. Camry was disappointed but realized storms can happen and it’s best not to travel during the severe ones.

The storm arrival inspired the writers. They went to the slope-top and watched the storm from above the lake. Then the storm forced them into the house around 3 pm. As the storm got worse the writers excitement dwindled. Around 5 pm it was dark as night and the lights went out.

Richard had lived long enough along Lake Michigan to have the kerosene lanterns and heaters, candles, water, radios, and other emergency supplies. He assured his guest that there was sufficient supplies for all of them and they would be ok during the storm. There were warnings over the shortwave weather radio that the people in the storm area should remain inside until the main threat of the storm left the area. It was estimated to be out of area around 7:30 pm.

After this they all decided there was nothing for them to do except to wait until the storm was completely out of the area.

Together they went upstairs and placed candles, on end tables gotten from the parlor, in the hall way and rooms so there was light for the entire night. Each person had extra candles, matches ,and a lantern for inside their rooms during the night. The weather radio was on a small table in the hallway, so anyone could listen during the night for information about the storm.

Around 7 the storm seemed to let up some, but still a dark gloominess remained. All communications did not work. The writers received their information through the short wave weather radio.

As 8 approached the main threat of the storm had passed. Still radio said the storm would last into the early morning hours. Also electric service was interrupt throughout the entire region. Most of the power will be restored by Saturday evening. However, it could take until Wednesday to repair damage in some of the isolated locations.

They all went into their rooms for the night. After everyone was settled in, Francis went to Ellen’s room as the night before.

Right after midnight Camry was in bed awake. She felt if she got up and walked around a little she would be able to sleep. She left the room and walked down the front stairs. Without knowing why she entered the study. She stood behind the chair where Richard sat while creating his stories. She looked at the blank computer screen. She expected to see something. The screen remained blank. The minor characters Lang and Sally watched her as she stood there.

Then Camry decided to walk around a little more so she returned up the stairs and walked down the hallway to the window at its end. Here she saw the storm had calmed and the darkest was giving way as the thick clouds diminished.

A frightening thud was heard on one window pane. Camry looked at the pane and saw nothing. The eeriness of the thug sent her to Richard’s door and she knocked. After a delay Richard opened the door.

Camry, “I don’t want to bother you but I was at the window and something hit it from the outside.”

Richard, “I better see what happen.”

He walked towards the window with Camry behind. As Passing Miss Liz Brown’s door she came out and asked, “What’s going on?”

Richard, “Ms. Ander heard something hit the window. We’re seeing what it was.”

Richard continued to the window.

Liz, “What did it sound like?”

Camry, “I’m not sure it was one quick thug-like sound and nothing else.”

They both went toward the window. Both stopped behind Richard who was at the window looking out.

Liz, “What was it?”

Richard, “I don’t know. It’s cleared up some, but still hard to see from inside. I’ll go outside to see if I can find anything.”

He went down the back stairs and out the back door, with Liz and Camry following. Ellen and Francis came out of Ellen’s room. They went downstairs to backdoor.

Ellen, “What’s going on?”

Liz, “Nobody knows. Camry heard something hit the window.”

All the writers went into the backyard.

Richard was along the house below the window. He was moving his foot in the grass. His foot lifted up something from under the grass.

Richard, “It was a sparrow that flew into the window pane.”

The writers looked at the sparrow in the grass.

Ellen saw the two shadows looking at the sparrow in the grass.

Ellen, “There’s nothing we can do here.”

Francis and Ellen return to Ellen’s room. Then Richard, Camry, and Liz returned to their rooms.

After the others got settled in their rooms.

In Ellen’s room Ellen spoke to Francis, “You saw them didn’t you.”

Francis, “Yes.”

Ellen, “Why didn’t you tell me?”

Francis, “I guess I just didn’t believe it. But it’s true you also saw them.”

Ellen, “Shouldn’t we tell Richard or something?”

Francis, “I think Richard is the one we should not tell anything to. Richard isn’t the writer he thinks he is. Something like the two below the window won’t make any sense to him at all.”

Ellen, “We need to make sure Camry is ok. First the branch and now the bird. She’s the one they’re after.”

Francis, “Your right. We better stay in the hall by the window. Whoever they are, that might keep them away.”

They both left the room and stood inside the window watching the remaining storm. It seemed to be leaving the area.

Unseen and unheard by Ellen and Francis; Greta, Lang, and Sally were just outside the back door watching Ellen and Francis.

