It’s been an uncreative day for the most part, and one of my great failures as a Wrimo is that I get pretty great snippet ideas for fiction, but they never congeal into a grand mosaic story. Enjoy:
We have to feed the beast occasionally. It keeps the earthquakes down and the weather temperate. If we leave her hungry for too long, we get the fog. No one can see and then people disappear. As in without a trace.
Not a big deal anymore, though. This spot is twenty meters down from the surface. Don’t get close to the edge. We’ve shined the searchlight in once. Light just falls in. Sonar can’t get a reading but will annoy her at some frequencies. No one knows how far down it goes.
The natives fed her pubescent young women. Their ancestors fed her infant boys. We’ve found she really likes whole papayas wrapped in bacon. Who’s a hungry beastie! Who’s a hungry girl!
You’ll want to be careful around the cook. Miguelle is a Clothwyck spy. Oh no, we figured it out only a couple of weeks after we employed her. Sanford wanted to make a message of her, but that was before we tried her exquisite custard tarts. We’ve been feeding her rumors for over a year now, and she’s been content to besiege the family with her culinary masterpieces. She might even know we know. I would guess she likes it better here than at home. Can’t say as I’d blame her. For now we keep a silent accord.
I’d see them every Wednesday. Sergéy would arrive shortly before eleven-o’clock, order his cappuccino and take the southwest corner table. Iván would come through the door soon after the hour and join Sergéy directly. The barista knew Iván took Darjeeling with a squeeze of lemon and a drop of honey, and brought it to the table. The two men would talk for hours in hushed tones. Those that overheard their conversation and understood Russian never were able to decipher the archaic dialect the two men shared. But when I passed by them I could hear the mandolins. Iván’s district was Clement and Sergéy’s was Stanyon, and between them the underground community was kept in stern rule and a stable peace for thirty-two years.*
* Inspired by true events. These two guys years ago would be at the same table every Tuesday at the Royal Grounds Cafe at Geary and 17th. I can’t say for certain that they were mafyosos, but I’ve heard the mandolins.