Saturday, June 29, 2013

Home Again (Circa 1994)

   After her band had finished their number Syd stepped up to the microphone.
   "Thank you for coming tonight folks."  Her eyes swept the crowd.  "It's wonderful to be back again after so many years.  Now I'd like to introduce Merry D, my daughter.  She's the real star of the show."
   The young girl came running out on to the stage, clutching her big guitar.  Dressed in white slacks and jacket, western hat and boots, identical to her mother's outfit.  She was a miniture Sidney Joyce:  Same long auburn hair, sparkling blue eyes and a big ShirleyTemple smile.
   The crowd clapped and cheered as she began to sing.  Syd and her band stepped back and let her have the stage, as everyone watched and fell in love with the twelve year old as she sang her heart out.  She was into her second song now and Syd accompanied her softly on her accordian as she sang, "South of the Border," in her clear soprano voice.  Syd's eyes moved proudly between the stage and the crowd,  but she still wondered had she made a mistake in coming back?  She wasn't as sure now.
   She smiled as old acquainatances danced by, enjoying the Saturday night barn dance.  It was 1944 and the war was on. Food, gas and nylons were rationed, and Walter Winchell's radio news sent chills out to anyone old enough to understand the world's situation. 
   The converted hayloft in Syd's old community was crowded with the local people, young and old.  Some of them were there to relax and dance, and some out of curiosity to see the big band from Chicago and the girl who had left years ago.
   Syd stepped up  to the mike again and announced the next song as the dancers waited espectantly on the floor. 
   "Ladies and gentlemen, this is my favorite. We hope you enjoy it as much as we do." And mother and daughter began to sing.  Their voices blending perfectly.  Just then in the middle of the song, Syd stopped and stood stock still as her eyes were magnetically drawn to a lone man standing away from the crowd.  He was dressed in gray.  A felt hat sat rakisly almost covering one eye and a handsome suit covered his muscled frame.  He was intently watching her and Merry D.
   My God, it was him!  Syd began to shake inside and the words to the song stuck in her throat.  Perspiration soaked her white jacket and her fingers felt as if they belonged to someone else's hand as they miraculously moved.  She stood on the stage, finally face to face with the man after so many years, but would he remember?
   Sydney Joyce counted her money again and tucked the ten dollars back safely in her purse.  The year was 1932 and she was sixteen years old and on her way to Chicago.  As she sat on the hard seat on the train the nausea came again and she leaned back in the seat and closed her eyes.  Alone and deeply hurt, the rumbling of the moving car lulled her momentarily and she smoothed her faded dress down over her stomach protectively, as the pain of rejection hurt again like a sudden blow.    


Thursday, June 13, 2013

Blinded (7)

   Reno crouched on the ground at Julia's side, his eyes wild. Sweat dripped off him and onto her face as he ripped her clothes.
   "Now you're mine. Now you'll be nice to me." His breath was hot and stale with liquor as he lashed out at her. He was going to rape her now! She was helpless.
   But instead, he raised his arm and she glimpsed a knife pointed at her. She braced herself for the end, for the cold steel to pierce her skin, cut her flesh. Seconds went by, then more, but a final blow didn't come, and time seemed to stand still.
   She opened her eyes to see a body fly through the air, knock Reno down. The knife went sailing into the tangle of weeds as the men rolled on the ground, the police arrived and handcuffed Reno.  Then Julia fainted.
   "It was Reno," she managed to say out of bruised lips. She was still lying on the sand.
   Johnny Agar helped her to sit up. Then carefully pressed a hankerchief to her battered face as he talked.
   "I know who it was Julia, I've had a eye on him lately.  I found out he escaped from prison last month and stole that limousine. The police said he had been convicted of stalking and attempted murder."
  Julia shuttered. "He always wanted me to go out with him."
   "Be thankful you never did, as I'm sure he had more than that in mind for you then."
   "You know Johnny, I sensed something about him. But, how did you find me now?"
   Johhny smiled at her. "I came over to get you to go walking and a neighbor said you'd left and was headed down here." As he talked he took off his jacket and wrapped it around her. "I could see you in the distance, then I saw someone come out of nowhere and chase you, then attack you. Well, thank God I had my cell with me and I called 911, then ran like hell."
   Julia began to cry and Johnny leaned down. "Julia," he murmured softly, "the nighnare is over, but it could be just beginning for us." She looked up into those twinkling eyes.
   The sun came out then exploding over the brilliant tropical greenery and the white tips of the crashing waves were bright as diamonds as he gathered her protectively in his arms.
   Safe at last, Julia smiled.
Dear Friends; I often take characters from short stories I've written and put them in my books.
 You probably recognized John Agar from Nightmares and Dreams. He was the FBI agent, posing as a drug buyer, that met Mario out on the ocean, that Mario shot and pushed overboard. The murder scene that Lindy Lewis witnessed.

Thanks, let me know if you think I should keep on, please.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Blinded (6)

   Julia's days were full. Johnny took her to the elegant places as he had promised. They ate oysters on the wharf.  Drank margueritas on a cruise and took early morning walks together.
She met new people on the beach, shopped and went sightseeing. Reno was there with the limo, whenever she needed transportation, but she still kept refusing his advances.
   It had began to rain the evening before, and stormed during the night and the radio promised clearing skies by noon and the weather man was right. Jullia rushed to get outside and to the beach. She grabbed her plaid base-ball cap and keys and ran down the condo stairs and out to the white sand where the shells crackled under her feet. Where the sea-gulls busily searched the sand for the tasty morsels the ocean had brought to their table again. She walked, refreshed and energized, by the beauty of her surroundings. She was alone on the beach, but soon the cooped up vacationers would burst out to join her.
   The sun broke through and gentle breezes chased the storm clouds away and she stopped to watch a group of sandpipers, fascinated as they moved together, as the waves came billowing over the beach, back and forth, like a marching band doing formations. She smiled.
   She walked on until she came to a familiar landmark, which was an old abandoned row boat and turned around to go back. She hadn't noticed a lone man standing in the dunes, until he started walking toward her. As he got closer she saw he had a white cap pulled low over his eyes and when he was about fifty yars away she realized something about him looked threatening. She kept walking and suddenly saw they were the only ones out on the beach. As they met each other, she avoided making eye-contact with him, but the hair on the back of her head prickled and a chill went down her back.
   A moment later, Julia turned around for a quick peek at him again and just then he turned too, and started running toward her. She yelled something and her heart started to pound as she ran. But within minutes, he caught up and had her in a viselike hold and her cap and keys fell to the ground. She struggled and fought against him, but he had one hand over her mouth, and the other twisting her arms in back of her. She was trapped and in desparate trouble. She fought as he forced her to walk ahead of him into the tangle of weeds and bushes in the dunes. Then his cap fell off and she recognized the man. It was Reno, the limo driver! Reaching a clearing, he pushed her down on the ground, and in that instant she screamed.
   He hit her then and blood ran from her nose and mouth. She cried out as everything blurred. Then he had a rope in his hand and bound her arms and legs and she lay there on the wet sand, her body twisted and tied. The air heavy with humidity.
"Reno, why?" she managed to cry out of swollen lips.
"You bitch! You think you're too good for me, how do you feel now?" And he hit her again, this time in her chest and she writhed in pain.