Greta, “They saw both of you while you were standing below the window. You were just shadows to them. They’re not telling anyone. Don’t worry about us now. They can’t see or hear us. They are suspicious and trying to figure out what is going on.”

Greta, “I would like to know what is going on to. You’re both characters stuck in a book. They should not be seeing either of you.”

Sally, “I don’t know. It’s like we have a reason to be here so we leave the book. Then we just go back into the book for no reason.”

Lang, “Or we keep going back to the book because we don’t know any other place to be. We are minor characters and that’s what Richard wants use to do. We really need to get rid of Richard. He’s causing everything. We need a reason to leave and a place to be outside the book.”

Sally, “Since we come here, we can stay here. It’s a nice house with a view of a Lake. If it was ours we would have a reason for staying.”

Greta, “That’s right. It’s the house. The house in the book was burnt by the angry mob. Richard created the angry mob the same as creating us. He uses the computer to create things and cause things to happen. We can create things too. I’ll write Richard out of the house. The house will be ours and you can stay out of the book. Richard going to be the minor character now. See how he likes it.”

Around 1 am. Camry, Ellen, and Francis were inside the back door watching the storm. They watched as it went to nowhere the same as it appeared from nowhere. The skies became clear. They walked across the back yard to the cliff and the view across Lake Michigan was of a peaceful night without a storm ever being there. They all relaxed enjoying the view and then Camry when to her room, Ellen and Francis went to their room, and all slept comfortable the remainder of the night.

Around 2 am, Greta was in the book talking to Lang and Sally, “The other people act different then Richard. I have found out things I never knew, by listening to the other writers. They talk about “the cult” story. Richard only told us certain things. There is much more to life then he told us.

“I found people have traits, so writers give traits to characters. It seems Richard gave us evil traits. So while we’re doing things we are using the evil traits Richard gave us.

“But we don’t need to use evil traits for the others because they have good traits. We’ll use good traits for the others and evil traits for Richard. So by doing this it makes sense the both of you can come out of the book.

“To get you both out of the book you need a reason. There is a place to go, which like Sally said is this house.

“One of the good traits the others have is they do things because they want to, which is a good trait. While Richard does things because he has to. I don’t know why he has to but he shows by how he does things that he has to. Like scaring people in the book and the people, like the angry mob got scared and burnt down the only house we have ever known. We only know to live in a house and because of Richard the mob burnt ours down, so we’ll live in Richard house when he leaves. To get him to leave we’ll use the evil trait of scaring people.

“First I need to type the instructions into Richard’s computer so everyone knows what to do. To start with I should end the storm. We really didn’t need the storm anyway, since it was to scare people to leave the house. The computer can give the other writers instructions to make up their own minds and leave the house. This way they’re all be happy and we’ll be happy.

“Everyone will be happy except Richard. To get rid of Richard, I’ll use the evil traits he gave to me and scare him out of the house.

“Then both of you can come out of the book and all of us can live in the house.”

In the parlor Saturday morning, the writers were having breakfast.

Camry, “I looking forward to leaving today. But it’s such a nice day I feel like staying. It’s like the storm yesterday didn’t happen at all. And I called the hospital they told me that Mr. Chambers will be leaving this morning. It seems that right after the end of the storm he, for no reason, improved to the extend he could be released. It’s like everything got better for no reason. So the weekend ends on a good point for me. Maybe sometime we can all get together again.”

After breakfast, Richard took Camry to the train station. The train arrived on schedule.

Camry, “The weekend worked out better then I expected. After receiving your invitation I didn’t know if I should come or not. Now I’m glad I did. I’m really glad I didn’t miss the weekend ,even when it’s a short one.”

Richard, “Glad to have you here for a couple of days. Maybe we’ll see each other again sometime.”

Camry boarded the train and Richard returned to the house at the end of the curved lane beside the cliff.

Upon his arrival he was annoyed since Ellen and Francis had made arrangements to leave on the evening train at 8:30. As the host he offered to take them to the train and they accepted the offered.

Around 7:30, Richard took Ellen and Francis to the train station.

The train arrived at 8:30 pm right on time as the earlier one Camry left on had arrived. Richard said goodbye to his guest and they boarded the train.

Ellen, “Like Camry said, things got better for no reason. Almost true. Except there was a reason. Just know body knows what it was.”

