Monday, March 11, 2013

At The Library - Story

This weeks story to be published is At the Library.  I wrote the story as a way to introduce what is going on in different story lines.  I wanted to write several stories that were all very short and very descriptive of what was going on with Ned and Claire, Bartholomew and The Nanny, Topping and Bartholomew, etc.  I finally settled on one story where Topping and Bartholomew have a conversation that encompasses all of these developments.  I also tried to show more friendship between Bartholomew and Topping than what had previously been seen.  I am happy overall with the results, I especially enjoyed having a chance to start pursuing a new paint job on Bartholomew's car, courtesy of Topping.  Next entry will include the illustrations of the car.  But for now, here is an excerpt from At the Library.

“I knew you’d be here,” said Topping to Bartholomew who was tucked in behind stacks of gardening books.

“Aren’t I always here? I assume you’re looking up jobs,” said Bartholomew happy to see his friend.

“Actually, I’m looking at books about painting cars.”

“So, you’re working for Uncle Cy again?” asked Bartholomew as he closed a book on garden design.

Topping looked down, picked up a book and ran his fingers over the spine. “No, he hasn’t had me back, yet. Well, just one day a couple of weeks ago, but now it’s almost March and I don’t know when he’ll call.”

Bartholomew smiled at Topping. “I’m sure his work will pick up soon. It’s getting warmer out and people will want to show off their cars.”

Topping squinted at Bartholomew and shrugged, “Yeah, maybe.”

Bartholomew wondered what he could do to help Topping. He hated seeing him so down. Then he said it without even thinking, “Do you want to paint my car?”

Topping looked at him. He wasn’t sure if it was a joke or just a bad attempt to make him feel better. Bartholomew couldn’t believe he had said it. But then he thought to himself, “Why not?”

“Topping, I want you to paint my car,” said Bartholomew.

“No…no, I couldn’t. It’s expensive to do and it’s a nice car just like it is.”

“No it’s not. My car is white with a big pink stripe down each side. That is not nice, or pretty or anything but ugly,” said Bartholomew realizing that he never really had liked the color of that car.

“But Bartholomew, painting a car isn’t easy and the paint is expensive…and there’s no place to paint it…and, and … it’s expensive,” said Topping.

“Geez, you make it sound like painting a car is expensive,” joked Bartholomew. “Paint it at Uncle Cy’s place after-hours and I will pay you.”

“No, you can’t pay me, I’m your friend!” protested Topping. Other people in the library started to stare disapprovingly at the two of them.

Firmly but more quietly, Bartholomew looked straight at Topping and said, “Design a new paint job for my car and I will pay for the paint and five hundred dollars for you. Don’t worry, Uncle Jeffrey submitted my taxes in early February and I just got my return. I can cover this.”

Topping didn’t know what to say. He stood quietly for a while but then leaned forward and whispered to Bartholomew, “It’s going to have flames. I hope you don’t mind a 1974 Peugeot with flames.”

At the Library will be published this Friday, March 15, 2013, here and at:

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