Noir: Dropout

Avatar Author: Pablo Vilas "Ascension" writer's notes are here, . Corrections and improvements, please! Born 1948, married, two daughters. Living in Seattle, Washington state, USA. Retired from a career in... Read Bio

Traffic growls and hisses from the darkness outside. Inside, a telephone dial zips and purrs a few times. A woman’s voice says, “You said I could call any time, right? Well, guess what?” The elevator motor comes on. Vincenzo comes in the room.

Painfully, I sit up in the love seat. “Vincenzo, I have a favor to ask.”

“What, Emilio?” He sounds annoyed. I gather that things up here have changed since the suitcase incident.

“I need to buy some medicine, and it isn’t cheap. Would you please give me an advance?”

“Let me count the money, and we’ll see.”

He sets the moneybag on his desk by the cash box, and goes next-door. “What did he say, dear?” comes a woman’s voice. They’re drunk and not real interested in me. I can’t wait much longer. I go to the double doors, open one, and push the button over the latch. I’ll pace off my jitters in the corridor while they decide.

I take three steps. The corridor disappears; I’m outdoors in a cold fog. The inner pockets of my jacket are stuffed with wads of paper.

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  1. Avatar Pablo Vilas

    August 2nd wrote up the simple steps for connecting two existing ficlets. It worked for me the first time; you’re the man! I pasted his doc at the end of my writer’s notes, under “Technical stuff.”

  2. Ahfl_icon THX 0477

    Ah, a withdrawal stupor of a theft. Nice explanation of how it happened and how it is not entirely a conscious choice of the otherwise loyal maitre-de

  3. Avatar Pablo Vilas

    I decided not to describe the theft. This is a mystery, right? So, she could have framed him. Or a third party might have entered; the door is unlocked. Lots of fun in store for our PIs.

  4. Avatar JonB

    I assumed the theft was an autonomic act of Fabrizio during a withdrawl-induced absent episode – but you’re right: any number of things could have happened during that suitably disorientating jump-cut between inside and out.

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