It was getting dark as Richard drove out of the parking lot. Driving to the house in the dark caused Richard to think how the weekend did not work out as he hoped. After all, the guest were gone. Then he thought again to remember Miss Liz Brown was still in the house. To save the distance, Richard decided to not return on the well-traveled main road but a less traveled road. The road had sharp curves and ran beside several small lakes.

As he approached the lakes, a fog settled in. He slowed his speed while going around a curve. Just as the road straightened he saw shadows on the road beyond his head lights for a split second then they disappeared. Continuing around the corners he saw shadows numerous times just out of his headlights just before they disappeared. Richard drove slower now not sure if he wanted to continue on this road. He thought it might be better to turn around and go to the main road.

As he slowly curved around a sharp corner a large shadow in the fog jumped from the right side the road over the hood of his car and landed in the ditch beside the road. With its next jump, Richard saw it was a deer. Richard heard a single shot from behind his car. Illegal deer hunters ran across the road both behind and in front of his car. He stopped his car on the road and heard two more shots, a pause, and one more shot.

They all were shouting to the others which direction the deer was going.

Each climbed over the roadside fence with their guns. One of them fell onto the other side the fence. He got up and ran into the woods. A second one fell, his gun fired, and he laid there. Richard watched the hunter lay not moving. Then the hunter got up, grabbed his gun, and ran into the woods.

Then the sound of the hunters, chasing the deer, disappeared in the distance.

As Richard continued his drive through the fog in the dark, he felt the tension caused by the deer hunters. He found the main road and reached the lane to his house. As turning into the lane he saw the ambulance and sheriff’s car setting inside the gate. He saw someone on a stretcher behind the ambulance.

He asked the sheriff, “What’s going on?”

Sheriff, “I don’t really know yet. Someone made an emergency call and said there was someone standing by the gate. It looked like she was in a trance of some sort. We checked it out and there was a lady standing just inside the woods by the gate. Their putting her in the ambulance now. Taking her to the hospital to get checked out.”

Richard, “Who is it?”

Sheriff, “Don’t know her. Checked id on her. It said she’s Liz Brown.”

Richard, “It can’t be. Liz Brown is in the house.”

Sheriff, “Don’t know who’s in the house. But Liz Brown is getting in the ambulance.”

Richard saw for the first time that weekend Miss Liz Brown as she was being put into the ambulance.

Richard didn’t speak, hopped into his car, hurried through the woods, down the twisted lane, reaching his front door, he quickly stopped the car. He hurried toward the front door. He stopped walking.

He began upper body motion to walk forward. He cannot walk forward. He was instantly frighten and begins shivering.

Looked at door. He sensed something was behind the door. Richard was afraid of what’s behind the door. He made upper body motion to turn around. He cannot turn around.

The fear and shivering stop. Richard moved to the door. He moved door handle to open door. The door did not open.

Richard knocked on door.

Greta, answered, speaking as Greta, “Who is knocking?”

Richard stood a while; did not know if he should reply to the unrecognized voice.

Richard, “It’s Richard. Who are you?”

Greta, “Richard isn’t here.”

Richard, “ I’m Richard. Open this door. Right now.”

Greta, “Go away. Richard.”

Richard, “Open this door right now. This is my house.”

Greta, “This is my house.”

Richard, Is that you Liz?”

Greta, “Liz is in the ambulance.”

Richard, “How do you know something like that?”

Greta, “I’m Greta. You taught me how to know something like that.”

Richard, “Greta.”

Greta, “Greta in the house . In the book. The house you burnt down. You left us there. Go away Richard.”

Richard’s frightened shivers returned. Sweat came from his head and arms. His body was shaking.

In his panic, he rushed to car, and hurried down the crooked lane.

He reached the gate and sped away.

Richard never returned to Greta’s house.

Greta walked to her study, sat in her chair, and began typing on her keyboard. Lang and Sally now alive; slid out of book. Walked to Greta and stood each on one side.

One year later-the mystery book was a best seller.

Greta placed the new best-selling mystery story ever on the top shelf’.

The cover read “The Greatest Mystery Story Ever Told–Coauthor by Greta, Lang, and Sally.”

End


Minor Characters

Three minor characters are in a book. The book is in the authors house beside Lake Michigan in northwest Michagan. One of the three, a female characters, has come to life and is out of the book at the begining of the story. At the story climax she gets the other two to leave the book and come to life.

  • ISBN: 9781370337019
  • Author: Don Fern
  • Published: 2017-02-16 05:35:09
  • Words: 8962
Minor Characters Minor Characters