Is it Friday already? I was hoping it was just Thursday. But I guess it isn't. I feel like I lost a day this week. Hmm, I suppose I did as far as getting the things on my "to-do" list done. Since I was gone all day on Tuesday working as an Election Judge, there wasn't much chance to do anything else.
Yesterday I spent much of the day working on creating the actual cover for the new Graham Quartet book! It's exciting to see it coming together. I only have a little bit left and then have to finish up the inside before I can upload everything and order my proof copy. I'm hoping I can do that by this weekend. How would you all like to read an interview with the Graham Quartet?
Last Saturday evening I went to one of my friend's birthday party. It was a costume party and here's my outfit. Can you guess who I was? I'll give you a hint: I'm from a children's book.
This story was rather fun. Yes, it is a bit exaggerated, but I was trying something. I picked an emotion from my "Emotion Thesaurus" and wrote a short story focusing on one emotion. You're mission, should you choose to accept it, is to decide what emotion is being portrayed. You have three weeks to do it in. Have fun! :)
What's Wrong with Caleb?
Tick, tock. Tick, tock.
“Ugh!” Pulling his pillow over his head, Caleb tried to muffle the sound of the clock. He had to get some sleep!
Tick, tock. Tick, tock.
It was no use. Finally, hurling the pillow across the room, he sat up and stared at the glowing red lights of his alarm clock. They stared back at him with a relentless gaze proclaiming that it was 4:27.
With another groan, Caleb flung himself back down, forgetting he had no pillow. As his head thumped the mattress, he heard the bell in the church steeple ring the half hour. “My clock must be off. Or that bell is,” he muttered. He wished sleep would come to him, but after ten minutes of trying, he gave up.
Leaving his bed unmade, he stumbled down the stairs of his small duplex and fumbled with the kitchen light switch. As light flooded the room, he blinked. “I gotta get a dimmer light. Or more sleep,” he thought, yawning and rubbing one hand over his unshaved chin.
His eyes fell on a pile of letters shoved back on the counter. At the sight of them, he flinched, his shoulders tightened, and he could feel the hair on the back of his neck rise. Quickly he turned away. “Breakfast. Got to get something to eat.”
Once breakfast, if a pop-tart and a glass of orange juice could be called such, was eaten, Caleb left his dishes in the sink and hurried from the kitchen. Dashing up the stairs two at a time, he stopped in his room. The bed wasn’t made, his dirty clothes were lying strewn on the floor, and the full laundry basket which held his freshly washed clothes, courtesy of his aunt, waited to be put away.
Deciding that the bed should be made, he stepped across the room and pulled up the bottom sheet. “Lumps. Must be my socks. Yep.” And Caleb fished under the sheet and pulled out his socks. He looked about him. Should he toss them on the floor or– “The basket. I’ll just put the clothes away first.”
He jerked open a drawer of his dresser. It was full, but he took no notice and squeezed and crammed the clean clothes in, shoving the drawer until it closed about two inches then tossing the basket to the floor.
“Now what was I doing?” He looked about the room. “Uh, right, bed.”
The bottom sheet was straightened before he hurried across the room to look out the window.
Tick, tock. Tick, tock.
Jerked back from his thoughts, Caleb returned to his bed making. But he seemed unable to stay focused. Half a dozen times he left the bed still unmade and walked to the window, another room, to the top of the stairs. At last, forgetting that his pillow still lay on the floor where he had tossed it, he disappeared downstairs.
He tripped over a rug in the living room, knocked a lamp off the end table, and managed to grab the phone before it too landed on the floor. With a hand that trembled, he dialed a number.
“Robert, it’s Caleb. Um, . . .” There was a long pause.
“Caleb? You still there?”
“Yeah. Uh, tonight, um, you want to come over for supper?”
“What are you having?”
“Uh, what do you want?”
A chuckle came across the line. “Caleb, you don’t usually invite someone over for supper and then ask what they want. But, if it’ll help, pizza is always good.”
“Right, pizza. Okay.” He hung up and stared at the opposite wall. He dropped the phone in his lap and wiped his moist palms on his jeans. He could hear the clock ticking.
Starting as though the sound had been a shot, Caleb snatched the phone and pushed “talk.” His heart was pounding against his ribs.
“Hello?” There was a quaver in his voice.
“Caleb, are you all right?”
“Yeah. The ring startled me.”
“When are we eating?”
“Let’s do six. Sorry, forgot to say. No, make that 5. Or–Oh, whenever you can come.”
“All right.” The other voice was hesitant. “Caleb, do you want me to come over sooner? Or do you want to come over here?”
“No, I’m good. Supper at six.”
“All right. See you then.”
Robert hurried up the steps two at a time and knocked on the door. There was no immediate answer and he knocked again, glancing about the dusky yard and watching the flashing, dancing lights of the fire flies. “Where is that guy?” he muttered to himself, opening the screen door and trying the doorknob. It was locked. Sighing with exasperation, Robert pounded on the door with his fist. “Caleb, open this door!”
It was several minutes and many door poundings later before the door was unlocked and Caleb stood in the gloomy entryway his hair rumpled. “Sorry. Wasn’t paying attention.”
Robert looked at his cousin with raised eyebrows. Then, stepping in, he pushed the door shut behind him. “Weren’t paying attention to someone pounding on your door? That’s the third time this has happened this week. Come on, Caleb, what’s going on?”
What do you think is going on?
Have any idea what emotion I'm writing about?
Will you be back next week?